Revelstoke – The Fraser River, and in particular, the “Heart of the Fraser” located between Hope and Mission, is the most endangered river in the province, according to the 100,000-member Outdoor Recreation Council of British Columbia (ORCBC).
The council released its 30th annual BC endangered rivers list. Every other year, the alliance of BC’s outdoor groups puts together a list of the province’s rivers that are most at risk. The list is based on input from ORCBC’s 100,000-member base and environmental groups, individuals, and resource professionals and is vetted by ORCBC’s endangered rivers committee.
While the 2021 endangered rivers list focused on the threats facing urban streams, including climate change, loss of riparian habitat and pollution, this year’s list focuses on Heart of the Fraser, one of the most ecologically significant stretches of river on the planet but also a part of the river that faces grave threats.
Mark Angelo, ORCBC Rivers Chair and founder of both BC and World Rivers Day, said: “Most of the critical fish habitat in the lower Fraser has already been lost to diking and industrial development, so it’s essential to protect what remains, especially within the Heart of the Fraser.
Angelo, who is both an Order of BC and Order of Canada recipient for his river conservation efforts, added, “We are urging the provincial and federal governments, in concert with the Nations of the Heart of the Fraser, to do more to utilize these tools. In addition, the ORCBC is asking governments to develop a plan that would enable the acquisition of key threatened habitats for conservation, or ecological restoration purposes. The most ecologically significant parts of the major un-diked islands within the Heart of the Fraser would be an ideal place to start.”
Angelo was in conversation with FVN and chillTV News Director Don Lehn, about the list and it’s findings: