Posted by: Vicki Burns | November 24, 2010

Protecting Freshwater Top Priority for Majority of British Columbians -Vancouver Foundation and WWF-Canada Team Up to Survey the Public’s Attitudes

A recently released poll of British Columbia residents is good news for all of us who are focussing on water issues in Canada. It confirms once again that Canadians view freshwater as our most precious natural resource. The McAllister Opinion Research Poll found that 91% of British Columbians surveyed felt that freshwater resources in their province were the most important resource and a resounding 94% felt that nature and wildlife needs related to water should be a top priority in new water rules being developed by the province of B.C.

image of river with treed hills in the background

Adams River in B.C.

I was impressed to see the Vancouver Foundation partnering with WWF-Canada in polling the public about their attitudes regarding water. When I asked Mark Gifford, the Director of Grants and Community Initiatives for the Vancouver Foundation, what motivated them to be involved he quickly responded “Water and its protection are fundamental in thinking about the long term health of our province and its residents. It made sense for the Vancouver Foundation to be involved in this initiative”.
These poll results will surely give the B.C. government the support they need to move ahead with modernizing their Water Act.

Some of the measures the public would like to see included are:
* Stricter rules for managing industrial and municipal water use (89 per
* Using science to inform water management decisions (89 per cent).
* Requiring commercial enterprises to obtain licences for groundwater use
(89 per cent).
* Requiring active monitoring and reporting of all water use by industry and
municipalities (91 per cent).

  Actually, wouldn’t it be great to see these types of considerations for water management put into a federal act for all of Canada? The same principles of protection for one of life’s most essential elements, water, should be consistent across the entire country. It’s hard to imagine a logical argument why not.



  1. I hate to be so caustic but lessons of the past 5 years have not allowed me to be otherwise.

    I suspect this public declaration is one to soften up up the BC electorate for higher water prices and the eventual export.

    BC Liberals follow Alberta’s Conservatives move for move.

    In Alberta we had a spring meeting 3 years ago in Medicine Hat and the Conservatives flew in an American water expert that told who ever would listen that raising the price of water to home owners would be the best way to stop misuse.

    I see Regina just put in a 25% increase in their water prices. No other reason than they could.

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