“Released in 2002, the Guidebook provides a framework for effective rainwater management throughout the province. This tool for local governments presents a methodology for moving from planning to action that focuses on implementing early action where it is most needed,” states Laura Maclean. “The Guidebook approach is designed to eliminate the root cause of negative ecological and property impacts of rainwater runoff by addressing the complete spectrum of rainfall events. The Guidebook approach contrasts with conventional ‘flows-and-pipes’ stormwater management.”
FLASHBACK TO 2002: Build a Vision, Create a Legacy – which is the Tenth Paradigm on Andy Reese’s Stormwater Management Continuum – is the guiding philosophy for "Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia"
“We can begin to think about the Tenth Paradigm as one involving making decisions aimed at achieving healthy urban watersheds,” wrote Robert Hicks. “Deciding what we want means we start with a common understanding and a shared vision of the future Target Condition for a healthy watershed. Having a Target Condition provides a direction for the long-term processes of change. An Action Plan then provides a ‘road map’ for getting there over time. This ‘road map’ approach addresses the goal of protecting people, natural systems and property; and then over time striving to move impacted watersheds towards a healthier condition.”
MILESTONE RECOGNITION – ‘Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia’ has proven to be a catalyst for action over the past decade
“The Guidebook applied a science-based understanding, developed the water balance methodology to establish performance targets, and demonstrated that urban watershed restoration could be accomplished over a 50-year timeframe as and when communities redevelop,” states Peter Law, Guidebook Chair (2000 – 2002). A decade ago, looking at rainfall differently led the Province of BC to develop the Water Balance Methodology, and initiate a paradigm-shift in the way rainwater is managed. BC was the first provincial or state government in North America to implement the Water Balance Methodology.
Written for both expert and non-expert audiences, the document explains how the Guidebook provides a transition into ‘Beyond the Guidebook: The New Business As Usual’. “We are using the slogan The New Business As Usual to convey the message that, for change to really occur, practices that until now have been viewed as the exception must become the norm moving forward. We have to build regulatory models and develop models of practice and expertise,” stated Dale Wall, Deputy Minister
“Our focus was on the technical details of practices in landscape areas that treat rainwater through plant materials and soils by infiltration, retention, detention and evapotranspiration”, states Ed von Euw. “The objective of this project was to reduce information barriers that previously stood in the way of effective implementation of rainwater source controls.”
Released in 2002, ‘Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia’ has proven to be a catalyst for action
When it was released, the Guidebook was a catalyst for action to implement a ‘design with nature’ approach to rainwater management and green infrastructure. “The premise underpinning the Guidebook was that land development and watershed protection can be compatible. The basis for this premise was that municipalities exert control over runoff volume through their land development and infrastructure policies, practices and actions,” states Peter Law. “The Guidebook applied a science-based understanding to develop the water balance methodology and establish performance targets.”
The City of Dawson Creek hosted a workshop titled “Sustainable Planning and Development for Small Communities”, a program developed by Canada Mortgage & Housing Corporation to help small communities. Held in December 2006, the workshop was attended by municipalities from throughout the Peace River region. The workshop provided a timely opportunity to introduce the Water Balance Model to the City of Dawson Creek and others in the region.
“Founded on British Columbia case study experience, the Guidebook formalized a science-based understanding to set performance targets for reducing rainwater runoff volumes and rates,” reports Kim Stephens.
Founded on British Columbia case study experience, the Guidebook formalized a science-based understanding to set performance targets for reducing rainwater runoff volumes and rates. These targets represent the synthesis of biological and hydrological understanding. Structured to meet the information needs of different audiences, the Guidebook formalized the ‘Integrated Strategy for Managing the Complete Spectrum of Rainfall Events’,