Sustainable Rainwater Management: 3-Person Teaching Team Integrates Regulatory, Historical, Local Government, Science and Technology Perspectives




Sustainable Rainwater Management: Mimic the Water Balance!

Learn how to use implement green infrastructures that reduce a community’s ‘Water Footprint’ at the Water Balance Model training workshop hosted by the Capital Regional District. Learn core concepts, such as how to:

  • achieve more at less cost
  • adapt to a changing climate
  • protect stream health.

On November 29 in Victoria at the offices of the Capital Regional District, the 3-person teaching team of Kim Stephens, Richard Boase and Jim Dumont will demonstrate how the Water Balance Model can be used to support land development and infrastructure decisions that reduce a community’s ‘water footprint’. 

This experienced trio provides complementary and integrated perspectives on what it means to “think like a watershed”. Presented together, their complementary perspectives provide a complete picture of sustainable rainwater management in watershed context.


About Kim Stephens

Kim Stephens is an engineer-planner, and is the Executive Director of the Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC. He specializes in public policy and has played a leadership role in a series of initiatives in British Columbia related to water sustainability, rainwater management and green infrastructure.

More than a decade ago, he looked at rainfall differently and developed the Water Balance Methodology that the Province subsequently  incorporated in Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia. Since 2003, Kim has been responsible for developing and delivering the Water Sustainability Action Plan for British Columbia, the partnership umbrella for a water-centric approach to community planning and development.

“At the dawn of the 21st century, the mantra in British Columbia was ‘overcoming fear and doubt’ in order to move ahead with projects such as the East Clayton Sustainable Community in the City of Surrey, and UniverCity at Simon Fraser University on Burnaby Mountain in the City of Burnaby,” recalls Kim Stephens.

“Circa 2000, translating high expectations into practical design guidelines meant revisiting accepted drainage engineering practice. This need led to development of the Water Balance Methodology; and in turn the need to generate numbers led to development of the Water Balance Model as an extension of the Guidebook.”


About Richard Boase

Richard Boase is a geoscientist, and is the District of North Vancouver’s Environmental Protection Officer. He is also Co-Chair of the Water Balance Model Partnership. Richard Boase is an innovator and is the District’s project manager for case study demonstration applications that have been driving the evolution of the Water Balance Model.

He is the Partnership’s lead for development of the Water Balance Model Express for Landowners. To be implemented by partner local government partners in 2013, this tool will have pre-set performance targets that are watershed-specific. This means that landowners will then be able to focus on the choices and the geometrics of fitting appropriate rainfall capture measures onto their properties.

“So many of us in local government are still searching for the magical ‘silver bullet’ that with the stroke of a pen will resolve all our watershed issues and challenges while at the same time stimulate economic activity and accommodate growth,” states Richard Boase.

“The time has come to make the hard decisions and to follow through with policy, regulations and bylaws that require simple, landscape-based, outcome-driven solutions so that we can start watershed restoration now.”

We now have the tools and experience to ‘design with nature’. We believe that BC is now at a tipping point. Implementation of a new culture for urban watershed protection and restoration is within our grasp.”


About Jim Dumont

Jim Dumont is the Engineering Applications Authority for the Water Balance Model Partnership. He is a recognized specialist in hydrologic modelling. For many years, he has been teaching modelling seminars as part of the professional development program provided by the Association Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of BC.

Jim Dumont evolved the Water Balance Methodology to address the relationship between rainfall volume control and resulting flow rates in streams; and developed the Stream Health Methodology as the technical foundation for the ‘Beyond the Guidebook’ initiative in 2007. This methodology correlated stream erosion as a measure of stream health.

“The methodology integrates the components of the water balance, and assesses how they change as the percentage of hard surface increases: runoff goes up; infiltration and surface evaporation both go down. Evaporation is critical and typically gets overlooked in conventional drainage modelling,” explains Jim Dumont.

“What most people overlook is that evaporation is almost equal to infiltration. This means there is increasingly more volume to manage as the landscape is built over.”


To Learn More:

To download a copy of the Agenda, click on this link to 2012 Capital Region Water Balance Model Training Workshop. This flyer provides regulatory context and elaborates on the two-part structure.

To register, visit the Civic Info website: Registration