Salish Sea Initiative

The Salish Sea Initiative supports eligible Indigenous groups to monitor cumulative impacts of human activities on local marine ecosystems. The accommodation measure responds to concerns about the cumulative effects on valued ecosystem components. Through the initiative, the Government of Canada is co-developing processes with eligible Indigenous groups to ensure long-term funding to support capacity building, monitoring, research, systems infrastructure and knowledge acquisition, integration and sharing to inform adaptive management.

  • Increase administrative, scientific, technical and monitoring capacity within Indigenous groups.
  • Empower Indigenous groups to undertake stewardship activities and thus increase our knowledge and understanding of cumulative effects of increased human activities on valued components of the marine ecosystems.
  • Collaboratively develop a governance structure for an arms-length fund that will support ongoing stewardship activities within the groups.

Until March 2024:
Collaboratively develop processes for stewardship activities with eligible Indigenous groups to identify and implement projects that could address valued ecosystem components and issues of concern related to the Salish Sea. Collaboratively develop a structure for an arms-length fund that can support stewardship activities long-term.

Beyond March 2024:
Using the arms-length fund, continue to support stewardship activities within eligible Indigenous groups’ marine ecosystems.

How it works

Agreements between Fisheries and Oceans Canada and eligible Indigenous groups address and support technical, administrative, scientific and other capacity needs for these groups to monitor cumulative effects in the local marine environment. This is not an application-based process — Fisheries and Oceans Canada is working with eligible Indigenous groups to develop work plans that fit groups’ needs.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada works with eligible Indigenous groups to co-develop an approach to monitoring and reporting on cumulative effects of human activities on valued components of Salish Sea ecosystems.

Funding for the measure

Status: Funding available

Until March 31, 2024:  Fisheries and Oceans Canada will work with the 33 eligible Indigenous groups along the TMX marine shipping route to build technical, administrative and scientific capacity and to implement stewardship activities within the marine environment.

Beyond the 5-Year Program: $50 million investment in an arms-length fund will support longer-term cumulative effects projects within the marine environment.

How does this connect to other initiatives?

The initiative is also linked to activities under the Ocean Protection Plan’s Cumulative Effects of Marine Shipping Initiative and Coastal Environmental Baseline Program.

Lead department: Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO)

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