GUIDANCE DOCUMENT: “Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia” (released by the Province in 2002)

Note to Reader:

In 2002, the provincial government released Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British ColumbiaThis established a new direction for urban hydrology and drainage engineering. Introduction of the Water Balance Methodology enabled the setting of performance targets for rainfall capture, runoff control and groundwater recharge:

If we manage the runoff volume, and if we mimic the natural flow pattern in streams, then we can… prevent increased stream erosion, prevent increased risk of flooding, and protect aquatic habitat.

The Guidebook introduced the Integrated Strategy for managing the complete spectrum of rainfall events (see image below). The Integrated Strategy expanded the scope and responsibility of drainage practice to include stream health.

Integrated Strategy for Managing the Rainfall Spectrum & Mimicking the Water Balance

Mimic the Water Balance

“Released in 2002, the Guidebook provides a framework for effective rainwater management throughout the province. This tool for local governments presents a methodology for moving from planning to action that focuses on implementing early action where it is most needed,” stated Laura Maclean, Co-Chair of the Guidebook Steering Committee and Environment Canada representative.

“The Guidebook approach is designed to eliminate the root cause of negative ecological and property impacts of rainwater runoff by addressing the complete spectrum of rainfall events.”

“The Guidebook approach contrasts with conventional ‘flows-and-pipes’ stormwater management that focuses only on the fast conveyance of the extreme storms and often creates substantial erosion and downstream flooding in receiving streams.”

“Solutions described in the Guidebook include conventional, detention, infiltration and re-use approaches for rainfall capture, runoff control and flood risk management.

To download the Guidebook, click on links below:

Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia (Complete Guidebook) (PDF/9.9 MB)