Across Canada Workshop Series on Resilient Rainwater Management: BC's Water Balance Team
An Introduction to the Team Members
The Partnership’s Water Balance Team for the Across Canada Workshop Series on Resilient Rainwater Management comprises Ted van der Gulik, Kim Stephens, Richard Boase and Jim Dumont. All four will be part of the presentation team for the Calgary Workshop, the first in the series of five. For the other four, the presentation team will comprise Ted, Kim and Jim.
Relevant background and career accomplishments are highlighted below, and are complete with “quotable quotes”. To download a PDF copy of the set of Biographical Sketches, click on An Introduction to BC’s Water Balance Team.
About Ted van der Gulik
Until his retirement in 2014, Ted van der Gulik was the Senior Engineer in the Ministry of Agriculture. Over the course of his 35-year career with the Ministry, Ted built an international reputation for his leading-edge work in agricultural water resource management. This was highlighted in 2000 when he received the Irrigation Association’s prestigious Crawford Reid Memorial Award, recognizing his work in promoting proper irrigation techniques.
Ted has led numerous water projects over the years that have had a large impact not only on individual farms but also on entire communities and watersheds in the province of BC. The many guides and manuals he has written are used locally and around the world.
Ted’s accomplishments include two Premier’s Awards of Excellence: in 2009, for the Water Balance Model; and in 2010, for the Agriculture Water Demand Model. His contributions go beyond agriculture and encompass integrated watershed planning initiatives. His provincial leadership in water conservation and innovative water sustainability practices demonstrates his ability to see the bigger picture and encourage different disciplines to work towards a shared goal.
Ted van der Gulik has been nominated for the 2014 Premier’s Legacy Award of Excellence. This award recognizes individuals who have made exceptional and lasting contributions to the BC Public Service and/or the province of British Columbia during their public service career.
“The Partnership for Water Sustainability is working with the Province on an array of programs that support implementation of the new Water Sustainability Act as well as a water balance way-of-thinking in the local government setting. Notable examples of collaboration include the Water Sustainability Action Plan, released in 2004, and the Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Education Initiative, launched in 2012,” reports Ted van der Gulik.
“BC is at the dawn of an exciting new era in water and watershed management. The Water Sustainability Act provides a fresh opportunity and framework for a uniquely British Columbian ‘top-down / bottom-up’ approach. The provincial government, local governments, stewardship sector and others can formally align efforts and collaborate to implement watershed-based solutions.”
About Kim Stephens
Kim Stephens is an engineer-planner and is the Executive Director of the Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC. His four decades of experience cover the spectrum of water resource and infrastructure engineering issues and applications, from master planning and modelling to implementation of capital projects. He specializes in public policy and has played a leadership role in a series of initiatives in British Columbia related to water sustainability, rainwater management and green infrastructure.
More than a decade ago, Kim Stephens looked at rainfall differently and developed the Water Balance Methodology that the Province subsequently incorporated in Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia. Since 2003, Kim has been responsible for developing and delivering the the Water Sustainability Action Plan for British Columbia, the partnership umbrella for a water-centric approach to community planning and development.
Kim Stephens has been invited to speak on “the BC experience” and make keynote presentations at forums in Australia and throughout North America. His work related to the UniverCity sustainable community at Simon Fraser University on Burnaby Mountain is featured in the book Dancing with the Tiger: Learning Sustainability Step by Natural Step, by Brian Nattras and Mary Altomare (2002).
In 2010, Kim Stephens received the Bridge Building Award from the BC Water & Waste Association. This recognizes individuals who help build linkages between BCWWA and other groups.
“At the dawn of the 21st century, the mantra in British Columbia was ‘overcoming fear and doubt’ in order to move ahead with projects such as the East Clayton Sustainable Community in the City of Surrey, and UniverCity at Simon Fraser University on Burnaby Mountain in the City of Burnaby,” recalls Kim Stephens.
“Circa 2000, translating high expectations into practical design guidelines meant revisiting accepted drainage engineering practice. This need led to development of the Water Balance Methodology; and in turn the need to generate numbers led to development of the Water Balance Model as an extension of the Guidebook.”
About Jim Dumont
Jim Dumont is the Engineering Applications Authority for the Water Balance Model Partnership. He is a recognized specialist in hydrologic modeling and infrastructure engineering. For many years, he has been teaching water resource and modelling seminars as part of the professional development program provided by APEGBC.
Jim Dumont evolved the Water Balance Methodology to address the relationship between rainfall volume control and resulting flow rates in streams; and developed the Stream Health Methodology as the technical foundation for the provincial ‘Beyond the Guidebook’ initiative in 2007. This methodology correlated stream erosion as a measure of stream health.
Jim Dumont’s innovation and many accomplishments as Engineering Applications Authority encompass creation of the technical foundation for both web-based tools, namely the Water Balance Model Express for Landowners and Drainage Infrastructure Screening Tool.
The latter is web-based and embeds a common-sense engineering methodology that allows local governments to quickly and efficiently assess the hydraulic performance of storm sewer systems, carry out redevelopment and climate change scenario comparisons, generate immediate answers and establish priorities for detailed analysis and capital planning purposes.
“The methodology integrates the components of the water balance, and assesses how they change as the percentage of hard surface increases: runoff goes up; infiltration and surface evaporation both go down. Evaporation is critical and typically gets overlooked in conventional drainage modelling,” explains Jim Dumont.
“What most people overlook is that evaporation is almost equal to infiltration. This means there is increasingly more volume to manage as the landscape is built over.”
About Richard Boase
Richard Boase is a geoscientist, and is the District of North Vancouver’s Environmental Protection Officer. He is also Co-Chair of the Water Balance Model Partnership. Richard is an innovator and is the District’s project manager for case study demonstration applications that have been driving the evolution of the Water Balance Model for the past decade.
Land redevelopment and densification to create the Lynn Valley Town Centre resulted in an applied research and implementation opportunity. The District of North Vancouver is pioneering the integrated application of performance targets for runoff management, at the neighbourhood scale, to protect stream health. Under Richard’s leadership, the District has also demonstrated the cost-effectiveness and power of imagery analysis as a rainwater management tool.
Richard Boase is the Water Balance Model Partnership’s lead for development of the web-based Water Balance Model Express for Landowners, and the District of North Vancouver’s Hastings Creek Watershed Blueprint is the demonstration application for this web-based tool. The Express has pre-set performance targets that are watershed-specific. This means that landowners will then be able to focus on the choices and the geometrics of fitting appropriate rainfall capture measures onto their properties.
“So many of us in local government are still searching for the magical ‘silver bullet’ that with the stroke of a pen will resolve all our watershed issues and challenges while at the same time stimulate economic activity and accommodate growth,” states Richard Boase.
“The time has come to make the hard decisions and to follow through with policy, regulations and bylaws that require simple, landscape-based, outcome-driven solutions so that we can start watershed restoration now.”
“We now have the tools and experience to ‘design with nature’. We believe that BC is now at a tipping point. Implementation of a new culture for urban watershed protection and restoration is within our grasp.”