We are also continuing to work collaboratively with industry partners on a number of regional programs and initiatives. While these programs are not considered part of our proposed mitigation for the Roberts Bank Terminal 2 Project, they play a vital role in maintaining the health of the local environment and Salish Sea by addressing potential cumulative effects of port and marine shipping activity.
World Ports Climate Action Program:
We are a member of the World Ports Climate Action Program, a new initiative bringing together port authorities from around the world to work on projects that address the issues of global warming.
Understanding the effects of marine shipping on whales:
Since 2014, the Enhancing Cetacean Habitat and Observation (ECHO) Program has undertaken numerous collaborative research initiatives to better understand and manage the cumulative effects of shipping activities on whales in our region, in particular the southern resident killer whales. Initiatives planned for 2020, such as voluntary ship slowdowns in Haro Strait and Boundary Pass and the voluntary lateral displacement for tugs in the Straight of Juan de Fuca, began in June.
EcoAction Program: Our EcoAction Program provides financial incentives in the form of discounts on harbor dues to recognize shipping companies that have made investments in their fleet to perform above and beyond industry best practices. This includes using renewable energy to reduce air emissions, installing propeller technologies that reduce underwater noise, or obtaining third-party environmental designations.
Enhancing fish habitat:
As part of our approach to environmental stewardship and sustainability, we have been proactively enhancing local habitat for more than 20 years. The Habitat Enhancement Program is a port authority initiative focused on creating, restoring and enhancing fish and wildlife habitat. It is a proactive measure intended to provide a balance between a healthy environment and future development projects that may be required for port operations.
Our New Brighton Park Shoreline Habitat Restoration Project received a gold rating under the Stewardship Centre for BC’s Green Shores for Coastal Development program. The project, completed in 2017 in partnership with the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation and in collaboration with Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh Nations, provides high-value habitat for fish and wildlife at a site that had been infilled in the 1960s.
Rewarding environmental efforts:
Each year, we recognize marine carriers and terminal operators for their voluntary efforts to conserve energy and reduce emissions. In 2019, we awarded 30 Blue Circle Awards for their commitment to reducing the impact of port operations on the environment and on our neighbouring communities.
Recognition for sustainability:
We were awarded a 2018 Governance Professionals of Canada Excellence in Governance Award in recognition of our sustainability governance practices. The port authority-led ECHO Program received a Lloyd’s List environmental award, recognizing efforts to reduce the pollution of the marine environment in the Americas from maritime sources.
Learn more about the port authority’s commitment to the environment.