Transfer of Govenlock Grasslands to Environment Canada Important Step towards Protection

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 30, 2015 (Ottawa, ON) — The transfer of over 200 square kilometres of important short-grass prairie at Govenlock in southwestern Saskatchewan to Environment Canada is an important step towards protecting grasslands and threatened grassland wildlife says Nature Canada.

“Congratulations to Environment Minister Aglukkaq, Environment Canada officials and the local ranching community in achieving this outcome” says Eleanor Fast, Executive Director of Nature Canada. “Transferring these lands to Environment Canada will now allow consultations to begin on establishing a National Wildlife Area to protect the Govenlock grasslands and the numerous species at risk that live there, while at the same time providing for continuing livestock production and respecting local community interests.”

“This important decision should be part of a larger plan to conserve native grasslands—the most imperilled ecosystem in Canada” says Stephen Hazell, Director of Conservation and Legal Counsel. “There are tremendous opportunities to conserve native grasslands and grassland wildlife species at many of the other 182 community pastures that were formerly managed by the Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration. For example, the Battle Creek and Nashlyn community pastures, which are adjacent to Govenlock and are of similar area and importance for nature, should also considered for special conservation management.”

The government’s announcement is online at NewsWire.

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About Nature Canada
Nature Canada is the oldest national nature conservation charity in Canada. 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 of more than 45,000 members and supporters and more than 350 nature organizations across the country, with affiliates in every province. Nature Canada focuses on effecting change on issues of national significance including bird conservation,  citizen science initiatives, urban nature initiatives, building a national network of conservation organizations, building a network of volunteers to care for critical natural habitat sites across Canada and being a voice for nature at the federal level.

Media contact:
Stephen Hazell
Director of Conservation and General Counsel
613 724-1908 (mobile)
shazell@naturecanada.ca