Cowichan – Integrated Farm Water Planning Pilot [cw06]
|Status||completed in 2015|
|Project Lead||Economic Development Cowichan|
|Funding Partners||Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, BC Ministry of Agriculture, Cowichan Valley Regional District|
Climate change will affect all aspects of water management for agricultural operations. An integrated and comprehensive approach to water management (from supply, to irrigation, to drainage) at the farm level is a positive step in supporting producers to manage the associated challenges.
Through this project, a holistic farm water planning process was developed and tested. During Phase 1 (completed April 2014) a farm water planning toolkit was developed. In Phase 2 the toolkit was piloted with 8–10 agricultural operations across the Cowichan region.
A range of farm types and locations were selected so that the pilot incorporated a cross-section of water sources and management issues. The pilot helped to refine and evaluate the planning approach and to identify common challenges or issues of exceptional concern. By identifying more complex water issues and opportunities (that require cooperation between multiple partners) the pilot project was also intended to form the foundation for future collaborative water pilot projects in the Cowichan Valley. Options for broadening the use of the planning toolkit and process are currently being explored.