Building Okanagan Flood Resiliency Utilizing Natural Assets

Screen grab from documentary

On October 21, 2020, the Okanagan Sustainability Leadership Council partnered with Entrepreneurship@UBCO to premier the documentary “Building Okanagan Flood Resiliency Utilizing Natural Assets”.  We also co-hosted the first virtual Leadership Forum event of the year, “Building Okanagan Flood Resiliency”, in partnership with City of Kelowna, Okanagan Nation Alliance, Peachland Watershed Protection Alliance, Okanagan Basin Water Board, Lawson Lundell, City of Gibsons, Regional District Central Okanagan, and Municipal Natural Assets Initiative.

Could nature provide low-cost ‘infrastructure’ solutions to our flooding challenges?

For a growing number of forward-thinking governments across Canada, including Gibsons and Kelowna, British Columbia – the answer is yes. Flood prevention and quality drinking water depend, in large part, on aging and depreciating engineering infrastructure assets. Climate change and outdated industry practices are putting even further strain on these critical systems.

The documentary and leadership forum provided the opportunity to hear from municipal leaders, environmental experts, and researchers on how natural assets projects have reduced aging infrastructure replacement costs, mitigated risks, and improved community liveability. Plus the group learned about the vulnerability assessment tools, Indigenous studies, modelling techniques, and natural resiliency strategies in development to protect our region.  The results are informing numerous strategic initiatives across the region.

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