2015 Water Balance Partners Forum: Metro Vancouver hosted the “event of record” for release of Beyond the Guidebook 2015, third in a series of guidance documents that build on BC's Stormwater Planning Guidebook

Note to Reader:

On November 5, 2015 Metro Vancouver and the Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC co-hosted the 2015 Water Balance Partners Forum. The event was open to local government in both the Metro Vancouver and Fraser Valley regions.


Sustainable Watershed Systems,
through Asset Management

In November 2015, the Partnership for Water Sustainability released Moving Towards “Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management”, third in the Beyond the Guidebook Report Series of guidance documents.

The series builds on Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia, released by the Province in 2002. Reports were published previously in 2007 and 2010.

The series documents progress by the champions in local government who are leading application of science-based practices to achieve watershed health outcomes.

For convenience of reference, the branding for the latest in the series is succinctly Beyond the Guidebook 2015.

Event of Record

The venue for the Water Balance “event of record” for Beyond the Guidebook 2015 was the Annacis Research Academy, a Metro Vancouver facility.

The Partnership also unveiled the Water Balance Express for Landowners (for North Vancouver District, Surrey and Coquitlam) at the Water Balance Partners Forum.

The Forum was co-hosted by the Metro Vancouver Stormwater Interagency Liaison Group (SILG), a technical committee comprising municipal representatives.


Forum Structure

The agenda for the half-day forum was structured in four parts.

  • Segment #1 set the scene, and included a town-hall session for storytelling and sharing.
  • Segment #2 then showcased the Water Balance Express for Landowners. It was organized in three units: Context, Intent and Results.
  • Segment #3 represented the technical heart of the forum because it involved teaching the basics of the Water Balance Methodology.
  • Segment #4 previewed the work plan for the Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Education Initiative, and was for the record.

To Learn More:

Visit 2015 Metro Vancouver Water Balance Partners Forum, the homepage on the Convening for Action community-of-interest, and read a comprehensive set of articles which provide complete details of the program and what was accomplished in bringing together local governments from the Metro Vancouver and Fraser Valley regions.


Storytelling, Showcasing, Sharing and Teaching

“Because we had a relatively young audience, the forum program was a mix of storytelling, showcasing, sharing and teaching so that we would achieve the learning ted-van-der-gulik_jun2015_dsc_0533_120poutcomes,” reports Ted van der Guilik, Partnership President.

“Our objective in the first two segments was to engage and energize our audience. For this reason, we conducted them as town-hall sharing in order to prime everyone for learning the ‘technical stuff’ and responding to the teachable moment in segment #3.”

“The teachable moment came in segment #3 when Jim Dumont showed that Washington State and California are on the same technical path as British Columbia. And furthermore, that BC is going further in terms of what application of the Water Balance Methodology achieves.”



Why a Water Balance Forum

“We won’t change the world in the next couple of years. But we have to try,” stated Kim Stephens, Partnership Executive Director.

mg_1071_kim-stephens_australia_1aug2016_120p“In British Columbia, we have made considerable progress over the past 10 to 15 years. We are on the right track.”

“By 2017 we would hope that everyone is beginning to understand where we need to go next.”

“We are tying it to asset management because we have a provincial initiative that is a factor in what everyone in local government does in their day job.”

“A sound-bite that guides what we do is this: Through sharing and learning, ensure that where we are going is indeed the right way.”

“We also need to know and understand where we have come from…in order to build on experience and lessons learned by doing.”