FREDERICTON, May 15, 2014 /CNW/ - The Nature Conservancy of Canada, the nation's leading private land conservation organization, congratulates the Government of Canada for its strong commitment to protecting our natural heritage through today's announcement of a National Conservation Plan.
This investment of more than $250 million, announced by Prime Minister Stephen Harper, demonstrates Canada's conservation leadership. With an emphasis on conservation, restoration and connecting Canadians to nature, this comprehensive plan will benefit Canada's natural environment and all Canadians.
In particular, the Nature Conservancy of Canada is pleased with the long-term renewal of the Natural Areas Conservation Program included in the plan. The program will be extended for another five years, with an additional $100 million in federal funding. This investment will be matched by private donations and funds from other sources.
Since 2007, nearly 4,000 square kilometres of ecologically significant land has been secured across southern Canada under the Natural Areas Conservation Program, providing habitat for more than 160 species at risk. With funding from the Government of Canada and contributions raised from other sources, more than $600 million in conservation activity has already been generated by the program.
"For seven years, the Nature Conservancy of Canada has been a proud partner with the Government of Canada to preserve and protect some of the most beautiful and important lands in the country," said John Lounds, President and CEO of the Nature Conservancy of Canada. "The National Conservation Plan extends our partnership for another five years so that we can continue to deliver on this program, which is a Canadian success story. We look forward to working with the government to provide tangible, on-the-ground results for nature, and for Canadians."
- The National Conservation Plan extends the Natural Areas Conservation Program (NACP) for another 5 years with an additional investment of $100 million to support private land conservation across southern Canada.
- The NACP supports both direct acquisition and innovative conservation agreements (sometimes called covenants, easements or servitudes) with willing landowners.
- Since 2007, the equivalent of 950 NHL-sized hockey rinks is being conserved each day, every day.
- Conservation work under the NACP has been focused on the 10 percent of Canadian land where more than 85 percent of Canada's terrestrial species at risk are found, and where 90 percent of Canadians live and work.
- More than 80 percent of Canadians live within 100 kilometres of an NACP project (based on 2008 pop.).
- The original program goal of conserving 2,180 square kilometres has been nearly doubled by NCC and its partners.
The Nature Conservancy of Canada is the nation's leading private land conservation organization, working to protect our most important natural areas and the species they sustain. Since 1962, NCC and its partners have helped to protect more than 2.6 million acres (over 1 million hectares), coast to coast.
The Government of Canada's Natural Areas Conservation Program has invested $245-million to date to assist non-profit, non-government organizations in securing ecologically sensitive lands to ensure the conservation of our diverse ecosystems, wildlife, and habitat. The Nature Conservancy of Canada has been entrusted to lead the program and has committed to raise matching funds for each federal dollar received.
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VIDEO AND IMAGES:
Images available for download: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ckcou4j9l7xbc0x/AADgYthYjPZxU92y7tKNCggua
SOURCE: Nature Conservancy of Canada
For further information: Andrew Holland, Manager, National Media Relations, Nature Conservancy of Canada, Tel.: 1-877-231-4400, (toll free), 506-260-0469 (mobile), ANDREW.HOLLAND@NATURECONSERVANCY.CA