Past Projects


The ActionH2O program was launched in the summer of 2009 in partnership with Sierra Club Canada, and with the support of the RBC Blue Water Project. Concluded in 2011, this program was the first national community-based and grassroots water sustainability campaign of its kind in Canada. By harnessing bottom-up efforts, the program sought to develop new conservation- and efficiency-based approaches to water management in communities across the country.

Through its outreach initiatives, the WSP worked with cities and towns across Canada to identify locally relevant solutions and opportunities for water conservation and innovative water-centric planning. A variety of practical handbooks and how-to resources were developed through this initiative.

For more information, please visit Water Conservation Toolkit for Communities.

Living Water Policy Project

The Living Water Policy Project (LWPP) initiative was driven by the belief that the fragmented nature of Canadian water policy inhibits effective management of our water resources. The project was guided by a community of partners, including water policy analysts and professionals, with expertise in monitoring changes to provincial, territorial, and federal water policy in Canada. Through the LWPP website, visitors could easily access detailed water policy summaries for each province and territory, as well as the federal government. The website also allowed for the easy comparison of water policy efforts across different jurisdictions. This “living” library was developed to assist water managers, as well as broader civil society, in participating in a more sophisticated and robust ongoing public policy dialogue. The LWPP ran from 2010 to 2012.

Soft Path Leadership Council—National Water Soft Path Development Project

From 2005 to 2009, the WSP actively worked with the Soft Path Leadership Council, in partnership with Friends of the Earth Canada. The Council was made up of a cross-sectoral group of water experts and professionals from across Canada. Its mandate was to move water soft path concepts from theory into action, and to develop on-the-ground pilot projects. Ultimately, this partnership culminated in the publication of the book Making the Most of the Water We Have: The Soft Path Approach to Water Management in 2009. Making the Most of the Water We Have compiles the writings of more than 20 water scientists, policy advisors and analysts, and political ecologists. It is the first book to comprehensively present and apply the water soft path approach. 

The three-day forum Watersheds 2014: Towards Watershed Governance in British Columbia and Beyond was held on Cowichan Tribes territory in Duncan, British Columbia from January 27th to 29th, 2014. This forum attracted nearly 200 delegates, plus an additional over 75 virtual participants via online satellite events across the country. Delegates came together to re-envision the way we use, share, and respect our freshwater and watershed resources.

The forum was organized by the WSP, the University of Victoria Department of Geography, and Brock University’s Environmental Sustainability Research Centre. Core partners/funders included the Canadian Water Network, Cowichan Tribes, British Columbia Ministry of Environment, Real Estate Foundation of British Columbia, Cowichan Watershed Board, Cowichan Valley Regional District, Centre for Global Studies, and Canadian Freshwater Alliance. Major funding came from the Canadian Water Network, Real Estate Foundation of British Columbia, British Columbia Ministry of Environment, and Tides Canada.

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