Site C dam decision harmful to wildlife

Toronto, Dec. 11, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) —

World Wildlife Fund Canada condemns the Government of British Columbia’s decision to continue construction of the Site C dam, which will cause irreparable harm to habitat for fish – such as bull trout and Arctic grayling – and for other species including the little brown bat, and stymy Indigenous-led efforts to transition to habitat-friendly renewable energy.

 

Elizabeth Hendriks, WWF-Canada’s vice-president of freshwater conservation, said:

“Building the Site C dam will irreversibly change water levels and flows in the Peace River, flooding upriver sections and drying out wetlands downstream. This development will exacerbate conditions for wildlife already struggling to cope with high levels of pollution and habitat fragmentation, such as the endangered whooping cranes that visit the Peace River’s delta. It will also add further stress to Wood Buffalo National Park – a World Heritage Site that was recently identified as being significantly at risk from development.

 

“WWF opposes large-scale hydropower developments like the Site C dam because they critically disrupt river systems that support wildlife and communities. Site C dam is a good example of bad hydro renewable-energy development. Not only will this dam destroy wildlife habitat, its sizeable generation capacity will hinder the business case for new community-scale habitat-friendly solar and wind energy developments. This means that coastal communities in British Columbia will not have the same economic opportunity to develop habitat-friendly, self-sufficient community power projects as fellow communities in other provinces.

 

“While it is essential for us to transition from fossil fuels as quickly as possible to slow climate change, this can’t excuse development that will hurt wildlife and communities. Renewable energy development must be both habitat and community friendly.”

 

For more information on freshwater stressors and health in Canada, please visit WWF-Canada’s Watershed Reports.

 

 

For more information or media requests, please contact

Rebecca Spring, senior communications specialist, WWF-Canada

rspring@wwfcanada.org, +1 647 338-6274

 

About World Wildlife Fund Canada

World Wildlife Fund Canada creates solutions to the environmental challenges that matter most for Canadians. We work in places that are unique and ecologically important, so that nature, wildlife and people thrive together. Because we are all wildlife. For more information, visit wwf.ca

Attachments:

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/c9d2b817-9248-4e54-b995-b4c57f51b34c

CONTACT: Rebecca Spring
WWF-Canada
+1 647-338-6274
rspring@wwfcanada.org

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