A series of three regional conferences on innovative rainwater/stormwater management were held in Vancouver, Calgary, and Toronto during 2007 to 2008 under the sponsorship of the Canadian Water Network and the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation. “An overview of the selected papers indicates that no single innovative measure is adequate under all circumstances, and a multi-barrier approach is deemed to be most effective,” wrote Jiri Marsalek.
Water-centric development at the University of British Columbia informs Metro Vancouver Reference Panel
In April 2009, the Metro Vancouver Liquid Waste Management Reference Panel toured three projects at the University of British Columbia where innovative green infrastructure approaches and designs have been implemented: Choi Green Building, Sustainability Street, and the South Campus Neighbourhood. “These projects show what can be achieved by implementing water-centric green infrastructure at three scales: site, street and neighbourhood,” explained David Grigg.
Recent Development in Washington State: New Map Shows Enormity of Storm Sewer Outfall Problem in Puget Sound
People For Puget Sound have released a map that dramatically shows for the first time all the public stormd rains carrying pollutants into Puget Sound. The map was produced by a team of University of Washington GIS students for People For Puget Sound
Influencing Actions on the Ground in British Columbia: Today's Expectations are Tomorrow's Standards
The Province’s Living Water Smart and Green Communities initiatives provide a framework for convening for action in British Columbia. The ultimate goal is to establish expectatons that will, in turn, influence the form and function of the built environment.
United States National Research Council concludes that EPA Stormwater Program Needs a Significant Overhaul
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's stormwater program — which oversees stormwater discharged by cities, industries, and construction activities — needs radical changes if it is to improve the quality of the nation’s waters, says a new report from the National Research Council. It recommends that permits be based on watershed boundaries, and the program focus on the impact of increased water volume rather than chemical pollutants.
"Learning Lunch Seminar Series" promotes consistent provinical approach to rainwater management and green infrastructure
The City of Courtenay is the host municipality for the second series of pilot Vancouver Island Learning Lunch Seminars. The series promotes a consistent provincial approach to rainwater management and green infrastructure, comprises three events, and will be held during the period September through November 2008. The first series was hosted by the Cowichan Valley Regional District, and was held in June/July 2008.
Andy Reese examines how our ideas about stormwater have changed since the 1800s. He insightfully looks back at why we pursued stormwater management in ways which unknowingly – at the time – foreclosed opportunities for more sustainable, livable communities. “It is much easier to know what the next paradigm is than to move into the next paradigm,” wrote Andy Reese.
“Fundamental change in the scope of rainwater/stormwater planning, development standards, construction and operations will only happen if there is a broad understanding as to why the changes are needed, what they are, and how they can be practically implemented,” wrote Erik Karlsen. “Publicly-supported decision-makers will determine the timing and phasing of change. The ability of consumers and the development community to adapt will then set the pace of change.”
Changing the Way British Columbians Do Business Around Water: What is the Elephant in the Living Room?
The 'elephant in the living room' was created by Banksy, the famed British graffiti artist. The elephant has been made to stand in a makeshift living room, to blend in to its surroundings. In elaborating on the story behind the image, Kate Miller of the Cowichan Valley Regional District told the Learning Lunch Seminar audience that “there is an elephant in our room right now…which is around how do we deal with rainwater management…how do we deal with the larger policy issues…what's the objective.”
City of Calgary hosted second in series of rainwater/stormwater events organized by the Canadian Water Network
Held at the City of Calgary Water Centre in October 2007, the 2-day workshop event attracted an audience if 155, and included a field trip component. “The magnitude of the response was overwhelming and took us by surprise. Clearly, there is an appetite on the part of drainage practitioners and others to learn more about rainwater management,” stated Lilliana Bozic.