The EMCO Corporation collaborated with the inter-governmental Water Balance Model Partnership to sponsor and organize three regional technical sessions on Rainwater Management in British Columbia during the period 2005-2006. The third in the series was held in Victoria in June 2006.
This study recommends best practices that will help communities in British Columbia better understand the impacts of higher and lower density on their water resources. The findings indicate that low-density developments may not always be the preferred strategy for protecting water resources.
The Green Infrastructure Community-of-Interest is a communication platform for informing British Columbians about a 'design with nature' approach to community development.
Developed by a BC-based Inter-Governmental Partnership as an extension of Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia, the Water Balance Model for Canada enables users to compare scenarios for rainwater runoff volume reduction in order to achieve a light 'hydrologic footprint'. The tool is developed by a consortium of local, regional, provincial and federal agencies.
The Irrigation Industry Association of British Columbia (IIABC) has developed this Landscape Irrigation Scheduling Calculator to assist irrigators in developing a proper irrigation schedule taking into account the location, landscape, soil and irrigation system operation parameters. The calculator will provide the irrigator with the number of days to water, the irrigation run time for each day and the maximum run time per cycle.
In 2005, the Master Municipal Construction Documents Association (MMCD) published a Draft Green Design Supplement. The Green Design Supplement provides criteria and guidelines to design more sustainable (i.e. green) municipal infrastructure.
Properly designed “rain gardens” can effectively trap and retain up to 99 percent of common pollutants in urban storm runoff, potentially improving water quality and promoting the conversion of some pollutants into less harmful compounds. This is according to new research scheduled for publication in the February 15, 2006 issue of the American Chemical Society journal, “Environmental Science and Technology”. The affordable, easy-to-design gardens could help solve one of the nation’s most pressing pollution problems.
New EPA ‘Smart Growth’ Release – “Growing Toward More Efficient Water Use: Linking Development, Infrastructure, and Drinking Water Policies”
This publication focuses on the relationship between development patterns, water use, and the cost of water delivery. It reviews literature that shows how large-lot, dispersed development patterns can cost more to serve because of the length of pipe required, pumping costs, and other factors. It also includes policy options that directly reduce the cost and demand for water, while indirectly promoting smarter growth.
Increasingly, the focus of design professionals is on how to build and/or rebuild communities in balance with the natural environment. Green infrastructure means use of processes and systems that are natural or mimic nature to provide community services — i.e. “design with nature”.
The mission of the Green Infrastructure Partnership is to provide leadership and encourage others to implement 'design with nature' design practices and regulation province-wide. Implementation by local governments will be voluntary, but once the decision is made to embrace green infrastructure, implementation will need clearly defined standards.