Creating Our Future: Today’s Expectations are Tomorrow’s Standards for Living Water Smart


Creating Our Future

Surrey wbm forum - kim (160p)“The Penticton Forum is an important milestone in advancing a regional team approach that will align local actions with provincial goals,” states Kim Stephens, Program Coordinator for the Water Sustainability Action Plan. He was the Forum moderator.

“In addition to providing British Columbians with a vision and a framework for action, Living Water Smart sets a clear direction. Thus, our purpose in convening for action province-wide is to establish consistent expectations on-the-ground: This is what we want to achieve, and this is how we will get there.

Shared Responsibility

“Our immediate objective in convening the Penticton Forum is to encourage ‘green choices’ that will ripple through time, and will be cumulative in creating liveable communities, reducing wasteful water use, and protecting stream health. We are NOT saying that every community must follow the same formula; what we are saying is that everyone needs to agree on expectations and how all the players….regulators, developers, designers, etc….will work together, and after that each community can reach its goals in its own way.”

“We are in the process of framing a Responsibility Matrix that will serve as a decision support tool in effecting change on the ground through the use of policy and legal tools, approved standards. Our focus is on linkages – that is, how people interact and collaborate to achieve community development sustainability goals.

Creating A Legacy

To get to the big picture, it starts with the smallest pieces. Thus, the ultimate goal of the Living Water Smart and Green Communities initiatives is to establish expectations that, in turn, will influence the form and function of the built environment.”

“Improving the built environment can protect or help restore the natural environment. How we develop or redevelop individual sites has ripple effects at the watershed scale. By designing with nature, this means actions on the ground can result in cumulative benefits over time,” concludes Kim Stephens.