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Parksville Water Stewardship Symposium

OUTREACH & AWARENESS RAISING FOR PARKSVILLE 2019 SYMPOSIUM: Op-Ed in the Vancouver Province draws province-wide attention to the call for a new land ethic such that “restorative land development results in sustainable stream stabilization” (February 26, 2019)


“Today, the scope of involvement and influence of stream stewards is expanding beyond the creek channel. What happens on the land matters to streams. Hence, stewardship groups are champions for community-scale responsibility. Given staffing and funding constraints, creative partnerships with stewardship groups are truly ‘win-win’ for local governments – especially when stewardship groups can access funding sources that local governments cannot,” states Richard Boase,

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OUTREACH & AWARENESS RAISING FOR PARKSVILLE 2019 SYMPOSIUM: e-Newsletter series published by the Partnership for Water Sustainability in British Columbia delves into the details of the cascading program to inform, educate and establish expectations


“The e-Newsletter series is designed to paint a picture of the field day and 2-day symposium,” states Kim Stephens. “Our hope is that delegates will take the time to read and reflect on the desired outcomes and educational objectives for the program as a whole. Also, that they will arrive in Parksville well-prepared to contribute to the ‘sharing & learning’ segments that are a feature of each day. The symposium program comprises four modules each day, and these are structured to achieve the educational objectives.”

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IMPROVING WHERE WE LIVE: Bowker Creek and Brooklyn Creek are “beacons of hope” on Vancouver Island / Learn more at Parksville 2019 (Announcement #8, March 2019)


“The Town of Comox is being proactive in changing development practices. This is demonstrated by the training course that the Town held for drainage and land development engineers. Because the course comprised six sessions over a 3-month period, participation required a major commitment of their time,” stated Marvin Kamenz. “The Town hosted this training because the planning and design process is becoming increasingly more complex, and with greater expectations than we have ever applied to drainage infrastructure.”

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OUTREACH & AWARENESS RAISING FOR PARKSVILLE 2019 SYMPOSIUM: The bottom-line is that decades of in-stream enhancement work will not be enduring if hydrological function is not restored – Asset Management BC Newsletter spreads word about a “watershed moment”


“A goal of restorative land development would be to restore the integrity of the natural water balance. If this work is done right, it should be possible to: first, halt ecosystem decline; and after that, bend the trend-line in an upwards direction,” states Paul Chapman. “Guided by a whole-system, water balance approach, restorative land development would reconnect hydrology and ecology. Connecting dots, then, a key message is that restorative land development results in sustainable stream restoration.”

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IMPROVING WHERE WE LIVE: “Closing the Data Gap: Water Stewards, the Key to the Future” / Learn more at the Parksville 2019 Symposium (Announcement #7, February 2019)


“Understanding the complex interactions of whole-system, water balance processes that lead to water availability in and on the ground, and all the values that depend on it, is critical to effective water resource allocation. My vision is to develop relationships and partnerships with stewardship groups, local governments, federal government and First Nations to expand our collection and understanding of data,” states Neil Goeller. “Involving stewardship groups in streamflow measurement would fill a gap at the micro-scale where flow data are sparse to non-existent.”

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Brooklyn Creek in the Comox Valley: It’s surviving, but faces old and new threats from upstream development


“That the stream can sometimes support salmon and trout in an urban environment is just magic,” Robert Deane, president of the Brooklyn Creek Watershed Society. But it’s more than magic, it’s long hours of hard work by a dedicated group of volunteers. “The town has been a good partner. Our aims and the town’s aims are aligned,” Deane said. He has a vision that could save Brooklyn Creek from dying the “death by a thousand cuts” that has killed other urban streams.

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PARKSVILLE 2019 SYMPOSIUM ON IMPROVING WHERE WE LIVE: March 1st is the last day for Early Bird Registration / Don’t Delay / Register Today (Announcement #6, February 2019)


The bridge between the two symposium days is a free public lecture by Storm Cunningham, author and global thought leader. He will also provide Closing Reflections on what he heard throughout the 2-day symposium. “Restoration comprises the largest new economic growth cycle since the beginning of the industrial revolution. Development has arrived at the ends of the Earth. Progress has nowhere to turn, except to revisit and restore what we’ve already wrought,” states Storm Cunningham.

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STORYLINE OVERVIEW: Root Causes of Degraded Urban & Rural Streams – attend the Parksville 2019 Symposium and learn why the way we have historically developed land and managed runoff has disconnected hydrology from ecology (Module B on Day One)


“At Kitsap County we have applied this Whole Systems concept to develop our strategy for watershed retrofit and rehabilitation – it is not sufficient to do only a single (or even a few) things – it is necessary to do everything! We know we need to work at multiple scales and multiple levels to improve conditions in our small stream watersheds – that’s our strategy,” states Chris May. “But, so many people in local government are just too busy these days to even contemplate what needs to be done to repair and restore at multiple scales and levels.”

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STORYLINE OVERVIEW: Creating an Actionable Vision for Drinking Water & Watershed Protection in the Regional District of Nanaimo – attend the Parksville 2019 Symposium and learn what is envisioned for the Second Decade (Module B on Day Two)


“Drinking Water and Watershed Protection program implementation has been characterized by numerous accomplishments, as documented in a third party review, completed in September 2018. The focus has generally advanced from an initial emphasis on education and outreach, proceeding to expanded effort in water science and data collection. More recently, as the program has progressed, policy and planning and refining science processes and data management has been given more attention,” stated Julie Pisani.

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IMPLEMENTING THE WHOLE-SYSTEM, WATER BALANCE APPROACH IN BRITISH COLUMBIA: “Closing the Data Gap: Water Stewards, the Key to the Future” – provincial government initiative aims to build capacity and mobilize the stewardship sector to collect flow data in creeksheds


“It really is a long-term objective to build stewardship sector capacity to do flow measurement. The people who are involved in this grass-roots program are all volunteers. They are doing the field work because they are passionate about it, and most importantly, they have the time,” stated Neil Goeller. “My vision is to develop relationships and partnerships with stewardship groups, local governments, federal government and First Nations to expand our collection and understanding of data. MVIHES and the Friends of French Creek are the first two groups to participate.”

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