The Blue Economy Initiative undertakes research and advocacy projects around four key "blue economy" focus areas:

1) value of water to Canada's economy
2) global water opportunities
3) value of water in agriculture/food production
4) innovative smart water and wastewater infrastructure "city of the near future"

  • Global Opportunities

    CANADA AS THE WATER SOLUTIONS COUNTRY
    Defining the Opportunities

    By David Crane

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    To kick off the BEI series, BEI organized a one-day panel event (March 4 in Toronto, by invitation) to inspire dialogue among business leaders and decision-makers to better identify the current trends that define and shape Canada's opportunity to become a global "water solutions" leader. This discussion focused on gaining insights about key emerging trends that drive and shape water opportunities, both here and abroad.  A report was prepared to encourage dialogue, propose recommendations and outline key questions requiring further discussion.

    With water spending expected to reach $1 trillion a year by 2020, ours is a world where the need for water solutions will become increasingly urgent. But this is also Canada's opportunity. If we make water our focus, Canada can become a leading water solutions country. If we combine our investment in research, our experience with water challenges, our water management systems, skilled workers and the array of Canadian companies that delvier water-related goods and services, Canada's water potential is truly promising.

    REPORT

    CANADA AS THE WATER SOLUTIONS COUNTRY
    Defining the Opportunities

    By David Crane

    Canada as the Water Solutions Country: Defining the Opportunities

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  • Water and Agriculture
    BETTER BY THE DROP : 
    Revealing the value of water in Canadian agriculture
    By Hanspeter Schreier and Chris Wood
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    BEI's third project focused on opportunities to invest in agriculture production in a thoughtful way to ensure water is managed and allocated sustainably. The report hightlights Canada's opportunties to increase food and agriculture production while ensuring our water resources are sustainably managed with the help of virtual water and water footprinting tools. An event was held in July 2013 to develop actionable priority areas and next steps.

    The world faces unprecedented food shortages as global demand for nutrition is set to double by 2050. Canada is one of very few countries that can expand its agricultural exports in a significant way. This presents our nation with a major economic opportunity and a significant responsibility.

    To capitalize on this opportunity and help feed the world, we must invest in our agri-food sector in an intentional, responsible and effective way, recognizing fresh water as an essential input in agricultural production. Without water, thare are no crops, no livestock, and no agri-food industry.

    Feature Report

    BETTER BY THE DROP : 
    Revealing the value of water in Canadian agriculture

     

    By Hanspeter Schreier and Chris Wood

    Better by the Drop

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  • Value of Water

    RUNNING THROUGH OUR FINGERS:
    How Canada Fails to Capture the Value of Its Top Asset
    By Steven Renzetti, Diane P. Dupont and Chris Wood

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    Running Through Our Fingers is an attempt by two of Canada’s best environmental economists and an award-winning journalist to revisit economist Andrew Muller’s 1985 analysis of the value of water’s contribution to the Canadian economy.

    Canadians consistently rank water as this country's most important asset. Climate change, growing industrial use and population growth are stressing water supply and fueling international sales of water-related services. Realizing the greatest benefit from Canada's water requires a capacity to distinguish which uses generate the most value. The first estimate of water's contribution to the economy in a quarter-century suggests that while the rest of the economy has alomost doubled over that period, water's measured contribution has apparently declined. The analysis clearly reveals how many "known unknowns" hold us back.

    Report

    RUNNING THROUGH OUR FINGERS:
    How Canada Fails to Capture the Value of Its Top Asset
    By Steven Renzetti, Diane P. Dupont and Chris Wood

    Running Through Your Fingers

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  • Blue City
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    Blue City: The Water-Sustainable City of the Near Future is a visionary report built on the interviews of 17 water-related professionals in Canada who share their views on what a water-sustainable city might look like and the success stories of existing project.  Grounded in research, design, and innovation, this report will help policy-makers, government officials, businesses and community leaders create tangible solutions for sustainable water management on a national and global scale.  As Canada faces an enormous water and waste-water infrastructure deficit, this report explores the possibilities for communities across the country.

    The report was authored by Kirk Stinchcombe, co-founder and Louise Brennan, sustainability specialist at Econics. Econics is a Victoria, B.C.  based company that provides sustainability services to municipal water service providers

    BLUE CITY:
    The Water Sustainable City of the Near Future

    By Kirk Stinchcombe and Louise Brennan of Econics

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