The Government of Canada and the Province of British Columbia team up to protect salmon populations and the fisheries they support

News release

December 14, 2023

Vancouver, BC – Today, the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard, the Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, and the BC Minister of Water, Land and Resource Stewardship, the Honourable Nathan Cullen, announced $86,119,340 for 58 projects receiving funding under the second phase of the British Columbia Salmon Restoration and Innovation Fund (BCSRIF). Launched in March 2019, BCSRIF has made investments in support of habitat protection and restoration, ensuring the fish and seafood sector in British Columbia is positioned for long-term environmental and economic sustainability. The projects announced today are jointly funded through Canada’s Pacific Salmon Strategy Initiative (PSSI) and the Province of BC. These contributions will support recipients selected through BCSRIF’s second application intake in carrying out important conservation projects that restore salmon ecosystems while providing sustainable, resilient and prosperous fisheries.

Some of the projects announced today include:

  • The University of British Columbia, Department of Civil Engineering receives $1.8M in funding to assess the prevalence of stormwater contaminants in salmon-bearing streams in BC and identify opportunities for green infrastructure interventions to protect salmon populations rom toxic road runoff contaminants.
  • The Pacific Salmon Foundation receives $2.4M in funding for the Salmon Recovery - advancing planning and action project.
  • Scw’exmx Tribal Council receives $5.30M in funding for the Post Flood Support for Fish and Fish Habitat Recovery in the Nicola Watershed project. The Scw’exmx Tribal Council’s Fisheries Department, the Nicola Watershed Stewardship and Fisheries Authority (NWSFA), aim to provide flood recovery actions in the Nicola Watershed and offset the impacts of flooding on fish and fish habitat.
  • Lax Kw’alaams Business Development Ltd.receives $2.21M for the Skeena River Fish Trap Project in collaboration with Skeena Fisheries Commission and the Wild Fish Conservancy to evaluate the feasibility of an impoundment net fish trap in the lower Skeena River to harvest salmon and other species.


“Our government is committed to working with the Province of British Columbia to invest in programs that protect BC’s salmon populations and the fisheries they support. The project recipients being highlighted today are making significant progress in preserving and restoring salmon habitat while also providing long term, sustainable fisheries. The British Columbia Salmon Restoration and Innovation Fund continues to be a successful contribution program that utilizes innovative techniques to safeguard the future of Pacific salmon and other priority fish stocks for years to come.”

The Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard

“Our government is taking action to protect and enhance watersheds and ecosystem health throughout the province. The projects we are announcing today will restore key salmon habitats, build climate-resilient salmon ecosystems and support the long-term economic and environmental sustainability of B.C.’s fisheries. These projects are using the best science and expert Indigenous knowledge to bring back abundance to B.C.’s waterways and the ecosystems and communities they support.”

The Honourable Nathan Cullen, B.C. Minister of Water, Land and Resource Stewardship and Minister Responsible for Fisheries

“As a Federal Minister in British Columbia, I understand the importance of accelerating our efforts to sustain and restore wild salmon populations and their habitat. The projects announced today will create infrastructure to protect salmon from climate change and pollution, introduce more sustainable fishing methods, and target destructive invasive species. These investments will create cleaner ecosystems where Pacific salmon, and B.C. communities like my own that depend on them, can thrive.”

The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources of Canada

"Salmon is a social, economic and spiritual cornerstone of life here in Richmond and across BC. Today’s joint investment by the federal and provincial government demonstrates our commitment to restore and protect Pacific salmon populations. These investments will help feed our communities, restore biodiversity, and improve salmon stocks that support our Steveston Harbor and the fishing industry."

Parm Bains, Member of Parliament for Steveston–Richmond East

Quick facts

  • Since inception, 155 projects have received BCSRIF funding, representing an investment of more than $214.67 million in the rebuilding of wild Pacific salmon stocks and supporting the BC fish and seafood sector. 

  • Additional information on projects selected for BCSRIF funding can be found online here.

  • The BCSRIF is a 70 per cent federal, 30 per cent provincial cost-shared program.

  • Budget 2021 committed an additional $100 million in new federal funding to expand the BCSRIF program, as a key component of the Pacific Salmon Strategy Initiative (PSSI), bringing Canada’s total contribution to $200 million over seven years. With the Government of British Columbia’s mandate commitment to double its investment, the Province is providing $85.7 million over seven years.

  • The Government of Canada's Pacific Salmon Strategy Initiative is the largest-ever government investment in efforts to save Pacific salmon. Through this investment, Canada will undertake a strategic and coordinated long-term response, rooted in collaborative action, to stabilize and restore Pacific salmon for the ecosystems, people, and communities that depend upon their sustainability.

  • BCSRIF funding is open to applications from Indigenous communities, commercial organizations in the wild fisheries and aquaculture sectors, recreational fisheries, as well as non-commercial organizations such as universities and research institutions, industry associations, and conservation groups.

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Jérémy Collard
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard 

Media Relations
Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Media Relations
Ministry of Water, Land and Resource Stewardship

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