Marine Action Strategy

MASt

The purpose of the Marine Action Strategy (MASt) is to mobilize shared leadership to protect and maximize the waterfront and marine resource as an important community asset recognized and supported for ecological values and services as well as providing social, cultural and economic benefits. The strategy identifies and prioritizes over 70 key actions across 4 focus areas for resourcing in the immediate term (1-2 years), medium term (3-4 years) and long term (beyond 5 years).

MASt Priority Actions 2020-22

MASt actions range from collaborative partnership building initiatives, special projects, as well as regulatory review, plan / policy-related actions, and educational activities. The following priority projects have been activated and resourced through the District's operational work plans and special project budgets in the last several years:

Squamish Marine Zoning Update (Ongoing - see dedicated project page)

Ocean Watch Action Committee  (Ongoing participation) as part of the Átl'ka7tsem / Howe Sound Biosphere Region Initiative

Development of the Howe Sound/Átl’ka7tsem Marine Stewardship Initiative + Marine Reference Guide

Squamish Marine Access Review (Launching soon in 2022 via Let's Talk Squamish)

Ecosystem-based long-term Dredge Management + Funding Strategy (Launching 2021-22)

July 2019 MASt Implementation Update

Squamish Marine Strategy implementation progress and priority actions recommended for the Budget 2020 were presented on July 23, 2019. View the Staff Report.

July 2018 MASt Development + Endorsement

The District of Squamish has developed  a Marine Action Strategy to take action and guide decision making on local waterfront/marine issues and opportunities. The strategy was endorsed by Council on July 17, 2018. View the Final Strategy here.

MASt Process Goals

  • Engage regulation and enforcement agencies, First Nations, marine stakeholders & stewards and broader community on marine issues and opportunities;
  • Collaborate to promote and support coordination of efforts of all interests and jurisdictions on the water;
  • Identify and scope focus areas and priority marine actions to steward and maximize waterfront and marine resource as a vital community asset;
  • Align municipal policy, regulations and initiatives to support community marine objectives.

Background

In early 2011, the District began actively exploring and conducting research to support development of a Marine Strategy aimed at establishing a leadership role to proactively address local marine issues (unauthorized mooring, derelict vessels and ship source pollution) and maximize broader opportunities for waterfront revitalization and stewardship (increased tourism, recreation access, waterfront activation and sensitive redevelopment).

Phase 1 - Marine Fact Finding
This phase involved researching and understanding marine jurisdiction and regulations, strategies, approaches and precedents in other coastal BC communities, and conducting interviews and engaging with local, provincial and federal agencies as a starting point to inform and guide how best to approach a Marine Strategy for Squamish. 

Phase 2 - Engagement & Marine Strategy Development

Starting in fall 2017, the District and marine consultant Sandra Bicego of PacificaBlue engaged with the community to develop the Marine Action Strategy that sought to affirm a shared vision and establish key marine focus areas, specific objectives and prioritized actions, along with an implementable action plan. The process has identified resourcing required to promote coordination of efforts and collaboration of all interests and jurisdictions on the water and upland areas.

MASt has been developed through an in-depth community engagement process (see summary chart below) to provide information and seek input on the strategy through: 

  • Liaison with Skwxwú7mesh First Nation representatives
  • Meetings and periodic updates with an internal multi‐departmental Marine Working Group
  • Key informant interviews with marine subject matter experts and local knowledge holders
  • Focus Sessions with key marine stakeholders including regulators at key stages of the process
  • Community Marine Forum to obtain broader community input
  • Online public feedback survey
  • Periodic Council meeting updates and recommendations

Phase 2 Strategy Development Process

process chart

Marine Strategy Engagement Process Chart

MAST process chart

Links

Marine Contact

Sarah McJannet, Planner 604 815-5096
Email: marine@squamish.ca