Our Water BC October 2021 Newsletter

How is it already October?! Thank you all for contributing to the newsletter. Happy reading. 

The next meeting is October 7, 2021, at 1:00pm

New Members

Nanaimo & Area Land Trust

The mission of the Nanaimo & Area Land Trust is to support, promote and protect the natural values of land and water in our area.

Social media:

Current projects and successes:

  • School Water stewards
  • Departure Creek Restoration
  • Walley Creek Restoration
  • Cat Stream Streamkeepers
  • Western Painted Turtle Monitoring
  • Lake Water Quality Monitoring
  • Community Watershed Monitoring Network
  • Water Stewardship seminar and symposium
  • Pollinator paradise.

News, events and actions:

Challenges:

  • Development and natural resource extraction outpacing conservation efforts.

 

North Cariboo Métis Association

A member of the MNBC Chartered Communities whose mandate is to develop and enhance opportunities for Métis communities by implementing culturally relevant social and economic programs and services.

Current projects and successes:

  • We are running a river temperature monitoring project in the Quesnel and Nazko area, focusing on Baker Creek, the Blackwater (West Road) River, the Cottonwood River, and the Quesnel River. The data collected so far is really interesting, showing surprisingly large fluctuations in daily and more long-term temperature trends.
  • We are also partnering with ?Esdilagh First Nation, Lhtako Dene First Nation, Nazko First Nation, and the Baker Creek Enhancement Society to form a regional monitoring group to collaborate on environmental projects and training in our region.

News, events and actions:

  • On Sunday, September 26th, the North Cariboo Métis Association will be partnering with the Baker Creek Enhancement Society to run a pink salmon information session and walk along Baker Creek. Métis Elders will share traditional teachings, and a representative from the Baker Creek Enhancement Society will teach us about the life cycle of the pink salmon before leading us on a walk down Baker Creek, where pink salmon spawn in late September and early October.

Challenges:

  • We are currently looking for sources of long or short-term funding to expand our environmental monitoring programs.

 

Rivers Without Borders Canada

Rivers Without Borders Canada (RWBC) raises awareness of the extraordinary ecological and cultural values of the transboundary watersheds of northwest British Columbia and southeast Alaska, and promotes ecosystem-based stewardship to sustain those values. We work with First Nations, tribes, commercial fishermen, scientists, community leaders, businesses, NGOs, and others to keep a spectacular region defining the essence of North American wilderness, and one of the continent’s best conservation opportunities, intact and thriving. 

Social media:

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • We have many staff members that are particularly knowledgeable about the transboundary area. We have a variety of resources available for these areas.

Current projects and successes:

  • Our current work focuses on raising awareness of the spectacular Taku watershed and the long-polluting Tulsequah Chief mine. It is our mission to keep the Tulsequah Chief mine on people's radars, and to remind the BC government that people on both sides of the Alaska/BC border care about seeing it cleaned up and kept clean.

News, events and actions:

  • Nothing specific to share at the moment. 

Challenges:

  • One challenge that we face is coming up with creative ways to keep people engaged with this issue. The Tulsequah Chief has been polluting the Taku watershed for 64 years. Because it is such a long-standing issue in a remote corner of BC, it can be difficult to make this issue seem "fresh" and to galvanize folks to take action or speak out about it. Any ideas are appreciated!

 

Province Wide

Canadian Freshwater Alliance

The Freshwater Alliance is a national initiative that inspires and supports a network of freshwater guardians working for a future where all our waters are healthy and safe. 

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Our work takes the form of partnerships through:

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • NewMode Suite of Tools
  • Access to educators
  • Staff time
  • Event promotion to our networks
  • Networking connections

Current projects and successes:

  • Great summer student support this year, leading to 4 CodeBlue BC Community Group meetings: Poco/Coquitlam, Maple Ridge, Cowichan and Vernon (total 32 volunteers engaged).

News, events and actions:

  • We hosted an episode of Shaw TV’s UpFront: Water for the Future highlighting the submission of the University of Victoria’s Environmental Law Program to the Provincial Government on behalf of the Golden and District Water Protection Committee and supported by the Merville Water Guardians (both members of Our Water BC!). In-line we created a petition, signed by over 4,000 British Columbians and created a Banning Bottling Toolkit, a one-stop shop for community groups that includes the first steps, tools and resources for creating freshwater change. 
  • We facilitated a workshop about watershed health with Kin Park Kids Camp with approximately 20 kids called Beyond Uplifting Youth Voices, Including Kids in Conversations About Water. This was all about including kids in discussions about healthy water systems, and creating opportunities for them to connect to their watersheds builds water security.

  • Fish also deserve a voice! We partnered with 5 organizations on Vancouver Island over the summer to highlight the need to protect our waterways to protect our fish. Check out our 3 part blog series here.

 

  • The Union of BC Municipalities (UBCM) passed a resolution asking the province to create a dedicated, sustainable, annual watershed security fund. A fund to the tune of $75 million annually for community-driven watershed projects. Through the BC Watershed Security Coalition we have had over 27 meetings with provincial and federal Ministers, Parliamentary Secretaries, MLA’s, MP’s and Local City Councillors. In addition, we coordinated 18 organizations to present in-person or virtually with additional organizations providing written submissions to the BC Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services Budget 2022 Consultations.

Challenges:

  • Developing volunteer teams while COVID continues to restrict in-person gatherings.

 

Watershed Watch Salmon Society

Watershed Watch Salmon Society works to defend and rebuild B.C.’s wild salmon and their habitats.

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Wild salmon (addressing threats including factory fish farms, lack of access to habitat, destruction of habitat, etc)
  • Watershed security through CodeBlueBC

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Shareable data sets, reports, maps, Social media, apps advice/ experience (social media content schedulers, CRMs, webinar platforms etc.), Misc skills (writing/editing, photography, GIS, fieldwork knowledge, restoration knowledge, etc.)
    • Water quality data for a subset of lower mainland streams from Chilliwack to Richmond
    • Utilize numerous apps, Asana, Hootsuite, Keela, Jotform, Slack, Zoom, Goto, Ringcentral, etc. and can provide general advice/ details about these platforms.
    • A large platform for event promotion- Please contact us about your events! 

Current projects and successes:

  • Through our Connected Waters campaign (advocating for changes to flood management in the lower Fraser with the goal of reconnecting 1500 of salmon habitat) we recently held a socially distanced bike tour of the dikes around Pitt Meadows with 250 registrants. This event was supported by a number of sponsors that contributed prizes and discounted food and drinks for participants. The Resilient Waters Project fieldwork continues at priority sites along the lower Fraser impacted by flood control infrastructure. Water quality and fish sampling data will be publicly accessible in the near future. We also finalized our Connected Waters short film and premiered that on Sept 28.
  • Safe Passage, our campaign pushing to get fish farms out of BC's coastal waters, continues to plug away with work focused on supporting local First Nations and engaging the public to send letters to their elected officials to ensure a transition from open net-pen farms.
  • Codeblue continues to make strides with roughly 24,000 followers on Facebook. The team has assembled a collection of tabling materials to get volunteers out in their communities. A recent UBCM resolution asking the province to invest in a long-term watershed security fund passed - CodeblueBC members sent over 2000 emails to city councillors and mayors when this resolution was first up for voting at the LMLGA AGM earlier this year. Our water bottling moratorium action has sent over 4100 letters to the province.
  • We put out a series of questions on water and salmon for our supporters to ask of their federal candidates prior to the election. 
  • We continue to host weekly meetups with our volunteer group.
  • We recently were able to purchase a drone and are looking forward to opportunities to take it out in the field.
  • We have been connecting with groups in the Fraser Valley to continue to advocate for protections for the Heart of the Fraser, the gravel reach that stretches from Mission to Hope and is vital habitat for endangered white sturgeon and salmon. 

News, events and actions:

Challenges:

  • Keeping volunteers engaged, especially online.

 

Rivershed Society of BC

Connect, protect and restore the Fraser's 34 riversheds.

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Delivering public education programs
  • Community initiatives
  • Building stewardship capacity in the Fraser River Basin

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Connecting with like-minded groups or organizations
  • Sharing your organization's work in our newsletter/social media channels
  • Support in organizing within the Fraser watershed (particularly in the lower Fraser)

Current projects and successes:

  • Rivershed launched our Watershed CPR Education Program in August! This self-guided, entirely virtual learning experience teaches users all about the Fraser Watershed through the three main principles of Watershed CPR: Connect, Protect, and Restore. This highly interactive program has two unique tracks-- Salmon Fry and Salmon-- designed for elementary school students and high school students/adults, respectively. We encourage folks to check out this program and share it with their audiences! The Watershed CPR Education Program can be accessed here.
  • We also hosted two programs this summer-- Race the River and our 2021 River Clinic. Over the course of three weeks in late June and early July, our community collectively travelled 5,527 km through Race the River via walking, cycling, hiking, kayaking, running, canoeing, swimming, stand-up paddle-boarding and more. This marked the completion of nearly four "laps" of the Fraser River, far exceeding our goal of completing just one lap! We also hosted an all-virtual River Clinic program, which featured 14 different environmental professionals working on resiliency-building initiatives in the Fraser Watershed and engaged 41 individuals interested in a career working for the environment.
  • In restoration work, in collaboration with səýeḿ Qwantlen (the business subsidiary of the Kwantlen First Nation) and our other partners, Rivershed's Foodlands program launched the sc̓e:ɬxʷəy̓əm/Salmon River pilot site in August. The construction work is on-track for completion in mid-September, which involves the creation off-channel fish habitat, removing invasive plants and stabilizing the riverbank. In autumn, we will plant ecologically and culturally significant plant species in the riparian zone. 

News, events and actions:

 

BC Coalition for Forestry Reform

Uniting communities for more say in forestry development in their local areas. 

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • We support data-driven, long-term stewardship of the timber and non-timber values of BC’s forests
  • We advocate for forest management based on long-term landscape-level planning, a mandatory shared decision making process with local communities, careful incorporation of public needs and values, and full recognition of our forests’ non-timber values including water, wildlife, tourism, and recreation

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Forestry-specific insight and access to a province-wide community

News, events and actions:

  • See Peachland Watershed Protection Alliance updates below!

 

Island Updates

Comox Valley Land Trust - Conservation Partnership Program 

The CVCP brings together local community-based groups and other stakeholders to provide a coordinated voice for the value of conservation in our communities. Together, as partners, the CVCP works proactively with local governments to encourage the development of innovative policies and regulations that protect sensitive ecosystems and watersheds, as well as to ensure the impacts of development and land use are balanced with environmental objectives.

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Advocate for water source protection, that conserves natural assets and drinking water sources at the watershed scale, while adaptively managing social and economic activities 
  • Advocate for land acquisition and habitat restoration opportunities to protect local species and ecosystems at-risk, improve habitat connectivity, and increase urban forest canopy coverage
  • Engage in collaboration and relationship building with local municipalities/authorities/school district 71, provincial/federal government and First Nations to incorporate the Nature Without Borders regional conservation strategy into current land use, policy and regulation
  • Encourage eco-asset valuation processes in support of local government sustainable asset management strategies to account for natural systems functions and promote climate change adaptation
  • Advocate for the inclusion of local environmental information and where appropriate, develop innovative studies to strengthen local approaches and strategies to conserve natural areas

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Insight into our Municipal Natural Assets Initiative(MNAI) work and eco-asset accounting

Current projects and successes:

  • Comox Lake Municipal Natural Asset Initiative - Pilot Project. This project started in 2019 by the Comox Valley Regional District, Komoks First Nation, local municipalities (Comox, Cumberland and Courtenay) and stakeholders thru the Municipal Natural Assets initiative to help better understand, measure and manage critical drinking water services provided by nature. Final DRAFT is now in review and should be finalized late 2021 or early 2022.
  • Courtenay's Official Community Plan (CVCP is a technical advisor) should be opening final public review phase for the DRAFT on Sept 27th. Successes to date is the elevated value of natural assets, clear connectivity and restoration opportunities for environmentally sensitive areas and a new "blanket" 30m riparian setback on all remaining undeveloped urban streams corridors (w/ adaptive measures for developed sites) 

News, events and actions:

  • CVLT is currently hosting a citizen science campaign "soil your undies" to promote the understanding and value of carbon in your soils. The challenge - is to bury a pair of cotton underwear in 6inches deep soil and dig up in 8 weeks to see how much they have decomposed! Open to any community!  

Challenges:

  • Municipal grant-in-aid programs are still deferred locally due to the global pandemic. ZOOM fatigue...

 

Mount Arrowsmith Biosphere Region

Biosphere reserves are considered model regions for sustainable development. They work to promote the conservation of biological and cultural diversity in addition to economic and social development. In each biosphere reserve, community partners work together to find innovative ways to achieve a balance between the needs of humans and nature.

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Conserve biodiversity, restore and enhance ecosystem services, and foster the sustainable use of natural resources.
  • Contribute to building sustainable, healthy and equitable societies, economies and thriving human settlements in harmony with the biosphere.
  • Facilitate biodiversity and sustainability science, education for sustainable development and capacity building.
  • Support mitigation and adaptation to climate change and other aspects of global environmental change.

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Shareable data sets, reports, map: Our research reports can be found here.

Current projects and successes:

  • Our Marine Debris Monitoring Project launched in July and now includes two monitoring sites (French Creek and Qualicum Beach). This citizen science initiative is off to a great start (a huge thanks to our volunteers!). We will be conducting our second round of surveys in October.

News, events and actions:

 

Vancouver Island Water Watch Coalition

As an umbrella organization, the mission of VIWWC is to work at guiding and supporting our member groups in lobbying all levels of government while we engage in various water-related projects.  

Website:

Key issues: 

  • See mandate above

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Website with regular news updates

Current projects and successes:

  • We will be making an appointment with a lawyer to discuss our major concerns with the development, both proposed and already existing, on top of the Cassidy Aquifer. I may be able to update further if we can get an appointment fairly soon.

 

Salt Spring Island Water Preservation Society

Protecting the fresh water resources of Salt Spring Island. Protect Drinking Water Sources & develop a Freshwater Catalogue for SSI to support local watershed stewardship and provide input to (influence/steer) island freshwater resource management:

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Regulating tree cutting
  • Researching water sources

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Shareable data sets, reports, maps. Contact John Millson at [email protected] for data being gathered on stream chemistry and flow. 

Current projects and successes:

  • With the help of a dedicated group of islanders, supporters and donors, the Water Preservation Society (WPS) has successful completed a land acquisition on Salt Spring Island (SSI).  20 acres of the “Larmour Lands”  are now owned outright by the Society, and another 13 ½ acres are protected by detailed legal agreements.  With neighbouring properties under conservation covenants, a contiguous protected area of about 18.5 Ha (46 acre) has been created.
  • The WPS lands contain a biodiverse mature forest, ponds and wetlands on the upland portions, and a number of large old trees throughout the properties.  This successful project entailed the novel protection, by Profit à Prendre, of a forest and wetland area in an Agricultural Land Reserve.  This area was not eligible for covenant protection, but the PaP will ensure strict ecological conservation. The Larmour land purchase project retains a unbroken natural habitat, protects drinking water in the island’s watersheds, conserves biodiversity and species at risk, and helps mitigate the local impacts of climate change.  It also allows the previously cleared farm area that is not covered by the PaP to be restored and brought back into sustainable production by our conservation-minded partners.
  • The WPS FreshWater Catalogue is now collaborating with Quw’utsun, Stqeeye’ Learning Society (SLS), in an exciting Xwaaqw'um watersheds restoration project.  Collaboration entails a joint SLS-FWC Xwaaqw'um watersheds field sampling programme, to establish, continue and expand a freshwater baseline data acquisition programme.  It will assess/monitor the impact of ongoing restoration on aquatic stream habitat and on the revitalization of cultural keystone natural ecosystems in this Xwaaqw’um community area.
  • The WPS (FWC) is developing a set of island-based, natural ecosystems and watershed-oriented field/classroom educational modules, with staff from School District 64.  This builds on prior "Watershed Health” and “A Watershed Walk” field sessions with one of the local schools - our Team Fernwood!
  • When further advanced details of these school modules can be shared with OWBC, some of this modular educational material may be suitable for wider use!   
  • A WPS "Our SSI Water - A Delicate Water Balance?” video short, aimed at island school/youth engagement, is currently being finalised.  It is planned that this video short will also act as a "calling card” for a planned documentary video “SSI Watershed Stewardship”.

News, events and actions:

  • Keen to develop a Watershed Stewardship Group video, but struggling to find funding and progress on this. Have any of the stewardship groups had success with online donation avenues (GoFundMe etc)?

Challenges:

  • Ensuring that the ongoing Gulf Island province/agency “remote sensing” science projects leverage locally collected “ground-truthing” field data collected for SSI (by the FWC project)
    • Answer to challenge - develop/ensure close engagement with respective province/agency planning groups.  Use data collection as a “big stick” to ensure that stewardship efforts are integrated into project plans - cf. this article on stewardship on how it can be done…

 

 

Merville Water Guardians

Prohibition of the bottling and commercial sale of groundwater @Merville-water-guardians (Facebook)

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Bottling and commercial sale of groundwater

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Guidance on water bottling campaign work

Current projects and successes:

  • Collaborated with a group from Golden, Freshwater Alliance and a team from the University of Victoria to compile and submit a report on the Future of Water, addressing water bottling, watershed governance and other water issues to the provincial government, asking for a prohibition of water bottling and other recommendations. I also continue to work with municipalities all over BC, urging them to prohibit water bottling in their land-use bylaws.  Salmon Arm City Council, under threat from a water bottling application, has a bylaw change in process, with our urging and assistance. qathet Regional District (Powell River) is undertaking a Policy Document on water bottling, since their RD does not have bylaws, again with our urging and assistance.

News, events and actions:

  • As part of the UVIC Water for the Future report submission, we are soliciting support in the form of emails to MLAs asking for action to ban water bottling.

Challenges:

  •  Although the email generating tool has generated almost 5,000 emails to MLAs, this is still a very small number compared to what we need to drive action. How do we generate a better response to our letter-writing campaign?

 

Quadra Island Climate Action Network Society

Our aim is to assist Quadra Island in becoming more resilient and self-sufficient in the face of impending ecological challenges. Our mandate is to organize and foster direct action on clearly defined practical projects. 

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • We are the team of ICAN dedicated to working on ways to help people, plants, animals of our Island have enough water to live in harmony in our changing times.

Current projects and successes:

  • The ICAN Water Security Team is moving forward with laying the groundwork to have our water assessment done.  We have a new member who worked to get the Okanagan Water Board started.  His experience will be much appreciated.  One of our members is talking to residents to gather their water stories.  We continue to have the support of a postdoc researcher and have developed a proposal framework that we can modify to suit the needs of our audiences.  It is getting very exciting!

Challenges:

  • I think our biggest challenge is finding the money to do the hydrogeological study for our island. Any suggestions are welcome.

 

Southwestern BC

Fraser Riverkeeper Society

Fraser Riverkeeper, an initiative of Swim Drink Fish, is a registered Canadian charity dedicated to the protection and restoration of the Fraser River and its watershed—our encompassing mission is to ensure the right of all citizens to safely swim, drink, and fish in BC waters. 

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Bacterial contamination

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

Current projects and successes:

  • Vancouver Water Monitoring Program
  • Vancouver Plastic Cleanup
  • POC Connections to Water and Perspectives Blog Series to amplify the voices of water leaders in BC
  • Coast Salish Languages series on social media and website
  • Sharing Halkomelem and Squamish words

News, events and actions:

  • Fraser Riverkeeper has spearheaded the Vancouver Plastic Cleanup by installing, maintaining, and overseeing multiple Seabins in Vancouver over the next three years to engage in waste characterization, plastic education, and advocacy project. We have opportunities to volunteer and expand the installation of Seabins across Vancouver and BC. 

Challenges:

  • Volunteer engagement, First Nations consultation requests.

 

Stoney Creek Environment Committee

Stoney Creek Environment Committee (SCEC) is a dedicated group of volunteers committed to protecting, preserving, and enhancing Burnaby’s urban forest and salmon-bearing stream through various stream-keeping activities. 

Social media:

Current projects and successes:

News, events and actions:

  • Continuing grant applications for the Road Salt and Salmon Project.

Challenges:

  • Reaching youth for water monitoring.

 

Coquitlam River Watershed Roundtable 

To preserve and enhance the health of the Coquitlam River Watershed through collaboration, education and advisory action.

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Pressures affecting watershed health, namely: development, invasive species, stormwater, water extraction, recreation, vandalism / illegal activity, mainstream cultural norms, mining

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

Current projects and successes:

  • Installing a demonstration rain garden with a rainwater recapture system as part of our stormwater outreach to single-family homeowners! Applied to Vancity for a $4500 grant and got $10,000 to build an even more awesome demo garden. Excavation and installation are to begin in October.

News, events and actions:

  • Rivers Day (Sept 26th) Clean-up along the Coquitlam River
  • Fire Prevention in Urban Forests - Lunch and Learn Webinar on Wed. Sept. 29th from 12-1
  • Volunteer opportunities to help with rain garden installation on Oct. 5th, 16th and 17th - email [email protected] to sign up!

Challenges:

  • Renewing current funding agreements; current funders want BC Hydro to contribute (outside of FWCP grants), but they will not fund Roundtables; looking for other stakeholders to contribute ongoing support to operational funds (not grant funding!)

 

WaterWealth Project

Community control over decisions affecting our local home waters, rooted in recognition of First Nations rights and title.

Social media:

Key issues: 

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Misc skills (writing/editing, photography, GIS, fieldwork knowledge, restoration knowledge, etc.)
  • Happy to talk with anyone about our experience launching a watershed monitoring program and deploying temperature loggers along about 60 km of Vedder/Chilliwack River and Sxótsaqel (Chilliwack Lake).

Current projects and successes:

  • Climate monitoring - Reached one year of data on most of our temperature loggers. Data retrieval and analysis in progress. Ramping up public outreach.
  • Deer Creek Off-channel Habitat Restoration - Flows restored. Fish salvage in a short dewatered section of Deer Creek revealed cutthroat trout, coho, salamanders and one tailed frog! Blackberry removal and native plant planting coming up. Looking forward to spawner surveys!

News, events and actions:

  • Tabled at the Chilliwack/Vedder River Cleanup September 26  at the Chilliwack Fish & Game Club. 

Challenges:

  • Time, and a shortage of fanatically motivated volunteers who will just run with stuff on their own.

Eastern BC

Peachland Watershed Protection Alliance

Our mandate is the preservation and protection of all watersheds in our community, with a goal of providing a consistent quantity, quality and timing of flow of water.@PeachlandWatershedProtectionAlliance(Facebook) @peachlandwpa(Instagram)

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • The vulnerability of our watershed — illustrated by our poor quality drinking water and annual flooding — is our chief concern.

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Letter-writing
  • Facebook support
  • How to start up a grassroots activism group #101

Current projects and successes:

  • 2021 budget consultations submission
  • SAR (Pygmy Owl) found in watershed following thru with a deferrals for logging, 
  • Found and registered 4 large trees in watershed with UBC big tree registry, (Terry Nelson)
  • Letters to the editor published on wildfire risks 
  • Monthly newsletter publishing regularly
  • Monthly general meetings, monthly directors meetings
  • Daily Facebook, Instagram posts
  • Produced a 3 mins documentary on our watershed with Herb Hammond and Will Koop1
  • Current video by Will Koop’s of clear cuts of Wilson lakes and audio overlay of RPF and forest ecologist, Herb Hammond’s observations and warnings
  • Reports to the municipal Healthy watershed Committee,
  • Awarded 2 grants , one from municipality one form Covid recovery funds, 
  • Produced an animation to share with government for discussions on over clearcut logging of a community watershed. The Animation of clear-cut history in Peachland's watersheds, notice how clear cutting rate accelerates after we are declared a community drinking watershed.

News, events and actions:

  • A 'haunted' Watershed, spooky Halloween decorating of our Peachland Pier on waterfront by PWPA to spotlight our groups and activity, pools of 'radioactive waters, 3 eyed fish and dead trees etc, hands out gummy fish.

Challenges:

  • Time and energy same 2-4 do all the work all the time all the organizing and ideas-this is a full-time job, need a funding source and more volunteers with skill.

 

Lake Windermere Ambassadors

We have a vision of an ecologically healthy Lake Windermere, with balanced management approaches that support recreation and traditional uses, high fish and wildlife values, and economic prosperity in the region. 

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Water quality/quantity
  • Community outreach/education
  • Increasing public access around the lake
  • Filling knowledge gaps around biodiversity in the lake (native fish and mussel surveys)
  • Adding to provincial invasive species inventories

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Shareable data sets, reports, maps: www.lakeambassadors.ca we make all of our data public and are happy to discuss our program with anyone!  

Current projects and successes:

  • Annual Activity and Monitoring Reports, Fall monitoring, Annual monitoring presentations.

News, events and actions:

  • BC Rivers Day - Sept 26! Lots of great events around the province.

Challenges:

  • Navigating relationships with industry and local government.

 

Elk River Alliance

The Elk River Alliance (ERA) is a community-based water group that aims to connect people to the Elk River ensuring it is drinkable, fishable and swimmable for future generations. ERA aims to improve and preserve watershed health through projects that raise watershed literacy, inform sustainable water decision-making, collect scientific data to prioritize restoration opportunities and promote safe and sustainable river recreation. @Elkriveralliance (Facebook, Instagram)

Social media:

Key issues: 

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Shareable data sets, reports, maps: We expect to be collaborating with a range of partners to improve data sharing agreements in the Elk Valley/East Kootenays. 

Current projects and successes:

  • Elk River Watershed Collaborative Monitoring Program - Added partners and gathering data
  • Stormwater Solutions: Installed floating wetlands in Fernie stormwater ponds, planted native plants in several Fernie locations
  • NCC Hosmer wetland restoration: Planted native plants and will be installing Elk exclusion fencing in fall
  • Hydrometric monitoring: Installed benchmarks for stage discharge measurements and installing monitoring sites this fall 
  • Community-Based Water Monitoring: Started annual sampling

News, events and actions:

Challenges:

  • Sustainable funding for core operational costs
  • Sustainable funding for water monitoring work
  • Email inbox full of spam

 

No Updates

Cowichan Watershed Board 

The Cowichan Watershed Board, a partnership between Cowichan Tribes First Nation, and the Cowichan Valley Regional District provides leadership for sustainable water management and to protect and enhance environmental quality and the quality of life in the local watershed regions. 

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Low river flows
  • Salmon sustainability
  • Indigenous co-governance
  • Riparian health
  • Estuary toxicity
  • Water quality
  • Watershed connections/education
  • Water conservation

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Website resources as well as sharing knowledge around the work of Indigenous co-governance in action

 

Columbia Basin Watershed Network

The Columbia Basin Watershed Network Society is the go-to hub for watershed groups to find information, training or connections, and a voice for watershed stewardship across the Basin.

 

Sqilxw Apna Society

Sqilxw Apna Society is centred on the sqilxw (of the North Okanagan syilx) territory in B.C. with the aim to strengthen Indigenous families' capacity in engaging deeper issues on sustainability from the Indigenous perspective. We are empowering ‘Indigenous ways of Knowing’ and traditional egalitarian groupings through community, culture, art and the environment.

Website:

 

Skeena Watershed Conservation Coalition

Cultivate a sustainable future from a sustainable environment rooted in our culture and a thriving wild salmon ecosystem.

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Economic development that salmon can thrive with
  • Science & research
  • Youth/women on water programs
  • Land use planning
  • Community building

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • We can take you rafting down the rivers of the Skeena Watershed

 

Nechako Environment & Water Stewardship Society

Mandate is the recovery of salmon-bearing streams. 

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Rehabilitation of streams
  • Watershed planning
  • Mapping of aquifers
  • Environmental stewardship and education
  • Developing a program to administrate a “Gold Label” certification standard for agricultural products produced in the Nechako Valley

 

BC Whitewater

Advocating for publicly accessible, free-flowing rivers throughout BC

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • We have ongoing work to secure access to rivers used for recreation throughout BC, working with local governments and the river community. 

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

 

 

Beaufort Watershed Stewards

The Beaufort Watershed Stewards work to promote the health and resilience of local watersheds in the Beaufort Range and to ensure the quality and quantity of fresh water for the future.

Social media:

Key issues: 

  • Sampling
  • Aquifer mapping
  • Partnership development

 

Arrowsmith GroundWater Alliance 

Our principal focus is on the health of our local watershed. We are interested in preventing new bottled water operations in BC. 

 

 

Pitt Meadows Environmental Network

To highlight and advocate for environmental and climate issues in Pitt Meadows.

Social media:

 

Protectors of Box Mountain Watershed

Working together as a community to protect our Box Mountain Watershed to the best of our ability to ensure clean drinking water for every child and their family. We will do this at all levels of government including locally. Any action we choose to take as a group working together will always be within the law.

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Key issues: 

  • Keeping any logging off Box Mountain Watershed

Key resources (to offer OWBC team):

  • Collaboration
  • Online consulting
  • Shared mentorship dialogues