Category:

Design with Nature

FLASHBACK TO 2010 FROM RAIN TO RESOURCE WORKSHOP: “The Water Balance Model allows the user to quickly establish the existing base line that will become the standard used to measure the performance of future development scenarios,” stated Jim Dumont


“The WBM embeds land use zoning from municipal member partners, soil calculator and a new calculation engine QUALHYMO utilizing the Environment Canada climate data that includes rainfall, snow, temperature and evaporation. The easy access and calculation speed combined with the embedded data and information allows the user to easily and effectively plan and design green infrastructure techniques which will achieve the vision and objectives established for the Site, the Development, or Watershed,” stated Jim Dumont.

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FLASHBACK TO 2006: UBC-Okanagan hosted one of the early Water Balance Model training workshops in February 2006


“UBC-Okanagan is pleased to have provided the venue for this application of sustainability-on-the-ground. This sponsorship opportunity was an outcome of a meeting with the Chair of the Inter-Governmental Partnership (IGP), at which time we realized that UBC-Okanagan and the IGP shared a common objective in advancing the state-of-the-art for water management in the Okanagan,” stated Bernard Bauer, Dean ot the Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences.

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DESIGN WITH NATURE BECAUSE: "The reality of climate change has exposed the hubris of the pave, pipe and pump mentality that has dominated urban development for over a century," wrote Sophie Knight in an article for the Guardian newspaper's resilient cities page


“As the recent floods from Bangladesh to Texas show, it’s not just the unprecedented magnitude of storms that can cause disaster: it’s urbanisation,” observed Sophie Knight. “A recent survey of global city authorities carried out by the environmental non-profit CDP found 103 cities were at serious risk of flooding. With climate change both a reality and threat, many architects and urbanists are pushing creative initiatives for cities that treat stormwater as a resource, rather than a hazard.”

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FLASHBACK TO 2008: "Beyond the Guidebook is a provincial initiative to advance implementation of green infrastructure policies and practices throughout British Columbia," stated Paul Ham, Chair of the Green Infrastructure Partnership


The article provides a concise overview of considerations that have led to integration of two hydrologic models. “The tool underpins ‘Beyond the Guidebook: The New Business As Usual (2007)’, a provincial initiative to advance implementation of green infrastructure policies and practices throughout British Columbia. The mantra for this provincial initiative is: Today’s Expectations are Tomorrow’s Standards,” stated Paul Ham.

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FLASHBACK TO 2007: "I am very interested in your approach to mitigate environmental impacts associated with urbanization”, stated Linda Pechacek when she represented the Urban Water Resources Research Council at the British Columbia Water Balance Model Partners Forum


BC’s Inter-Governmental Partnership held a Forum in March 2007 so that Partners could share success stories and lessons learned in implementing green infrastructure. “Once the IGP had invited me to be a member of its Expert Advisory Panel, I decided to attend your Water Balance Model Partners Forum because I am very interested in your approach to mitigate environmental impacts associated with urbanization”, Linda Pechacek informed the Partners.

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FLASHBACK TO 2013: "In the 21st century we are implementing smaller-scale solutions. In the long-term, this will produce a savings for the City and taxpayers," wrote Councillor Lisa Helps in a primer about Victoria's Stormwater Utility


In 2014 the City of Victoria will be rolling out its new Stormwater Utility. “This is something that makes the City of Victoria a leader in Canada. It’s innovative because it encourages people, at the level of their own properties, to take responsibility and leadership for creating solutions – like rain barrels, cisterns, raingardens, bioswales – that are good for the planet and good for the City’s stormwater system,” wrote Lisa Helps.

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FLASHBACK TO 2011: Watch Philadelphia's "Green City, Clean Waters" Video – "Changing the world, or even one small piece of, requires a lot of trial and error," stated Howard Neukrug, the visionary behind Philadelphia's bold plan to peel back the concrete and asphalt and replace it with green infrastructure


Philadelphia has developed a US$1.6 bllion plan to transform the city over the next 20 years. The plan reimagines the city as an oasis of rain gardens, green roofs, permeable pavements, thousands of additional trees, and more. According to Howard Neukrug, the Philadelphia Water Department’s Director of the Office of Watersheds, “We are taking that (old, grey infrastructure) barrier down, and are stopping the water from ever hitting the system.”

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FLASHBACK TO 2007: “Funding provided by the Canadian Water Network enabled us to bring together a pan-Canadian team of academics and practitioners”, stated Dr. Hans Schreier when introducing the vision for a National Knowledge Translation Strategy led by the University of BC


“The Vancouver get-together is the first of three cross-Canada working sessions, and will be followed by an event in Calgary later in 2007, with the third event to be held in Toronto in early 2008”, stated Dr. Hans Schreier. Three universities are involved in the project: UBC, Guelph and Waterloo. Three local government organizations are also involved in order to provide a practitioner perspective for each of three participating provinces.

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DESIGN WITH NATURE TO PREVENT STORMWATER FLOODING: "We are playing catchup – why is application of the science lagging far behind long established knowledge," is the question posed by Rick Baumann in South Carolina guest column


“I read a recent article entitled Stormwater Flooding An Expensive Problem, Hot Issue. Well, it has been an ‘expensive’ and ‘hot’ issue for about a hundred years – and our leaders have mostly chosen to ignore that, ” wrote Rick Baumann in a guest newspaper column. “We are playing catchup. The result of this brilliant mindset: we end up paying far more to fix a problem further down the road when the absolute need to address it leaves no other option.”

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