The comment deadline is January 9th at 4:00pm
Vancouver Hunter responded with the following commentary:
1) Deadlines for action to protect habitat and begin restoring fish and wildlife populations are too far in the future, beyond 2021 and some even after 2025. This pushes the start date to take action until after the next election. It is not sufficient just to continue to make committees and monitor declines in wildlife and fish populations which are in crisis.
2) Dedicated funding from allocating 100% of hunting licence fees to conservation was a campaign promise by the NDP in the last election and they have not followed through. I would support a reasonable increase in licence fees once 100% of fees are dedicated to conservation.
3) We need to end the professional reliance model where resource companies get to hire their own experts to sign off on resource extraction. This is a conflict of interest which leads to wildlife populations suffering.
4) We need quarterly and annual reports with facts and figures, showing objectives and funding, successes and failures, as we try to reverse the declines of wildlife populations.
5) We need per capita funding comparable to US states which are enjoying wildlife population increases due to well managed habitat. This means finding funding to grow the provincial budget from approximately $34 million to between $150 million and $250 million spent on conservation, habitat improvement, and wildlife management.
B.C.’s diversity of wildlife provides many environmental, cultural, social, and economic benefits to all British Columbians.
The Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development has adopted a four-phase engagement process to develop a new and improved wildlife management and habitat conservation strategy for British Columbia. The ministry collaborated with Indigenous peoples, rural communities, wildlife organizations, natural resource development industry stakeholders, and the public to develop the draft strategy, called Together for Wildlife.
The first phase of engagement was held from May 22 to July 31, 2018. We received over 1,100 comments through the website discussion and close to 50 written submissions. You can read the archived public comments, written submissions, and “what we heard reports” on this site.
The second phase of engagement focused on collaborative policy development from December 2018 to October 2019. During this phase, we worked closely with a newly established B.C.-First Nation Wildlife Forum and stakeholders from a range of sectors to identify priority policy options for the government to consider. This phase of engagement involved monthly meetings with the B.C.-First Nation Wildlife Forum, and a series of webinars and workshops with stakeholders. You can read more about the results of this engagement on the Phase 2 Engagement page.
During the third phase of engagement, we are checking in with all First Nations in B.C., as well as with stakeholders and the general public, to make sure that the right actions are identified in the draft Together for Wildlife strategy. This phase began with workshops with the B.C.-First Nation Wildlife Forum and stakeholders in October 2019, and is continuing with broader engagement in fall 2019. You can review the draft strategy and provide input on the Current Engagement page.
The fourth and final phase of this initiative will be implementation of the strategy. Although full implementation is targeted for Spring 2020, aspects of the strategy are being implemented throughout all phases of this initiative.