Ellen Cuylaerts | Ocean Image Bank

Stakeholders’ involvement: a win for marine mammals in the Canadian Arctic

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In July 2022, the Government of Canada announced an investment of $7.46 million in the co-management of Marine Protected Areas (MPA) in Canada’s western Arctic, in the Inuvialuit Settlement Region.

The investment will be allocated to the co-management of the Tarium Niryutait and Anguniaqvia niqiqyuam MPAs, in the Inuvialuit Settlement Region. Both MPAs contribute to Canada’s drive to conserve 25% of Canada’s oceans by 2025, and 30% by 2030, with areas of 1,750 km(established in 2010) and 2,358 km(established in 2016), respectively.

Map of the Anguniaqvia niqiqyuam Marine Protected Area (MPA) | Government of Canada
Map of the Tarium Niryutait Marine Protected Area (TN MPA) | Government of Canada

The Canadian arctic region and these critical MPAs are important habitats for marine mammals. Both MPAs have set conservation objectives related to supporting marine mammals and their critical habitats. Tarium Niryutait MPA provides refuge for the Eastern Beaufort Sea population of Beluga Whales that return to the shallow waters each summer, and the Anguniaqvia niqiqyuam MPA is an important breeding ground for seals. Both MPAs also support, and promote aggregations of, other marine mammals including bowhead whales.

Both MPAs hold cultural importance to the Inuvialuit and the inclusion of local and Indigenous Knowledge of the Arctic in the co-management of the MPAs is critical for conservation, with this investment in co-management key for local stakeholders and marine mammals.

Adapted from an article by Cision Canada.

More stakeholder involvement resources and guidance can be found in the stakeholder involvement factsheet of the Marine Mammal Management Toolkit.

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