Nature Canada congratulates federal government for its commitments to nature but no funding to conserve biodiversity is a missed opportunity
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Ottawa (March 22, 2017)—Nature Canada congratulates the federal government for its commitment to nature in the 2017 federal budget, including providing $25 million over 5 years for the Indigenous Guardians Pilot Project to provide indigenous communities with resources to manage nature conservation on their traditional lands.
Nature Canada is also pleased by the investment of $30 million over 5 years for completion of the Trans Canada Trail, providing millions of Canadians with opportunities to enjoy nature.
“We are pleased to see a re-commitment to Canada protecting 17 per cent of its lands and inland waters by 2020 as required under the Aichi Targets of the Convention on Biological Diversity”, says Eleanor Fast, Executive Director of Nature Canada. “However, with no funding for new National Parks, National Wildlife Areas or Migratory Bird Sanctuaries, or to conserve biodiversity in existing areas, overall the 2017 federal budget is a missed opportunity for Canada to meet its international commitments to protect nature”.
“Nature Canada commends the $364 million investment in management and maintenance of infrastructure in National Parks and National Historic Sites. Roads, campgrounds and visitor centres are an important gateway for people to access and enjoy nature,” says Stephen Hazell, Nature Canada’s Director of Conservation. “But conservation of biodiversity must remain the primary purpose of our parks and protected areas, and we are disappointed to see no investment in this area.”
For media comment, please contact:
Eleanor Fast, Executive Director, Nature Canada
Stephen Hazell, Director of Conservation, Nature Canada
For further media assistance, please contact:
Janet Weichel McKenzie, Media Specialist, Nature Canada
The Green Budget Coalition (GBC)
The Green Budget Coalition (GBC), including Nature Canada, recommended that the 2017 federal budget invest $10 million per year for five years in Parks Canada to lead development and coordinate implementation of a pan-Canadian action plan to protect at least 17 percent of lands and inland waters by 2020. The Coalition also recommended an ongoing federal investment of $85 million per year to:
- Create at least six new national parks and three new national wildlife areas by 2020, and identify additional new areas for protection through science and traditional knowledge-based plans; and
- Strengthen management of all national parks, national wildlife areas and migratory bird sanctuaries to protect their ecological integrity.
The Green Budget Coalition (GBC), active since 1999, brings together seventeen of Canada’s leading environmental and nature organizations to present an analysis of the most pressing issues regarding environmental sustainability in Canada.
Nature Canada is Canadian nature conservation charity. Over the past 75 years, Nature Canada has helped protect over 63 million acres of parks and wildlife areas in Canada and countless species that depend on this habitat. Today, Nature Canada represents a network comprised of over 45,000 members and supporters and more than 350 nature organizations across the country and with affiliates in every province.