Sign our petition to tell the federal government to enact a mandatory 1,000 metre vessel buffer for endangered Southern Resident killer whales

We need to reach 500 signatures by April 21st, 2024 on our House of Commons petition to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Diane Lebouthillier.

Recently, Washington State (U.S.), passed legislation (Senate Bill 5371) that establishes a mandatory 1,000-yard buffer for recreational and commercial whale watching vessels around Southern Resident killer whales. The law comes into effect in January, 2025, and will reduce the effects of vessel noise and disturbance on these whales. 

It  makes sense for Canada to equally legislate a 1,000-metre vessel buffer for recreational and commercial whale-watching vessels to match the protections provided by Washington State.

Please sign our House of Commons petition addressed to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Diane Lebouthillier. This is a legally binding petition which means if we surpass 500 signatures by April 21st, the petition will be presented to Minister Diane Lebouthillier in the House of Commons. You must be either a Canadian resident or a citizen to sign it. 

Endangered Southern Resident killer whales are listed under Canada’s Species at Risk Act

  • Underwater noise and physical disturbance from vessels affects the ability of Southern Residents to communicate successfully and forage effectively. 
  • Southern Resident killer whales can lose more than 50% of their echolocation range when foraging near commercial shipping traffic.
  • Increased shipping traffic from container expansions at Roberts Bank and oil tankers for Trans Mountain terminal increase underwater noise in critical habitat. This noise reduces the ability of the Southern Resident killer whales to successfully catch salmon and feed.  As such, it increases their risk of extinction. 
  • If Canada is committed to halting and reversing biodiversity loss, as declared with the signing of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework, the draft 2030 National Biodiversity Strategy, and proposed nature accountability legislation, then the federal government must legislate a 1,000-metre vessel buffer zone. 

Sign our petition to urge the federal government to implement matching 1,000-metre buffer zones for vessels. This will reduce the negative impacts of underwater noise on nutritionally-stressed Southern Resident killer whales.

Days left to sign


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Coastal wolf with a salmon in its month.
Photo by Dene Rossouw.