Protect the Bay of Fundy now that Energy East is dead
TransCanada’s decision yesterday to abandon the Energy East oil pipeline and tanker project creates a tremendous opportunity to put in place legal protection for the Bay of Fundy—a globally renowned treasure of an ecosystem.
The Bay is becoming increasingly industrialized—even in the absence of Energy East marine terminals and oil tankers—with tidal turbines, coastal mega-quarries and other shipping traffic. Millions of shorebirds flock to the salt marshes and mudflats on the Bay of Fundy each year on their annual migrations, and populations of whales including the endangered North Atlantic Right Whale are drawn to the rich upwelling zones caused by the highest tides in the world.
Canada is internationally committed to protecting 10 per cent of our oceans and 17 per cent of our lands and freshwater bodies by 2020, and there are as yet no areas in the Bay of Fundy that protect nature by law. Now is the time to get on with establishing large new national marine conservation areas (Parks Canada), national wildlife areas (Environment and Climate Change Canada) and marine protected areas (Fisheries and Oceans Canada).