B.C., Yukon to manage, protect, waters of Liard River and Mackenzie River Basin

B.C., Yukon to manage, protect, Liard River

VICTORIA — The B.C. and Yukon governments have signed an agreement pledging to co-operatively manage shared waters within the sprawling Mackenzie River basin.

The agreement specifically covers waters and tributaries of the Liard River, which springs from the mountains south of Ross River in Yukon, crosses the northeastern corner of B.C. and enters the Northwest Territories, emptying into the Mackenzie River.

The pact specifies that both governments will protect the health of the 1,115 kilometre waterway as well as the interests of First Nations and other area residents, while addressing water quality, consumption and flow.

A news release from the province says this is the second bilateral water management agreement both B.C. and Yukon have signed under a broader deal to manage the waters of the Mackenzie River Basin.

The basin is the largest in Canada, covering 1.8-million square kilometres.

Water from rivers within the basin flow through B.C., Alberta and Saskatchewan, as well as Yukon and Northwest Territories.

The Canadian Press

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