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

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Rare white orca spotted hunting off shores of Alaska for first time

Tl’uk seems healthy and strong, says researcher

Mental health challenges add to youth stress load

Part 2 in a Black Press series on Youth Homelessness

Langford bike park rolling along to completion

New park a tribute to Jordie Lunn’s legacy

Protesters showcase massive old yellow cedar as Port Renfrew area forest blockade continues

9.5-foot-wide yellow cedar measured by Ancient Forest Alliance campaigners in Fairy Creek watershed

Sooke Bluffs staircase closed due to rot

District to consider replacement for ‘high risk’ staircase in fall

VIDEO: Greater Victoria police officers try bhangra dancing with social media star

Gurdeep Pandher leads bhangra lesson on front lawn of the BC Legislature building

Captain Horvat’s OT marker lifts Canucks to 4-3 win over Blues

Vancouver takes 2-0 lead in best-of-7 NHL playoff series with St. Louis

Widow of slain Red Deer doctor thanks community for support ahead of vigil

Fellow doctors, members of the public will gather for a physically-distanced vigil in central Alberta

Taking dog feces and a jackhammer to neighbourhood dispute costs B.C. man $16,000

‘Pellegrin’s actions were motivated by malice …a vindictive, pointless, dangerous and unlawful act’

Racist stickers at Keremeos pub leaves group uneasy and angry

The ‘OK’ hand gesture is a known hate-symbol

VIDEO: World responds to B.C. girl after pandemic cancels birthday party

Dozens of cards and numerous packages were delivered to six-year-old Charlie Manning

Expected fall peak of COVID-19 in Canada could overwhelm health systems: Tam

National modelling projections released Friday show an expected peak in cases this fall

Hundreds of sea lions to be killed on Columbia River in effort to save endangered fish

Nearly 22,000 comments received during public review were opposed, fewer than 200 were for

Most Read