ANNUAL REPORT FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR (2019): “The Partnership’s mission is to advance the whole-system, water balance approach to land development and sustainable service delivery,” stated Kim Stephens


Reproduced below from the 2019 Annual Report is the Report from the Executive Director (Kim Stephens). To download a copy of the 2019 Annual Report, click here.

Kim Stephens has four decades of experience in water resource and infrastructure engineering issues. He has played a leadership role in a series of initiatives related to water sustainability, rainwater management and green infrastructure.

Since 2003, Kim has been responsible for developing and delivering the Water Sustainability Action Plan for British Columbia, the partnership umbrella for programs that advance a water-centric approach to community planning and development. Kim Stephens has received international recognition for his pioneering efforts and has been invited to speak on ‘the British Columbia experience’ and make keynote presentations at forums in Australia and throughout North America.

Collaboration in a Changing Climate

This annual report remind readers that the Partnership for Water Sustainability originated as an inter-governmental partnership, formed in 2002. Since 2004, we have been responsible for delivering the Water Sustainability Action Plan through partnerships and collaboration. The essence of this long-term and ongoing commitment is distilled as follows:

  • Multi-year programs blend technical assistance and awareness-raising.
  • Develop guidance documents and online tools.
  • Collaborate. Develop talent. Focus on outcomes.
  • Cross-pollinate with other organizations.

The Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Education Initiative (IREI) is the Partnership’s flagship program. Five regional districts are IREI partners: Metro Vancouver, Capital, Nanaimo, Cowichan Valley and Comox Valley. Combined, they represent 75% of BC’s population. The Partnership’s mandate is to provide value through collaboration and partnerships. This means:

  1. Play a bridging role among the provincial government, local government and community sectors.
  2. Help to align regional and local actions with provincial policy, program and regulatory framework.
  3. Employ research and develop tools and resources to support whole-system, water balance approach
  4. Undertake demonstration applications that test, refine and mainstream new ideas and approaches.
  5. Showcase success stories and facilitate peer-based learning.

The IREI provides local governments with a mechanism to collaborate, share outcomes and cross-pollinate experience with each other. Under this umbrella, the Partnership’s mission is to advance the whole-system, water balance approach to land development and sustainable service delivery. The associated educational goal is to provide local governments with tools and understanding necessary to implement whole-system, water balance approach.