Timeline test

To understand where we’re going and why we need a Blueprint for the Coast, we need to understand where we’ve been and where we are now.

Since time immemorial, Indigenous nations have been stewarding coastal and ocean areas in accordance with their Indigenous laws in what has now become known as British Columbia. While severely disrupted by colonization, Indigenous nations have continued to keep their laws, customs, and stewardship practices alive.

1970s

The first modern coastal marine strategies are adopted

Lightship Columbia at the Mouth of the Columbia River 05/1973
With coastal development accelerating, and pressure from a burgeoning environmental movement, states along the Pacific US coast adopt some of the first modern coastal marine strategies. These coastal plans bring together the federal government, Indigenous tribes, and local governments.
1974

Private member’s bill proposed

Here in BC, MLA Harold Steves introduces a private member’s bill to establish a Coastal Commission Act but it fails.

1984

Inland waters

Georgia Straight As viewed from the summit of Hat Mountain at 1644 meters.

The Supreme Court of Canada determines that the waters between Vancouver Island and the Lower  Mainland are “inland waters” within the Province of BC establishing that the province, not the federal government, are responsible for their management.

1997

Oceans Act realized

East coast harbour

After the federal Oceans Act comes into force, the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans & the Canadian Coast Guard is put in charge of developing a national oceans strategy.

1998

A new approach to coastal management

The BC premier announces the release of the Coastal Zone Position Paper, calling for a new approach to coastal management and saying, “While we have made significant progress on major environmental, social and economic issues related to the land, it is now time to turn our attention to the coastal zone…” However, the Position Paper is never endorsed by Cabinet.

2015

Marine Planning Partnership for the North Pacific Coast

Barren island with forested mountains in background

A big win for sustainable ecosystem-based ocean management occurs when a co-initiative between Indigenous nations and the Provincial government completes its marine plans for the Great Bear Sea. The initiative, called the Marine Planning Partnership (MaPP) for the North Pacific Coast, would go on to win the inaugural BC Reconciliation Award in 2021.

November, 2019

BC support for UNDRIP

A full BC legislature stands and applauds

British Columbia enacts legislation requiring the province to bring its law and practices into harmony with the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).

December 7, 2020

Union Of BC Municipalities passes resolution

With a renewed focus, the BC government commits to develop a new coastal marine strategy in partnership with Indigenous nations and other orders of government, to better protect coastal habitat while growing coastal economies. The momentum grows when the Union Of BC Municipalities passes a resolution to support a coastal strategy.

Summer, 2021

Increased stress the BC coastline

Dead salmon lying on shore

Intensifying climate change impacts, record low salmon runs, and increasing demands over resources continue to negatively impact BC coastal communities and ecosystems.

Today

Designing a blueprint for the coast

Blueprint for the Coast logo

BC remains one of the last coastal jurisdictions in North America without a united plan and law to protect its coast. Our goal is to create a blueprint, co-designed with Indigenous nations, that ensures marine life and coastal communities get the future they deserve.