“If communities are to truly benefit from use of nature’s assets to provide vital community infrastructure services, then two issues must first be recognized as being impediment to changes in practice,” stated Jim Dumont. “Issue #1 is widespread lack of understanding of the relationship between flow-duration and stream (watershed) health. Issue #2 is widespread application of a standard of practice that has little connection to real-world hydrology.”
“The Partnership for the Water Sustainability is excited to enter into an agreement with the Urban Watershed Research Institute. The focal point for this collaboration is found at ncimm.org,” states Ted van der Gulik. “This is a mutually beneficial strategic partnership founded on strong human links." The Partnership develops online tools and delivers capacity-building programs on behalf of government. In particular, the Partnership is responsible for the Water Sustainability Action Plan.
"Successful implementation provincewide of 'Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management', would represent an evolution in how infrastructure is planned, financed, implemented and maintained in British Columbia,” stated the Hon. Peter Fassbender, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development. "Work needs to be done today to ensure we have a secure water future. Benefits are long-term."
“Local government collaboration under the umbrella of the Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Educational Initiative (IREI) is producing tools and resources that will help communities integrate watershed systems with land use and infrastructure decisions. There is no reason for any of us to re-invent the wheel. We are sharing and learning from each other. We are cross-pollinating our experience," stated Jon Lefebure.
“One of the things that I have learned over the last two days is that something really good is happening in British Columbia,” stated Bob Sandford when he provided a closing perspective at the Comox Valley Symposium. “I travel widely, but I have never heard a conversation like what I have heard at the Symposium. And while I am often part of very positive conversations, what was unique (about the Symposium) was the atmosphere of possibilities and hope that I have witnessed here.”
The Symposium will introduce participants to a whole-system, water balance approach for restoration of watershed health. “The purpose of the Symposium is to build local knowledge and interest in how to apply eco-asset management principles at the local level,” stated Tim Ennis, Executive Director, Comox Valley Land Trust. “The Symposium is very much about setting in motion a mind-set change. It is therefore essential that everyone steps back and sees the big picture.”
"At the dawn of 2017, the purpose of this article is two-fold: take stock of our progress in 2016 to inform and educate; and foreshadow where we may be at year-end," stated Kim Stephens. "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."
The influence of community-based community groups is expanding beyond the creek channel. “The stewardship and conservation sector has traditionally focused on habitat restoration and protection of lands with high ecological values,” states David Stapley. “With cumulative impacts from climate change, urban and resource development escalating, these groups have now become community leaders in educating and supporting improved land use practices.”
"Understanding leads to action. Getting to action is a step-by-step process to give practitioners the tools and experience to get the job done," stated Kim Stephens. "In addition, moving from understanding to implementation requires a sustaining commitment by local governments to implement ‘standards of practice’ that restore the desired watershed condition over time."
"A systems approach to watershed health and protection recognizes that actions on the land have consequences for the three pathways to streams and hence the water balance of the watershed," stated Richard Boase. "Local governments regulate how land is developed, drained and serviced," stated, This means local governments have the authority and ability to determine and implement watershed-based volume targets that would help to prevent drainage impacts in wet weather."
A scenario comparison tool to assess green infrastructure effectiveness, achieve a lighter 'water footprint' and protect stream health. Learn More
The Water Conservation Calculator illustrates how specific water conservation measures can yield both fiscal and physical water savings for communities. Learn More
This Landscape Irrigation Scheduling Calculator uses real-time daily evapotranspiration (ET) rates determined from climate stations located within British Columbia. Learn More
This Agricultural Irrigation Scheduling Calculator uses real-time daily evapotranspiration (ET) rates determined from climate stations located within British Columbia. Learn More
The BC Agriculture Water Calculator enables water licensing for all irrigation purposes, whether agricultural or landscape. All non-domestic users of groundwater in BC are required to obtain a licence. Learn More