Monday, April 20, 2020

COVID-19 impacts on regional utilities and parks

The Metro Vancouver Regional District provides water, sewer, and solid waste disposal services on behalf of its member municipalities which includes Langley City. The regional district also owns and operates parks throughout Metro Vancouver.

The regional district has posted some statistics about the change in demand for its utilities since the province declared a state of emergency to support COVID-19 response in mid-March.

The demand for water and sewer services has been consistent compared to previous years, even with many businesses shut down.

Weekly water utilization during COVID-19 state of emergency in Metro Vancouver. Select chart to enlarge. Source: Metro Vancouver.

The biggest change has been a shift in peak water demand in the mornings during weekdays. People are likely getting up later in the day as many people no longer need to commute for work.

There has been a 10% decrease in solid waste (garbage) being delivered to Metro Vancouver waste transfer stations. This is likely due to many businesses being shut down.

Solid waste delivered to Metro Vancouver transfer stations by day during COVID-19 state of emergency. Select chart to enlarge. Source: Metro Vancouver.

There has been a large increase in regional park utilization. The regional district has noticed a 40% increase in park utilization. This is supported by Google’s data which shows an overall 20% increase in park utilization throughout the province.

Parks utilization in BC. Select chart to enlarge. Source: Google COVID-19 Community Mobility Report.

Interestingly, BC is the only province in Canada that has seen an increase in park utilization since the start of the COVID-19 state of emergency.

With more people in our parks, Metro Vancouver has created a video and guidelines to help keep people healthy.

Physical Distancing in Metro Vancouver's regional parks from Metro Vancouver on Vimeo.

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