While we can be proud of past resiliency-building initiatives that have helped to build back the Fraser Watershed, it’s clear that more action is needed to address the complex issues facing our environment. Globally, we are facing a nature emergency and climate crisis. We know the Fraser Watershed is in trouble, and that no one, singular approach will solve every issue. Creating a resilient Fraser Watershed will require a combination of approaches, including individual action, support from governments (co-governance with Indigenous communities, in particular), industry commitment to new technologies and sustainability, and a shift in priorities.
The Rivershed Society of BC has adapted a strategy of Watershed CPR – Connect, Protect, Restore—as a path to creating a resilient Fraser Watershed by promoting and using nature-based solutions.
What is a resilient watershed? A resilient watershed has the capacity to retain and improve community, economic, and ecosystem health, even during major disturbances such as climate change.
Click each circle to learn how we define a “resilient Fraser.”
What does it mean?
Connecting people with and within the Fraser Watershed.
Advocating for the legal protection of land within the Fraser Watershed.
Restoring damaged habitat within the Fraser Watershed.
Connecting people to each other and their watershed allows communities to better understand the issues facing the Fraser and create a unified effort to build a resilient watershed.
Large parts of the Fraser remain intact, but are threatened by climate change and unsustainable growth. Protection will support the continued resilience of these critical habitats and foster Indigenous sovereignty.
Restoration of damaged areas is critically important to combatting climate change and building ecosystem resilience.
What does this look like?
Building a movement of Watershed Defenders through education, awareness, and advocacy campaigns. Watershed Defenders are dedicated to transforming the Fraser into a resilient watershed, with salmon, people, and economies flourishing.
Developing strategic partnerships throughout the Fraser Watershed to create a unified voice for a resilient Fraser.
Building and fostering respectful relationships with First Nations, who have been stewards of the lands within the Fraser River since time immemorial and continue that significant role today.
Elevating and supporting campaigns which work to protect key salmon and wildlife habitat, biodiversity, and old growth.
Fostering Indigenous sovereignty and stewardship of the land by prioritizing Indigenous Protected and Conserved Areas (IPCA) and Indigenous-led land management strategies, which also result in higher biodiversity protection.
Supporting land trusts, conservation funds, private land conservation easements, and parks and protected area systems that preserve habitat throughout the Watershed.
Elevating, supporting, and leading efforts that assist in the recovery and regeneration of ecosystems and habitats within the Fraser Watershed.
Prioritizing restoration efforts that foster Indigenous sovereignty and stewardship, increase biodiversity, and include a protection plan to ensure long-term resilience.
Leading the Foodlands Corridor Restoration Program, which works to restore pieces of privately owned land adjacent to important habitat to create a larger, healthier space for wildlife.
Rivershed has a goal to Connect 100,000 Watershed Defenders by 2030.
Rivershed has a goal to Protect 30% of the Fraser Watershed by 2030.
Rivershed has a goal to Restore 5% of the Fraser Watershed by 2030.
Keep learning about Watershed CPR with this resource from the Fraser River Discovery Centre: My River, My Home
The Watershed CPR Education Program is a self-guided, virtual learning experience all about the Fraser River, created by the Rivershed Society of BC.
In this virtual experience, users are introduced to the three pillars of Watershed CPR—Connect, Protect, and Restore—through a series of engaging activities and interactives about the Fraser Watershed. Users will learn about the flora and fauna that inhabit the Fraser; the First Nations who have lived in this area since time immemorial; some of the conservation issues affecting the watershed; and how to “perform Watershed CPR” and become a Watershed Defender.
To learn more about Watershed CPR and the Rivershed Society of BC, visit rivershed.com.
Thank you to our partners in development: Cicada Creative and Canadian Geographic, and immense gratitude to the Kwantlen First Nation for their time and contributions to the program. Consultation from Raincoast Conservation Foundation. Funding provided by the Pacific Salmon Foundation, and Environment and Climate Change Canada, via the Environmental Damages Fund.
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