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Government of Canada announces funding for projects to restore fish habitat and protect nature in British Columbia

Press Release

October 19, 2018 – Vancouver, British Columbia

Protecting the environment and growing the economy are priorities for the Government of Canada. By working with Canadian organizations, businesses, and Indigenous Peoples across the country to protect nature and its wildlife, the Government is ensuring that our kids and grandkids can have a healthier and more prosperous future.

Environment and Climate Change Canada is committed to supporting projects that help restore, conserve, and protect nature. The Government of Canada’s Environmental Damages Fund is an effective way to respond to environmental damage by making sure that funds received from fines, court orders, and voluntary payments from environmental violations are used to carry out projects that benefit our environment and our economy.

Today, Environment and Climate Change Canada announced $2.86 million in funding to support seven environmental projects based in the Kootenay River and Columbia River watersheds in British Columbia. The projects will focus on restoring and improving fish access to high quality and healthy habitat. Of this amount, $1.44 million is being directed to projects being undertaken by Indigenous organizations.

The following seven organizations will receive funding:

  • Salmo Watershed Streamkeepers Society ($219K)
  • British Columbia Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development ($253K)
  • British Columbia Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy ($796K)
  • Lower Kootenay Band ($619K)
  • Okanagan Nation Alliance ($248K)
  • Ktunaxa Nation Council ($571K)
  • British Columbia Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure ($149K)

Quick facts

  • This funding is the result of court penalties paid by Teck Metals Ltd. after the company pleaded guilty, in March 2016, to three offences under the Fisheries Act, related to releases of effluent materials deleterious to fish, into the Columbia River. Eligible applicants included not-for-profit groups, Indigenous communities and organizations, universities, and provincial, territorial, and municipal governments.
  • Created in 1995, the Environmental Damages Fund is a Government of Canada program administered by Environment and Climate Change Canada.
  • The Environmental Damages Fund follows the polluter pays principle to help ensure polluters take responsibility for their actions. Funds are invested in projects that help to restore the natural environment in the area where the environmental damage occurred.
  • Environmental Damages Fund project proposals, received through an open and transparent call for proposals, are thoroughly assessed to determine how best to use the available funds.
  • The Environmental Damages Fund receives funds from fines, court orders, and voluntary payments from various legislation including the Fisheries Act; the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999; the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994; and the Canada Shipping Act, 2001.

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Caroline Thériault
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change
[email protected]

Media Relations
Environment and Climate Change Canada
819-938-3338 or 1-844-836-7799 (toll-free)
[email protected]


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