Premier Christy Clark announced a $2 million enhancement to BC’s mussel defence program that protects BC’s freshwater ecosystems from invasive species of mussels.

New mussel inspection station opens near Castlegar

As of April 1, Castlegar is home to a new permanent invasive mussel inspection station.

As of April 1, Castlegar is home to a new permanent invasive mussel inspection station.

Last week Premier Christy Clark announced a $2 million boost to the province’s invasive mussel defence program to fund eight new permanent mussel inspection stations installed at major entry points along BC’s borders.

Five inspection stations are setup along the BC-Alberta border and the other three are setup along the BC-US border. Five of the stations are in the Columbia Basin, located near Castlegar, Golden, Radium, Sparwood and Valemount.

Funding for the new stations is being provided through BC Hydro, FortisBC, Columbia Power and the Columbia Basin Trust, with the province making in kind contributions with staff, equipment and office space.

There will be a total of 32 conservation officers working the stations, which will be open 10 hours a day, seven days a week from now until October. This is an increase of 20 crew members from last year’s pilot project. Expansion of the program also includes increased highway signage at the station locations, expanded monitoring for quagga and zebra mussels, expanded Report All Poachers or Polluters (RAPP) response line coverage, and increased education and outreach activities.

Quagga and zebra mussels are a threat to BC’s aquatic ecosystems, salmon populations, hydro power stations and other infrastructure. The mussels can clog pipes, displace native aquatic plants and wildlife, degrade the environment and affect drinking water quality.

“It’s a very significant threat for us, because we know that if they get a foothold in British Columbia, they become established in our waters and our waterways, it could cost us millions of dollars,” Clark said at the announcement. “We estimate $43 million every year in economic impact. So we’ve started with our preventative approach.”

Last year’s pilot project caught 34 watercraft in need of decontamination, 15 of which were confirmed to be transporting invasive mussels or their larvae. Six of those were issued a 30-day quarantine order due to risk of live mussels.

Anyone aware of boats or equipment that may be contaminated should contact the RAPP hotline at 1-877-952-7277.

 

Just Posted

Updated: Man seriously burned in Rossland Avenue fire

An explosion was heard in the Gulch neighbourhood at approximately 12:30 p.m. Friday

Mine exploration company bullish on old Rossland mine properties

Swath of claims purchased; test drilling to begin this fall

MP Cannings’ long-awaited wood-use bill passes in House vote

The private member’s bill is his first to pass the House, a rare feat for rookie MPs in opposition

Rossland arts group sees future for old Drill Hall

Heritage building ‘move-in ready’- if the stars will align

Rossland council sets direction for local pot rules

No limit on number of shops, but location, public smoking regulated

Trans Mountain pipeline: How we got here

A look at the Kinder Morgan expansion, decades in the making

B.C.’s devastating 2017 wildfire season revisited in new book

British Columbia Burning written by CBC journalist Bethany Lindsay

B.C. RCMP swoop in to save injured eagle

An eagle with a broken wing now in a recovery facility after RCMP rescue near Bella Coola

Bug spray 101: Health Canada wants you to stay bite free

Health Canada is reminding Canadians to use bug spray and other insect repellents safely

Unions reject CP Rail contract offers

Both meeting Friday to determine next steps; 72 hours notice required before strike action.

B.C. jewellers warn public about fake gold scam

‘They are playing on people’s sympathy and their greed’

Former B.C. premier says pot industry about to enter Wild West

Mike Harcourt says Canada is about to enter a new gold rush with many dreaming of striking it rich

Hunt continues for two suspects in Ontario restaurant explosion

The explosion left 15 people injured, but all victims have now been released from hospital

B.C. teacher charged with sexual offences involving two teens

Henry Kang, 50, of Abbotsford charged with two counts each sex assault and sexual exploitation

Most Read