The Government of Canada has committed $1.5 billion to projects covered under the Oceans Protection Plan (1). The Oceans Protection Plan is a comprehensive set of investments towards projects focused on the protection of bodies of water and coastlines across Canada (2). The fund is led by different governmental departments collaboratively due to the variety of projects covered by the plan, including co-operation with Transport Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Environment Canada, and Natural Resources Canada (2).
An important component of the Oceans Protection Plan is the Coastal Restoration Fund, which offers financial support for projects focused on maintaining and protecting Canada’s coastlines and the species that inhabit them (3). Beginning in May 2017, the Coastal Restoration Fund was given a budget of $75 million to be used over a five-year period (3). Projects that applied for this funding were judged based on a thorough set of criteria, assessing the project’s potential impacts of restoring and maintaining the quality of coastlines and waterways of Canada (4).
There are a variety of ongoing projects funded by the Coastal Restoration Funds, currently located in British Columbia, Nunavut, Northwest Territories, Yukon, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador (5). There are specific areas of priority within different regions, allowing for more focus of specific projects (4). For example, areas of focus in Quebec are the St. Lawrence River and the Gulf of the St. Lawrence, with initiatives focused on protecting the species inhabiting those waterways (4). There is also collaboration with First Nations, Metis, and Inuit communities across Canada for a majority of these projects, including the Kivalliq Inuit Association to assist Arctic char populations in the Kivalliq region (5). Notably, the first stage of the Coastal Restoration Fund involved $47 million being supplied to 32 projects, with all projects involving collaboration with First Nations communities (6).
Overall, the government has committed to protecting the waterways of Canada by funding restorative projects across Canada designed to help protect coastlines and species that inhabit them. To learn more about the approved projects, click here.