This post was submitted by Alan Wiebe, Watershed Assistant at the Seine-Rat River Conservation District
The Roseau River Watershed is made up of about 5,800 square kilometers within the municipalities of Montcalm, Franklin, Stuartburn, and Piney. The Roseau River Watershed joined the Seine-Rat River Conservation District (SRRCD) in 2013. The SRRCD now works with residents in the Roseau River Watershed to promote the sustainable management of land and water resources by providing incentive-based funding for landowners. We are pleased to announce that we are beginning the development of the Roseau River Integrated Watershed Management Plan (IWMP).
An IWMP is a community-based planning document. They are developed by the local conservation district in collaboration with the Province of Manitoba, local municipalities, watershed residents, and special interest groups. IWMPs are important tools used to identify land and water-related priorities and goals. They outline policies that identify how land and water management programming will be implemented throughout the watershed. These plans are a strategy that describes what needs to be done in order to maintain a healthy watershed.
There are many benefits to creating an IWMP. They can help communities prioritize resources and give residents a voice. IWMPs can also target specific activities and programs to areas that need greater protection. They are also supportive of the existing community framework for economic benefit and land use planning. This integrative approach balances ecosystem, community, and economic health. Each plan is a unique reflection of the concerns of the community within each watershed.
Roseau River Watershed residents will have opportunities to speak to the watershed values, issues, and concerns that are important to them. Public consultations held throughout the planning process are essential to developing an effective plan. Local residents have an intimate knowledge of their local landscape and are encouraged to attend these consultations as they are planned.
The SRRCD has recently completed IWMPs for the Seine River Watershed and the Rat-Marsh River Watershed. You can read these plans on our website at www.srrwd.ca. You can also pick up hard copies from our partner municipal offices throughout our district or at out head office in La Broquerie.