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April 8, 2021

Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4

UBC Future Waters & BCWWA Workshop On Drinking Water Sustainability in BC

UBC Future Waters workshop series objectives

The broad objective of the Future Waters science, policy, and practice workshop series is to bring researchers, industry representatives, health authorities, and water system operators together to foster cohesive, high-level strategies to address current water-related issues in BC.

Drinking Water Sustainability workshop objectives

This workshop session addresses the need to respond to the Auditor General’s Report, The Protection of Drinking Water, released July 2019 (similar report released by the Public Health Officer in June 2019). The Auditor General’s Report focuses on whether the BC Provincial Ministries are taking adequate action to protect drinking water in British Columbia.

Specific issues identified by the Auditor General’s Report that we will focus on in the workshop include the following:

- Watershed protection: systemic risk identification and mitigation

- Water treatment: Site-specific risk identification and mitigation

This workshop supports a need for industry and academia to work together to deliver research results and industry recommendations into the hands of decision-makers in a timely and effective manner. Participants will have the opportunity to cultivate working partnerships, build trust and reliance across professional boundaries, and develop an understanding of the complementary needs and capabilities offered by each individual and their home institution. These relational benefits will emerge organically as participants share experiences and knowledge of working on water-related projects.

Tangible outputs and outcomes

Formulate high-level strategies (rather than specific policy-recommendations) to address issues identified by the 2019 Auditor General’s Report, focusing on the four issues highlighted above. To accomplish this, breakout groups organized by issue will be utilized to:

Identify barriers to progress

- Recommend solutions

- Outcome report prepared by the UBC Future Waters team, to be distributed to participants and relevant government representatives

- Improve communication/accountability network, re-envision network of shared roles and responsibilities with new connections between groups