DOWNLOAD PROGRAM BROCHURE for “Parksville 2019: Second Annual Vancouver Island Symposium on Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate – Make Better Land Use Decisions & Move Towards Restorative Land Development” (April 2-3-4, 2019)

Note to Reader:

The “Parksville 2019 Symposium” is an outreach and professional development event, held under the umbrella of the Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Education Initiative, and is designed to foster a conversation in communities along the east coast of Vancouver Island and in the Metro Vancouver region about “Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management”.

Join us in the City of Parksville on the east coast of mid-Vancouver Island for a field day on April 2, followed by a 2-day symposium on on Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate on April 3rd and 4th. The daily symposium themes are Sustainable Stream Restoration and Restorative Land Development, respectively.


City of Parksville – an aerial view

How will communities ‘get it right’ as land develops and redevelops?

“The Parksville 2019 Symposium is a milestone event on a multi-year ‘convening for action’ journey that commenced in 2004 with release of the Water Sustainability Action Plan,” reports Kim Stephens, Executive Director, Partnership for Water Sustainability in British Columbia.

“The genesis for Parksville 2019 was the 2017 Comox Valley Eco-Asset Symposium, held in the City of Courtenay. The impact was transformational. It inspired the 2018 Vancouver Island Symposium on Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate, held in the City of Nanaimo.”

Call to Action

“Nanaimo 2018 was a call to action,” continues John Finnie, Chair of the Organizing Committee.  “The theme? Build on the good outcomes that flow from local government and stewardship sector collaboration! It introduced a vision for ‘restorative land development’ that would re-establish creekshed function. And it energized the audience with this challenge:

How will communities ‘get it right’ through collaboration as land develops and redevelops?

“A decade of effort of Vancouver Island, by partnerships of local governments and community stewards, is demonstrating success on the ground where it matters. They are on a pathway to reconnect hydrology and ecology. Parksville 2019 will celebrate success stories that are characterized by three attributes: commitment, collaboration and the ‘hard work of hope’.”

The Issue – Will Communities Get It Right or Wrong?

“At a time of climate instability, success in solving ‘in your face’ problems resulting from land use changes would mean less flooding, less stream erosion, and more streamflow when needed most,” explains Kim Stephens.

“Thus, the issue or gap is communities recognizing that it is necessary to ‘get it right’ with respect to planning, engineering and asset management standards of practice – especially as they relate to and impact upon creekshed health and restoration – because ‘getting it right’ would mean the sustainable and cumulative ‘community benefits’ would then ripple through time.

“Getting it wrong results in an unfunded and unaffordable infrastructure liability that is then a financial barrier to restoration of creekshed function.”

To Learn More:

For the complete storyline, download the PARKSVILLE 2019 BROCHURE. This is a comprehensive package that maps out the field day plus 2-day symposium.


Make Better Land Use Decisions & Move Towards Restorative Development

A desired outcome is that BC communities would achieve water and watershed sustainability through implementation of green infrastructure policies and practices that “get it right”. When such policies and practices are based on an understanding of WHY and HOW hydrology is the engine that powers ecological services, then they would be effective in achieving the desired outcome.

Foundation for Action

Parksville 2019 is a program deliverable for Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management, implemented under the umbrella of the Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Educational Initiative (IREI). The current program is building on a large body of collaborative work undertaken over decades. Defining moments in this building blocks process are highlighted from a provincial perspective as follows.

Released in 1998, A Water Conservation Strategy for British Columbia had a transformational impact because it initiated the paradigm-shift in how water is viewed and planted the seeds for integration of land and water.

Released in 2002, Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Colmbia” also had a transformational impact because it incorporated science-based understanding to correlate and quantify the relationship between land use and stream health.

Released in 2015, Asset Management for Sustainable Service Delivery: A BC Framework is a game-changer in every sense because it has made it possible to strive for integration of the natural and built environments as a whole-system.