This case study examines solutions to the existing ecological and human health risks facing Rotary Park, as well as the expected impacts of climate change in exacerbating existing water quality and pond health concerns. The Township of Havelock-Belmont-Methuen has long viewed the pond in Rotary Park as a defining feature of their community, and one of its most prized natural environments. The Rotary Park Pond located at Rotary Park is an area where residents can enjoy the pond, picnic areas and soccer field all in the natural outdoors. In recent years, however, the health of the pond has been jeopardized by low water levels leading to increased turbidity and scum. The Township is concerned that if work is not undertaken, a changing climate could exacerbate the decline in the pond’s health, threating both the wildlife that make their habitat in the pond, and also the community members and visitors who use it for recreational purposes. The Township of Havelock-Belmont-Methuen seeks to conduct dredging within a pond known as the ‘Rotary Park Pond’ on a piece of municipally owned land. Dredging will reduce the scum that has built up over the last number of years due to low water levels and reduce the threat that climate change poses to the wildlife that rely on this pond’s natural habitat. It is hopeful that the Township may also hit a natural spring within the pond that could potentially assist with a healthier shoreline maintaining water quality and providing vital habitat. The area to be dredged is roughly 430 m², while the pond itself is much larger.
This case study was led by ICLEI Canada in 2018 and involved the Township of Havelock-Melmont-Methuen; the case study describes a project to dredge a locally significant public pond impacted by low water levels that have been exacerbated in recent years by climate change. Dredging was intended to reduce scum built up over a number of years due to low water levels and to reduce threats that climate change poses to wildlife that rely on the pond’s natural habitat. It was hoped that dredging would also hit a natural spring within the pond that could assist with sustaining a healthier shoreline, maintaining water quality, and providing vital habitat. The dredged area was approximately 430 square meters. The project was set back by delays in the permitting process and unseasonably wet summer conditions and therefore had not been implemented by the time of the study’s publication.