Conservation, Stewardship, Land Use Planning, and Land Management
Once conservation priorities are identified, determination will be made considering historical land use and requests for continued use using scientific data that supports Indigenous knowledge.
CASE STUDY – Environmental and sustainable uses for community livelihood.
Walleye are now taking over the water. As a predatorial fish, they are eating other species such as Mullets, White fish, and Pike. The community, and the local Fisherman’s Cooperative, have monitored Walleye growth over the past ten years, bringing these concerns to provincial fisheries and environment officials. The community has presented a viable plan for Walleye management to stop any further damage to other species. The government has failed to acknowledge and respect the perspective and community needs of Sakitawak.
At present, Île-à-la-Crosse has permission to harvest 50,000 kilos of Walleye yearly. That 50,000 is approximately a million dollars in wages for the fishermen, helpers, and staff of the Île-à-la-Crosse Fish Company, a CFIA certified fish processing plant that employs 18 people in its peak winter season.
If Île-à-la-Crosse had an increase of 30,000 kilos for a total of 80,000 yearly, which Île-à-la-Crosse had in previous years, this income would go back into the community allowing the fish plant to be open longer and create more steady jobs for community.
Instead priority is given to tourists.
This is just one example of many that affect the everyday lives of people of Sakitawak and Île-à-la-Crosse. This is an example of why there needs to be more respectful relations, respect for the community’s plan for Walleye management, and collaboration with plan development, implementation, and management.
This necessary collaboration can also be applied to addressing the endangered Woodland Caribou, the mighty Old Growth Pine in N-14 and the unique plants around them, and other issues of conservation such as peat moss harvesting and carbon management.