DOWNLOAD: “Water Sustainability Action Plan for British Columbia: Framework for Building Partnerships” – released in February 2004


Released in February 2004, the Water Sustainability Action Plan for British Columbia introduced a framework for building partnerships and demonstrating what can be achieved through a ‘top-down & bottom-up strategy’ that aligns efforts at the provincial, regional and local scales to respond and adapt to a changing world.

A Teachable Moment Created the Opportunity

“The drought, forest fires and floods that British Columbia experienced in 2003 created a ‘teachable moment’ for change in the way we view water in this province,” recalls Kim Stephens, Executive Director, Partnership for Water Sustainability.

Capitalizing on this opportunity, a roundtable of land and water champions created the Water Sustainability Action Plan for British Columbia. Timing is everything – a successful outcome requires that the right people be in the right place at the right time. Producing an Action Plan that was credible was made possible through a precedent-setting approach to collaboration that involved representatives of multiple  provincial government ministries. This helped us get the attention and blessing of Premier Gordon Campbell. We  came together as the Water Sustainability Committee of the BC Water & Waste Association. In 2010, the committee morphed into the Partnership for Water Sustainability, an autonomous non-profit entity.”

Ecosystem Perspective

The Action Plan reflects what we initially framed as a ‘watershed / landscape-based approach’ to community planning and resource management. Within a couple of years, we re-framed this as  ‘water-centric planning’. This approach recognizes that the greatest impact on water and water resources occurs through our individual values, choices and behaviour.

“This approach also enables consideration and application of an ecosystem perspective that links physical, biological and human perspectives.”

The Action Plan Story

“The purpose of the Action Plan document is to ‘tell the Action Plan story’ succinctly and clearly. The focus is on the framework for building partnerships. It is a communication tool – that is, it articulates the vision and the desired outcomes for a ‘water-centric’ approach to development.

“The target audience is comprised of those who share a vision for creating transformational change in the way water resources are valued and managed in British Columbia.”

To Learn More:

Download and read the entire document! — Water Sustainability Action Plan for British Columbia