Salish Sea Initiative
The Salish Sea Initiative (SSI) provides funding and collaboration to eligible marine Indigenous communities to build capacity to enable:
- acquisition and reporting of data on baseline environmental conditions
- tracking of environmental impacts and changes
- assessment of cumulative environmental effects from human actions
- determination of Valued Ecosystem Components within the Salish Sea bio zone
- knowledge acquisition, integration, and sharing
The grants and contributions funding, available until 2025, will also help these communities to conduct marine stewardship activities and report on cumulative effects. The initiative provides a long-term investment strategy to support First Nations in evaluating the impacts of human activities on the local ecosystems and to provide for ongoing project delivery.
A Government of Canada team, led by Fisheries and Oceans Canada, is available to provide advice and support for project development based on the priorities and requirements identified by the initiative’s Indigenous participants. This can include research and scientific advice, if required.
The Salish Sea Initiative supports integrated monitoring, evaluation and reporting structures inclusive of, and responsive to, participating Indigenous communities.
Find out how the Initiative is responding to the Trans Mountain Expansion Project as an accommodation measure.
Salish Sea Initiative goals
- Build technical and governance capacity for research, assessment, monitoring, stewardship and reporting activities to understand cumulative impacts of human activity along the marine shipping route
- Build networks and systems such as data management systems, that include appropriate knowledge acquisition, integration and sharing, to support community-level work
- Support communications development that includes annual reports on the health of the marine environment along the shipping route and reports on progress toward new planning and management frameworks
- Co-develop governance and processes to manage a long-term arms-length fund to support ongoing marine stewardship activities within Indigenous communities
Actions we’re taking to support the Salish Sea Initiative goals
- Building contribution agreements with Indigenous communities to access funds to increase technical, scientific and administrative capacity. This can include increased capacity for planning and coordination with other Trans Mountain Expansion Project Initiative activities. Contribution agreements will enable Indigenous communities to undertake increased marine stewardship activities, based on their specified valued components.
- Supporting collaborative engagement between the Government of Canada and First Nations to support effective communications and to co-develop the structure and process for the long-term arms-length fund.
- Working to ensure that collaborative engagement is transparent, accountable, and grounded in fundamentals like Indigenous community concerns, reconciliation, and UNDRIP.
Learn more about the work Canada is doing to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP)
If you have any questions about the Salish Sea Initiative, send them to DFO.SSI-IMDS.MPO@dfo-mpo.gc.ca.
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