Event Title

Resilient and Effective Ecosystem Governance: The Abbotsford-Sumas Aquifer International Task Force Two Decades Later

Presentation Abstract

The Abbotsford-Sumas aquifer located along the border of Southern British Columbia and Western Washington is used by over 100,000 people. This aquifer has been plagued with nitrate contamination well above the safe drinking water standards on either side of the border for over two decades. Studies have proven that a reduction in nitrate leaching is necessary to improve the health of the aquifer. Several organizations at various scales have set out to accomplish this task. One of these organizations is the Abbotsford-Sumas Aquifer International Task Force, a subcommittee of the Environmental Cooperation Council. The task force was initiated after the ECC declared the aquifer one of the five highest environmental priorities and was created as part of the BC/WA Environmental Cooperation Agreement in 1992. Although it has recommended various best management practices over the years, it has not been successful in sustaining nitrate reduction overall. Further, the task force took a six year hiatus from 2007-2013, but has recently reconvened. In typical environmental management scenarios this would indicate a crisis-mode, which begs the question why has the task force re-started and will the institution be more resilient than it was? Could an adaptive management approach provide a framework for effective ecosystem governance? Finally, what do stakeholders feel the mission and future direction of the Task Force is?

Session Title

Session S-06D: Marine Survival of Salmon and Steelhead: the Salish Sea Marine Survival Project

Conference Track

Species and Food Webs

Conference Name

Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference (2014 : Seattle, Wash.)

Document Type

Event

Start Date

1-5-2014 5:00 PM

End Date

1-5-2014 6:30 PM

Location

Room 6C

Contributing Repository

Digital content made available by University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Rights

This resource is displayed for educational purposes only and may be subject to U.S. and international copyright laws. For more information about rights or obtaining copies of this resource, please contact University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA 98225-9103, USA (360-650-7534; heritage.resources@wwu.edu) and refer to the collection name and identifier. Any materials cited must be attributed to the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference Records, University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Type

Text

Language

English

Format

application/pdf

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May 1st, 5:00 PM May 1st, 6:30 PM

Resilient and Effective Ecosystem Governance: The Abbotsford-Sumas Aquifer International Task Force Two Decades Later

Room 6C

The Abbotsford-Sumas aquifer located along the border of Southern British Columbia and Western Washington is used by over 100,000 people. This aquifer has been plagued with nitrate contamination well above the safe drinking water standards on either side of the border for over two decades. Studies have proven that a reduction in nitrate leaching is necessary to improve the health of the aquifer. Several organizations at various scales have set out to accomplish this task. One of these organizations is the Abbotsford-Sumas Aquifer International Task Force, a subcommittee of the Environmental Cooperation Council. The task force was initiated after the ECC declared the aquifer one of the five highest environmental priorities and was created as part of the BC/WA Environmental Cooperation Agreement in 1992. Although it has recommended various best management practices over the years, it has not been successful in sustaining nitrate reduction overall. Further, the task force took a six year hiatus from 2007-2013, but has recently reconvened. In typical environmental management scenarios this would indicate a crisis-mode, which begs the question why has the task force re-started and will the institution be more resilient than it was? Could an adaptive management approach provide a framework for effective ecosystem governance? Finally, what do stakeholders feel the mission and future direction of the Task Force is?