Watershed Entities & Plans
Measures the percent of Canada’s 167 sub-watersheds which have a watershed entity and a plan for the watershed that is both ecosystems-based and enforceable

Getting data to report on this impact measure is a work in progress. This shared measurement system belongs to all members of the Our Living Water Network, so if you have any data or ideas to share with us on this measure, please send us an email at info@ourlivingwaters.ca.

Overview

Watershed governance refers to the the ways in which decisions are made and upheld within a watershed, which informs how well our water is managed. Whereas the Watershed Governance impact measure identifies mechanisms to support watershed governance within the 25 major watersheds of Canada, this impact measure examines both: the extent to which watershed entities within the 167 sub-watersheds of Canada exist; and the presence of an enforceable ecosystems-based plan.

A watershed entity may take many forms. Important to this measure is the presence of an identifiable, multi-partner, watershed-based organization that has the authority for, or direct access to, enforcement. This means that it has an institutional form, holds meetings, and is tangible.

It is important for this entity and its decisions to be guided by watershed planning. According to the Fraser Basin Council’s guide to watershed planning, a watershed plan is a strategy that assesses the state of a watershed and presents detailed management information in terms of analyses, actions, participants and resources required for developing and implementing the plan. Ecosystems-based planning builds on this by advancing an approach that considers the full range of activities and interactions within a sub-watershed, rather than focusing on isolated issues or species.

While a full analysis has not been made on this impact measure, a few watershed entities have been identified (although, whether they have the the ability to enforce, or have an enforceable ecosystem-based plan has not been assessed). Some examples from six provinces/territories:

  • British Columbia: Columbia Basin Trust, Fraser Basin Council, Okanagan Basin Water Board
  • Alberta: Alberta Watershed Planning and Advisory Councils (WPACs) and Alliances, such as the Bow River Basin Council and the Mighty Peace Watershed Alliance
  • Saskatchewan: Watershed Stewardship Associations / Basin Councils, such as the Assiniboine River Watershed Stewardship Association and the Carrot River Valley Watershed Association
  • Northwest Territories: Water Boards, such as the Sahtu Land and Water Board and the Wek'eezhii Land and Water Board
  • Manitoba: Conservation Districts, such as the Seine-Rat River Conservation District and the West Souris River Conservation District
  • Ontario: Conservation Authorities, such as the Grand River Conservation Authority and the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority

5-Year target: To establish a process and criteria for, and identify, an initial benchmark for this impact measure.

Last updated November 2017

Note: The data presented here represents our best research given the time and resources at hand. We acknowledge there may be errors. This shared measurement system belongs to all members of the Our Living Water Network, so if you have any corrections for us, or ideas to share on this measure, please send us an email at info@ourlivingwaters.ca.

Watershed Entities & Plans|Measures the percent of Canada’s 167 sub-watersheds which have a watershed entity and a plan for the watershed that is both ecosystems-based and enforceable
Watershed Entities & Plans|Measures the percent of Canada’s 167 sub-watersheds which have a watershed entity and a plan for the watershed that is both ecosystems-based and enforceable
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