Sustainable Rainwater Management: ‘Water Balance Model Express for Landowners’ ready for prime time in November 2012 in Victoria!



Integrate the Site with the Watershed and the Stream

Integrate the Site with the Watershed and the Stream. Protect stream health. In British Columbia, the Ministry of Environment’s renewed emphasis on rainwater management is a driver for the Water Balance Model Express for Landowners. This new web-based tool represents a bold leap forward in the way it strips the challenge of setting and implementing performance targets to its essence.

In November 2012, the Capital Regional District (CRD) is hosting a workshop to showcase the work-in-progress prototype for the WBM Express.

Deal with Watershed Stressors Near the Source

“CRD is hosting the workshop because it informs and supports the goals of the region’s Integrated Watershed Management Implementation Strategy,” stated the CRD’s Dale Green. He is Program Manager of the Stormwater, Harbours and Watershed Program.Dale Green_CRD_May-2012_120p

“Moving to a watershed-focused program is allowing the CRD to support the municipalities and electoral areas with new strategies for environmental protection, including an increased focus on dealing with watershed stressors near the source rather than at the infrastructure or receiving environment level.”

Mimic the Water Balance!

“The workshop is tailored to meet the information needs of a continuum of local government staff – from general manager to technician.  The curriculum is Kim Stephens_2012_120pdesigned to provide everyone with a common understanding of the WHY, WHAT and HOW of rainwater management in a watershed sustainability context,” adds Kim Stephens, Executive Director of the Partnership for Water Sustainability. He is the workshop leader for a team that also comprises Jim Dumont and Richard Boase (District of North Vancouver).


WBM Express Integrates Three Watershed Performance Targets

“The patterns of development and growth in BC stress fresh and coastal waters in ways that, in sum total, are particular to this region.  It is crucial that we look clearly at this picture, understand what is needed, and develop technologies that fit those circumstances,” explains Dr. Charles Rowney, the internationally recognized Scientific 2_Charles-Rowney_120pAuthority for BC’s Water Balance Model Partnership.

“The Water Balance Model Express for Landowners is an example of this kind of thinking.  It solves the vast majority of common problems faced by a homeowner exploring ways to implement rainfall capture in accordance with a watershed plan, without requiring use of tools designed for more complex situations.”

Targets Link Rainfall to Watershed Health

Jim-Dumont_2011_120p“The Express integrates three pre-set performance targets using a methodology developed by Jim Dumont, Engineering Applications Authority for the Express. These are watershed-specific and link rainfall to stream health. This frees users to focus solely on selecting rainfall capture measures that will achieve their specific pre-set targets for storage, infiltration and stream baseflow sustenance. The underlying technical approach is precedent-setting.”

No More Complex Than a Car Dashboard

“The interface is also innovative.  It uses modern web technologies to guide the landowner through a simple and visually oriented set of sizing options, with outcomes displayed in real time.  It is colourful, effective, fast and no more complex than the dash board of a typical car, stripping the problem down to a few sliders and gauges.  We think both homeowners and professionals will find this interactive tool to be an efficient and enjoyable way to rapidly test alternative rainwater control types and sizes,” concludes Dr. Rowney.

To Learn More:

To read an article posted in June 2012, click on ‘Water Balance Model Express for Landowners’ previewed at workshop hosted by Regional District of Nanaimo. The article is complete with links to video clips posted on YouTube. In the clips, Richard Boase explains the Express. 

To visit the workshop homepage, click on Capital Region Water Balance Workshop.

Richard Boase (standing on left) and Jim Dumont (standing on right) provided guidance in how to apply the Water Balance Model Express

Richard Boase (standing on left) and Jim Dumont (standing on right) provided guidance in how to apply the Water Balance Model Express