British Columbia Partnership announces that rebuilt 'Water Balance Model' is now LIVE!
Integrate Performance Targets at Three Scales to Protect Stream Health
The Water Balance Model for British Columbia is a scenario comparison tool. In December 2011, the Water Balance Model Partnership completed a year-long program to rebuild both the website front-end and the user interface that connects to the QUALHYMO calculation engine.
“Rebuilt on a Linux platform, the Water Balance Model (WBM) is now quicker and cleaner to use. Also, it incorporates new modules that provide expanded capabilities. Early responses from users exceed expectations. Feedback from those involved in land development and infrastructure servicing confirms that the rebuild is timely. It is filling an on-the-ground need,” reports Richard Boase, Co-Chair, WBM Partnership.
Three Points of Entry
“The rebuilt Water Balance Model is tailored to multiple levels of users who have a wide range of technical backgrounds, from hydrology experts to stewardship groups. To provide users with more flexibility, the model now has launch buttons at three scales of investigation: SITE, NEIGHBOURHOOD and WATERSHED.”
“New modules encompass stream erosion, rainwater harvesting and climate change. More modules are coming in 2012, including the Drainage Infrastructure Screening Tool and a tree canopy module. These will open doors to an array of educational opportunities.”
Stream Health Methodology
“Embedded in the Water Balance Model is a Stream Health Methodology. It addresses the interaction of runoff (volume and duration) with the physical aspects considered important to the aquatic environment. We can now correlate green infrastructure effectiveness with protection of stream health.”
“The Partnership vision is that local governments will utilize the Water Balance Model to establish watershed-specific targets; and then translate those targets into action at the site scale,” concludes Richard Boase.
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