Ontario Supports Environmental Action in Pic River First Nation to Continue Protecting and Restoring the Great Lakes

BIIGTIGONG NISHNAABEG/ Pic River First Nation — The Ontario government is investing $77,365 in the Biigtigong Nishnaabeg Monitoring Hub through the Great Lakes Local Action Fund that will help build healthier communities while protecting and improving the health of the Great Lakes and their connecting waters.

Biigtigong Nishnaabeg will establish a community-based water monitoring initiative and engage Indigenous community members, Elders, academia and partners in collecting, sharing and refining water quality information to inform and help mobilize future action throughout Biigtigong Nishnaabeg. The project will involve operationalizing a scalable, sustainable monitoring approach that addresses both traditional knowledge and western science, building local community capacity in delivering monitoring initiatives and prioritizing areas of poor water quality for restoration actions. The project will involve participating in SwimDrinkFish’s ‘Community of Practice’, that supports ongoing knowledge/resource sharing – to help build capacity and help identify best practices for maintaining Indigenous-led monitoring.

“We, Biigtigong Nishnaabeg, are pleased to have secured some funding to set up a water monitoring program on a few of our significant waterways. We look forward to continuing to monitor water throughout our Exclusive Title Area and assist in the development of protection measures to ensure safe and clean water for our members to continue to use throughout our territory” Chief Duncan Michano

“Through this investment, we’re supporting innovative projects led by Ontario municipalities, community-based organizations, conservation authorities, small businesses and Indigenous communities that are protecting and restoring the Great Lakes and their connecting waters,” said David Piccini, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks. “Project grants from the Great Lakes Local Action Fund are helping communities and organizations promote environmental stewardship and take action in their own backyards.”

This project is one of 38 community-based projects to receive $1.9 million in funding from the Great Lakes Local Action Fund.


  • Since 2021, the province has invested $3.8 million through the Great Lakes Local Action Fund to support 82 projects in communities across Ontario.
  • In its first year, the Great Lakes Local Action Fund supported restoration projects that engaged over 7,000 volunteers to help plant over 44,000 trees and 15,000 shrubs to support diverse and resilient shoreline habitats. These projects helped clean up more than 26,000 lbs of litter, and restore and protect over 860 acres of vital greenspace and wetlands. • 20 per cent of the world’s fresh surface water is found in the Great Lakes, making it the largest lake system in the world.
  • Ontario’s Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River shoreline is the longest freshwater coastline in the world measuring 10,000 kilometers.
  • Ontario invests approximately $14 million per year in actions to protect and restore the Great Lakes, including projects that support commitments in the Canada-Ontario Agreement on Great Lakes Water Quality and Ecosystem Health and Ontario’s Great Lakes Strategy.


  • Learn how Ontario is protecting the Great Lakes
  • Learn more about the Great Lakes Local Action Fund


Environmental Manager: Brittany Moses