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Asset Management for Sustainable Service Delivery: Supporting the Vision for Integration of Natural Systems Thinking into “The BC Framework”

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"Coined in 2010, the term Sustainable Service Delivery was introduced by the Province to integrate financial accountability, infrastructure sustainability and service delivery. While the BC Framework was only launched in early 2015, it has garnered both national and international attention. Other provinces, as well as the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, are integrating the BC Framework into their respective work," wrote Glen Brown.

FLASHBACK TO 2009: Looking Back, the Future is Now – Yesterday’s Policies and Expectations for Green Communities have been Evolving into Today’s Standards and Practices

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Provincial programs provide direction as to where the Province wants to go with Living Water Smart and the Green Communities Initiative. “At the end of the day, planners and engineers and other disciplines must come together to determine the issues and solutions. No statute will help them do that. Living Water Smart is about motivating and inspiring everyone to embrace shared responsibility," stated Lynn Kriwoken.

“The Partnership for Water Sustainability in British Columbia is the keeper of the GIP legacy,” observes Paul Ham, a Past-Chair of the Green Infrastructure Partnership

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“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.

Ian McHarg’s “Design With Nature” vision has influenced development of the Ecological Accounting Protocol

Renowned landscape architect, writer and educator Ian L. McHarg (1920-2001) was best known for introducing environmental concerns in landscape architecture. His 1969 book Design With Nature pioneered the concept of environmental planning. "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.

FLASHBACK TO 2011: The Most Efficient Infrastructure is ‘Design with Nature’ – Start With Water Sustainability (President’s Perspective – an article by Tim Pringle foreshadowed development of the Ecological Accounting Protocol)

“Designing with nature is efficient. It amounts to using income from natural capital rather than drawing down the resource,” wrote Tim Pringle. “The key principle is that settlement and ecology are equal values. This condition is prerequisite for designing with nature and it supports better control of the life-cycle costs of providing infrastructure for the built environment.”

Asset Management for Sustainable Service Delivery: “Nature’s assets provide vital community infrastructure services,” explained Kim Stephens at a meeting of Metro Vancouver’s Stormwater Interagency Liaison Group (Nov 2016)

“The Ecological Accounting Protocol is the lynch-pin for Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management,” stated Kim Stephens. "The three pathways by which rainfall reaches streams are ‘infrastructure assets’. The pathways provide ‘water balance services’. With this frame of reference, local governments would then use the Ecological Accounting Protocol to develop a more complete financial picture.”

Zoning Bylaw Precedent: West Vancouver integrates Water Balance Solutions into Site Development Decision Process

The municipality has applied longstanding legislation – S.523 and S.527 of the Local Government Act – and amended its Zoning Bylaw to make a landscaping plan a building permit requirement for every lot in residential zones. “It is fair to characterize the District’s use of S.523 and S.527 as a basis for private property stormwater management and landscaping requirements as ‘cutting edge’," stated Chris Bishop.

DESIGN WITH NATURE: Renowned developer and urban thinker Jonathan Rose argues for new criteria for urban planning and development in his epic book ‘The Well-Tempered City’

"The well-tempered city is not just a dream. Our current best practices in the planning, design, engineering, economics, social science, and governance of cities are moving us closer to increasing urban wellbeing. Even if these actions have only a modest effect when taken alone, their power emerges when they are integrated. Well-tempered cities will be refuges from volatility," wrote Jonathan Rose.

Sustainable Watershed Systems: New California law recognizes meadows, streams as green infrastructure

"It’s a major shift in the way we think about conservation — nature isn’t just ‘nice to have’ but an absolutely critical piece of our water infrastructure systems,” said Genevieve Bennett. “There are hundreds of communities all over the world who understood that years ago, and started figuring out how to make sure they were protecting their water sources. And now we’re starting to see that concept making its way into higher-level policy.”

‘The Well-Tempered City': An Epic Book, and Why

"I love epic stories with universal meaning for varied audiences around the world. In sum, that is why I think Jonathan F.P. Rose‘s new book will become a must-read classic. And, if 400-pagers are not your style, it’s at worst a well-written, must-browse wonder, with relevant lessons for us all," wrote Chuck Wolfe in a book review. "Even those who prefer the short length of a tweet should immerse themselves in Rose’s ideas."

Leading Change in the United States: Forester Media publishes White Paper on Green Infrastructure Case Studies for Stormwater

The report highlights several innovative green infrastructure stormwater projects. "By examining projects over diverse parts of the country, readers will be able to assess trends and techniques that consider various stakeholders in their stormwater projects," wrote Margaret Buranen. "There are a variety of ways to handle rainwater runoff with green infrastructure and many factors to consider when evaluating options."

Gowanus Canal (New York City): America’s most toxic waterway gets some help

"Our infrastructure should be as resilient as the New Yorkers that call this great city home, Managing stormwater is a critical step on our path towards sustainability. This project proves that taking care of our environment and providing amenities to the public are not mutually exclusive — in fact, quite the opposite is true. The more green infrastructure and open space we create, the greater the public’s stewardship," stated New York City Council Member Stephen Levin.

Cities Face a Plethora of Challenges in a Rapidly Urbanizing World: Developer Jonathan Rose on The Well-Tempered City

Margaret Jackson writes that: "In The Well-Tempered City, Jonathan Rose condenses a lifetime of research and firsthand experience into a model for designing and reshaping cities with a goal of equalizing their prospects for opportunity. 'The most competitive cities have the most flat or equal landscape of opportunity,' Rose says. We can measure all of this and make decisions to achieve these outcomes'.”