In a virtual parliamentary committee on Fisheries and Oceans June 10, Courtenay-Alberni MP Gord Johns pressed Minister Bernadette Jordan on the importance of federal investment in the Kus-Kus-Sum Estuary Restoration Project in the territory of K’omoks First Nation.
“If the federal government is able to find $34 million to deal with the catastrophic landslide at Big Bar, and if it is able to find $17 billion to buy a pipeline and tanker project, it is hard to understand why it can’t find $1 million for one of the most important conservation projects on Vancouver Island,” Johns said in a news release.
Jordan responded that her department does not have a program to provide funds to acquire land.
John said the acquisition and reclamation of the former Field Sawmill industrial property is important to fish and wildlife, including Pacific wild salmon. He also notes that time is running out; if federal funds are not forthcoming, the property could be sold for private development.
Local business and community groups have raised $1 million towards the purchase. The Province of B.C. will contribute $1 million to match a similar federal contribution.