First Nations leader celebrates evolution of stewardship in Great Bear Rainforest

 By Rochelle Baker Local Journalism Initiative Reporter There are new measures to better protect bear and fish habitat in the globe’s largest remaining coastal temperate rainforest, thanks to First Nations’ increasing role in stewarding the Great Bear Rainforest (GBR). The new protections resulted from the latest five-year review of an agreement between the B.C. Ministry of Forests and two First Nations alliances, Coastal First Nations and Nanwakolas Council, which represent 11 of the 26 Nations with territory in the rainforest. The Great Bear Rainforest covers 6.4 million hectares, an area equivalent to Ireland, along B.C.’s wild West Coast and is home to the iconic “spirit bear,” black bears that have a creamy white coat as a result of rare genetic mutation. While the GBR was being developed in 2000, coastal…

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