Tsleil-Waututh Nation’s xʔəlilwətaʔɬ/Indian River Watershed Integrated Stewardship Plan

Tsleil-Waututh Nation’s xʔəlilwətaʔɬ/Indian River Watershed Integrated Stewardship Plan

News & UpdatesTsleil-Waututh Nation’s xʔəlilwətaʔɬ/Indian River Watershed Integrated Stewardship Plan

Tsleil-Waututh Nation’s xʔəlilwətaʔɬ/Indian River Watershed Integrated Stewardship Plan

The xʔəl̓ilwətaʔɬ/Indian River Watershed is located approximately 30 kilometres northeast of Vancouver and is the southernmost fjord on the west coast of North America. It is surrounded by the Seymour, Stawamus, Mamquam, Pitt, and Coquitlam Watersheds.

Tsleil-Waututh oral history teaches that the Tsleil-Waututh people have always belonged to, and have accepted responsibility for the care of, the lands and waters within their traditional territory. More recent management by Crown governments has been fragmented, and it has diminished environmental and cultural values.

Seizing the opportunity presented by the Province of British Columbia through the Sea-to-Sky Land and Resource Management Plan process, Tsleil-Waututh proposed a watershed-level planning process for the xʔəl̓ilwətaʔɬ/Indian River Watershed. In December 2005, Tsleil-Waututh and the Province signed a Partnership Agreement for the collaborative development of an Integrated Stewardship Plan. This process was led by Tsleil-Waututh, and it was one of the first collaborations of its kind in the province.

Tsleil-Waututh has been working for decades to reach this agreement. Since 2005 they have reintroduced Roosevelt elk and helped salmon stocks rebound. The changes have had cascading effects: Herring have returned to the inlet, and wolves and cougars returned on the heels of the elk. The work continues today, as the Nation’s environmental crews carefully extract creosote-soaked pylons where log booms were once moored.

Download and read the xʔəl̓ilwətaʔɬ/Indian River Watershed Integrated Stewardship Plan here.

Read the Globe and Mail Article: An urban First Nation reclaims stewardship over vast rainforest on Metro Vancouver’s doorstep – The Globe and Mail

Latest Articles

On June 17, there was a beautiful celebration in this beautiful city that is home to Musqueam, Tsleil-Waututh and Squamish people, explains Gabriel George, Director of Treaty Lands and Resources. In the colonisation of these lands we were erased, and today some of the erasure was undone. Our collective Nations came together and put a name on this beautiful park. The names are: sθәqәlxenәm in the hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓ language and ts’exwts’áxwi7 in the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh language.
Last week, the Tsleil-Waututh Nation and Environment and Climate Change Canada celebrated their landmark, first-of-its-kindagreement to co-manage Disposal at Sea within Burrard Inlet, with their Agreement on Collaborative Decision Making Regarding Disposal at Sea.
On May 10 & 11, 2022, Tsleil-Waututh Nation Staff, Community, and School students came together to help prep and tie cə́ləm (eelgrass) shoots for transplant. cə́ləm (eelgrass) is a flowering plant that grows in shallow, sheltered areas of the ocean and is important habitat for fish, crabs and other animals. There have been many traditional uses of eelgrass by First Nations, including as food. 
Alongside Tsleil-Waututh family, Musqueam & Squamish relatives, Chief & Council, and Tsleil-Waututh leaders, Elder Carleen Thomas, ‘Unsakhalote’, became the new Chancellor of Emily Carr University Art + Design (ECUAD). This is a special moment for our community and historically, as Carleen is the first Indigenous person to hold the Chancellor position at Emily Carr University.
The 2025 Invictus Games will be hosted in Vancouver and Whistler with support from Lil’wat, Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations. The Invictus Games is an 8-day competition for wounded and ill military personnel from around the world, and has over 500 athletes from more than 20 nations competing.
The North Shore News interviewed Tsleil-Waututh Nation School vice-principal Sarah Martz to discuss the new Indigenous-focused graduation requirements and what these changes mean to TWN. They also review what Tsleil-Waututh currently does to incorporate Indigenous education into the current school curriculum at siʔáḿθɘt.