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2020 Virtual Water Stewardship Symposium

WATER STEWARDSHIP IN A CHANGING CLIMATE: “We have designed the Video Trilogy as a series of watershed moments about implementing actionable visions for ‘Reconnecting Hydrology and Ecology’ in altered urban landscapes,” states Paul Chapman, Chair, Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate Symposia Series (Announcement #1, September 2020)


Watershed Moments, the video trilogy series, is cascading. Our focus is on the whole-system approach, connecting land and water, and restoring water balance in altered landscapes. The series will inform, educate and create understanding. The three videos, each 60 minutes in duration, are designed to be used as educational legacy resources that inspire action. Each is built around a ‘facilitated conversation’ moderated by Richard Boase, District of North Vancouver. These conversations are much more than talking heads in a studio setting. Inter-weaving of outdoor footage creates an engaging narrative.

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REGISTRATION OPEN FOR VIDEO TRILOGY SERIES: “Actionable Visions for Reconnecting Hydrology and Ecology in an Altered Landscape” – a unique and interactive experience on YouTube > on November 19 / November 26 / December 3


“The changes wrought by COVID 19 have allowed NALT and the Partnership for Water Sustainability to dare to be bold in integrating technology platforms and co-host what we anticipate will be a compelling virtual symposium. We are integrating Zoom and YouTube to create a viewing experience that captures the passion, knowledge and wisdom of our team members in conversation. The vision for the Video Trilogy Series is that it will take on a life of its own as a legacy resource that informs, educate and creates understanding,” states David Mackenzie. He is the technical director for production of the series.

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COVID 19 PANDEMIC RESPONSE: Reimagining the 3rd Annual Vancouver Island Symposium on Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate as a “Video Trilogy Series on Reconnecting Hydrology and Ecology” for delivery via YouTube on November 19 / November 26 / December 3


“In the age of COVID, and at moment in time when in-person public gatherings are not allowed by British Columbia’s Provincial Health Officer and the only option is to go virtual, the challenge for everyone involved in delivering outreach-type programs is to provide participants with a unique and interactive experience,” stated Paul Chapman, Chair of the Vancouver Island Symposia Series on Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate. We hope to point the way for making a difference through collaborative leadership. We define success as participants will be inspired to action.”

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WATER STEWARDSHIP IN A CHANGING CLIMATE: Re-Imagining the 3rd Annual Vancouver Island Symposium for online delivery to showcase “Actionable Visions for Reconnecting Hydrology and Ecology in an Altered Landscape” on YouTube on November 19 / November 26 / December 3


“In the age of COVID 19, it is necessary to adapt and evolve in response to the new reality imposed by physical distancing. How could we avoid going down the same pathway as others, which would be to subject viewers to a day of staring at their computer screens? And so the plan took shape for a unique and interactive experience via YouTube in combination with Zoom. We are bringing our three teams together in a safe space for a series of in-person, facilitated conversations. Immediately after watching each video on YouTube, our virtual audience will be able to chat in real-time with the presentation team,” stated Kim Stephens.

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COVID 19 PANDEMIC RESPONSE: Originally scheduled for April, the Comox Valley 2020 Symposium was initially postponed to October when British Columbians were asked by the Provincial Health Officer to go into self-isolation and comply with physical distancing requirements when in group settings


“The directive from British Columbia’s Chief Medical Health Officer is to cancel events where more than 50 people would be attending. The anticipated registration for Comox Valley 2020 (CV20202) was trending to about 200. In light of that directive, the CV2020) has been postponed until October. We are pleased to announce that the organizing team has secured venue dates at the Filberg Centre,” stated Paul Chapman, Chair of the Vancouver Island Water Stewardship Series, on March 16, 2020.

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WATER, PLACE & RECONCILIATION IN BRITISH COLUMBIA: “Our vision is to transform an eco-liability into an eco-asset in the heart of the K’ómoks Estuary,” states Caila Holbrook, Project Watershed’s Manager of Fundraising, Outreach and Mapping (Announcement #7 in March 2020 for the Comox Valley 2020 Symposium – which was postponed and then reimagined due to COVID 19 pandemic)


“Pre-1950 aerial photographs confirm that Kus-kus-sum was indeed a forested streamside area in the K’ómoks Estuary with side-channels connecting it to the adjacent Hollyhock Marsh,” stated Caila Holbrook. ”The restoration process will include removing built infrastructure from the site, removing fill, re-grading the topography of the area, planting native species and removing the steel wall. Nature will come back; it is already trying to – as trees and salt marsh plants are poking through the 1 foot deep rebar-reinforced concrete.”

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WATER, PLACE & RECONCILIATION IN BRITISH COLUMBIA: Implementing Actionable Visions – Are you curious to learn what it means to collaborate to ‘stitch together altered landscapes’, and thus improve where we live? (Announcement #6 in March 2020 for the Comox Valley 2020 Symposium – which was postponed and then reimagined due to COVID 19 pandemic)


“I am fond of the saying: If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together. This comes from the hiking world but is applicable to many aspects of life and to the unique challenges of adaptation in the face of climate instability,” stated Paul Chapman. “The truth of this adage is apparent when we come together to learn from each other’s water stewardship efforts, glean new ideas to take home from our gatherings and modify and apply in our home watersheds. Comox Valley 2020 promises new opportunities to build our community of stewardship.”

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A ‘ONCE IN A GENERATION’ WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY: “The International Year of the Salmon program has the potential to be a game-changer. It is not just about the fish; it is about humankind creating sustainable landscapes for people and salmon,” say Kim Hyatt and Peter Tschaplinski, the federal-provincial science duo who will inform, educate and engage participants in the finale module of Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate (Announcement #5 in February 2020 for the Comox Valley 2020 Symposium – which was postponed and then reimagined due to COVID 19 pandemic)


“From an International Year of the Salmon perspective, large efforts of a very large mass of people around the rims of the North Atlantic, North Pacific and likely Arctic oceans will need to ‘come together’ for any real change to occur. From this perspective the requirement in an increasingly interconnected world is closer to ‘humankind’ than to a few of us in the local community. That said, it’s the sum of us in local communities that will move this closer to a humankind undertaking,” stated Kim Hyatt.

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CONTENT FOR 3RD ANNUAL SYMPOSIUM ON WATER STEWARDSHIP IN A CHANGING CLIMATE: A series of articles previewed the seven modules that would have comprised a 2-day “Comox Valley 2020 Symposium on Climate Change, Collaboration and Landscape Restoration” (HISTORICAL NOTE: originally scheduled for April, the symposium was initially postponed to October due to the COVID 19 pandemic, before being re-imagined as the virtual Video Trilogy Series for delivery via YouTube)


Comox Valley 2020 is the third in a series on water stewardship in a changing climate. The Symposia Series is a building blocks process. Each builds on the last and points the way to the next. “Designed to paint a picture of the 2-day Comox Valley 2020 Symposium, a series of articles published by the Partnership for Water Sustainability during the period November 2019 through April 2020 delves into the details of the cascading program. The series is designed to inform and educate the reader about what to expect in individual program modules,” stated Kim Stephens.

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IMPROVING THE PROCESS OF IMPROVING PLACES: Should Storm Cunningham’s RECONOMICS be mandatory reading for Mayors, Chief Administrative Officers & Directors of Planning in cities and regions?


“I’ve spent the past 20 years leading workshops, keynoting summits and consulting in planning sessions at urban and rural places worldwide. All were focused on some aspect of creating revitalization or resilience.Most of those events had other speakers who recounted their on-the-ground efforts and lessons learned. I’ve thus spent the past two decades researching commonalities: what’s usually present in the successes, and what’s usually missing in the failures? I’ve boiled it down to six elements. Each of them individually increases the likelihood of success,” explained Storm Cunningham.

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