Additional Resources and Information
- Riparian areas and wetlands are some of the most diverse and productive ecosystems on earth.
Benefits produced from these areas are essential, and invoke in us a sense of responsibility to ensure their health and continued ability to provide necessary and desired values. Often they are among the first landscape features to show impact from management activities and reflect overall watershed condition. More and more, people are coming together through recognition of the importance of watershed function for long-term water supplies and maintenance of water quality. Our environmental and economic well-being is dependent on the sustainability of these systems, and as the demands on our natural resources increase, we are compelled to restore and protect them.
Proper Functioning Condition (PFC) is both a state of health and an assessment tool for riparian-wetland areas developed jointly by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Forest Service and NRCS. Aqua-Tex has adapted this tool for use in urban aquatic systems and works closely with government colleagues in the U.S. to train practitioners in its use. Aqua-Tex staff form the core of the Canadian PFC cadre and regularly collaborate on stream assessments and training throughout western North America.
Download Technical References
- Environment as Infrastructure-Nature's Revenue Streams: Saving Communities Millions of Dollars in Water Infrastructure Costs
What is Nature's Revenue Streams (NRS)?
Nature's Revenue Streams (NRS) is a 3-year public-private pilot project, based in Saanich BC, that linked stormwater infrastructure to the restoration of stream and watershed function. The project demonstrated how urban development could be used as an opportunity to improve watershed and stream health, build/restore aquatic habitat and reduce infrastructure costs for developers and the municipality while also addressing stormwater runoff.
The project is a partnership between the District of Saanich and Aqua-Tex Scientific who has been working in the municipality for over 20 years. Aqua-Tex has developed many proven examples of ecologically functional stormwater infrastructure within the municipality's Colquitz River watershed. These projects have shown that by using techniques that mimic the ability of natural systems to store water and treat pollutants, developments can be built for less money, with more stable and cost effective drainage systems, while also creating attractive green spaces, restoring water flows, rebuilding habitat and saving significant municipal infrastructure costs. NRS provides practical, applied solutions for builders and municipalities to implement effective stormwater management techniques that consider the local ecological and economic conditions within a long-term cost-effective strategy to restore natural landscape drainage features.
In 2008, two reports were completed for the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation:"Nature's Revenue Streams: Five Ecological Value Case Studies" December 2008; and
"Nature's Revenue Streams: Assessment of Stormwater Treatment via Engineered Ecology™ Treatment Systems and Stream Restoration" December 2008. A synopsis of the stormwater report can provided by email request.
The "Colquitz River Watershed: Proper Functioning Condition Assessment" report (July 2009) is available for viewing at the District of Saanich.
- The North Shore Integrated Resource Recovery Report and Technical Appendix is public.
The report, undertaken by Fidelis Resource Group together with staff of Aqua-Tex, Farallon, and others, was commissioned by Metro Vancouver for the North Shore municipalities of: The District of West Vancouver, the District of North Vancouver, the City of North Vancouver, Squamish First Nation, and Tseleil Waultuth First Nation. This groundbreaking study is the first of its kind in North America and its findings are taking Metro Vancouver in a whole new direction for city planning and infrastructure renewal.