“Storm Water Management innovation in BC is the result of not being overly regulated. Establish sound principles. Apply them. Adapt to the specific site conditions. Do not be too prescriptive, it may take away the opportunity for innovation,” states Hugh Fraser. “Creating a watershed health legacy will ultimately depend on how well we are able to achieve rain water management improvements on both public and private sides of a watershed.”
MAGAZINE ARTICLE: "Sustainable Watershed Systems" connects dots between municipal infrastructure and health of watersheds
Released in December 2014, ‘Asset Management for Sustainable Service Delivery: A BC Framework’ is a game-changer. “Sustainable Service Delivery is the New Paradigm. It is the singular aim. Sound Asset Management practices prevent in-service failure of assets which consequently cause service delivery interruptions. Therefore, Asset Management is the means to achieve the aim,” states David Allen.
“Where a local government regulates land use, a watershed is an integral part of the drainage infrastructure assets of the local government. More specifically, the three pathways (surface, interflow, groundwater) by which rainfall reaches streams are infrastructure assets. They provide ‘water balance services’. This has implications for asset management,” stated Richard Boase.
“The asset management process is a continuum; and nature is an integral part of a community’s infrastructure system. The process starts with the engineered assets that local governments provide. Communities will progress along the continuum incrementally as their understanding grows. By also accounting for and integrating the services that nature provides, over time they can achieve the goal of Sustainable Service Delivery for watershed systems,” states Wally Wells.
Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Education Initiative: Moving Towards “Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management”
“Over the next two years, the Inter-Regional Education Program (IREI) program would progressively inform and educate an expanding network of practitioners on how to integrate watersheds systems thinking and climate change adaptation into asset management to achieve hydrologic integrity and hence avoid expensive fixes. This would result in a common understanding,” wrote Kate Miller.
"In the 1990s, Puget Sound research by Horner and May made it clear that stormwater management was as much or more about land use decisions as engineering solutions," recalls Bill Derry, watershed champion
“In 1996, Richard Horner and Chris May published a seminal paper that synthesized a decade of Puget Sound research to identify and rank the four factors that degrade urban streams and negatively influence aquatic productivity and fish survival. This science-based ranking provides a framework for Integrated Watershed Management,” reports Bill Derry. In the 1980s, he was one of the first stormwater utility managers in Washington State.
“Recurring region-wide consequences of water-related challenges have also prompted regional action to develop governance structures and processes to make the connections between high-level decision making and actions on the ground. The Regional Surface and Ground Water Management and Governance Study identified co-governance with First Nations as a primary condition for success in managing regional water resources,” stated Keith Lawrence.
Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Education Initiative Update: "Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management" – title for Beyond the Guidebook 2015 deliverable announced at Metro Vancouver presentation
The ‘Beyond the Guidebook Series’ documents the progress of local government champions who are leading implementation of practices that would restore hydrologic integrity after land is urbanized. “Over the next two years, we will progressively inform and educate an expanding network of practitioners on how to integrate watershed systems thinking and climate change adaptation into asset management,” stated Kim Stephens.
Connecting Dots: "2005 Metro Vancouver Consultation Workshop" led to "Showcasing Green Infrastructure Innovation Series" and then to IREI
The Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Education Initiative (IREI) provides local governments on the east coast of Vancouver Island and in Metro Vancouver with a mechanism to share outcomes and cross-pollinate experience. “Sharing of knowledge and experience through ‘organic collaboration’ is vital because peer-to-peer learning is what practitioners respect most,” observes Thomas White.
“The genesis for CAVI was ‘Meeting of the Minds’, a grass-roots initiative that started in 2005,” says John Finnie, Founding Chair, CAVI-Convening for Action on Vancouver Island
“Ten years ago, when Eric Bonham organized the first ‘Meeting of the Minds’ workshop to talk about water sustainability on Vancouver Island, I was a bit skeptical that it would take more than just a group of ‘minds’ getting together to move water-centric thinking and actions forward. But that first meeting evolved into a significant initiative. In a relatively short period of time,” stated John Finnie.