The Fraser River Basin occupies approximately one quarter of the area of British Columbia ranging from undeveloped forests to heavily urbanized centres. Competing demands are continually being made on the system with respect to preservation of the natural environment and economic development. In response to increasing stresses, the six year Fraser River Action Plan was initiated in 1991 to reduce pollution, enhance environmental quality, and develop an integrated basin management program based on sustainability. Activities addressing the first two are under way in the areas of pollution abatement, environmental quality and research, enforcement and compliance, and habitat restoration and conservation. Partnerships are critical to implementing a successful integrated management program. The Fraser Basin Management Program balances current social and economic needs with environmental conservation to achieve sustainability. Smaller scale management programs exist within the basin to address the highly urbanized/industrialized Fraser estuary (Fraser River Estuary Management Program) and the Port of Vancouver/Burrard Inlet (Burrard Inlet Environmental Action Program). Environment Canada, in partnership with others, is cleaning up pollution and establishing effective sustainable management programs, before the conflicts between environment and economy reach a critical point. Results to date are encouraging.

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