Children standing by the source of their grandparent’s drinking water. Glade, BC.


The Kootenays are home to one of the highest populations in BC that depends on creeks, streams and surface water springs for their drinking water. These communities have all of the responsibility to keep their drinking water clean but little means to do so. 

People need safe, clean drinking water, and we have that in abundance in the West Kootenays. Nature-based planning supports communities to protect the watersheds they rely on for drinking water. It also helps build resiliency to face the increasing effects of climate change and industrial use that cause flooding, droughts and landslides.

The West Kootenay EcoSociety is part of a new provincial program to support healthy watersheds in 2021. The program will lay the groundwork for designing natural solutions to support the health and safety of rural communities.

Through nature-based planning, communities integrate their concerns and needs and learn about how healthy watersheds naturally provide clean drinking water and naturally lessen the potential for landslides, droughts and floods.  

Since 2018, community members from watersheds in the RDCK’s Area E have been working with local government representatives and local experts to find resources to conduct nature-based planning in their watersheds.

EcoSociety is pleased to support these efforts by being a Healthy Watersheds Initiative partner to further the nature-based planning efforts of people in watersheds in Area E. This year we will lay down the preliminary framework for this process.

This project is supported through the Healthy Watersheds Initiative, which is delivered by the Real Estate Foundation of BC and Watersheds BC, with financial support from the Province of British Columbia as part of its $10 billion COVID-19 response, and through Areas E and I of the RDCK.