We would like to thank everyone who has participated in the Wetland Policy Poll and answered the question “Does BC need a Wetland Policy?”.
We have had a total of 658 responses so far and we will be leaving the poll open for those who would still like to vote. As shown in the chart below, 97% of respondents have voted yes and 3% of voters have voted no to BC needing a Wetland Policy. Also shown below, is a graph representing the breakdown of respondents that have participated and their corresponding responses.
A few participants who answered Yes gave the following reasons:
- “It is crucial that we preserve wetlands because of the important part they play in keeping the environment healthy for both animals and people. Clean water will be increasingly important in the future and wetlands help to clean water as well as act as carbon sinks, resulting in cleaner air and helping to decrease the effects of climate change. At this time, there is no cohesive policy protecting wetlands, only fragmented efforts from conservation groups. A province wide policy would help to bring awareness to the general public as to the important role wetlands play in our daily lives.”
- “BC does not have a wetlands policy. As a result, wetlands are being filled in to allow development, particularly if they are not connected by surface flow to fish habitat (as described in the BC Riparian Area Regulation). It is challenging for local governments to regulate and protect wetlands when the province is not taking leadership on the issue. A Wetland Policy would provide this type of leadership and precedent for local governments to follow suit.”
- “Wetlands provide a wide range of ecological services: water retention, water filtration, carbon sequestration, temperature moderation of both water and air, and habitat for wildlife. Loss of wetlands is seriously reducing our ability to cope with extreme weather events and is costing our Province millions of dollars in “technological fixes” in terms of drinking water treatment plants, stormwater infrastructure and even habitat restoration projects. Protecting and restoring wetlands is good for everyone!”
- “[BC needs a Wetland Policy] to clarify development and planning where wetlands are involved.”
A few participants who answered No gave the following reasons:
- “Policy is the means by which government elaborates on how particular legislation and or a regulation is to be implemented. Policy is not enforceable. There is no sense in advocating for a wetland policy without first having the regulatory framework that addresses the protection and management of wetlands.”
- “The last thing we need is more regulations.”
- “Govt already has sufficient policies to protect wetlands. What they do need is better enforcement. Without enforcement any policy is meaningless.”
So far the poll has been mainly circulated to BCWF members and participants of past BCWF Wetlands Education workshops. We are aiming to reach a broader demographic, which can help to give a more fair representation of the opinion of British Columbians on whether BC needs a Wetland Policy.
We have completed the random draw for the 4 BCWF Wetland T-shirt winners. Congratulations on winning a T-shirt are in order for:
- Jim H.
- Ross B.
- Johnny B.
- Keith W.
Enjoy your shirts!
We will not be doing any further draws for BCWF Wetland T-shirts at this time, however as mentioned above we are leaving the poll open for people to continue voting. Please follow this link if you would like to vote. For more information on wetland policy please see the Blog post: Does BC need a Wetland Policy?
Thank you again for your participation in the poll. Stay tuned for future BCWF Wetlands Education Program blog posts.