The Council of the Haida Nation is collaborating with the federal and provincial governments to protect and manage the ocean in Haida territorial waters. One of these initiatives plans for a Marine Protected Area (MPA) network in the Northern Shelf Bioregion, an area that runs from northern Vancouver Island, through the central and north coast, and here to Haida Gwaii. The planning process includes government-to-government engagement between federal and provincial bodies and Indigenous Nations, and consultation and information exchanges with marine users and coastal communities.
The Haida Gwaii portion of the current draft MPA network is built on Haida marine plans and marine protected areas, including Gwaii Haanas and the foreshore components of the 11 Haida Heritage Sites that the Province of BC recognizes as Conservancies; five Haida Heritage Sites that the Province of BC recognizes as Ecological Reserves; two Haida Heritage Sites that the Province of BC recognizes as Provincial Parks; and Protection Management Zones identified in the Haida Gwaii Marine Plan.
CHN’s Marine Planning team is currently talking with members of the Haida Marine Work Group, the Haida Oceans Leadership Committee, and Haida fishermen about the draft MPA Network Scenario, in addition to continuing to engage with the Haida Gwaii Integrated Advisory Committee. This will ensure Haida citizens can contribute to and shape the MPA Network design. The CHN is aiming to engage more with Haida citizens about the draft MPA Network Scenario in Fall 2020. Stay tuned for more opportunities to get involved.
This article is published in the recent Autumn Haida Laas. View or download the full edition here.