”Here in the Okanagan we are facing our own water issues as a result of unsustainable forms of development that are now leading to unprecedented levels of habitat and species extinction. Equity of access to water is also an issue that is becoming more problematic as water becomes an increasingly scarce resource,” stated John Wagner.
2006 Celebration of World Water Day at UBC-Okanagan University
“Land use planning cannot be disconnected from water use planning. People’s transformation of the landscape has impacts on the natural water balance. We must move towards ‘water-centric’ planning, where water is a key consideration, whether planning for a site or for the entire province. In 2003, droughts, forest fires and floods created a teachable moment,” stated Kim Stephens.
Dr. Jeff Curtis posed this question to the audience to provide context for the panel discussion: “How long until we run out of water in the Okanagan during a drought year?” He then proceeded to illustrate the inevitability of a collision course. His key message was that the time horizon is relatively short.