Funds Announced for Puntledge River Fish and Wildlife
COURTENAY – Three projects that will help conserve Chinook Salmon in the Puntledge River watershed will benefit
from more than $73,000 in funding from the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program (FWCP).
The first of two projects to be delivered by the K’ómoks First Nation will help maintain genetic distinctions between wild and hatchery Chinook in support of the recovery of summer Chinook populations. The second project will examine the influence of Harbour Seal predation on Chinook populations. And the third project, led by the Comox Valley Project Watershed Society, will assess if Chinook Salmon are migrating back to Comox Lake where their chances for survival are greatest.
Projects funded in the Puntledge River watershed will start this spring and conclude by early 2015. They are among 31 fish and wildlife projects approved for more than $1.7 million in funding this year in the FWCP’s Coastal Region.
Bill Bennett, Minister of Energy and Mines
“In BC, we are blessed to have hydroelectric facilities that generate clean power. This electricity is the backbone of our economy. It is our responsibility to ensure our resources are cared for and preserved. This year alone, more than $7 million will go towards protecting fish and wildlife in areas with hydroelectric operations, through more than 80 individual projects. The projects are carefully selected by local boards in each region, which have representation from the public, First Nations, DFO, the Province and BC Hydro.”
Brian Assu, Chair, FWCP – Coastal Regional Board
“Salmonid stocks are of great importance to First Nations and others and this project will support long-term Steelhead stocks. We are fortunate to have strong working partnerships with First Nations in this watershed.”
Patrice Rother, Manager, Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program
“We are pleased with the strong interest in the FWCP and the quality of project proposals that support the FWCP vision of thriving populations in watersheds that are functioning and sustainable.”
A few facts about the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program
• The Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program funds conservation and enhancement projects in the Coastal, Columbia River and Peace River regions. The Coastal Region includes Vancouver Island, the Lower Mainland and the Southern Interior.
• In 2014, the FWCP will provide more than $7 million towards more than 80 fish and wildlife projects province-wide in its Coastal, Columbia and Peace regions.
• FWCP funds are provided by BC Hydro and managed in a partnership with the Province of British Columbia, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, First Nations and the public to conserve and enhance fish and wildlife impacted by the creation of BC Hydro dams.
• Funding applications are received each fall and reviewed annually in the Coastal Region by technical committees and FWCP Coastal Board members. Projects are chosen based on technical merit, linkages to watershed-specific priorities, cost-effectiveness, level of partnership, and overall benefit to the FWCP’s mandate and vision.
• For a full list and descriptions of all 2014 projects funded by the FWCP across the province, and information on how you can apply for funding next year, visit fwcp.ca.
Stephen Watson, on behalf of the FWCP
BC Hydro, Vancouver Island Community Relations Phone: 250-755-4795 firstname.lastname@example.org