Government of Canada is taking action to protect species at risk

VANCOUVER, Aug. 26, 2014 /CNW/ - Colin Carrie, Parliamentary Secretary to the Environment Minister and Member of Parliament for Oshawa, on behalf of Canada's Environment Minister, the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, today announced $11.5 million in funding from the Habitat Stewardship Program (HSP) that will fund more than 160 projects across Canada that will help protect species at risk.

Stewardship is an important step in protecting critical habitat of species at risk. HSP fosters stewardship measures like land and resource use practices that maintain habitat necessary for the survival and recovery of species at risk, enhance existing conservation activities and encourage new ones. Voluntary activities are clearly making a difference in habitat protection, the recovery of species, and the conservation of biodiversity.

One example of an initiative that the HSP will fund this year is a project led by the British Columbia Conservation Foundation. Their project aims to address the degradation of Coastal Sand Ecosystems on British Columbia's Southern Coast by mitigating threats due to habitat destruction, invasive plants and human recreational activities. Conservation activities will take place in Boundary Bay, Iona Beach, Thormanby Islands and Savary Island all within the Coastal Douglas Fir and the Lower Fraser Valley areas.

The HSP is also providing funding to the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre for their important work that focusses on habitat protection for cetacean and sea turtles species at risk and reducing threats such as physical disturbances, entanglements, and ship strikes.

In support of such stewardship activities, the National Conservation Plan, announced by Prime Minister Harper in May, includes funding of $50 million over five years to support voluntary actions to restore and conserve species and their habitats. Programs like HSP are an important part of the Government of Canada's National Conservation Plan to conserve and restore our lands and waters, and connect Canadian families to our natural spaces.

Quick Facts

  • Since 2006, under the Habitat Stewardship Program, we have invested over $86 million to support 1,467 local conservation projects, benefitting the habitat of 431 species at risk. Activities funded by the Program must take place on private, provincial Crown, or Aboriginal land, or in freshwater or marine environments across Canada.
  • Non-governmental organizations, Aboriginal organizations and communities, individuals, businesses, community associations, and provincial/territorial and municipal governments are eligible for funding.

Quotes

"Our Government is proud to support the environmental efforts of local communities through the Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk. With this investment and the recently announced National Conservation Plan, the Government is building a stronger Canada, a country that cares about conserving its natural heritage and a country where we can all enjoy the beauty of nature from coast to coast to coast."

- Colin Carrie, Member of Parliament for Oshawa and Parliamentary Secretary to Canada's Environment Minister

Related Products

For more information and to view a backgrounder on this announcement, please visit the Web site of Environment Canada.

Associated Links

More information on the Species at Risk Act and the Habitat Stewardship Program is available online.

Canadians can also learn more about the National Conservation Plan.

SOURCE Environment Canada

For further information:

Ted Laking
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of the Environment
819-997-1441

Media Relations
Environment Canada
819-934-8008

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