April 25, 2005

BC's "WaterBucket" provides on-line information resource for managers, industry

The British Columbia Water and Waste Association (BCWWA), together with provincial Water, Land and Air Protection Minister Bill Barisoff, recently launched the "WaterBucket," a new Web-based resource which will provide information on water conservation and sustainability to local governments and water suppliers throughout BC. "This resource will allow those responsible for water management to develop tools and programs that address water sustainability and to share their knowledge and successes with others," Barisoff told the BCWWA's annual general meeting in Penticton.

The WaterBucket was developed by by the BCWWA's water sustainability committee, in partnership with the provincial government and others. It will function as an interactive on-line community, bringing together local governments, water utilities, water suppliers and managers. It will enable these groups and others to share--electronically--success stories, information, practical tools and ideas about water sustainability and conservation. While it is initially targeting local governments and water resource managers, the WaterBucket will eventually provide links for domestic, industrial, commercial and agricultural water users.

As a living Web site, the WaterBucket will be continually updated with new programs, information and educational tools. Initial topics for development include: water use and conservation; rainwater management; green infrastructure; and watershed-based planning. The BCWWA's water sustainability committee is working with six partners involved in developing and maintaining the site's content: the BC government, Environment Canada, the Capital Regional District, BC Hydro's Power Smart program, Terasen Gas, and the Stewardship Centre for BC which is hosting the WaterBucket and integrating it with its own site.

The initiative is one of six elements in BC's Water Sustainability Action Plan. It is the key communication strategy for the action plan, whose goal is to encourage implementation of integrated water sustainability policies, plans and programs throughout BC. The association committee brought together experts in water resource management and related disciplines from government, the private and academic sectors, and stewardship groups.

"In providing universal access to information, we will see improved standards in all aspects of water resource management," said BCWWA president Don Degen, adding, "the 'WaterBucket' will be where water officials immediately go to for the latest in technology and practices."

More information is available from BC Water and Waste Association executive director Del Haylock, 604/999-5078, or on-line at www.waterbucket.ca/.

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