Note to Reader:
In March 2017, the 2nd annual North Vancouver workshop organized by the North Shore Streamkeepers attracted participants from communities throughout the Metro Vancouver region, and on a Saturday afternoon!
To support the workshop organizers, the Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC prepared a downloadable document that served both as a workshop handout and a legacy resource. It provides context for the workshop and watershed-based action.
CAUSE-AND-EFFECT: What Happens on the Land Does Matter!
The North Shore municipalities in the Metro Vancouver region of British Columbia are mountainside communities. They are defined by the wilderness at the top, the water at the bottom, and the creek channels that connect the two. The stewardship history and ethic are embedded in the community fabric. The rainwater lens is integral to the form and character of land development because stream health matters.
Sustainable Watershed Systems,
through Asset Management
On March 18th 2017, the North Shore Streamkeepers group hosted a workshop for community leaders and groups from North Vancouver and from around the Metro Vancouver region. The workshop informed participants about Sustainable Watershed Systems: Primer on Application of Ecosystem-based Understanding in the Georgia Basin.
“Informed stream stewardship volunteers can spur local government decision-makers to capitalize on (and not miss) opportunities to implement whole-system, water balance practices,” stated Kim Stephens, keynote speaker for the workshop and author of the Primer. He is the Executive Director, Partnership for Water Sustainability. He introduced the audience to the vision for Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management.
To Learn More:
Click on What Happens on the Land Does Matter! – Moving Towards “Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management” to download and view the complete set of slides comprising the storyline delivered by Kim Stephens.
Journey to a Water-Resilient Future
“Our read of the audience was that they were engaged (we never lost them) and that most learned new and useful things. So many were taking notes! Breakout groups were asked to identify possible community actions that can support a sustained focus on improving watersheds. Great ideas emerged from the breakout discussions,” stated Glen Parker, workshop co-organizer.
“Afterwards, many people expressed their appreciation for the information, the ability to discuss their ideas, and for the networking that occurred.”
“We believe that if the workshop helps raise community awareness about watershed issues, while at the same time educating decision-makers, then the outcome will be better decisions.”
Whole-System, Water Balance Approach
“The North Shore Streamkeepers have learned from Sustainable Watershed Systems: Primer on Application of Ecosystem-based Understanding in the Georgia Basin. By hosting the workshop, and building on what we have learned, we wished to achieve four outcomes,” added Glen Parker. He identified these as:
- a bit of education – get people pointed in the right direction;
- a bit of motivation – we may not be able to solve ‘world hunger’ but there are things we can do personally and in our communities to make a difference;
- a bit of networking – we want people with shared values to see they are not alone and that together they can both enjoy themselves (working in groups on tangible projects is rewarding) and leave a trail of positive impacts.
- a bit of promotion – we wish to support the work that Kim Stephens (Partnership for Water Sustainability) and Julie Wilson (UBC) are doing to implement a whole-system, water balance approach.
Benefits of the whole-system approach include less flooding, less stream erosion, and more streamflow during dry weather when needed most. These water balance benefits ultimately translate into lower life-cycle costs and a water-resilient future!
To Learn More:
Download Stormwater Impacts Communities and Creeks – What Can Streamkeepers Do? to read the complete story about the workshop program and desired outcomes.