Ongoing Concerns

  • WATER FLOWS  -  the increase of  peak flow  events   causing flooding and the scouring (loss) of important spawning  gravels and nutrients;  drought  worsened  summer low-flows;  the unchecked&unbalanced  overuse of stream water by people (via legal water licences and illegal extraction) has  always been  a serious issue for the survival of salmon and other biota  in the river.
     

  • DESTRUCTION OF INSTREAM HABITATS  -  the removal of many types of natural and manmade watercourses for land conversion or high-intensity use that are ideal for young salmonids and other species at risk.
     

  • LAND CONVERSION - the increase in non-permeable surfaces (parking lots, roads, artificial turf, building roofs) slowly nudges the river to a non- permeable ratio of over 9-11%,  the number at which the decline in bio-productivity in a watershed becomes measurable. This pauperizes the landscape of year-round moisture; essential nutrients and habitat; financial speculation in land pressures local governments to make decisions that can destroy a working balance with nature.
     

  • DESTRUCTION OF RIPARIAN AREAS - naturally wide, high canopied, densely vegetated complex and biodiverse stream edges are one of the main keys to a healthy functioning watershed. They cushion watercourses in terms of nutrient balance, water balance, temperature balance,  air & water pollution inputs; they help protect all forms of resident vertebrates  & invertebrates. Riparian elements take scarce time and money to re-introduce.
     

  • POLLUTION - agricultural pollution by pesticides, industrial fertilizers,  farm and pet animal waste and pollution from automotive & industrial pollution compromise the water quality of the river. A direct consequence is that the receiving waters of Boundary Bay have high fecal coliform and sedimental heavy metal counts causing shellfish to be both toxic and illegal to harvest.  Pollution, flow issues and riparian decline all exacerbate already dangerous oxygen levels in the river.
     

  • FIRST NATIONS -  not a single legacy food source remains for Semiahmoo First Nation. The only viable options to restore any traditional sustenance source for SFN  are intimately tied to the health of the LC watershed.