“Local governments need ‘real numbers’ to deliver outcomes and support decision making,” stated Tim Pringle, Chair, Ecological Accounting Protocol (EAP) Initiative
Note to Reader:
Reproduced below from the 2018 Annual Report is the Report from the Chair (Tim Pringle) of the Ecological Accounting Protocol (EAP) Initiative. To download a copy of the 2018 Annual Report, click here.
Tim Pringle was the founding Executive Director of the Real Estate Foundation of BC (REFBC), and served in that capacity for 20 years.
EAP is a major milestone in a journey that had its’ genesis when Tim Pringle convinced the REFBC Board of Governors to adopt a philosophy that “use and conservation of land are equal values”. It took him a year to make the case and achieve this outcome. From that point forward (1994), the REFBC funded work in the stewardship and conservation sectors that showcased how to implement this guiding philosophy.
Value the ‘Water Balance Services’ Provided by Nature
The worth of a creekshed is a package of ecological services made possible by the hydrology. Looking through the ‘worth lens’ leads to a fundamental shift in philosophy regarding how to value natural assets. Focus on the investment of resources (time and money) as well as aspirations of motivated stakeholders for maintenance and management of ecological (water balance) services. The Partnership is proceeding with implementation of a 3-stage program as follows:
- Stage 1 – Test the Concept (2017-18)
- Brooklyn Creek Demonstration Application
- Cowichan Valley Demonstration Application
- Stage 2 – Refine the Concept (2019)
- Regional District of Nanaimo
- Capital Regional District
- District of North Vancouver
- Town of Gibsons
- Stage 3 – Transferability (2020)
- Make the EAP approach transferable for any local government to use
The concept of natural capital and natural assets can be a challenge to integrate effectively into asset management practices. Local governments need “real numbers” to deliver outcomes and support decision making. EAP deals with a basic question: what is a creekshed WORTH, now and in future, to the community and various intervenors?
Ecological services are diverse, and provide environmental, social and traditional (core) services to the community via a natural asset – in this case, a creek/riparian area. Stage 1 tested the concept for leveraging the BC Assessment database to establish a financial value for the “Commons Asset” (the land comprising the stream corridor and riparian zone). Stage 2 would refine the “valuation of worth” methodology by further validating the EAP additional demonstration applications).
The 2018 Asset Management BC Annual Conference featured an EAP presentation in the opening plenary session. This introduced EAP to a broadly-based BC audience.