City of Surrey envisons a city-wide Green Infrastructure Network for environmental protection


The City of Surrey has released its draft Ecosystems Management Study (EMS). This template for environmental protection outlines a new approach to measuring the value of the environment, and represents a major shift in this city's approach to environmental concerns.

In the past, Surrey relied on Environmentally Sensitive Area (ESA) plans, which identify low, medium and high ecological sensitivities – particularly in regards to trees and stream-side setbacks. For that reason, the studies were somewhat limited because they didn't explore the interconnected nature of ecological systems, as the current EMS does.

“The study builds on the ESA's approach, but expands the focus beyond how development affects identified ESAs, to the perspective of a city-wide Green Infrastructure Network, where all areas of the city have a role to play in the creation of a green infrastructure,” the report to council states.

The draft EMS recommends classifying environmental values as hubs (contiguous areas of 10 hectares or larger); sites (smaller than 10 hectares); corridors (natural routes or linkages); and matrixes (the remainder of moderator or high value systems).

To learn more about the City's approach, click here.


Posted December 2009