What does it look like?

Coastal First Nations have carefully managed the marine areas of our Traditional Territories for millennia. We have brought this vision, experience and Traditional Knowledge to the leadership of modern marine use planning processes on the Pacific north coast.

In British Columbia, First Nations have been leaders in a collaborative marine use planning process; one that has brought together Indigenous, provincial and federal governments, and stakeholders to decide the best use of ocean resources.

First Nations have led development of marine use plans at the community and regional level for the Central and North Coast, and Haida Gwaii. These plans guide the development of sustainable economic opportunities while considering impacts on coastal ecosystems and communities.

Coastal First Nations community marine use plans include:​​​​​​​

  • A community vision for our marine territory
  • Cultural values and perspectives on ocean resources
  • Goals and strategies for managing ocean resources
  • Special First Nations protection for specific areas
Marine Use Planning - Everything is Connected

The Marine Use Planning Process

Coastal First Nations Great Bear Initiative communities have been the driving force behind local planning processes.

First Nations marine planning teams included elders, hereditary chiefs, commercial fishermen, tribal councillors and community members.

Community coordinators worked closely with leadership and teams to:

  • Develop community values and interests on local issues
  • Coordinate community planning team meetings
  • Compile and organize community information related to marine resources
  • Raise awareness for integrated marine use planning in the communities

Area technical teams – made up of a biologist/coastal planner and a socioeconomic planner – assisted in:

  • Providing ongoing technical support for the community planning process
  • Gathering and analyzing information to assist community planning teams with their decision-making process

Community Sub-Planning

Council of the Haida Nation

Marine Planning Program

North Coast-Skeena First Nations Stewardship Society

North Coast Marine Use Planning

Central Coast Indigenous Resource Alliance

First Nations Marine Use Planning