FLASHBACK TO 2010: “Topsoil is the interface between rainwater management and drought management,” stated Ray Fung when the Green Infrastructure Partnership released the Topsoil Primer Set
From Stormwater to RAINwater
In British Columbia, Beyond the Guidebook 2007 initiated the paradigm-shift from the single-function view of traditional ‘stormwater management’ to the holistic, integrated and landscape-based perspective that is captured by the term ‘RAINwater Management’.
The desired outcome of RAINwater Management is to improve both the natural and built environments in an urban setting.
This means determining how rainfall capture objectives can be integrated with land development processes and tools to mitigate the cumulative impacts of landscape alternation, and instead produce cumulative benefits at a watershed scale.
An Holistic Approach
When released in 2007, Beyond the Guidebook set the stage for defining water sustainability as an outcome of green infrastructure policies and practices.
Rainwater management is about managing the spectrum of rainfall events, and is at the heart of water-centric green infrastructure.
“An absorbent topsoil layer has emerged as a fundamental building block for achieving water sustainability outcomes through implementation of green infrastructure,” states Raymond Fung, Chair of the Green Infrastructure Partnership.
“Topsoil is the interface between rainwater management and drought management. Soil depth creates a sponge…. which can limit runoff during wet-weather periods; and reduce water need during dry-weather periods.”
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Don Moore’s Legacy
In British Columbia, the late Don Moore was a catalyst who played a significant role in facilitating the paradigm-shift in the way practitioners view drainage.
In 2004, he asked: Why do we say stormwater management; shouldn’t it be RAINwater management?
During his career, Don Moore worked for the City of Vancouver, Municipality of Delta, Webild Enterprises and City of Coquitlam.
He joined Wesbild, developer of the Westwood Plateau in Coquitlam, as Manager of Environment in 2004.
“Don’s hallmark at this stage in his career were his ‘green infrastructure’ initiatives, which he enthusiastically promoted at each of his development sites,” recalls David Desrochers, his longtime friend and former colleague at the City of Vancouver.
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