The glass sponge reef in Chatham Sound is thought to be one of the oldest in the world. Until the reef in Hecate Strait was discovered in 1987, scientists believed glass sponge reefs were extinct. (Fisheries and Oceans Canada, University of Alberta and Canadian Scientific Submersible Facility)

Glass sponge reef recommended as World Heritage Site

The Hecate Strait and Queen Charlotte Sound Glass Sponge Reefs are among eight nominated sites

Some B.C. landmarks are being added to the list of potential UNESCO world heritage sites.

On Dec. 20, Catherine McKenna, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, announced the addition of eight new sites to Canada’s Tentative List for World Heritage Sites.

Among those sites added to the list are the Hecate Strait and Queen Charlotte Sound Glass Sponge Reefs — located off the coast of British Columbia.

READ MORE: Reef discovery goes unnoticed

The glass sponge reefs were discovered in 1987 off the coast of British Columbia after being thought to have gone extinct 40 million years ago.

At 1,000 square km, the reef is unique since no other glass sponge of this size has been located anywhere else in the world. In 2017, the Canadian government designated the reefs as a marine protected area to safeguard them as they are an important deep-seas habitat and are vital to geological, paleontological and biological research.

READ MORE: Protecting rare ancient glass sponge reefs

Also included on the list are Stein Valley in British Columbia, Wanuskewin Heritage Park in Saskatchewan, Anticosti Island in Quebec, Heart’s Content Cable Station Provincial Historic Site in Newfoundland and Labrador, Qajartalik in Nunavut, Sirmilik National Park and the proposed Tallurutiup Imanga National Marine Conservation Area in Nunavut and the Yukon Ice Patches in the Yukon.

This is the first time the tentative list has been updated since 2004. Forty-two applications for new sites were received from across the country during the public process to find candidates for the updated list.

They were then reviewed by an independent ministerial advisory committee of Canadian experts in the fields of natural and cultural heritage.

The Advisory Committee then recommended to the Minister McKenna the addition to the tentative list of those candidates with the strongest potential for successful designation as World Heritage Sites.



matthew.allen@thenorthernview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

PHOTOS: Thousands show for 40th GoodLife Marathon in downtown Victoria

New records, first-time runners, and stories of resilience

Mother of alleged hit-and-run victim hopes municipalities will work together to improve crosswalk

Young woman injured, dog killed when struck by driver on marked crosswalk at Foul Bay Road

Here comes the rain: Victoria can expect post Thanksgiving showers all week

Mild, rainy weather expected from Tuesday to Saturday

Opponents of Elizabeth May criticize her push to scrap temporary foreign worker program

May has proposed to scrap the federal program which supplies local business with temporary workers

Victoria woman uses loss to raise awareness of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day

City of Victoria to recognize Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day Oct. 15

VIDEO: Greater Victoria, here’s the news you missed this weekend

Dog killed in alleged hit and run, Goodlife Marathon takes over city and more

Canadian Snowbirds plane crashes before air show in Atlanta

Pilot lands safely after ejecting from jet

Share crash data, private insurers tell David Eby, ICBC

B.C. monopoly makes drivers retrieve their own records

B.C. VIEWS: Wolf kill, not backcountry bans, saving caribou

B.C.’s largest herds turn the corner from extinction

Pearson nets shootout winner as Canucks clip Flyers 3-2

Vancouver picks up second straight home win

Map on Elections Canada website sends Nanaimo-Ladysmith voters to landfill

Address for polling station correct, but Google Map address differs

BC Children’s Hospital launches 2 new virtual care sites bringing total to 19 across province

Provincial initiative allows pediatric patients to see health specialists through video

‘Wham-bam out the door’: Surrey man’s front yard left ruined by scamming landscaper

Resident warns neighbours to be careful of door-to-door salesmen

Most Read