The Big Wild is reaching out across the country, asking Canadians to send word to Yukon leaders that the Peel Watershed matters to our entire nation. During the summer and fall of 2010, affected First Nations and the Yukon government will accept submissions from the public on how to manage this precious landscape. Sign our letter and help protect this magnificent wilderness. Click here to see the letter.
The Peel watershed is located in the Yukon Territory at the northern tip of the Yellowstone to Yukon (Y2Y) conservation corridor. The watershed, including its five major tributaries, makes up the largest collection of wild mountain rivers in North America.
The 68,000 square kilometre watershed is home to species that are rare or threatened elsewhere, including grizzly bear, wolverine, pine marten, peregrine falcon, and mountain, boreal and barren-ground caribou. This is an ancient cultural landscape and an important fish and wildlife harvesting area for First Nations. The Peel watershed is an internationally renowned wilderness destination for paddlers. Its famous Three Rivers, the Wind, Snake and Bonnet-Plume, attract paddlers from all over the world,.
What Threatens the Peel
Mining and oil and gas extraction threaten this priceless ecosystem. There are over 8,400 mining claims in the Peel. More than 6,700 were staked after the Peel land use planning process began in 2004. .
Mining interests are lobbying hard to open up the Peel to roads and industrial development. . The Peel Watershed Planning Commission recommends protecting 80% of this wilderness. Affected First Nations are calling for protection of the entire watershed. The final consultations on the recommended Peel Watershed Land Use Plan are happening in late summer and fall 2010. The Yukon government will decide the future of this vast and celebrated wilderness early in 2011.