SEHAB Roundtable Report –– November 2016

SEHAB Member: Paul Cipywnyk

Area: North Side Fraser River, Burnaby to Mission

Community Advisor: Maurice Coulter-Boisvert

Date: Sept. 26, 2016

Key Issues:

What top three points can you distill from community input to take to DFO RHQ?

  1. Ongoing development-related issues such as siltation from work sites
  2. Volunteer recruitment and retention. Training of executive members and activity leaders
  3. There is little to no follow-up on projects that began years ago. How do we know if commitments are being kept? How do we know if habitat restoration is succeeding?


A few examples of successes, failures, challenges.

  • There have been ongoing issues with siltation into local creeks in north Burnaby due to development, particularly impacting Silver Creek and other waterways near Burnaby Mountain. The City of Burnaby has responded with fines, and media pressure has also resulted in DFO action – however, there was irritation in the community at how long it took to get a response, and why media attention was apparently required to get a response.
  • Several groups such as the Stoney Creek Environment Committee, and the Byrne Creek Streamkeepers Society, are struggling with attracting and keeping members. It is particularly difficult to get folks to step into roles of responsibility such as taking on executive positions or leading activities. Many groups are suffering burnout of key volunteers.
  • There has been dismay among stewardship groups at a continuing lack of success in getting municipalities to step up implementation of watershed-friendly facilities such as swales, rain gardens, infiltration ponds, etc. For example, several major roads have been redeveloped in the Byrne Creek watershed, and the municipality has not put in a drop of infiltration anywhere, despite ISMPs etc.
  • On a positive note, Byrne Creek Streamkeepers are meeting with several key City of Burnaby staff to assess the municipality’s support of streamkeeper programs, to strengthen lines of communication, and to discuss stormwater best management practices.

Issues Specific to SEHAB’s Work Plan:

SEHAB Work Plan

Local Issue, Specific  Examples

Actions by Community or DFO

SEHAB Opportunity

Wild Salmon Policy (Stock Assessment, Habitat)

Lack of enforcement of the wild salmon policy.







Capacity & Core Funding




Submissions, Comments from Groups:

Under "Ongoing Projects."  The Salmon and Eulachon shoreline restoration habitats agreed upon by DFO and others to take place at the River District Development Projects located on the North Arm of the Fraser River west of Boundary Road, needs a update! Has all the work been completed as noted in the development plans, is there any specific habitat changes in size of the replacement or the planting of habitat, species being used etc. These habitat projects were originally noted in the Vancouver East Fraser Lands "River District" over 15 years ago now! 

 An update on the progress of riverfront Salmon and Eulachon restoration habitats, specifically from the River District Project Developer, DFO, First Nations Musqueam Band and the City of Vancouver is needed now. A detailed report would be very helpful regarding this very old agreed-upon habitat restoration work. Terry Slack from the North Arm of the Fraser River.