Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC organized “2015 Feast AND Famine Workshop” (Flood and Drought! What Happened to the Balance?)
About the Annual Workshop Series co-hosted by the Partnership for Water Sustainability and the Irrigation Industry Association
On December 1, 2015 the Partnership for Water Sustainability in British Columbia (PWSBC) and the Irrigation Industry Association of British Columbia (IIABC) joined forces for the third year in a row to co-host a workshop in conjunction with each of their annual general meetings.
The precedent for collaboration was established in 2013 with “Get Your Mind Into the Gutter: A Workshop on Rainwater Harvesting in British Columbia”.
The theme for the second in the series of annual workshops was Convening for Action on Vancouver Island: How Managing the Water Now….Will Shape the Future.
The theme for the third in the series was: Flood and Drought. Feast AND Famine! The event attracted an audience totaling 115. This included representatives of 18 local governments from the Metro Vancouver and Vancouver Island regions.
The incorporation date for the Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC, a not-for-profit society, is November 19, 2010. Hence, the third in the series provided the opportunity to celebrate the Partnership’s 5th anniversary.
2015 Workshop Theme: Flood and Drought! Feast AND Famine!
“The weather in 2015 has impacted on how the public views the BC climate and their understanding of how it is changing. There is now growing awareness that the summer dry season has extended on both ends. Also, that BC communities can no longer count on a predictable snowpack and reliable rain to maintain a healthy water balance in their watersheds,” states Peter Law, Director and Membership Chair for the Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC.
“The 2015 workshop was designed to spark a conversation and ultimately inform a shared vision for ‘designing with nature’ to restore hydrologic integrity and maintain the seasonal ‘water balance’. The workshop informed attendees about tools, in particular the Agricultural Water Demand Model for BC that can help communities achieve a vision for water resiliency when the climate is changing.”
The Storm after the Calm: Hydro-Climatic Change & Its Consequences
Bob Sandford, water champion and author, was the keynote speaker. “After a period of relative hydro-climatic stability, changes in the composition of the Earth’s atmosphere have resulted in the acceleration of the global hydrologic cycle with huge implications for every region of the world and every sector of the global economy,” stated Bob Sandford.
“The drought that extended this past winter, spring and summer from Vancouver Island to Manitoba and from Mexico to the Yukon suggests we may be crossing an invisible threshold into a different hydro-meteorological regime in Western North America. This would have huge consequences for water security.”
“It is interesting to think about how these kinds of changes make historic averages meaningless. If you go 360 days enduring deep drought and then get a year’s rainfall in five days, average precipitation remains the same – but the effects are very different.”
To Learn More:
Visit the workshop homepage on the Convening for Action community-of-interest: https://waterbucket.ca/cfa/category/on_the_ground_changes-in-british-columbia/2015-feast-and-famine-workshop/