Located on the south coast of British Columbia, the Strait of Georgia, northern arm of the Salish Sea, is one of the most biologically rich marine ecosystems in the world. It is home to some of the planet’s most awe-inspiring creatures – orca and humpback whales, giant octopus, great blue heron and a diver’s paradise of glass sponge reefs to name a few.
It is a place of spectacular beauty, with soaring mountains, remote inlets, vibrant islands, and abundant watersheds, stewarded for millennia by coastal First Nations and loved and relied on by communities today, from small island villages to Canada’s third largest urban centre, Vancouver.
But the Salish Sea is a region under threat. Population growth, urbanization and climate change are putting increased pressures on both ecosystems and communities.
Georgia Strait Alliance (GSA) is dedicated to the protection and restoration of this place that almost nine million people and 3000 marine species call home. As our name implies, GSA’s work is built on the principles of collaboration working with coastal communities, the scientific community, businesses, other non-profit groups and by ensuring that strong environmental protections are in place and that governments are held to account for their actions or inactions.
For more than 30 years, we have been using advocacy, stewardship, legal action and collaboration to make an impact on the health of this region. Here’s how:
Healthier waterways – GSA led the way to reducing water pollution from the pulp and paper industry, undertreated sewage, household chemicals, oil spills, and boating contaminants, leaving the Salish Sea more beautiful and safer for all to enjoy.
Protected species – Southern Resident orcas, wild Pacific salmon and other species are protected by improved legislation and decreased threats, thanks to GSA’s legal advocacy, environmental stewardship and cross-sector collaborations.
Empowered communities – People in communities across the region have the knowledge and tools they need to understand the value of the Salish Sea and take action to make ecosystems healthy for people who live around the Strait.
Local climate action – Human-induced climate change is a global crisis with local impacts for the communities of BC. GSA helps people understand what is happening, what can be done, who is responsible, and realize that they themselves have the power to achieve the solutions so desperately needed.