2012 Vancouver Island Economic Summit: Springboard to Inter-Regional Educational Initiative on ‘Sustainable Service Delivery’
View Watersheds Through a ‘Sustainable Service Delivery’ Lens
Asset management usually commences after something is built. The challenge is to think about what asset management entails BEFORE the asset is built. Cost-avoidance is a driver for this ‘new business as usual’. This paradigm-shift starts with land use and watershed-based planning, to determine what services can be provided affordably.
Effective change in the way we develop land and respect water will result from collaboration of business, local government and community. A desired outcome is that local governments will view watersheds through a ‘sustainable service delivery’ lens.
A Forum within a Summit
On October 15 in Nanaimo, the Vancouver Island Economic Summit will feature the CAVI-Convening for Action on Vancouver Island initiative. CAVI began as a grass-roots initiative, now falls under the umbrella of the Partnership for Water Sustainability in British Columbia, and is a provincial demonstration application for moving from talk (awareness) to action (practice).
“The Partnership has brought together four regional districts as partners in an Inter-Regional Education Initiative. The ‘CAVI forum within the Summit’ is a springboard to collaboration, alignment and a consistent approach to achieve water and watershed sustainability up and down the east coast of Vancouver Island,” states Derek Richmond, CAVI Chair, and Manager of Engineering with the CIty of Courtenay.
“The CAVI Forum follows the keynote address by Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of Canada. Eva Kras, a past-President of the Canadian Society for Ecological Economics, will connect the dots between the two as a featured speaker at the CAVI forum. Eva Kras is author of THE BLOCKAGE–Rethinking Organizational Principles for the 21st Century.”
“The Forum has two halves: first, LOOK BACK at what has been accomplished by the CAVI initiative over the past six years; then, LOOK AHEAD to paint a picture of settlement, ecology and economy in balance,” further explains Kim Stephens, Partnership Executive Director. He is the Forum facilitator.
Settlement, Economy and Ecology in Balance
“The time to shape future life-cycle costs is at the infrastructure planning ‘front-end’; hence, the importance of thinking at a watershed scale. The linkages between the natural Water Balance, watershed and stream health, and infrastructure liability have emerged as important pieces in Sustainable Service Delivery, both fiscally and ecologically. Because nature has no borders, the Inter-Regional Education Initiative will help local governments explore how they can align and integrate their efforts at a watershed scale, and leverage more with the same resources,” continues Kim Stephens.
“The Inter-Regional Educational Initiative will link activities up and down the island so that those working in the local government setting can share experiences, benefit from lessons learned, and align efforts with the provincial Living Water Smart and Green Communities initiatives. This will help everyone to go farther, more efficiently and effectively. Launched in 2008, Living Water Smart and Green Communities comprise plans, strategies, targets, actions and tools to reduce the ‘water footprint’ of BC communities.”
“The knack is to demonstrate that the road to both short and long term economic security is through COLLABORATION. We have to demonstrate that ‘business as usual’ will eventually result in economic loss both short and long term. Then hearts and minds will be receptive to a vision for settlement, economy and ecology in balance. This is why I am so impressed by the collaboration that is gathering momentum on Vancouver Island,” states Eva Kras.
To Learn More:
To enquire about registration for the CAVI forum, send an email to Wendy Sears at email@example.com. For more information on the 2-day State of the Island Economic Summit on October 15/16 event, visit www.viea.ca