JOIN US FOR A WATERSHED MOMENT: Parksville 2019 / Second Annual Vancouver Island Symposium / Water Stewardship / Restorative Development / April 2-3-4 (Announcement #1, November 2018)

Note to Reader:

The rhythms of water are changing in British Columbia. What happens on the land in the creekshed does matter to streams – thus, the time has come to reconnect hydrology and ecology! Join us in the City of Parksville on the east coast of mid-Vancouver Island for a field day on April 2, followed by a 2-day symposium.

The theme for this Announcement #1 is that cross-border collaboration expands our horizons and connects us with a larger body of experience! Each day of the event features a prominent headline speaker from the United States. 

How will communities ‘get it right’ as land develops and redevelops?

The Parksville 2019 Symposium is a milestone event on a multi-year ‘convening for action’ journey that commenced in 2004 with release of the Water Sustainability Action Plan. The genesis for Parksville 2019 was the 2017 Comox Valley Eco-Asset Symposium, held in the City of Courtenay. The impact was transformational. It inspired the 2018 Vancouver Island Symposium on Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate, held in the City of Nanaimo.

A Call to Action

According to John Finnie, Chair of the Organizing Committee, “Nanaimo 2018 was a ‘call to action’. The theme? Build on the good outcomes that flow from local government and stewardship sector collaboration! It introduced a vision for ‘restorative land development’ that would re-establish creekshed function. And it energized the audience with this challenge: How will communities ‘get it right’ through collaboration as land develops and redevelops?

“A decade of effort of Vancouver Island, by partnerships of local governments and community stewards, is demonstrating success on the ground where it matters. They are on a pathway to reconnect hydrology and ecology. Parksville 2019 will celebrate success stories are that characterized by three attributes: commitment, collaboration and the ‘hard work of hope’.”

To Learn More:



Reconnect hydrology and ecology – what happens on the land in the creekshed does matter to streams! (April 3, 2019)

Understand how ‘changes in hydrology’ (water quantity) have consequences for stream ecology. 1) Development reduces the capacity of the landscape to absorb water. 2) Thus, more flow volume in creeks when it rains, and little or no flow during a drought.

In the 1990s, Chris May’s seminal research defined the relationship between land use change and stream impacts. His subsequent local government work has allowed him to put theory into practice. Under his leadership, Kitsap County has applied the Whole-System Approach to develop its strategy for watershed retrofit and rehabilitation.

Chris May’s research findings influenced and are integrated into the Water Balance Methodology that is the foundation for Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia.

Yes, we can decrease our “destructive footprint” while at the same time increasing our “restoration footprint”! (April 4, 2019)

Everywhere one turns these days, some form of the words “renewal”, “restoration” or “regeneration” appear. Storm Cunningham was the catalyst of that global “re” trend when he published The Restoration Economy in 2002. This was followed by reWealth in 2008.

He has been called “the world’s thought leader on community revitalization and natural resource restoration”. To learn more, watch Storm Cunningham’s TEDx Talk at

“We don’t fully understand complex systems, so humility and adaptive management are needed to restore nature, and to revitalize cities,” states Storm Cunningham.

An Outdoor Classroom on Sustainable Stream Restoration at Shelly Creek (April 2, 2019)

Dave Derrick had a 35-year career with the US Army Corps of Engineers where he held the position of Research Hydraulic Engineer in the Coastal and Hydraulics Lab.

Dave has had the opportunity to model ideas in the lab and then implement solutions in the field. He developed and refined dozens of cost-effective streambank protection techniques, including different types of Bendway Weirs.

He enjoys working with community-based groups. His focus is on “using nature’s materials”. Through 150-plus workshops over the past decade, he has taught over 8,000 individuals.

A true innovator in Potomology (the study of the behaviour of rivers), his wealth of hands-on experience encompasses over 10,000 hydraulic structures in rivers and streams, in every American state, and under every possible situation.