Addressing Cumulative Impacts of Climate Change and Development on Freshwater Fish in Northern Ontario

CREDIT: GARTH LENZ
MINERAL EXPLORATION AND MINING FOR DIAMONDS AND GOLD ARE IMPORTANT DRIVERS OF LAND USE CHANGE IN ONTARIO’S FAR NORTH. CREDIT: GARTH LENZ.

The provincial approach to environmental planning proceeds without a good understanding of what the rate, intensity, and location of industrial development and climate change will be on freshwater fish and their habitats.

FIRST NATION COMMUNITIES IN THE RING OF FIRE ARE WORKING WITH THE ONTARIO GOVERNMENT TO DEVELOP LAND USE PLANS. CREDIT: JENNI MCDERMID/WCS CANADA.
BOTH RESIDENT AND MIGRATORY BROOK TROUT ARE FOUND IN NORTHERN ONTARIO. FLY-IN SPORT FISHERIES CONTRIBUTE TO THE TOURISM INDUSTRY CRITICAL TO THE NORTHERN ONTARIO ECONOMY. CREDIT: SEAN LANDSMAN/ENGBRETSON UNDERWATER PHOTOGRAPHY.
LAKE STURGEON OCCUR IN ALL MAJOR RIVERS OF NORTHERN ONTARIO AND REQUIRE UNFRAGMENTED WATERSHEDS TO THRIVE. CREDIT: ENGBRETSON UNDERWATER PHOTOGRAPHY.

The “business as usual” approach to planning (and monitoring) does not lead to a holistic vision for how to conserve ecological and cultural values in the face of new land use and a changing climate.

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