The Kootenay Lake Partnership (KLP) was formed in 2010 to address the increasing growth and development pressures of people desiring to live on or near Kootenay Lake. As a result,several agencies including local governments and First Nations joined and developed a strategic Terms of Reference to collaborate on lake management planning.
The mandate of the KLP is to develop integrated and collaborative approaches to lake management planning which will allow for a healthy and productive lake, with balanced land and water uses that support and sustain environmental, community, recreational, aboriginal, cultural, traditional and aesthetic values.
The geographic scope of the KLP is from the mouth of the Kootenay River, including the main body of the lake (North and South Arms), up to the mouth of the Duncan River and down the West Arm to the Corra Linn dam. The scope also includes the foreshore and upland components 100 metres inland or to a logical physical break (i.e. Hwy 3A on the East Shore and the rail line on the West Shore).
In order to fulfill its mandate, the KLP is completing a three-part lake study including preliminary foreshore inventory mapping (FIM) followed by an aquatic habitat index (AHI) and archaeological overview assessment (AOA) which will feed into shoreline guidelines for the lake. The guideline document will identify ecologically significant areas such as wetlands, tributary outlets, native grasslands, wildlife habitat and corridors, biologically productive areas and critical areas for fish and species at risk. They will also identify sites of high cultural significance for First Nations such as traditional and contemporary use areas. The study will lead to an improved scientific knowledge of lake processes and form a baseline for improved decision-making.
The KLP and Friends of Kootenay Lake are working together to protect and preserve the natural capitol of Kootenay Lake while supporting economic, recreational, and traditional uses.