Kootenay Lake is a cultural and environmental touchstone for the West Kootenay. The lake is critical to our region's fish and wildlife habitat, and its economic, recreational, and social values are vital to our identity. Together, we can protect the values of Kootenay Lake that we all hold dear.

What's at stake

Kootenay Bay on Kootenay Lake

Although many areas of Kootenay Lake are relatively pristine, every lakefront property owner has a role to play in protecting the lake's immense value. Likewise, upland land uses directly affect the cleanliness of the lake's water, and the amount of water that flows into the lake. We all have a stake in making sure that Kootenay Lake continues to provide a benefit to visitors and residents alike.

The Kootenay Lake Partnership is a multi-agency program that is developing a lake management plan for the lake. When complete, the management plan will provide a scientific basis for steps to protect the lake through Official Community Plans.

What's proposed

The Friends of Kootenay Lake is a new group that aims to promote stewardship of Kootenay Lake and its resources by engaging a broad array of stakeholders in a consensus based process. The group will hold workshops, monitor indicators of lake health, and assist community members in developing and implementing ideas to improve or protect the lake. The Friends of Kootenay Lake will also help residents participate in the Kootenay Lake management plan. 

What you can do

You can do some simple things to support the Friends of Kootenay Lake. Look for events and actions taking place over the next few months. You can sign up for EcoSociety email updates to learn more about upcoming opportunities, and you can email friendsofkootenaylake@gmail.com with specific questions about the program. Visit the Friends of Kootenay Lake website for more information.

You can also take direct action to protect the lake: clean up after dogs and people in your area to maintain water quality. Contact the City of Nelson or your regional district before building docks and retaining walls. Maintain septic fields and flood protection infrastructure. Look for ways to reduce the spread of invasive weeds. Plant native vegetation to increase wildlife habitat. Learn more about managing your property at Living By Water.

Resources

BC Lake Stewardship Society

Kootenay Lake Partnership

Kootenay Lake Sustainable Boating Society