Publication Date: October 23, 2018
October 10, 2018 – Sackville, New Brunswick
The Government of Canada is committed to protecting nature, and preserving it for generations of Canadians to come. Protecting and restoring valuable water resources like the Saint John River Watershed, the Southern Gulf of Saint Lawrence Watershed, and the Gulf of Maine, helps us make sure we are passing cleaner waters on to the next generation.
On October 10th, Alaina Lockhart, Member of Parliament for Fundy Royal announced, on behalf of the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, a federal investment of more than $1.19 million to eight multi-year projects aiming to protect and restore valuable freshwater resources in Atlantic Canada. Seven projects were funded through the Atlantic Ecosystems Initiatives (AEI) Funding Program and one project was funded through the Gulf of Maine Initiative Funding Program.
These projects will give us a better picture of the health of Atlantic ecosystems and will support clean and sustainable communities and long-term economic growth. Including the “Collaborating to Improve Riparian Health on the Lower Saint John River” project being led by the Kennebecasis Watershed Restoration Committee (KWRC). The project received $97,012 under the AEI Funding Program and is a collaborative effort between seven environmental groups in Southern New Brunswick.
The project will address complex water quality issues in Atlantic Canada through integrated planning and collaborative decision-making that will lead to action and measurable environmental results. In addition, the funding will allow for the conservation, restoration, and enhancement of the Saint John River valley. The AEI Funding Program supports an ecosystem-based approach to improve the health, productivity and long-term sustainability of ecosystems in Atlantic Canada.
Through strong partnerships and collaborative action, these projects will lead to positive environmental results. These initiatives conserve our natural environment and improve our water quality; they also create active community and partner engagement, and meaningful employment opportunities.
“The Government of Canada is making historic investments in protecting nature, including freshwater resources such as the Saint John River Watershed, the Southern Gulf of Saint Lawrence Watershed and the Gulf of Maine. Partnerships with non-government organizations, Indigenous governments and organizations, industry and academia in Atlantic Canada are essential in the fight against climate change. We all need to work together to protect Canada’s environment, and create a sustainable economy, for our kids and grandkids.”The Honourable Catherine McKennaMinister of Environment and Climate Change
“Funding projects through programs like the Atlantic Ecosystems Initiative help us see real, tangible efforts being made to protect and conserve the Saint John River Watershed. The Kennebecasis Watershed Restoration Committee is an important leader in the Fundy Royal community. I am pleased that our Government was able to support this amazing initiative, along with the other projects. Through the combined on-the-ground efforts of community groups, indigenous groups and all levels of government these watersheds stand a much greater chance of remaining healthy, diverse and productive for generations to come.”Alaina LockhartMember of Parliament for Fundy Royal
“Our ‘Collaborating To Improve Riparian Health’ project will see the completion of multiple restoration projects across the lower Saint John River and increase the capacity of the partnering watershed groups so that we can all better complete similar projects in the future. This will allow us to continue to improve water quality, enhance watershed health, and build community resiliency in the face of a changing climate on the Saint John River.”Ben WhalenProject Manager, Kennebecasis Watershed Restoration Committee
- In 2018 and 2019, the Atlantic Ecosystems Initiatives are focusing on two priority ecosystems of concern: the Saint John River Watershed and the Southern Gulf of St. Lawrence Watershed.
- The Saint John River is an international and interprovincial waterway that flows 673 km through Maine, New Brunswick and Quebec, with the watershed covering 55,000 square kilometers. The watershed falls within the traditional territory of the Maliseet people, and was designated a Canadian Heritage Rivers System in 2013.
- The Southern Gulf of St. Lawrence Watershed region is an important ecological, economic and socio-cultural region of North America. Communities along the Gulf coast depend on its resources for income and their quality of life. The Gulf region supports key ecosystems such as salt marshes, beaches, estuaries and forests.
- The Gulf of Maine is a large watershed spanning much of the provinces of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick and the states of Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts, which border its coast. It is a highly productive ecosystem that is environmentally significant and economically important to Canada. Over 3,000 marine species and birds are found in the Gulf of Maine, as well as more than 30 species at risk.
- The seven environmental groups participating in the “Collaborating to Improve Riparian Health on the Lower Saint John River” project are:
- Kennebecasis Watershed Restoration Committee (project lead)
- Hammond River Angling Association
- Nashwaak Watershed Association
- Atlantic Coastal Action Program Saint John
- Canaan Washedemoak Watershed
- Belleisle Watershed Coalition
- Oromocto River Watershed Association
- Atlantic Ecosystems Initiatives
- Gulf of Maine Initiative
- Kennebecasis Watershed Restoration Committee
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change
Environment and Climate Change Canada
819-938-3338 or 1-844-836-7799 (toll free)
Communications & Outreach Coordinator
Office of MP Alaina Lockhart