Free Online Tool Supports Water-use Decision-making in Cariboo Region

Victoria, BC – Aug 3, 2016 – Award-winning environmental science and consulting firm Foundry Spatial today unveiled a free new tool allowing government, First Nations, industry and members of the public to access detailed information on water supply in the Cariboo region of the province.

The Cariboo Water Tool presents monitoring information from 1,500 stream flow, groundwater, water quality and weather measurement stations in the central portion of the Fraser River watershed. It also uses innovative technology to estimate mean annual and monthly discharge for user-defined watersheds at over 180,000 locations, and provides an overview of watershed characteristics including vegetation and topography, along with an overview of current climate and projected climatic conditions.

“The Cariboo Water Tool is very fast and easy to use,” says Ben Kerr, CEO and Senior Water Scientist at Victoria-based Foundry Spatial. “Traditional hydrologic data analysis requires days or weeks to generate information to prepare and adjudicate water license applications. With the Cariboo Water Tool, users can get meaningful information within a few seconds.”

Water license applicants can use the information from the Cariboo Water Tool to help them during the water use application process. Likewise, regional water managers can use modeled flow and environmental flow needs information to support their water allocation decisions. This allows users to not only see what the long term average water availability for their location of interest is, but also to estimate what is happening at locations where there is no monitoring data.

“The Cariboo Water Tool joins a suite of GIS-based tools we developed to support decision-making on water-use planning and approvals,” says Kerr. Building on the success of the Northeast, Northwest, and Omineca Water Tools, and the Water Portal, the Cariboo Water Tool summarizes information on all water-use licenses, and provides government decision-makers with guidance on environmental flows and potential water supply in a format that is transparent, readily accessible, and easily interpreted.

Developed by Foundry Spatial for the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, together with the Ministry of Environment and the BC Oil and Gas Commission, the BC Water Tools are unique in North America as water resource decision-support tools.

Quick Facts:

  • The information used in the Cariboo Water Tool was developed through a modeling process that used 119 hydro metric stations in BC, the Yukon and Alaska.

  • The Cariboo Water Tool allows users to generate reports describing the hydrology of over 180,000 watersheds in the region.

  • The Cariboo Water Tool includes information on currently active water approvals issued under the Water Sustainability Act.

  • The Cariboo Water Tool includes historical and current environmental monitoring data from over 1,500 locations in the region.


Cariboo Water Tool:

Omineca Water Tool:

Northwest Water Tool:

BC Water Portal:

Alberta Water Tool:



David Sovka



Based in Victoria, BC, Foundry Spatial is an environmental science and consulting firm. Our expert team of scientists and programmers builds helpful tools that turn raw data into meaningful information for smart, sustainable, resource management decision-making. We have a proven track record, having delivered hydrology modeling and decision support tools for more than one million km2 of Western Canada. For more information, visit