Monday, August 22, 2011

DFO Urban Stormwater Guidelines have evolved into 'Beyond the Guidebook 2010'

Water Balance Model supports ‘designing with nature’ to protect stream health
In November 2000, the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) produced the Urban Stormwater Guidelines and Best Management Practices for Protection of Fish and Fish Habitat, Draft Discussion Document; and set a direction for the development industry. By 2007, the Guidelines had evolved into "Beyond the Guidebook". 

“We are moving from guidelines to tools,” states Corino Salomi. He is Area Manager, Oceans, Habitat & Enhancement Branch, Lower Fraser Area. He represents the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) on the steering committee for the Inter-Governmental Partnership (IGP) that developed and maintains the Water Balance Model. According to Corino Salomi, the 2000 document "got practitioners thinking about how to capture rainfall in order to reduce runoff volume and protect water quality."

"By 2007, however, we had concerns about how the document was being interpreted and applied. Beyond the Guidebook 2007 represents the initial course correction. It introduced a science-based analytical methodology that enabled local governments to explore the requirements for stream health protection. This methodology is now embedded in the Water Balance Model. "

The Water Balance Model is a tool to assess green infrastructure effectiveness. The user can correlate runoff volume management strategies with stream erosion and water quality outcomes. This process allows the delivery of watershed-specific and outcome-oriented plans that are specifically applicable to the municipality, watershed and stream.

To Learn More: 

The rollout of Beyond the Guidebook 2010: Implementing a New Culture for Urban Watershed Protection and Restoration in British Columbia commenced in September at the 2010 annual convention of local governments. This ‘water-centric’ guidance document tells the stories of how change is being implemented on the ground in British Columbia.

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