Salmon conservation projects across B.C. granted $227,000

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PSF funds 48 local salmon projects, leveraging $2 million in total value for communities

Vancouver, B.C. – The Pacific Salmon Foundation (PSF) has granted $227,828 to 48 community-led salmon conservation, enhancement, and habitat restoration projects across British Columbia. These projects represent $2 million in total value of salmon stewardship work.

The Community Salmon Program, launched by PSF in 1989, empowers volunteers, local streamkeepers, Indigenous communities, and schools to take action to conserve and rehabilitate Pacific salmon and their habitats.

In the 33 years since its inception, PSF’s Community Salmon Program has awarded $25.6 million in grants to more than 3,000 projects across B.C. and the Yukon and engaged roughly 30,000 volunteers.  Successful projects have included salmon habitat restoration, aquatic monitoring and research, emergency flood initiatives, hatcheries, and educational programming and outreach.

The Community Salmon Program accepts new applications each spring and fall. The federal Salmon Conservation Stamp, a decal which anglers purchase with their saltwater fishing licence that enables them to keep any species of wild salmon, is the primary funding source for the program. PSF proudly stewards 100 per cent of the proceeds from the Salmon Conservation Stamp on behalf of Fisheries and Oceans Canada to advance hundreds of local salmon conservation projects each year.

Rapid Ascent by artist Valerie Rogers will appear on the 2023/2024 Salmon Conservation Stamp.

An annual Salmon Conservation Stamp, valid between April 1 and March 31 of each fishing season, can be purchased online or through an Independent Access Provider.

“Salmon face countless struggles, but with our help, they can recover. We depend on community-led initiatives to restore and protect Pacific salmon. We are thankful to the passionate people for salmon who leverage the Pacific Salmon Foundation’s Community Salmon Program to uplift their grassroots stewardship efforts,” says Michael Meneer, CEO and president of the Pacific Salmon Foundation.

For the fall 2022 funding cycle, demand for Community Salmon Program grants was three times the amount of funds available – a new record for funding requests in program history.

“As demand for Community Salmon Program funds increases, we encourage you to make a tax-deductible donation to PSF to ensure this program and others that support salmon continue. At PSF, we’re salmon first, salmon always—and we don’t go it alone,” says Meneer.

Donate online.

See below to learn how two current Community Salmon Program recipients are making a difference for salmon.

Community Salmon Program dollars in action

Fish-friendly flood infrastructure in the Lower Fraser

(Fernando Lessa)

More than 150 flood control structures in the Lower Mainland block an estimated 1,500 kilometres of potential salmon habitat.

Resilient Waters – a collaboration between MakeWay Charitable Society, Lower Fraser Fisheries Alliance, Watershed Watch Salmon Society, more than 10 First Nations groups, and many other organizations and local governments – seeks to reconnect vital wild salmon habitat by modernizing aging flood-control infrastructure to restore fish passage in tributaries adjacent to the Lower Fraser River. Upgrading or modifying outdated floodgates, pumps, and dikes will benefit salmon ecosystems and help reduce flood risk.

The project assesses habitat quality and fish passage at 25 high-priority sites scattered across the Lower Fraser basin with fieldwork led by Pearson Ecological. PSF funding will help cover the costs of genetic analysis of samples of Chinook and coho salmon to determine the origin of salmon accessing (or attempting to access) lower Fraser floodplain habitats.

Reviving estuarine habitat in Port Alberni

Only 36 per cent of natural area in the Somass Estuary in Port Alberni, B.C. remains intact due to alteration from agricultural, industrial, water management and development pressures. The estuary supports up to 30 million salmon smolts as they transition to the ocean.

A multi-year project led by the Alberni Valley Enhancement Association with support from 12 volunteers aims to re-establish a historic flood channel in the Somass Estuary to facilitate access for salmon to the highly productive estuarine habitat. The goal is to reconnect 380 metres of habitat from the Somass River to Shoemaker Bay.

To date, the group has constructed a bridge and started the channel excavation process. Currently in the third year of the project, a PSF grant will support the completion of the channel excavation to re-naturalize the habitat.

The Community Salmon Program is currently accepting applications for the spring 2023 cycle until Feb. 15, 2023. Apply here.

The Community Salmon Program also benefits from corporations with sustainability goals. Trans Mountain, Mosaic Forest Management, BC Hydro, Methanex, Seaspan, Paper Excellence, Secure Energy, Neptune Terminals, ENCORP PACIFIC, Sutherland Foundation Inc., and Pembina Pipeline support the program. Interested businesses can contact PSF’s Senior Business Development Manager Cory Matheson at cmatheson@psf.ca.

A full list of recipients for the fall 2022 Community Salmon Program funding cohort includes:

Applicant Project Title Funding confirmed $  Project Value $
A Rocha Canada – Houston project Upper Bulkley Riparian Corridor and Stream Restoration 13,365       42,530
Alberni Valley Enhancement Association Somass Estuary Flood Channel 19,800     175,000
BC Conservation Foundation Community-Based Social Marketing workshop 2,500         7,135
BC Wildlife Federation Stewardship Workshop and Education 10,000     142,700
Brooklyn Creek Watershed Society Mitigating 6 PPD-Q in stormwater runoff 2,500         5,300
Cameron Elementary School Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         3,550
Campus View Elementary Stream of Dreams at Campus View Elementary 3,000       18,314
Cariboo Chilcotin Conservation Society BC Parks Guide 2022 2,500       36,000
Champlain Heights Annex Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         3,570
Chicago Creek Community Env. Enhancement Society Mission Creek Fence Rebuilding Completion 10,362     212,150
Chute Creek Stewardship Society Chute Creek Habitat Restoration 2,500     126,800
Cliff Drive Elementary Stream of Dreams at Cliff Drive Elementary 3,000       12,145
Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre Society Restore Chum and Coho Rearing Habitat, Fish Gut Alley, Lower Cowichan River 5,544       18,040
David Lloyd George School Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         3,950
Deroche Elementary Forest & Stream Restoration-Phase 3 1,500         4,625
Don Ross Middle School Salmonids in the Classroom 1,300         3,100
Dorothy Lynas Elementary Stream of Dreams at Dorothy Lynas Elementary 3,000       21,447
East Chilliwack Elementary School Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         3,550
École Pauline Johnson Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         3,550
Edith Cavell Elementary Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         3,870
F.W. Howay Elementary Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         3,550
Gavin Lake Forest Education Society Aquatic Insects as indicators program 2,500       10,240
George Jay Elementary School Salmonids in the Classroom 1,000         2,100
Gibsons Marine Education Centre Society Healthy Harbour – Gibsons Harbour Clean-up and Restoration 5,828       19,160
Gitksan Watershed Authorities McCully Creek Restoration Initiative 17,688       77,045
Guardians of Mid Island Estuaries Society Eco-Cultural Restoration of Salish Sea Estuaries (annual funding request 1/5) 24,250     209,500
HT Thrift Elementary Salmonids in the Classroom 600         1,200
John Norquay Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         3,350
MakeWay Charitable Society Resilient Waters Genetic Analysis of 25 priority Lower Fraser Tributaries 5,000     206,150
Morten Creek SEP Hatchery Maintenace, Including Bridge Repair 1,500         4,060
Nanaimo Science and Sustainability Society Science in the Park – Salmon Run days 1,600         8,160
Northern Vancouver Island Salmonid Enhancement Association SEP 2023 Workshop 14,773     116,575
Nuxalk Stewardship Office Nuxalk Sockeye Recovery Program 15,000     247,738
Peninsula Streams Society Long-term Salmon Monitoring & Stewardship in Four Greater Victoria Watersheds 16,500     194,500
Qayqayt Elementary Stream of Dreams at Qayqayt Elementary 3,000       24,211
Queens Park Preschool Society Stream of Dreams @ Queens Park Preschool 1,200         3,867
Semiahmoo Fish and Game Club – Little Campbell Hatchery Little Campbell Hatchery 2,468         4,988
Somenos Marsh Wildlife Society GreenStreams Community Stewardship Program 5,145       63,396
Sooke School District Salmonids in the Classroom 563         1,125
Sperling Elementary Salmonids in the Classroom 700         1,700
St. Andrew’s School Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         3,450
St. Anthony’s School Stream of Dreams at St Anthony 2,798         9,147
St. Pius X School Salmonids in the Classroom 360         1,810
Sts’ailes community school Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         3,450
Sunshine Coast Streamkeepers Society Sechelt Streamkeepers Assessment Testing Equipment 2,184         4,384
Walnut Road Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         1,900
West Bay Elementary Salmonids in the Classroom 1,650         3,650
Yorkson Watershed Enhancement Society Yorkson Watershed Floodplain Restoration 2,500         7,940