ARTICLE: “Early uptake of the vision for Sustainable Watershed Systems has exceeded our expectations,” wrote Kim Stephens, Partnership for Water Sustainability in British Columbia (Asset Management BC Newsletter, Winter 2017)

A watershed is an integrated system. The need to protect headwater streams and groundwater resources in BC requires that communities expand their view from one that looks at a site in isolation to one that considers all sites, the watershed landscape, streams and foreshores, groundwater aquifers, and so on, as an integrated system.

A watershed is an integrated system. The need to protect headwater streams and groundwater resources in BC requires that communities expand their view from one that looks at a site in isolation to one that considers all sites, the watershed landscape, streams and foreshores, groundwater aquifers, and so on, as an integrated system.

Sustainable Watershed Systems

“A new way of thinking about municipal infrastructure has the attention of the local government world. Simply put, natural watershed systems are infrastructure assets – we must manage and protect them as such,” wrote Kim Stephens in the opening paragraph of the first of two companion articles published in the Winter 2017 issue of the Asset Management BC Newsletter.

Kim Stephens is the Executive Director, Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC.

Kim Stephens_Jan2017_v3_120pStarting in November 2015, we have introduced the vision for Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management to an array of audiences in a variety of forums and media.”

“So, what were the defining moments in 2016? In August, my keynote address at a national conference in Australia provided a platform to reflect on ‘parallel journeys’. In October, publication of an op-ed in the Vancouver Sun demonstrated that our whole-system, water balance message is news worthy.”

Journey to a Water-Resilient Future

“Other regions recognize BC as a leader. They perceive BC moving in the right direction with integration of watershed systems thinking and asset management. International exposure allows us to judge how BC stacks up against the rest of the world,” observed Kim Stephens.

“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 Vision for “Sustainable Watershed Systems” resonates with audiences in BC and beyond to read the complete article as published in the Winter 2017 issue of the Asset Management BC Newsletter.

The key message is that Sustainable Watershed Systems would be the outcome in Step Three. Even as local governments are progressing through Steps One and Two for their core infrastructure, however, they need to be laying the groundwork so that they wiould be ready to implement Step Three.

Asset Mgmt Continuum_v2_Nov2016