All posts by salishsea

Remembering Our Friends This Thanksgiving Weekend

Media Release
For Immediate Release                                                                                                                   October 5, 2017

Remembering Our Friends, Thanksgiving Weekend
All Creatures Great & Small Need Protection In The Salish Sea
Let’s Celebrate Canada’s 200th Birthday By What We Do Today!

[CEDAR, BC] – “It’s 2017, and there’s no protection for our cultural and natural heritage in the Salish Sea,” says Laurie Gourlay. “Our federal and provincial governments need to step up to the plate or there won’t be much left to celebrate for Canada’s 200th Birthday.”

‘Thanks, giving, and remembering our friends in the Salish Sea’ is the message the Salish Sea Trust is sending out to it’s 15,000 supporters this Thanksgiving Weekend. The Trust states that there are some 3000 species in the Salish Sea, and 113 of them are threatened.  “We’re calling for a World Heritage Site designation that would put cultural and natural protections in place to ensure all our ocean friends are still here on Canada’s 200th Birthday.”

“All creatures great and small need protection in the Salish Sea,” says Laurie Gourlay, Interim Director of this non-profit organization. “And we’re inviting Canadians to sign our on-line House of Commons Petition to show their support for our ocean and inter-tidal friends.”

In late September the Salish Sea Trust had a Petition posted on Parliament’s website, to encourage Members of Parliament to take initiatives that would protect the Salish Sea, as well as begin a 6-10 year process that would have it recognized as a World Heritage Site.* E-Petition 1269 is sponsored by MP Rachel Blaney, MP for North Island-Powell River.

“The mid and north coasts of British Columbia have cultural and natural protections, with indigenous partnerships in place under the MaPP and GBR agreements of 2016,”** Gourlay notes. “But there’s no such protection for the south coast and Salish Sea. We think there should be.”

The Salish Sea World Heritage Site proposal offers a means to address many cross-sectoral issues, as well as being a tool in the toolbox as federal and provincial decisions are taken with respect to ocean health and management, indigenous interests and regional prosperity.

“This is one of those moments when a region’s future will be determined,” states Gourlay. “Our governments have a chance to be on the side of sustainability, ocean health and protection, and the furtherance of indigenous rights and interests. Support of a Salish Sea World Heritage site proposal would ensure that options remain open and a process is in play as climate change, business interests, and an ever-increasing population settles in and around the Salish Sea.”

The Salish Sea Trust is encouraging its supporters to contact their elected representatives and encourage support for cultural and natural protections that should be in place in the Salish Sea and south coast of B.C. “At the very least we would urge all Canadians who care about our ocean friends to give a little of themselves this Thanksgiving weekend by personally signing House of Commons Petition E-1269,” Gourlay adds.

The Salish Sea Trust submitted its application to have the Salish Sea recognized as a World Heritage Site last May, including letters and signatures of 15,000 individuals who agree. The decision for ten new Canadian sites will be announced by the Prime Minister in December.

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Further information:

Laurie Gourlay            Kait Burgan                            MP Rachel Blaney
Interim Director          SeaLegacy                             North Island—Powell River
Salish Sea Trust           250-816-0046                     House of Commons
(250 722-3444)            613-943-2185

*Similar cultural and natural heritage processes and indigenous partnerships are in place in the mid and north BC Coasts – under the Marine Area Partnership Plan, and Great Bear Rainforest agreements of 2016. Why not the Salish Sea in 2017?

**A copy of House of Commons Salish Sea Petition E-1269 can be found at: (

Salish Sea Trust, Box 333, Cedar, B.C., V9X 1W1
250.722.3444, <> (

Please Sign: Salish Sea House of Commons Petition E-1269

Salish Sea House of Commons Petition E-1269

Canadians have a chance, right now, to remind Parliament and politicians of the need to take positive initiatives to protect the Salish Sea

…its cultural and natural values, its beauty and diversity, its indigenous and World Heritage, it’s economic and environmental potential.

E-Petition 1269
Salish Sea House of Commons Petition E-1269

If you agree please sign House of Commons Petition E-1269, to support the Salish Sea World Heritage Site application:

And feel free to contact us …or go to our new website for background and Petition information <>

Salish Sea Trust, Box 333, Cedar, B.C., V9X 1W1;                                                <> (

E-Petition Calls For World Heritage Recognition

Media Release
For Immediate Release                                               September 27, 2017

The Salish Sea Coasts Into The House of Commons
E-Petition Calls For World Heritage Site Recognition

[CEDAR, BC] – “The Salish Sea is ten weeks away from being recognized as a World Heritage Site,” according to the ever-optimistic predictions of Laurie Gourlay, Interim Director of the Salish Sea Trust – the organization that submitted the UNESCO WHS application.

And just to be sure Canada’s federal politicians appreciate the global significance of the Salish Sea’s world-class heritage, MP Rachel Blaney is sponsoring their House of Commons on-line Petition E-1269. Blaney is MP for North Island – Powell River, and has a long history of working with coastal and indigenous communities.

Canada’s Parliament

“We want Parliamentarians to seize this legacy moment for Canada,” says Gourlay. “To realize how important the Salish Sea is to the west coast’s future, and to release the many economic and environmental benefits that will accrue by recognizing it as a World Heritage Site.”

Working with SeaLegacy the non-profit Salish Sea Trust submitted a World Heritage Site application to Parks Canada in May. Accompanied by 15,000 signatures of support this spring the Trust’s Petition maintains that the Pacific Ocean gateway is vitally important to Canadians, and directly calls upon MP’s to ‘show leadership for coastal and marine protection initiatives’.

“We’re doubling down, reaching out to Parliament and to all Canadians,” Gourlay adds. “We want support from all who love the Salish Sea, who appreciate its diversity and beauty, and the incredible historical, cultural and natural values these west coast waters embody.”

The Petition calls for UNESCO World Heritage Site designation to help protect some 3000 species in this unique inner ocean, along with recognition of a 10,000 year old First Nation culture that deserves honour and respect. All Canadians are invited to show their support.

A copy of House of Commons Salish Sea Petition E-1269 can be found at: (

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Further information:

Laurie Gourlay,  Interim Director, Salish Sea Trust, (250 722-3444)

MP Rachel Blaney, North Island—Powell River, House of Commons, 613-943-2185

Kait Burgan, SeaLegacy, 250-816-0046,

Salish Sea Trust, Box 333, Cedar, B.C., V9X 1W1
250.722.3444, <> (

The Salish Sea’s World Heritage

World Heritage deserves recognition and protection.

And that’s what we’re hoping to further with the efforts we’ll profile here.

In April 2017 we  submitted an application for formal recognition of the Salish Sea to Parks Canada, in cooperation with our partners at SeaLegacy and Wild Awake.

If successful the Salish Sea will go on Canada’s Tentative List, with a formal assessment and partnership process to follow. We’ll know in December with the Prime Mininster’s announcement of ten new sites.

We are building this website as a way to profile non-profit efforts for the Salish Sea, to help support Canada’s cultural and natural inheritance. And that includes work for a World Heritage Site designation for the Salish Sea.

And that includes the United States efforts for the Salish Sea too, the State of Washington enjoying some 40% or so of the total area – Puget Sound, the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and the Georgia Strait.

We’ll explore these partnerships, jurisdictional and governance matters as we delve further into the deeps and the human history that is the Salish Sea.

More to say on this …soon!

For now, you may wish to visit our Facebook page or our Facebook Group Page, both of which invite contributions and discussion on the Salish Sea. ( & (

Some 15000 individuals supported our April application for the Salish Sea World Heritage Site.  And we have been gaining momentum and interest in related cultural and natural protections ever since.

The gist of it is that, with world-class photographers as partners, as well as professionals, academics and government representatives lending their support, we expect great things in the near future.

As our skills and contacts grow so too will we generate interest and a positive approach,  encouraging health and sustainability measures for the Salish Sea.

Please feel free to join with us as we celebrate this unique inner ocean on the west coast of North America, home of the Coast Salish peoples since the ice age, shared with some 3000+ marine species.

The Salish Sea’s beauty and bounty, promise and potential, awaits us all!


Laurie Gourlay

Interim DIrector, Salish Sea Trust


‘Salish Sea Summer Splashdown’

‘Salish Sea Summer Splashdown’
Get Out & Enjoy Canada’s Waters on the Labour Day Long Weekend

[CEDAR, BC] – The Salish Sea Trust is calling out to Canadians, inviting them to go for a swim, stroll in the shallows or walk along a coastal beach, river or lake – to “get into” their heritage on the last long weekend of summer.

“We’re inspired by the Prime Minister’s dip in the Salish Sea over the August long weekend”, said Laurie Gourlay, Interim Director of the Salish Sea Trust. Prime Minister Trudeau enjoyed a paddle on the waters of the Salish Sea over the mid-summer long weekend, slipping into the salty coastal waters on a missed entry into his kayak.

“Whether it’s a splashdown, getting into a canoe or boat,  or just dipping your big toe in a stream or lake, we’re inviting one and all to have fun on the last long weekend of summer,” says Gourlay. “Over the Labour Day long weekend the Salish Sea Trust is encouraging our 15,000 supporters to get out with family and friends, and make a ‘splash’ – immerse themselves in the cultural and natural heritage of Canada’s waters.”

The Salish Sea Trust has submitted an application to the federal government to have the Salish Sea recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Citing the 10,000 year history of the Coast Salish peoples and some 3000+ species of the Salish Sea, the WHS submission details the outstanding universal values which local residents and international visitors regularly enjoy and benefit from. Successful applications will be announced in December by the Prime Minister.

“As Canadians get ready for school, and our daily schedules call us back to work, we should all enjoy one last fling of summer,” said Gourlay. “Let’s  kick up our heels, and enjoy our cultural and natural inheritance – our coastal waters, lakes and rivers all across the country!”

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For more information,
Laurie Gourlay

Salish Sea Trust, Box 333, Cedar, B.C., V9X 1W1
250.722.3444, <> (


Media Notice – August 17, 2017