Who We Serve
The IFC seeks to help state, provincial, and territorial fish and wildlife agencies better fulfill their public trust responsibility to protect aquatic resources, so that they can be used and enjoyed by current and future generations. As a membership organization with limited resources, we focus our assistance on the needs and issues most pressing to member agencies. We also strive to assist and collaborate with the broader instream flow community (researchers, practitioners, educators, and other stakeholders) to benefit agency programs and activities. These groups can provide important contributions to the effectiveness of member agency instream flow programs and activities and thereby the integrity of the riverine resources entrusted to these agencies.
Mission and Vision
The mission of the IFC is to improve the effectiveness of state and provincial instream flow programs and activities in protecting, maintaining and restoring aquatic ecosystems. The vision of the IFC is that each water body in Canada and the United States has flow and water level regimes that sustain ecological integrity.
Our work is based on the following guiding principles:
- Conservation (protection, maintenance, and restoration) of natural aquatic ecosystems, including rivers, lakes, estuaries, groundwater, and wetlands, is integral to sustaining healthy and abundant fish and wildlife;
- River and lake systems from headwaters to estuaries provide many beneficial values and services, including connectivity, flood mitigation, groundwater recharge, navigation, nutrient transport and recycling, pollution attenuation, energy generation, water supplies, biological productivity, aesthetic vistas, and recreational opportunities such as fishing, hunting, boating, swimming, and wildlife viewing;
- State, provincial, and territorial governments have a public trust responsibility to protect, maintain, and restore fish and wildlife resources so they can be used and enjoyed by future generations; and
- IFC perceives value in the development of a commonly accepted public and agency ethic that recognizes the need to manage our water resources in a way that respects ecosystem integrity – not just for intrinsic reasons, but because of the societal values these ecosystems provide.
Our work is guided by the following goals:
Facilitate the development and improvement of member instream flow knowledge and competencies.
Ensure IFC’s organizational effectiveness and relevance.
Effectively deliver our organization’s products and approaches to members and stakeholders to stimulate support and action for riverine resource stewardship.
Advance the integration of instream flow science, policy, law, and public dialogue.
Facilitate the development and effective application of tools and methods for instream flow science, policy, law, and public involvement.
Origins of the Instream Flow Council
T. Annear (1998) The Instream Flow Council: History and Promise Rivers: Vol 6, Num 4, p. 231.