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Beyond the Guidebook Initiative

DOWNLOAD BEYOND THE GUIDEBOOK 2015: “Moving Towards Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management” (released November 2015)


“Beyond the Guidebook 2015 is a milestone accomplishment, and was made possible with provincial funding assistance. The Ministry of Environment acknowledges that the Partnership for Water Sustainability is also adding depth to the Guidebook through the Beyond the Guidebook Report Series and the Beyond the Guidebook Primer Series. The work of the Partnership is supporting the Province’s Living Water Smart vision and Green Communities initiative,” stated Wes Shoemaker, Deputy Minister.

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DOWNLOAD BEYOND THE GUIDEBOOK 2010: “Implementing a New Culture for Urban Watershed Protection and Restoration in British Columbia” (released June 2010)


“There are a lot of times when we in local government like to blame or put on senior governments the responsibility to provide the framework for doing something, but there are things that we in local government can do. We need to choose to be enabled. So, what we mean by shared responsibility is that everyone has a role, and everyone can act – all levels of government, developers, regulators, bureaucrats, consultants, planners, engineers – we all have a role,” stated Ray Fung.

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DOWNLOAD BEYOND THE GUIDEBOOK 2007: “Context for Rainwater Management and Green Infrastructure in British Columbia” (released June 2007)


“British Columbia’s Stormwater Planning Guidebook, released in 2002, recognized that water volume is something over which local government has control through its infrastructure servicing policies, practices and standards. Through implementation of ‘green infrastructure’ practices, the desired outcome in going Beyond the Guidebook is to apply what we have learned at the site scale over the past five years – so that we can truly protect and/or restore stream health in urban watersheds,” stated Paul Ham.

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FLASHBACK TO 2007: “The purpose of the ‘Beyond the Guidebook’ initiative is to help local governments and the development community establish what level of rainwater runoff volume reduction makes sense at the site, catchment and watershed scales,” stated Corino Salomi, Area Manager, Department of Fisheries & Oceans


“It helps to look back to understand how we got to here. In 2000, DFO released Urban Stormwater Guidelines and Best Management Practices for Protection of Fish and Fish Habitat. That document set a direction. It got practitioners thinking about how to capture rainfall in order to reduce runoff volume and protect water quality. By 2007, however, we had concerns about how the document was being interpreted and applied. ‘Beyond the Guidebook 2007’ represented the initial course correction,” stated Corinio Salomi.

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First article published about Beyond the Guidebook: "Stormwater Management: A Discipline in Transition" (2006)


“Experience has taught engineers that we must always be learning, stretching the bounds of expertise, and anticipating new requirements,” wrote Jim Dumont. “We will be able to advance the science and engineering practice in a manner intended by the author and proponents of the Guidebook. Is it time to now go ‘Beyond the Guidebook’? Do we have the knowledge to allow us to do this? The answer to both questions should be yes.”

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Flashback to 2012: Ministry of Environment reaffirmed importance and value of the “Beyond the Guidebook Initiative"


“The Ministry celebrates the Partnership’s latest success in bringing together four regional districts through an Inter-Regional Education Initiative,” stated Cairine MacDonald. “The Ministry looks forward to aligning efforts with the Partnership to further advance implementation of the ‘Beyond the Guidebook’ initiative. Collaboration across regional districts is the pathway to a consistent approach to water sustainability and green infrastructure policies and practices.”

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Flashback to 2012: Historical perspective on the first 5 years of the "Beyond the Guidebook Initiative", released by the Partnership for Water Sustainability in conjunction with provincial government announcement


“There are a lot of times when we in local government like to blame or put on senior governments the responsibility to provide the framework for doing something…but there are things that we in local government can do. We need to choose to be enabled,” stated Ray Fung. “So, what we mean by shared responsibility is that everyone has a role, and everyone can act…. all levels of government, developers, regulators, bureaucrats, consultants, planners, engineers.”

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Flashback to 2009: Ministry of Community Development announced that "Beyond the Guidebook" is an ongoing provincial initiative that supports and/or complements Living Water Smart and Green Communities


“Beyond the Guidebook reflects a ‘design with nature’ approach to climate change adaptation. The initiative builds on the guidance provided in the original Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia. It supports and/or complements other provincial initiatives that will influence the form and function of the built environment and green infrastructure. Collectively, these initiatives establish expectations,” wrote Glen Brown.

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Beyond the Guidebook Initiative: Milestones early in the rollout process (2006 & 2007) provide historical context for evolution of rainwater management practice


The Guidebook’s premise that land development and watershed protection can be compatible represented a radical shift in thinking in 2002. “Through implementation of ‘green infrastructure’ policies and practices, the desired outcome in going Beyond the Guidebook is to apply what we have learned at the site scale over the past five years…so that we can truly protect and/or restore stream health in urban watersheds”, stated Paul Ham in 2007.

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