CRACKING THE CODE (IN 3-D): A WATER DATA HUB DIALOGUE

CRACKING THE CODE
(IN 3-D)

 An Open Source Data Dialogue Towards a Columbia Basin Water Monitoring Framework

Wed, Nov 29, 2017, 8:30 AM – Thu, Nov 30, 2017, 4:30 PM MST
Copper Point Resort in Invermere, B.C.

Click here for EVENT PROGRAM including detailed agenda and speakers bios.

REGISTER HERE

Click here for advance MEDIA COVERAGE of the conference (see pages 5 & 10).

Join the Conversation: #WaterDataHub2017

ABOUT THE CONFERENCE

On November 29th and 30th in the Columbia Valley (Invermere), join the dialogue that will envision creating a Water Monitoring Framework for Source Water Protection and a shared, Open Source Water Data Hub for the Columbia Basin.
The goal of the dialogue is to develop a collective understanding for integrating the region’s water knowledge through freely accessed open source data that is useful, reliable, and evaluated and applied by users.

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During this action focused event, participants will craft 3-D outcomes:

  1. DECIDE: An understanding for what is required to catalyze a water monitoring framework towards filling important water data gaps for a watershed.    
  2. DESIGN: A vision for a Columbia Basin-specific, open access, water data hub.
  3. DO: Cross-sector working groups to move forward on the shared water data hub and the water monitoring framework

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A WATER MONITORING FRAMEWORK

In February 2017, Columbia Basin Trust (CBT) released a report led by Dr. Martin Carver outlining the current status of water quality and quantity knowledge in the Columbia Basin. The report, titled “Water Monitoring and Climate in the Upper Columbia Basin, Summary of Current Status and Opportunities”, revealed that Basin water data is inadequate for the undertaking of managing and protecting the region’s water resources in response to climate change.

Over the past few decades, the federal and provincial governments have reduced their hydrometric monitoring, especially on smaller streams. Because existing monitoring networks pre-dated the need for regional climate impacts monitoring, the current network does not represent an optimal configuration for tracking and understanding the full range of implications of climate change on water supply for Basin ecosystems and people (Carver, 2017).

In light of this report, time is of the essence when it comes to establishing a Water Monitoring Framework for the Basin, an endeavour particularly relevant to the region’s higher-volume users such as communities and municipalities, hydropower operators, agricultural producers, industrial operations, ski resorts (snowmaking), as well as commercial and residential users.

A WATER DATA HUB

Storage and access to Columbia Basin water data in a way that supports decision-making is the next step. Cracking the Code (in 3-D) will tap into conversation about open source data that is currently trending on a global scale in citizen scientist, academic, government and industry circles. The time for an innovative, coordinated and collaborative open water data platform for the Basin — one that is free of charge and open to everybody — has arrived, but it’s not without its challenges. How to efficiently house reliable, multi-tiered data is the question everyone is grappling with.

We will learn about best practices examples from regions in Canada and the U.S. We will have a shared understanding regarding water monitoring and water data storage needs from the perspectives of government (all levels) including First Nations, community water stewardship groups, industry sectors and academia.

AGENDA HIGHLIGHTS

WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 29, 2017
CHARTING THE WATERS
  • Day 1 — Charting the Waters — panels will focus on holistic best practices of larger scale collaborative water monitoring initiatives; shared understanding of big data hubs; current and future water monitoring and database needs for all levels of government, industry and communities. Day one will finish with plenary dinner guests to share a First Nations water stewardship perspective. There will be an optional visit to Radium Hot Springs.
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2017
DIVING IN
  • Day 2 — Diving In — panels will have a more in-depth focus: on-the-ground First Nations and non-First Nations community based water monitoring examples; local and regional government and industry examples; needs for shared data and collaborative monitoring work. This will be followed by a facilitated session to gather input for next steps needed in creating a Columbia Basin Water Monitoring Framework and a Basin-specific water data hub.

Click here for EVENT PROGRAM including detailed agenda and speaker bios.

EVENT DETAILS

Cost: $200 ($100 per day)

  • Covers all meals (breakfast x2, lunch x2, snacks x4, dinner x1), coffee and registration
  • Optional shuttle to local hot springs included – hot springs entry must be paid separately by attendee

Discounted Locals’ Day Rate: $100 ($50 per day)

  • Covers lunch and snacks only (no breakfast or dinners), coffee and daytime registration only (no evening presentation)
  • No hot springs shuttle included

We have blocked rooms at the Copper Point Resort where the conference will be held. The resort has offered conference delegates a special off-season room rate. Please make sure you notify the resort that you will be attending the Conference to ensure the discount is applied.

Direct room reservations can be made by calling the central reservations line at: 1.855.926.7737 or by emailing: reservations@copperpointresort.com, Monday through Friday between the hours of 9 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Discounted Suite Options:

  •  Standard Rooms – $83.00/night + taxes
  • 1 Bedroom Suite – $132.00/night + taxes
  • 2 Bedroom Suite – $195.00/night + taxes

BURSARIES

Bursaries will be available to individuals working with non-profit watershed stewardship groups as well as interested First Nations. Please apply here — a limited number will be available.

TRANSPORTATION

Transportation will be provided from Calgary International Airport to Copper Point Resort in Invermere on Tuesday, November 28. Anyone requiring transportation is asked to meet between 3 and 5 p.m. at Calgary International Airport on November 28. Return transportation will be available on Friday, December 1st. For details, please email Avery Deboer-Smith at averydeboer@gmail.com.

For those interested in carpooling options, ride sharing information will be emailed to all registrants prior to the conference.

 

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

Open Source Data Hub Dialogue

OPEN SOURCE DATA HUB DIALOGUE:
Towards a Columbia Basin Water Monitoring Framework

Wed, Nov 29, 2017, 8:30 AM – Thu, Nov 30, 2017, 4:30 PM MST
In Invermere, BC

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

About the Conference

You can read the overview and agenda highlights by clicking here.

In February 2017, Columbia Basin Trust (CBT) released its “Water Monitoring and Climate in the Upper Columbia Basin, Summary of Current Status and Opportunities” report led by Dr. Martin Carver. The report outlines the current status of water quality and quantity knowledge in the Columbia Basin. Filling important water data gaps will be a priority in order to support informed decision-making for elected officials, government agencies and water managers.  Decisions regarding water allocation, watershed governance, ecosystem health, source water and aquifer protection will become increasingly complex in this era of climate change .

On November 29th and 30th, join the dialogue that will envision creating a Water Monitoring Framework and a shared, Open Source Water Data Hub in the Columbia Basin. The goal of the dialogue is to develop a collective understanding for modernizing water knowledge with useful, reliable, open source data, that is freely accessed, evaluated and applied by users. The time for a coordinated, collaborative, innovative, user friendly, cost effective and open water data platform, has arrived.  We will learn about best practices examples from regions in Canada and the U.S.  We will have a shared understanding regarding water monitoring and water data storage needs from the perspectives of government (all levels), indigenous and non indigenous engaged water stewardship groups, engaged industry sectors and academia.

Dialogue Outcomes

  1. A vision for a Columbia Basin specific, open source, water data hub.
  2. An understanding for what is required to catalyze a water monitoring framework towards filling important water data gaps for a watershed.
  3. Cross-sector working groups will be formed to move forward on the shared water data hub and the water monitoring framework.

Long-Term Vision – Toward Columbia Basin Water Monitoring Framework

Develop a comprehensive Columbia Basin Water Monitoring Framework and Open Source Water Data Hub, that is supported and implemented by a collaboration of agencies and organizations to address the knowledge gaps; improve water data management; and inform applied science-based decision-making.

  1. Establish partnerships with organizations, agencies, and First Nations to support and guide the Water Monitoring Framework and Data Hub Dialogue and develop subsequent action items.
  2. Prioritize regional water knowledge gaps based on the 2017 CBT report, the WWF National Freshwater Health Assessment, and other sources.
  3. Identify appropriate approaches, partnerships and first steps for collecting and analyzing water data to help address knowledge gaps.
  4. Expand the collaboration of agencies and organizations to address and share information regarding water knowledge gaps.
  5. Develop and populate water database in open source platform.
  6. Link water data with decision-making.
  7. Share lessons on provincial and national scales.
  8. Learn lessons from other provincial, regional scales and other best practices examples.

Ticket Costs Cover

Tickets are $200 for the two-day conference and will include:

  1. Meals (breakfast x2, lunch x2, snacks x4, dinner x1), coffee and registration
  2. Optional shuttle to local hot springs will be included – hotspring entry must be paid separately by attendee

We have blocked rooms at the Copper point resort where the conference will be held.  The resort has offered conference delegates a special off season room rate. Please make sure you notify the resort that you will be attending the Conference to ensure the discount is applied.

Direct reservations can be made by calling the central reservations line at: 1.855.926.7737 or by emailing: reservations@copperpointresort.com, Monday through Friday between the hours of 9am – 4pm.

Discounted Suite Options:

Standard Rooms – $83.00/night + taxes
1 Bedroom Suite – $132.00/night + taxes
2 Bedroom Suite – $195.00/taxes

Direct reservations can be made by calling the central reservations line at: 1.855.926.7737 or by emailing: reservations@copperpointresort.com, Monday through Friday between the hours of 9am – 4pm.

Bursaries

Bursaries will be available to individuals working with relevant non-profit groups – A limited number will be available. Bursaries will become available when registration opens. Please fill out our bursary application by clicking here.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

Read agenda highlights and overview by clicking here.

Conveners

Nelson Field Practicum – Canadian Aquatic Biomonitoring Network (CABIN)

Do you want to conduct freshwater benthic invertebrate monitoring and assessment to test the water quality on streams near you?

Living Lakes Canada is hosting a Canadian Aquatic Biomonitoring Network Field Practicum in Nelson, BC September 13 and 14.

Join us and register today!

For more information on CABIN and aquatic biomonitoring.

Space is limited. Registration closes August 28, 2017.

Please share this opportunity with your networks.

The Healthy Water’s Summit June 12, 2017

Water Canada magazine’s Water’s Next Award program is the only national awards program to honour leadership across the entire water sector—including public servants, non-governmental groups, researchers, municipalities, and technology providers. Since 2010, Water Canada has hosted the awards to help strengthen and celebrate the thriving national community by showcasing Canada’s water leaders, champions, and innovators.

The Water’s Next national awards program honours the achievements and ideas of individuals and companies that successfully work to change water in our country.

Download the Summit PDF

Also check out the The Water’s Next Gala Award Dinner held at the Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel on Thursday, June 22, 2017

Living Lakes Canada Executive Director Katrina Hartwig is a finalist in the NGO category for the 2017 Water’s Next Award

Water Canada magazine’s Water’s Next Award program is the only national awards program to honour leadership across the entire water sector—including public servants, non-governmental groups, researchers, municipalities, and technology providers. Since 2010, Water Canada has hosted the awards to help strengthen and celebrate the thriving national community by showcasing Canada’s water leaders, champions, and innovators.

Good Luck Kat!

The Water’s Next Gala Award Dinner will be held at the Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel on June 22, 2017

Announcement and Call for Proposals: NALMS 2016

Living Lakes Canada is co-hosting the 36th International Symposium of the North American Lake Management Society (NALMS) in Banff from November 1-4, 2016. The theme of this year’s symposium is Science to Stewardship: Balancing Economic Growth with Lake Sustainability.

There may be no locale more appropriate to host a discussion on the impact of development on natural spaces than Banff National Park, Alberta. Established in 1885, Banff is Canada’s first national park. Hosting millions of visitors annually, Banff exemplifies the need for a sustainable balance between economic development and conservation. Alberta has undergone significant landscape change during the last hundred years. Intact ecosystems have been altered by rapid population growth and a thriving natural resource-based economy. We invite you to join us at the 2016 NALMS Symposium to help us celebrate, explore the area, and engage in discussions about science, stewardship and finding a balance between the environment, economy and social goals in lake management.

The deadline to submit abstracts is May 6, 2016. Find out more here.

Traditional Teachings from Moose Nose Soup

Travelling down the Yellowhead Highway, I cross the continental divide, leaving the Pacific watershed and entering the Arctic.  As I follow the mighty Athabasca into Central Alberta, historic trading posts are scattered between energy extraction projects, a melding of historic and current evidence of our dependence on the land. The Upper and Central Athabasca watersheds are an important link between the Rocky Mountain, Foothills and Boreal forest and are home to grizzly bear, wolverine and other species at risk.

I’m on my way to teach a course on how to use CABIN (Canadian Aquatic Biomonitoring Network), a protocol developed by Environment Canada to assess the health of freshwater ecosystems. Just a few years earlier, I made this same trip to train the Keepers of the Athabasca in the protocol. The Keepers are a cross-cultural community-based group determined to protect their watershed. Equipped with CABIN, the Keepers were able to begin monitoring the effects of a 670-million-litre coal mine waste spill into the upper tributaries of the Athabasca River.

And now we are partnering to train a group from the Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation. Our Upper Athabasca Biomonitoring Program is expanding to 12 CABIN monitoring sites this year, and trained, committed and passionate CABIN volunteers are essential to the success of the program. The first day of training begins with an engaged, enthusiastic group. Cracking jokes, telling stories of life on the river and in the bush, they are as excited as I am to check out the macroinvertebrates that help us to assess stream health. The group is impressed by the holistic approach of the protocol, and make independently leading my first CABIN training course a real joy.

On the second day of training, I receive a phone call from some of the participants, letting me know they will be late due to a moose being hit on the highway. The participants collected the moose nose, in which I later learned is used for ceremonial moose nose soup, and investigated whether the meat was still edible. I am continuously blown away by this group’s connection to the land and surroundings, their ways of knowing, and constant reminders of the importance of a holistic approach to freshwater monitoring. As I share my scientific methods with them, they give me just as much training into the importance of including traditional ecological knowledge into the protocol.

After the training is complete, we join with the Keepers of the Athabasca and begin monitoring our 12 new sites on the river. As we work, the group’s insights continue to resonate. The importance of indigenous education systems—learning by doing, input from community members and direct learning from elders (mentorship) is imperative for a holistic approach to assess freshwater health. In order to learn about the current state of the ecosystem, like the bugs we collect in the CABIN protocol to determine potential past water quality impacts, we must also investigate the history of a place through community connections, and by accepting of other ways of knowing.

Rosenberg International Forum: The Mackenzie River Basin

The Rosenberg International Forum on Water Policy released this report based on the findings of a 2012 workshop on trans-boundary relations in the Mackenzie River Basin. The workshop, which took place in Vancouver from Sept. 5 to 7, 2012, convened several experts in the fields of law, economics and various scientific disciplines with the goal of looking at the legal and scientific principles relevant to creating a co-ordinated basin-wide approach to management.

The workshop was co-hosted by The Gordon Foundation and Simon Fraser University’s Adaptation to Climate Change Team. The Mackenzie River Basin is Canada’s largest drainage basin at 1.8 million sq. km – 20 per cent of Canada’s landmass – and is one of the most intact large-scale ecosystems in North America. While the Basin is relatively undisturbed ecologically, it is at risk from both a warming climate and extractive and hydrological industries. These large forces of change threaten the Basin’s ecology, as well as its role as a homeland to aboriginals and northerners who rely on the land and its resources to provide food, clothing, water and other necessities of life.

Read the full report here.

With the support of