WINNIPEG — The Wilderness Committee is appealing to the Manitoba government to protect the lower Bird River from destructive mining activity.
The committee delivered 2,050 letters to Sustainable Development Minister Rochelle Squires on Thursday morning ahead of World Rivers Day, taking place on Sunday.
“The lower Bird River is a rare gem, clean and wild and accessible. Manitobans want it protected,” said wilderness and water campaigner Eric Reder.
“The lower Bird River will continue to be at risk until legislation banning industrial activity is put into action,” said Reder. “Mining speculators are still laying claim to this wild and wonderful river. And up the road in Nopiming we’ve just seen the devastation mineral exploration causes.”
The Wilderness Committee is proposing a protected area 1.5 kilometres wide on either side of the river, to preserve the riparian habitat for moose, whip-poor-wills and other species at risk from new and existing mining claims.
To raise awareness of the at-risk river, the Wilderness Committee and the outdoor recreation community have been running the Paddle for Protection day trip each year on World Rivers Day.