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From: Parks Canada
Seeking to protect 30,000 hectares of land with a $15 million federal contribution matched by Nature Conservancy of Canada will help reach Canada’s ambitious goals of protecting 30% of lands and waters by 2030
October 24, 2023 Ottawa, ON
Canada’s national parks and protected areas are iconic jewels that are emblematic of this country’s natural wonders and rich biodiversity. These place conserve biodiversity, protect ecosystem services, connect landscapes, take up and store carbon, build knowledge and understanding, and inspire people.
Today, Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, together with Catherine Grenier, President and Chief Executive Officer of Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC), announced a collaboration that will strengthen conservation on protected areas that form important buffer zones around Canada’s National Parks.
The Government of Canada is contributing $15M toward this initiative, which will use a variety of land conservation tools and approaches to help protect up to 30,000 hectares of land located near existing Parks Canada administered places located across Canada. Nature Conservancy of Canada will double the impact of the investment by providing a matching contribution of $15M, for a total investment of $30M.
This funding supports Canada’s progress in achieving its ambitious target of protecting biodiversity and conserving 30 percent of land and inland waters and 30 percent of marine and coastal areas by 2030. This Parks Canada project contributes to these goals by protecting lands against biodiversity loss, fostering ecological connectivity across landscapes, and supporting the role that Indigenous peoples play in caring for the lands, waters and ice that have been their home since time immemorial.
The announcement caps an outstanding month for nature protection across Canada. From the Canada-Nova Scotia Nature Agreement to Indigenous-led land agreements announced in Nunavut and the Northwest Territories to protection of peat bogs in Quebec, more than 1 million square kilometres — an area four times the size of the United Kingdom – has been recently earmarked for conservation. This builds on the addition of areas equal to almost the size of Germany that have been added to Canada’s confirmed land conservation totals since 2015.
As Canada’s largest non-profit conservation organization, NCC works at the scale and scope needed to support Canada’s conservation goals. Through community-based relationships and a vast network of supporters and staff, NCC has contributed to the protection of more than 15 million hectares of nature across the country over its 61-year history — more than 1 million in the last two years alone. These conservation wins are achieved when NCC works side-by-side with donors, partners and Indigenous communities. To protect nature around national parks in Canada, NCC will work with its partners and will deploy innovative tools and programs to prioritize where conservation is most urgently needed.
The areas targeted through this initiative include some of the most treasured places in Canada where conservation action is urgently needed to halt biodiversity loss and ensure long term ecological health. This includes places such as Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site to support existing conservation efforts in Southwest Nova Scotia in collaboration with the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia and other conservation partners, La Mauricie National Park to support priority areas for ecological corridors and connectivity outside the park, and Thousand Islands National Park and Bruce Peninsula National Park to support existing conservation efforts in the broader conservation area.
In a country as large and diverse as Canada, strong collaborations across boundaries are key to maintaining and improving healthy and resilient landscapes. As such, this initiative is an important complement to Parks Canada’s work under the National Program for Ecological Corridors which aims to strengthen Canada’s network of protected and conserved areas. Parks Canada and Nature Conservancy of Canada have a common goal of increasing Canadians’ support for conservation and access to the benefits that protected places provide. This initiative builds upon many years of sharing knowledge and expertise in the practice of conservation.
Corporate logos of the organizations participating in this partnership announcement today.
“Canada’s 30 by 30 target is a model embraced by the international community. Now we are doubling down on implementation. Working together with communities and conservation partners is key to ensuring that the lands, waters and ice that play such important roles in the lives of Canadians are protected for current and future generations. Parks Canada and Nature Conservancy of Canada are supporting real actions that build resiliency across protected and conserved areas and take us one step further to reaching our goals of conserving 30 percent of land and inland water by 2030.”
The Honourable Steven Guilbeault
Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada
“Protecting nature relies on the collective efforts of individuals, communities, and organizations working together to protect and conserve our environment. Collaborative initiatives like the one we are celebrating today are essential in addressing pressing issues like climate change, and the loss of biodiversity. By coming together and pooling our resources, knowledge, and passion, we can ensure a sustainable and flourishing planet for future generations.”
Member of Parliament Ottawa West—Nepean and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Development
“This important initiative builds on our longstanding relationship with Parks Canada to address the impacts of the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity loss in Canada. Nature knows no bounds; neither should we. That’s why partnerships like this are so critical. NCC will rally its vast network of partners across the country around our evidence-based approach to deliver impactful conservation solutions around some of Canada’s most iconic natural places. Through partnership, expertise and perseverance, we will conserve critical habitat for the plants and animals we cherish, and ecosystem services that benefit all communities.”
President and CEO, Nature Conservancy of Canada
§ La Mauricie National Park (QC)
§ Bruce Peninsula National Park (ON)
§ Thousand Islands National Park (ON)
§ Point Pelee National Park (ON)
§ Grasslands National Park (SK)
§ Waterton Lakes National Park (AB)
§ Kootenay National Park (BC)
§ Gulf Islands National Park Reserve (BC)
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change