Roundtable Submission

SEHAB Representative: Brian Smith

CA: Sandie Hollick-Kenyon

Area: North Vancouver, City of Vancouver, Port Moody

Date: Nov 5-7, 2107

Concerns from: Tsiel-Wauth Nation (TWN), Bridget Doyle

Bridget is concerned that all the TWN funding applications to the “Coastal Restoration Fund” were denied.  These funding applications were for habitat restoration projects in the Indian River Watershed, on the Maplewood Mudflats area and for a forage fish habitat project in Burrard inlet.  She explained to me that the reasons for the denials were not adequately expressed.

SEHAB Involvement:

Could SEHAB help TWN obtain proper DFO explanations for funding application denials?

TWN Positive story(??):

TWN was able to partner with the Port Authority on a habitat restoration project at the Maplewood Flats area.  The Port will fund the project and in turn use this area as off sets for a terminal expansion.

Concerns From: North Shore Stream Keepers (NSSK), Glen Parker

Not only is the NSSK concerned about the maintenance of dykes but also the development or construction of dikes without the consideration of other alternatives. Streamkeepers are concerned about the impacts of climate change on our streams and the salmonids that depend on them. Our specific concern is that as communities respond to rising flood risks using physical measures such as the construction of floodways and dykes or flow regulation by diversions, these measures will negatively impact natural stream processes. In other words, hardening of infrastructure to address climate change will sacrifice natural ecosystems that fish depend on. Our position is that non-physical, fish friendly alternatives should be used. Non-physical measures such as regulating land use (to better manage impervious cover and reduce development within floodplains), acquiring property on floodplains, and relocating infrastructure and buildings should be given priority over physical methods. We request that guidelines for federally and provincially funded programs contain explicit statements of the preference for non-physical, fish friendly alternatives.  The NSSK approached the Climate Change Advisory group for the Natural Resources Canada Climate Change Adaptation (NR Can) with similar concerns and asked that these considerations be included in future finding opportunities.  They were successful in getting specific mention of alternatives to hardening infrastructure in the NR Can funding document.  The specific wording in the recent NR Can funding document is as follows:

 “1.1 Alternative and Innovative Options to Hard Protection Infrastructure Solutions: While infrastructure solutions such as seawalls, bulkheads and dikes, are common strategies for addressing coastal erosion and flooding, alternative approaches that incorporate other measures, such as planned retreat, accommodation and/or nature-based features, can be more cost-efficient, environmentally sustainable and yield co-benefits such as aesthetic and recreational values.”

SEHAB Involvement:

SEHAB suggest to other groups that they could approach their municipalities in a similar fashion as the NSSK, expressing concerns with diking. Ask their municipalities to consider alternatives to dikes.

NSSK Positive Stories:

  1. The feel good story is that NSSK has funding and has started work of some “off channel habitat” on Lynn Creek. The project has been identified for many years but is now underway.
  2. NSSK engaged with the Port of Vancouver on the new grain terminal (G3) being built at the mouth of Lynn Creek. The first small win was that virtually all the concerns raised by NSSK were specifically included in the Environmental Permit. Many items were required by regulation but having them called out specifically in the permit highlighted them and hopefully has increased compliance. The engagement led to a site visit by NSSK to check permit compliance and a donation of $25,000 by G3 for enhancement work in the Lynn Estuary.
  3. NSSK participated in the DNV planning of the proposed Maplewood area redevelopment. Two nice items that are now documented in the plan are the protection of the greenspace supporting McCartney Creek and the concept of gathering groundwater seepage into a stream that will flow to west side of Maplewood Flats to enhance (restore) salmon spawning habitat on the small bay that had its stream flow cut off years ago. Here is a link to the DNV project plans. . The plan went to DNV Council last week.
  4. NSSK provided input into the reconfiguration of the Fibreco operation on the NV waterfront. The input was not particularly significant but Streamkeepers being there to reinforce the needs of fish was well received. The reconfiguration will help fish by eliminating the wood chip operations and removing creosote piles. Here is a link to the project plans.
  5. NSSK is pleased to say that the coho juveniles in the reconfigured (deepened) pond at Morten Creek Hatchery are doing well and the predator protection devices installed (culverts with screens) seem to be being used. Last year all the coho juveniles were lost to otters and the hope is the reconfigured pond and predator protection will prevent that this year. Thanks to PSF and DNV for the funding and support of the project.
  6. NSSK has provided input into the new overpass at the bottom of the “cut” near Lynn Creek and has been monitoring the water flow from the construction into Keith and Lynn Creeks. Early input has provided us contacts within MoTI/DNV and with the contractor (Lafarge). The small wins are that we have passed on what we have seen in our monitoring and it has help improve the stormwater management at the site. The contractor has offered to provide NSSK a site tour of the water management systems (early engagement opened the door to allow site access – something contractors are not always wanting to provide). MoTI (Highways) has promised to engage NSSK in the next project phase that will significantly impact Keith Creek. The idea discussed is to enhance the creek for pink and chum spawning and identify other enhancement opportunities in the Lynn Creek area that may be used as offsets to habitat loss if needed.

Feel good story from Mossom Creek:

Recently a very successful Bioblitz was conducted in the Mossom Creek watershed, Port Moody.   Here is a link to an article in a local news paper describing  the event: