Partnership released "Vision Document for Water Balance Model Express" in March 2012
Integrating the Site with the Watershed and the Stream
The ‘Water Balance Model Express for Landowners’ is a bottom-up initiative that integrates the site with the watershed and the stream. It is a tool to achieve on-property rainwater management and performance target objectives that will protect stream and watershed health. In March 2012, the Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC released a Vision Document to build awareness of the initiative.
Funding for development of the Express was provided by Metro Vancouver as well as by Natural Resources Canada through the federal-provincial Regional Adaptation Collaborative Program.
A Framework for Action
“The Water Balance Model powered by QUALHYMO (WBM) is a scenario comparison tool. Launched in 2003, it can help local governments create a future watershed vision by informing their decisions about the impacts, or not, of their ‘water footprint’ on watershed and stream health,” wrote Ted van der Gulik, WBM Chair, in the preface to the Vision Document.
“Coming next is the WBM Express for Landowners. The Partnership vision is that local governments will utilize the WBM to establish watershed-specific targets; and then translate those targets into widespread action at the site scale. The Partnership believes that the WBM Express will help local governments drive changes in property owner behavior.”
“The Vision Document is the first step in the implementation process for the WBM Express. The Partnership has developed guiding principles and a framework for tool development. This sets the stage for undertaking technical design and programming in the coming months. In the interim, this Vision Document will serve as a communication tool.”
Change Behaviour at the Site Scale
“Proactive use of the WBM Express can help local governments achieve two educational objectives at the site scale,” states Richard Boase, WBM Co-Chair.
“First, addition of the WBM Express to the local government toolkit will help front counter staff show landowners HOW to reduce their ‘Water Footprint’. Secondly, use of the WBM Express will help raise awareness and drive behaviour change from the landowner side.”
“A desired educational outcome is that all the players will ‘think like a watershed’; and their actions will be guided by this stewardship ethic: “What I can do for the watershed”.
“The project vision is influenced by two existing web-based tools: Surrey’s Sustainability in My Back Yard and North Vancouver District’s Geoweb-Community Solar Application. The Surrey tool provides a picture and the North Van tool demonstrates the capabilities,” concludes Richard Boase.
To Learn More:
For the complete story, click on Vision Document for Water Balance Model Express for Landowners to download a PDF copy.