MOE Bear Smart Community Program

Bear Smart BC Consulting works in partnership with the Ministry of Environment to deliver the “Bear Smart” Community Program to BC Municipalities and Regional District Governments across the province. Based on years of experience working with communities, Bear Smart BC Consultants are experienced with the policies and procedures that govern municipal involvement with human-bear conflict reduction.

The Ministry of Environment Bear Smart Community Program is a proactive conservation strategy aimed at addressing the root causes of human-bear conflicts to reduce the risk to human safety and private property as well as the number of bears destroyed annually.

The Program outlines 6 criteria that provide the framework to support the development of a proactive bear-conflict management program. When communities show progress in each steps of the following 6 criteria they become eligible to apply for official Bear Smart Community Status.

 STEPS  DESCRIPTION OF ACTIVITY
   1.  Prepare a Bear Hazard Assessment using  required criteria
   2.  Prepare a Human-Bear Conflict Management  Plan designed to address the  bear hazards  and land-use conflicts identified in the hazard  assessment.
   3.  Revise planning and decision-making  documents to be consistent with the  human-  bear conflict management plan.
   4.  Implement a continuing education program  directed at all sectors of the  community.
   5.  Develop and maintain a bear-proof municipal  solid waste management  system.
   6.  Implement “Bear Smart” bylaws prohibiting  the provision of food to bears  as a result of  intent, neglect, or irresponsible management  of attractants.  These regulations also set the  standard for how local constituents are  expected to co-exist with wildlife within the  municipality/regional district.

For more information on:

*How to bear-proof your home property, work place, or campsite,

*How to volunteer with the Oceanside Bear Smart Committee,

*Information on the Ministry of Environment Bear Smart Community Program or Bear Smart BC Consulting Contact: Crystal McMillan at 250.951.WILD (9453) or bearsmartbc@telus.net

Information provided by Crystal McMillan, Executive Director, Bear Smart BC Consulting.

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