Learn Why and How Regulatory Change in British Columbia Enables Grass-Roots Innovation and Leadership

Note to Reader:

On December 3, 2013 the Partnership for Water Sustainability and the Irrigation Industry Association of BC (IIABC) are joining forces to co-host a workshop that will explore regulatory requirements, water balance benefits and practical applications of rainwater harvesting design and operation. The workshop is structured as four cascading modules.

In the lead-off module, the team of Chris Midgley, Zachary May and Cate Soroczan will connect dots and paint the “big picture” for rainwater harvesting in BC. They will address the regulatory context that enables, and the opportunities this creates, for innovators and implementers to harvest and utilize rainwater where it falls. They will set the stage for a Town-Hall Sharing & Learning Session titled “What Do You Wonder”.

TO REGISTER for the workshop, go to the IIABC website: https://www.irrigationbc.com/irrigation/courses/view_scheduled/119

TO DOWNLOAD a copy of the Program Overview, click on Get Your Mind Into the Gutter: A Workshop on Rainwater Harvesting in British Columbia.


2013-Rainwater-Harvesting-Workshop_Module Team A


Living Water Smart: Doing Business Differently in British Columbia

Many BC communities are often water-short when demand is greatest. And now our climate is changing. To future-proof communities, the 45 actions and targets in Living Water Smart, British Columbia’s Water Plan establish expectations for doing business differently. This provincial target frames the learning outcomes for the workshop: 50% of new municipal water needs will be acquired through conservation by 2020.

“Reflecting on what is happening across Canada, it is evident that rainwater harvesting is a grass-roots initiative. The next step, as the BC experience demonstrates, is that provincial governments get on board. At a national scale, it is then largely a matter of achieving consistency of technical standards,” observes Cate Soroczan, Senior Researcher with Canada Mortgage & Housing Corporation.

“The BC Building Code enables innovation. Designers can propose Alternative Solutions to the Building Code. Coupled with this enabling opportunity, however, is a duty for designers to demonstrate how they are being responsible in applying an understanding of Building Science. In effect, the Building Code has a backdoor for those who want to innovate outside of traditional approaches,” explains Zachary May, Codes Administrator, BC Building & Safety Standards Branch.

“In October 2012, the Regional District of Nanaimo (RDN) published the Rainwater Harvesting Best Practices Guidebook,” continues Chris Midgley, RDN Manager of Energy and Sustainability. “The Guidebook is pragmatic. It strikes a balance between ‘too little versus too technical’ by providing information in a way that helps homeowners, builders, designers and suppliers understand what is required of them.”

“The story of rainwater harvesting in the RDN shows how one region is enabling action with good information. The Guidebook provides the technical foundation for self-sufficiency, our rainwater harvesting rebate program, and regulatory evolution.”




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