A roadmap is a good first step for a local government to get a handle on how to manage and value their natural assets. The roadmap is a high-level plan that pulls together individuals from various municipal departments to discuss and centralize their expertise.
Roadmaps have proven to be a relatively low effort, high impact activity requiring no more than a few days’ work for the project lead and a few hours from the other staff participants, yet it provides a strong foundation for participants to get started in NAM with confidence.
In Ontario, municipalities are required to have an approved asset management plan for all municipal infrastructure assets — including green infrastructure assets — that identifies current levels of service and the cost of maintaining those levels of service under O. Reg. 588/17, Asset Management Planning for Municipal Infrastructure by July 1, 2024. The Natural Asset Management Roadmap Program is a great tool to help municipalities ensure they are meeting the proper criteria.
Most local governments complete their roadmap within four months, through which time they are able to:
- Build awareness about NAM among a cross-functional staff group
- Understand how their local government is considering natural assets in planning and delivering services
- Complete a high-level roadmap that includes the actions they will take over the short to medium term to integrate NAM into their asset management practices
- Learn from their peers and build a network helping to advance NAM