Septic Smart Survey Continues

Friday, July 15, 2016


Salmon Arm, BC – The next phase of the Columbia Shuswap Regional District’s (CSRD) Septic Smart program is in full swing. Ambassadors are visiting rural communities to talk to residents about their septic systems and provide educational resources, all to help improve the health of Shuswap Lake.

Four communities have recently been visited, including Anglemont, Gardom Lake, Swansea Point and Sunnybrae, with Septic Smart ambassadors heading to White Lake and Malakwa within the coming weeks. “We have received positive feedback so far,” says Ben Van Nostrand, Environmental Health Services Team Leader for the CSRD.  “Residents have an interest in the protection of the quality of Shuswap Lake and have been generally happy to take the survey and receive the homeowner guide.”

The incentive for a chance to win one of two iPad mini 4’s has also increased the online survey response rate. “We are excited that 15% of all property owners in the program area have completed the survey online,” says Van Nostrand. “And we intend to reach out to at least another 40% of residents by the end of the summer.”

Nola Kotow, a resident of Swansea Point, was the winner of the first iPad mini 4. Kotow was overjoyed when she got the call.  “I never win anything!” she exclaimed when Lindsay Eason, Septic Smart Coordinator met with her to deliver the iPad. When asked if she remembered the Septic Smart program from 2012, Kotow stated, “I learned so much from the program four years ago. I didn’t know you shouldn’t use a garburator. I now compost all my vegetable trimmings for my flower pots. It was nice to learn something new.”

Kotow had also made several other changes since 2012. She avoids buying laundry detergent with phosphates and bleach, and recently had her septic tank pumped. “I now have a set schedule for inspections and pump outs that is right for my system,” Kotow adds. As for the iPad, Kotow is “keen to learn how to use it to take photos, listen to music and read books”.

The best thing property owners can do for their septic system is to have regular inspections from a registered professional and to think about what they’re putting down the drain. “Phosphates, bleaches and other chemicals can wreak havoc on your septic system (and the environment), and it’s a good idea to avoid fats, grease and other items that can clog your system,” adds Eason.

The CSRD is building on the foundations Septic Smart laid in 2012, and will continue to increase awareness of the importance of maintaining a properly functioning septic system as a tool to improve the health of Shuswap Lake.

Residents can learn more about Septic Smart and enter the prize draw at

For further information please contact:

Ben Van Nostrand, Team Leader
Environmental Health Services
T: 250.833.5940

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