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Convening for Action in British Columbia

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"Convening for Action is a provincial initiative that supports innovation on-the-ground. From the perspective of those leading and/or participating in regional programs, having this community-of-interest provides the opportunity to 'tell our story' and 'record our history' as a work-in-progress," states Ray Fung.

Green, Heal and Restore the Earth: Ian McHarg’s “Design with Nature” vision has influenced implementation of British Columbia’s Water Sustainability Action Plan

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In his 1969 book, Design With Nature, Ian McHarg pioneered the concept of environmental planning. "So, I commend Design with Nature to your sympathetic consideration. The title contains a gradient of meaning. It can be interpreted as simply descriptive of a planning method, deferential to places and peoples, it can invoke the Grand Design, it can emphasize the conjunction with and, finally it can be read as an imperative. DESIGN WITH NATURE!," wrote Ian McHarg.

Celebrating a Decade of Success: “Green infrastructure practices have moved from pilot project to neighbourhood and watershed scale approaches,” reflects Paul Ham, an early green infrastructure champion

“I see my years of chairing the Green Infrastructure Partnership as helping to get the ball rolling and ideas disseminated, on green infrastructure, all of which has subsequently been taken up by others to a much greater degree of implementation and success. Our efforts a decade ago moved the state of-the-art of green infrastructure to a more mainstream level," said Paul Ham.

Gas Tax Grant Program: British Columbia Links Infrastructure Funding to Implementation of “Watershed-Based Approach”

"Avoidance of a future financial liability is a driver for Sustainable Service Delivery. This starts with land use and watershed-based planning. No matter what level of Asset Management implementation a local government is at, the key message is that including nature, natural resource management and natural services into their thinking should be done at the beginning - and the beginning has everything to do with planning," stated Glen Brown.

“Clearly, the waterbucket.ca website is a ‘go-to’ resource for many,” observes Mike Tanner, Chair

“The website is designed to provide the complete story on integrated land and water management – why, what, where and how. Because we have such a strong following in the United States, we do make a special effort to include American stories. We cannot help but wonder about the extent to which the BC experience may be subtlety influencing thinking in the United States," states Mike Tanner.

Celebrating a Decade of Success: “We try to inspire communities to have a vision of their future, what they will look like on the ground in fifty years,” says Tim Pringle

"After ten years of involvement with the Partnership for Water Sustainability, I feel as committed as ever. At times, I find myself amazed at the collective expertise of the volunteers who work in Partnership initiatives. Their wisdom makes the work of the Partnership efficient; it allows a great deal to be done with very limited dollars. We collaborate with practitioners as equals and take services to their territories," states Tim Pringle.

ACTION PLAN 10-YR CELEBRATION: “The waterbucket.ca website allows our ‘convening for action’ partners to record their history even as they are creating it,” says Mike Tanner, waterbucket.ca Chair

4TH IN A SERIES: “The waterbucket.ca website facilitates communication and integration across initiatives, regions, sectors and disciplines and links these in order to foster development and implementation of ‘Design with Nature’ practices. We share stories about how practitioners can reduce project (and environmental) costs by applying ‘Design with Nature’ principles," explained Mike Tanner.

ACTION PLAN 10-YR CELEBRATION: “Water-centric thinking, planning and doing have become more than just a vision,” says John Finnie, CAVI Past-Chair

3RD IN A SERIES: “When CAVI began, we established a goal that Vancouver Island would be well on its way to water sustainability by 2010. CAVI has moved forward significantly and successfully promoted the message of water sustainability by engaging governments, developers and the community in water-centric thinking, planning and development activities," states John Finnie.

FLASHBACK TO 2009 (video): Eric Bonham introduced an international audience to “Convening for Action on Vancouver Island” at the Resilient Cities Conference

“We are being bold in using the mantra: What do we want Vancouver Island to look like in 50 years? Rather than being guided by 3-year municipal and 4-year provincial government election cycles, we are saying….look 50 years out and backcast to determine what decisions we need to make now to create the future that we want," stated Eric Bonham.