FLASHBACK TO 2007: Creating Our Workshop Workshop initiated a call to action to "design with nature" on Vancouver Island to achieve water sustainability outcomes
Note to Reader:
At the 2007 Gaining Ground Summit, the title of a shoulder workshop sponsored by the Real Estate Foundation of British Columbia was: Creating Our Future: What will Vancouver Island look like in 50 years? The program was organized by CAVI-Convening for Action on Vancouver Island. Space was limited to 50 participants and was on a first come, first serve basis.
‘Convening for Action’ shoulder event designed to inform decision-makers
As an adjunct to the Gaining Ground Summit Conference, the organizations that comprise the Convening for Action on Vancouver Island (CAVI) partnership held a consultation workshop for local government on June 3, 2007.
The workshop was an action item arising from an earlier consultation workshop held in conjunction with the Water in the City Conference in September 2006.
2006 Water in the City Conference
The Water in the City Workshop was the first step in an educational and consultative process. The 2006 workshop was by invitation and had a broad cross-section of representation. A workshop specifically for local government was identified as the logical next step.
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Design with Nature / Green Value
According to John Finnie, Chair of the CAVI Leadership Team, “If we are to control our destiny and create our future, then we need to challenge our fellow Vancouver Islanders to visualize what they want Vancouver Island to look like in 50 years.
“We have identified two desired outcomes in Convening for Action. First, we wish to influence Vancouver Island local governments to adopt Design with Nature as the preferred process of approving land development applications. Secondly, we intend to facilitate the move from awareness to action in changing the way that land is developed and water is used on Vancouver Island.”
Change the Language
“Our goal is to move green value from concept to practice. In terms of desired outcomes for the workshop, we had two: first, that participants will embrace the vision for being leaders in water sustainability; and secondly, that they will have absorbed the vocabulary of green value, convening for action, designing with nature, water sustainability, and green infrastructure.”
To begin the dialogue, the CAVI Partnership invited key political and administrative leaders from local Vancouver Island governments, representatives from local Real Estate Boards, and selected large landowners to spend a day discussing water sustainability: from the shoreline to the watershed, from the development site to the municipality. The workshop was focussed on:
- Celebrating local, practical initiatives that are happening now (case studies)
- Providing time for roundtable discussion and sharing of innovative projects
- Clarifying the plethora of ‘green’ vocabulary that we now hear on a daily basis.
“The spotlight was on local government because implementing new practices will need clearly defined standards and regulatory models. Also, willing municipalities were invited to pool resources under a partnership framework”, noted John Finnie,
“Furthermore, the workshop was a prelude to a Green Infrastructure Forum for Mayors and Chairs in Fall 2007.”
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