Note to Reader:
In May 2016, Kim Stephens of the Partnership for Water Sustainability in British Columbia met with Chair Bill Veenhof and the Board of the Regional District of Nanaimo (RDN) to recognize the regional district as a Champion Supporter of the Partnership. RDN experience related to its Drinking Water & Watershed Program is informing the Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Educational Initiative, which the Partnership is leading.
Moving Towards Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management
Kim Stephens (Partnership Executive Director) introduced the RDN Board to Beyond the Guidebook 2015: Moving Towards “Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management”. Released in November 2015, this guidance document showcases five “regional stories”, including that of the Nanaimo Region.
“The Partnership for Water Sustainability brings together, and supports the efforts of, local and regional governments across BC. It’s overarching goal is to provide tools to help organizations achieve their water sustainability goals, and opportunities for shared learning. The IREI is an outstanding example of this shared learning approach, and is endorsed by 5 Regional Boards, representing 75% of the population in BC,” stated Randy Alexander, General Manager (Regional and Community Utilities, Regional District of Nanaimo.
Beyond the Guidebook 2015
“My purpose in meeting with you is to provide you an overview of the work of the Partnership, our goals for the coming years, and to introduce you to Beyond the Guidebook 2015, the third in a series of guidance documents. As part of the roll-out, we have already met with the Boards of the other four IREI participants,” stated Kim Stephens in his opening remarks to the RDN Board members.
“In addition, my presentation is an opportunity is to both thank the RDN Board for its long-term support for the work of the Partnership, and to celebrate the good work that the RDN is doing.”
“In 2012, Board support for the IREI enabled the Partnership to align efforts and implement the ‘proof of approach’ in collaboration with the Capital, Cowichan and Comox Valley regional districts. The experience gained that year subsequently informed full-scale implementation along the east coast of Vancouver Island and in the Metro Vancouver region.”
Drinking Water & Watershed Protection Program
“We all learn from stories, and the most compelling ones are based on the experience of those who are leading their communities,” emphasized Kim Stephens. “Beyond the Guidebook 2015 showcases five ‘regional stories’, including the successes of the RDN’s Drinking Water and Watershed Protection Program, and the inter-regional and provincial recognition the RDN is receiving for this program.”
“Everyone cannot do everything. Sharing and learning from other the experience of other regions is therefore essential if each region is to accomplish more with the same resources. Sharing and learning helps break down barriers and silos. We know what needs to be done. The challenge is in doing it. The experience of the RDN in creating Sustainable Partnerships to move from awareness to action is informing the efforts of other regions.”
“The Drinking Water & Watershed Protection Program is a notable accomplishment because it is helping to foster a new ‘land ethic’ among land and water practitioners. The program is helping to create an understanding that actions on the land have consequences for water,” concluded Kim Stephens.
To Learn More:
Download Beyond the Guidebook 2015: Presentation to the Regional District of Nanaimo Committee of the Whole in May 2016 to view the complete storyline for the presentation by Kim Stephens.
The Regional District of Nanaimo chapter in Beyond the Guidebook 2015 is 16 pages and is organized in five sections as shown below. To download a PDF copy and read the complete story, click on Convening for Action in Nanaimo Region.
To download a copy of the entire 158-page Beyond the Guidebook 2015: http://waterbucket.ca/viw/files/2015/11/Beyond-Guidebook-2015_final_Nov.pdf