Dumping 9,000 cubic meters of construction fill, from dredging efforts, into the pristine waters and spawning grounds of Kootenay Lake does not come without consequence...
This Summer I had the pleasure of assisting the BC Freshwater Fisheries Society staff with the release of 90,000 Kokanee destined for Kootenay Lake. Today I was briefed on an imminent issue that could potentially have a longstanding impact on the lake.
Dumping 9,000 cubic meters of construction fill, from dredging efforts, into the pristine waters and spawning grounds of Kootenay Lake does not come without consequence. Increasing exposure to suspended sediment, caused by dredging, makes it harder for fish to find their food, elevates their stress levels, and causes damage to gills affecting growth and development.
The environmental assessment report for the Kootenay Lake Ferry Dredging project states that, “There is the potential for large numbers of fish to be present in the dredging and disposal area...”. It goes onto say that, “the primary species of concern are rainbow trout, kokanee, and burbot. All three species are part of a recreational, commercial and Aboriginal fishery.”
We need to show leadership and be accountable. We must take the time to review the environmental study, apply due diligence, consult with all stakeholders and bring in experts, such as marine biologists, to help guide us. We need leadership in Ottawa and leadership starts with listening. As your Member of Parliament I will ensure that we are making the right decisions and protecting our environment!