Canada's New Government highlights National Wildlife Week



    OTTAWA, April 10 /CNW Telbec/ - The Honourable John Baird, Minister of
the Environment, and Mr. Colin Maxwell, Executive Vice President of the
Canadian Wildlife Federation, today marked National Wildlife Week, April 8-14,
by calling on Canadians to help protect and conserve Canada's abundance and
variety of wildlife and the habitat that sustains them.
    The theme of this year's National Wildlife Week--Canada's North...ours to
protect...the world's to cherish-coincides with and promotes the efforts of
the International Polar Year (IPY) 2007-2008, an internationally coordinated
campaign of polar science research.
    "Our identity as Canadians is linked to our country's vast and beautiful
natural environment, and Canada's New Government has invested more than
$384 million in new conservation and protection initiatives," said Minister
Baird. "This Government is proud to partner with The Canadian Wildlife
Federation to celebrate National Wildlife Week."
    Since 1963, the Canadian Wildlife Federation in partnership with federal,
provincial, and territorial wildlife and related agencies, has developed and
implemented the National Wildlife Week program in Canada. National Wildlife
Week raises awareness about the importance of wildlife and wildlife habitat in
Canada.
    "National Wildlife Week is a perfect opportunity for Canadians to
actively demonstrate their appreciation for our natural environment," said
Mr. Maxwell. "Schools, community groups and caring Canadians are participating
in local festivals, starting habitat improvement projects and discovering
Canada's North during the week and continuing throughout the year."

    Canada's New Government has made several recent important investments to
preserve and conserve nature and protect wildlife. These include:

    
    - $110 million for more effective implementation of the Species at Risk
      Act;
    - $10 million to conserve ecologically important lands in the Northwest
      Territories;
    - $225 million to help preserve ecologically sensitive land in southern
      Canada;
    - $30 million to help promote the sustainable development of British
      Columbia's Spirit Bear Rainforest;
    - $2 million for restoration efforts in Vancouver's Stanley Park;
    - $1 million to help restore the hurricane-damaged Point Pleasant Park in
      Halifax;
    - $700,000 for restoration projects at Pacific Rim National Park Reserve;
      and
    - $5 million over 5 years for initial development and $700,000 annually
      for ongoing operational costs of protecting and cooperatively managing
      the Northwest Territories' Sahoyué - Sehdacho National Historic Site of
      Canada with the Déline First Nation and the Déline Land Corporation.
    

    These initiatives are part of this new Government's comprehensive
environmental agenda, which totals $9 billion and includes the ecoENERGY
Initiatives, the ecoTransport Strategy, the ecoAUTO Program to encourage
Canadians to buy fuel-efficient vehicles, support for public transit, action
on renewable fuels and new investments of $4.5 billion in Budget 2007.

    The Canadian Wildlife Federation is dedicated to fostering awareness and
appreciation of our natural world. By spreading knowledge of human impacts on
the environment, sponsoring research, promoting the sustainable use of natural
resources, recommending legislative changes, and cooperating with like-minded
partners, The Canadian Wildlife Federation encourages a future in which
Canadians may live in harmony with nature.

    (Egalement offert en français)




For further information:

For further information: please contact: Eric Richer, Press Secretary,
Office of the Minister of the Environment, (819) 997-1441; Environment Canada
Media Relations, (819) 934-8008, 1-888-908-8008; Jennifer James, Canadian
Wildlife Federation, Communications Officer, (613) 599-9594, ext. 219

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