Protect the world's largest intact coastal temperate rainforest

Photo: Jesse Saunders

Photo: Jesse Saunders

The Great Bear Rainforest, located along the North and central coast of British Columbia, is a 6.4 million hectare area with winding fjords nestled between the Pacific Ocean and still glaciated mountains making up the world's largest intact coastal temperate rainforest. Environmental activists first gave the Great Bear Rainforest its' name to help protect the Kermode (spirit) bear, a rare and beautiful white-furred black bear found there, but the area also provides habitat for numerous other species.

Ancient old-growth forests made up of Western Red Cedar and Sitka Spruce trees are habitat for eagles, cougars and wolves who roam the forest's reach to the ocean which hosts whales, sea otters and salmon. In this area, still arguably the same as it has been for centuries or longer, preservation will be crucial for future generations.

Conservation Issues

Mining and forestry have threatened the rainforest since the 90's, however the Government of BC officially recognized permanent protection for 85% of the old growth rainforest from logging. A moratorium for crude oil tankers along British Columbia's north coast was also a big win in 2016, which will help protect BC's pristine northern coastline, including the Great Bear Rainforest from potential oil spills.

Continuous pressure from the environmentally devastating non-renewable resource extraction sectors, however means further protection efforts are still needed. Although, the Northern Gateway Pipeline did not receive approval, a project of this nature would severely harm major tracts of the rainforest and its inhabitants. First Nations un-ceded traditional territories and their associated tribal groups are still threatened even though the 2016 agreement recognizes their say regarding land use decisions. Old growth logging protection is an excellent start to permanently protect this rainforest, however more conservation initiatives are still needed.

What you can do

Ripple Coast Society encourages you to learn more about the Great Bear Rainforest and how to protect it at: