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Marine Stewardship Program

At Tsleil-Waututh, a key measure of legally acceptable environmental conditions in Burrard Inlet is whether we are able to maintain a vibrant subsistence economy. Current levels of pollution, loss of habitat and species, and reduced abundance of remaining species indicate that the environmental integrity of Burrard Inlet is compromised. Restored access to abundant, safe salmon, herring, clams, and birds would be one important indicator of environmental conditions in Burrard Inlet that could once again support the meaningful exercise of Tsleil-Waututh title, rights, and interests as described in Table 1. Tsleil-Waututh stewardship responsibilities dictate that all projects provide a tangible environmental improvement (“net environmental benefit” rather than “no net loss”), as explained in Section 8. Tsleil-Waututh law mandates a return to environmental conditions that would support the full range of Tsleil-Waututh title, rights, and interests. To support gradual environmental improvement in Burrard Inlet, in 2005 Tsleil-Waututh developed a Marine Stewardship Program. It has three facets: » Recognition of Tsleil-Waututh legal authority, which brings with it a corresponding level of governance over stewardship planning and implementation » On-the-ground Tsleil-Waututh regulatory action, and habitat and species restoration » Long-term commitment from all governments to oversight, monitoring, and capacity building These three facets are all important elements of Tsleil-Waututh’s environmental stewardship rights and responsibilities as described in Table 1. The Marine Stewardship Program sets out two desired environmental outcomes: » Restoring Burrard Inlet to a condition where wild marine foods are abundant and safe to eat and a subsistence economy may be re-established » Restoring Burrard Inlet to a condition where cultural work may occur in clean water, without exposure to contaminated sediment, at sites that are physically intact and free from impaired views, violations of privacy, and noise intrusions The extent of Tsleil-Waututh reliance on the subsistence economy is a measurable indicator of restoration success. The near-term objective is to achieve a level of environmental improvement that will allow us to obtain 10% of our food (measured as a portion of our protein requirements) from Burrard Inlet by 2040. One achievement of the Marine Stewardship Program has been the identification and designation of 2,600 hectares of Burrard Inlet as sensitive marine fish and wildlife habitat. Included are shoreline sites of archaeological or cultural significance. Map 18 shows the area that comes under the designation. Tsleil-Waututh law mandates that these sensitive areas receive heightened protection from environmental harm or damage as set out in the Marine Stewardship Program in accordance with Tsleil-Waututh stewardship obligations and responsibilities. The sensitive designation includes all estuaries, potential forage fish spawning beaches, known shellfish harvest beaches, and the Rockfish Conservation Areas. Any shoreline archaeological or cultural heritage sites outside those sensitive areas are included. Altogether, the designation covers about 23% of Burrard Inlet. One very sensitive area is Maplewood Flats, just east of Second Narrows on the north shore of the Central Harbour. It is the most extensive intertidal area in close proximity to Tsleil-Waututh Reserve, and its location is highlighted on Map 18. Maplewood Flats has a long history of use for resource harvest, both for finfish and shellfish. It has an archaeological feature that has been identified as a fish trap and dated to the period around AD 569 to AD 809 (Morin 2015). A portion of the trap is shown in Figure 9. The area remains important for crab harvest today. Because of this, it has been the focus, under the Marine Stewardship Program, of a Tsleil-Waututh initiative called “Bringing It Back.” Another element of the Marine Stewardship Program is more active assertion of Tsleil-Waututh stewardship responsibilities on the lands around Burrard Inlet. Our leadership is moving to put the “Tsleil-Waututh face” back on the territory. One way our nation has met this responsibility is by entering into co-management agreements for areas of our territory that are now parks. One is Whey-ah-wichen, also known as Cates Park, located on the north shore of the Central Harbour, in the District of North Vancouver. Another is Say Nuth Khaw Yum Provincial Park, located on both sides of Indian Arm. Together they make up over 6,700 hectares of uplands and about 35 kilometres of shoreline. Map 19 shows the park locations.

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Profile for Tseil-Waututh Nation Sacred Trust Initiative

Tseil-Waututh Nation Assessment of the Trans Mountain Pipeline and Tanker Expansion Proposal  

Landmark independent assessment by the Tsleil-Wautuh Nation of Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain Expansion Project. The assessment applies TWN'...

Tseil-Waututh Nation Assessment of the Trans Mountain Pipeline and Tanker Expansion Proposal  

Landmark independent assessment by the Tsleil-Wautuh Nation of Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain Expansion Project. The assessment applies TWN'...

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