(L-r) Dr. John Soles, fourth year medical student Joanne Kwan and Dr. Kayode Bamigboje paddle in a canoe race - a first time experience for Kwan and Dr. Kay.

Letter: Outdoors enthusiasts urged to action

Right now, the federal government is reviewing the Navigation Protection Act—that’s the law that should give all Canadians the right to paddle up and down this land’s waterways. That right is very important to me.

In recent years, 99 per cent of Canada’s waterways lost navigation protection under the act. Unless our waterways have full legal protection we’ll all lose our right to enjoy and play in streams, rivers, lakes and oceans.

Even worse, when waterways are blocked by development or land owners, sensitive ecosystems are put at risk. There’s currently no law that makes it mandatory to evaluate environmental impacts on blocking and obstructing waterways, which can seriously harm fish, fish habitat and water.

Long-lasting decisions are being made right now about our basic right to explore this country by kayak and canoe. Fellow outdoor enthusiasts, I hope you’ll join me in writing or calling your MP to tell them to make sure the Navigation Protection Act protects our environment, heritage and way of life.

Laura Harvey

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