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A New Project Will Protect and Restore Coastal Habitats in the St. Lawrence Estuary

By Water Canada 10:46AM February 23, 2018

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Canada has announced $2.4 million in funding to support the work of ZIP Committee of Sud-de-l’Estuaire in its efforts to protect coastal habitats in the St. Lawrence Estuary.

Rémi Massé, Member of Parliament for Avignon—La Mitis—Matane—Matapédia, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, announced the funding for ZIP Committee of Sud-de-l’Estuaire will be dispensed over the next five years for a project to help restore the coastal habitats of five sectors on the south shore of the St. Lawrence Estuary.

“In addition to fostering regional synergy between the ZIP Committee of Sud-de-l’Estuaire and its partners, the project will help reinforce the capacity of several organizations to restore key habitats and to share knowledge about the various actions that will be taken,” said Massé.

The goal of the project is to restore coastal habitats in the sectors of Saint-Ulric, Isle-aux-Grues, Rivière-Ouelle, Notre-Dame-du-Portage, and Trois-Pistoles. The objective is to mitigate the threats to forage fish populations, which are typically found in the south shore of the St. Lawrence Estuary, and to increase their resilience to climate change.

“The $75 million Coastal Restoration Fund provides an opportunity to address threats to our ocean and coastal areas,” said Minister LeBlanc. “I am pleased that our collaboration with the ZIP Committee of Sud-de-l’Estuaire will ensure healthy, thriving coastal habitats in the southern St. Lawrence Estuary for future generations.”

ZIP Committee of Sud-de-l’Estuaire has worked since 2000 on regional cooperation to protect, conserve, and rehabilitate St. Lawrence ecosystems. The organization undertakes remediation and pollution prevention projects in the St. Lawrence and its tributaries. The long-term objective of this new project is to mitigate threats to fish populations at the bottom of the food chain, such as the capelin, the American smelt, the stickleback and the herring, and to establish the conditions essential to their resilience to climate change.

In May 2017, the Government of Canada announced the $75 million Coastal Restoration Fund to help rehabilitate some of our most important coastlines and protect marine life and ecosystems.

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