Update on the Howe Sound UNESCO Biosphere Region Initiative

Three years ago, Ruth Simons was inspired to create the Howe Sound UNESCO Biosphere Region Initiative.  With her skillful leadership and the contributions of many capable individuals and conservation groups around Howe Sound, this dedicated group is getting very close to completing the lengthy and complex nomination form. They have set themselves a deadline of July 31, 2019.

Some key goals of a UNESCO Biosphere Region include biodiversity conservation, sustainable development, education and reconciliation. This was the first of two update meetings,  held at Sewell’s Marina in Horseshoe Bay and open to anyone who has expressed interest and/or contributed to this initiative.  Those at the meeting included the Board members, a sustainable logging company owner, a Capilano University senior student and the Biodiversity Squamish coordinator.  Next week’s meeting will bring together participants with different backgrounds.

The Buffer Zone (between Core Areas and Transition Areas) was a topic of discussion.  I found it inspiring to witness the cooperation and constructive dialogue among informed participants seeking to achieve a wise balance.

Ruth Simons expressed our shared realization that this Howe Sound UNESCO communication hub is a valuable round table organization itself, whether Biosphere Region status is achieved as a result of our first application or not.

Judith Holm
May 31, 2019