Science


People


Water


Foundry Spatial is

empowering decisions to shape the future of watersheds and aquifers

Foundry Spatial connects people with technology, science, and data for sustainable water management. We empower our users to make decisions based on accurate and timely information so that water management initiatives can be aligned with sustainable outcomes.

To see what we’ve been working on, check out our blog.

BC Oil and Gas Commission

“Foundry Spatial turns millions and millions of numbers into something that actually explains the hydrology of an area.”

Assembly member, California Legislature

"This tool will provide water users with a quick and inexpensive way to assess existing water supply and demand, addressing one of the biggest existing barriers to developing streamflow enhancement projects that benefit both ecosystems and people."

Province of British Columbia

“A $1.2 Million investment is generating $30 Million annually in opportunity value.”

We specialize in

Water Science For Real-World Problems

Our web-based software makes complex science accessible, creating a solid foundation of understanding for your decision-making process.

Detailed Watershed and Aquifer Information

With on-demand information, you can identify problems and opportunities sooner. Allowing you to spend more of time focusing on solutions.

Geospatial Solutions For Actionable Insight

Our user-centered design process, scientific and engineering skills, and toolbox of cutting-edge technologies helps us craft solutions for your spatial and temporal data problems.

News & Awards

Foundry Spatial California Water Framework Overview

Feb 12 2021

The California Water Framework is a web application that provides information to support the conjunctive management of surface and groundwater resources. Covering a broad spectrum of critical water management issues, the California Water Framework is an end to end solution: data acquisition to web-based decision support. The key to the framework is high-quality data, combined with robust analytics, delivered through a powerful, cutting-edge technology platform.Our overarching objective with the framework is to provide insightful, on-demand, unbiased, and actionable information that can help support sustainable water resource management decision-makers at all levels.The CWF has three key features: The Fully Integrated Water Rights and Allocations tool, Groundwater Pumping and Streamflow Depletion, and Watershed and Basin Reporting.Fully Integrated Water Rights and Allocations ToolComplete watershed analysis of water rights, licensing, and surface water and groundwater allocationsComplete picture of sustainable limits for withdrawals from a watershed, as well as fully appropriated and available allocations for every streamDetailed, location-specific surface water and groundwater rights and licensing information available directly from the mapGroundwater Pumping and Streamflow DepletionTest the impacts of new proposed groundwater withdrawals on streamflowAccurate, real-time estimates of the location and magnitude of groundwater pumping impacts throughout a stream networkEvaluate impacts either by individual wells, or cumulative impacts to streams and aquifersRun projections into the future to assess sustainability objectivesResults of depletion models are provided on demand and integrated into easily understood reports for actionable water management decision makingWatershed and Basin ReportingCustom, on-demand reports for every stream, lake, and watershedReports provide insight into water supply, demand, and environmental flow needs, along with watershed characteristics including land cover, topography, and past and future climateInteractive, location-sensitive reporting to evaluate environmental sustainability objectivesDisplay and analysis of monitoring data, stream hydrographs, surficial geology, and other important water management informationOverall, the California Water Framework provides a holistic and unbiased view of water management using analytical models that are not constrained by the limited domains typically associated with numerical model approaches. Fully understanding water budgets, ecosystem impacts, and groundwater sustainability is crucial for water resource managers, and the California Water Framework allows them to do that and more.While we’re working on getting all of the data together for the state, we’re keen to further engage with Groundwater Sustainability Agencies, consultants, and non-SGMA watershed or groundwater basin organizations to fulfill two key priorities. First, incorporate additional, more detailed information for local areas or regions, and second, further demonstrate the data and information capabilities of the framework. Stay tuned to see what exciting projects Foundry Spatial tackles next!Foundry Spatial California Water Framework Overview was originally published in The Boiler on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.  Read more

Foundry Spatial Presents: A Very Covid Christmas

Dec 22 2020

With the pandemic giving the Grinch a run for his money, this year’s holiday season is looking a little different for all of us. Yet, just like the Whos in Whoville, Foundry Spatial isn’t going to let anything steal our Christmas spirit.Though a typical Foundry Christmas begins with decorating of the office and concludes with a holiday dinner at one of our favourite local restaurants, we improvised this year and devised the perfect plan to stay safe and still celebrate.The Foundry Spatial Covid Christmas Game Plan:Phase One: The AssignmentGiven that we aren’t able to partake in our usual festivities, the Foundry Team decided to institute a new tradition of virtual Secret Santa. Leading up to Christmas, we all received a FaceTime call from two elves, better known the other eleven months of the year as the daughters of our team member Merie, giving us the name for our gift-giving mission. Over the next few weeks, we all put our Santa hats on and sought out the perfect gift.Phase Two: Operation ExchangeOnce everyone had bought, wrapped, and addressed their gift, each team member received designated drop-off and pick-up times at the office backdoor to ensure social distancing and sanitizing protocols could be followed. Our Toronto-based UX Designer and the Victoria-based team member who pulled her name out of the hat, of course, had the extra step of sending their gifts by sleigh across Canada.Phases Three: The OpeningArguably the most challenging step, team members had to exercise an immense amount of self-control and patience leading up to the much-anticipated Secret Santa Google Meet call. One-by-one, we took turns opening our gifts and trying to guess the team member behind each thoughtful present. Once that was over, the team surprised management with gifts to thank them for all the hard work they’ve done to make our transition to an online office as seamless and enjoyable as possible.Phase Four: Cheesy CelebrationsWith our new goodies in hand, the team split up to finish the workday and reconvene after work for our virtual team dinner. As an office full of foodies, pizza delivery wasn’t exactly going to cut it, so we had a customized charcuterie board delivered to each team member by a local charcuterie business. Seeing as a charcuterie board doesn’t exactly travel well, we sought out the advice of a good friend and Toronto-based cheese connoisseur to recommend the best charcuterie on the East Coast so Alex could join in on the tasty festivities.Phase Five: Betrays and BlanketsThough our team is a tight-knit group, nothing can drive a wedge quite like a surprise game of virtual White Elephant during the team dinner. Turns out that a Kirkland queen-size blanket (pictured top right) does, in fact, trump besties. But, as the ultimate winner and new owner of the coveted blanket said, “don’t hate the player, hate the game”! Safe to say this new tradition will be one that stays for years to come.Phase Six: Getting DistanceThere’s no denying that 2020 has been a mentally and physically draining year for all of us. Despite everything going on in the world right now, our team showed up and exceeded our expectations every day. So we’re closing our office to allow each team member to relax, reflect, and reset for the coming year. This blog post, Getting Distance by Rohan Rajiv, really resonates with us as it speaks to our thoughts behind the office closure. We are firm believers that a happy team is a productive team, and we can’t wait to see everyone’s smiling, well-rested faces back in January 2021.From all of us at Foundry Spatial, we wish you Happy Holidays and a wonderful New Year!  Read more

Trump and Water

Oct 30 2020

Given the sheer magnitude and volume of ridiculousness we’ve heard coming from President Trump over the past four years, you may not remember the 2016 campaign rhetoric paying special attention to the drought in California, and in particular, the conflict around agricultural use of water in the Central Valley.To provide a refresher, Trump stated in a late summer 2016 speech that there was, in fact, no drought in California, and the only problem was that water was being left to flow out into the ocean. This narrative stayed consistent throughout his four years in office and has returned for a second season during his 2020 Covid-19 giveaway tour, er…, I mean, campaign trail.“Look at where California is going to have to ration water,” Trump said during a bizarre Fox News phone interview on October 8th. “You know why?” he continued. “Because they send millions of gallons of water out to sea, out to the Pacific because they want to take care of certain little tiny fish that aren’t doing very well without water, to be honest with you.”Though unsurprising given Trump’s ignorance around climate change and water in general, by not properly attributing the real issues going on in California, he spreads dangerous misconceptions about the true severity of the situation and downplays the importance of the delta smelt. Despite its small size, the delta smelt makes a big impact by acting as a health indicator for the entire Delta ecosystem. By 2015, the species was near extinction, a harrowing reflection of the devastating impacts of the extended drought that started in 2011. Obviously, there is more at play here than just ‘taking care of certain little tiny fish’.Since 2016, there has been an ongoing tug of war between California Democrats and the Trump administration regarding water policy. While the State of California pursues conservation policies that redirect water into the San Francisco Bay to protect the fish, Trump has motioned to roll back protections for the delta smelt and redirect water to farmers. Stuck on the size of the fish, Trump fails to recognize that sending water out to sea through the state’s natural watercourse is not solely an effort to revive the species but is also vital to the preservation of the natural environment. A natural environment that is relied upon by millions of people to make a living.So you might be wondering, what’s the situation actually like in California? The Central Valley stretches about 700 km from top to bottom, parallel to the coast and set inland between the Coast Ranges and the Sierra Nevada mountains. It is California’s most productive agricultural region, one of the most productive in the world, producing more than half of the fruits, vegetables, and nuts grown in the US. All of which requires a big bunch of water.Groundwater, stored in the Central Valley Aquifer under the valley floor, has supplied much of this water for the past century. But the water stored in this aquifer has been depleted faster than it has been replenished, resulting in a groundwater overdraft and causing the ground to sink dramatically. The Sacramento River and San Joaquin River, two of the biggest rivers in northern California, join up before flowing into San Francisco Bay. Water is diverted from these rivers and sent through a series of canals through the Central Valley and into southern California. Along the way, water is withdrawn and used for agriculture. With groundwater stocks rapidly depleting, the water in the rivers is being looked at as a source to support continued agricultural growth through the drought by rediverting more of their water into the canal system, at the expense of ecosystem health in San Francisco Bay.Indicative of the current situation in California, a key component to addressing some of these difficult issues is sustainable water management practices. Answering the imminent need for data and tools in the state, we developed the Foundry Spatial California Water Framework to provide accessible, actionable information concerning sustainable groundwater management.Our work in water management considers the concept of environmental flow needs and streamflow depletion from groundwater pumping. When we look at water supply and demand on a stream or river, it’s not just about the total amount of water that is available compared to the existing water demand but also considering the variability of supply and the amount required for the environmental health of the water system. Putting that into calculations shows how much water needs to be reserved to maintain the health of the ecosystems.The Foundry Spatial California Water Framework bridges the gap between the lack of data and tools in California to prevent adverse impacts to groundwater, surface water, and their dependent ecosystems and vital leading-edge solutions for the long-term sustainability of these resources. By helping resource managers and decision-makers understand the past, present, and future surface water depletion that results from groundwater pumping, we are one piece of the puzzle for solving the water crisis in the state. Another piece of the puzzle is, of course, electing a new president.SourcesHiltzik — LA TimesBusiness Insider  Read more