First projects under TD Forests program
CALGARY, Oct. 3, 2012 /CNW/ - The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC)
today announced the conservation of 260 acres (106 hectares) of
exceptional forest habitat in Alberta's Crowsnest Pass. This project
was completed thanks to generous funding from TD Bank Group (TD)
through the TD Forests program and the Government of Canada through the
Natural Areas Conservation Program.
The Lusicich project has significant habitat value, including Douglas
fir forests, montane grassland, north-south and east-west wildlife
movement corridors and, consequently, provides critical range
connectivity for species including grizzly bear, elk and wolf. More
than 70 percent of the property contains Douglas fir, pine and aspen
TD Forests is helping NCC to increase the amount of forest habitat
protected and cared for, especially in southern Canada, where forests
are most threatened by development. This is where the majority of
Canadians live, competing for space with more than 80 percent of our
terrestrial and freshwater species at risk.
Through this program, NCC and TD are also engaging Canadians in and
connecting them to the mission of conserving our forested areas.
The Natural Areas Conservation Program is a unique public-private
partnership. As of June 30, 2012, the Natural Areas Conservation
Program had protected 835,637 acres (338,170 hectares) of habitat,
which includes habitat for 126 species at risk.
NCC's involvement in the Crowsnest Pass Natural Area is primarily
motivated by the goal of maintaining and enhancing wildlife linkage
zones and corridors across and along the Crowsnest Pass valley in
southwestern Alberta. The variation of climate and the elevation
gradient located along this east-west valley creates habitat that
supports a high diversity of species.
For more information about forest conservation and other TD Forests
projects, please visit: www.natureconservancy.ca/celebrateforests.
"We are thankful for the generous support of our partners in this
project who have all made an incredible commitment to conservation,"
remarked Bob Demulder, Regional Vice President, Alberta for the Nature
Conservancy of Canada. "Together, we are ensuring that Canada's
incredible forests will be here for our children and grandchildren to
cherish in years to come."
"This acquisition marks another achievement under our government's
Natural Areas Conservation Program," said the Honourable Ted Menzies,
Member of Parliament for MacLeod and Minister of State for Finance.
"With this investment, we are taking real action to protect and
conserve our country's ecosystems and sensitive species for present and
"Ninety percent of Canadians have said forests are important to them,
and for good reason," says Karen Clarke-Whistler, TD's Chief
Environment Officer. "Forests form the backdrop of our lives. They are
where we work, live and play. Forests play an essential role in
cleaning the air and moderating temperatures, and are home to more than
one-third of the plant and animal species in North America. As our
world becomes more urbanized it is essential to protect forests and the
valuable habitats they represent. That's why we made growing the area
of protected forest habitat a key pillar of the TD Forests program."
At Crowsnest Pass, elevations range from 1,113 metres at the Crowsnest
River, to 2,804 metres at the mountain peaks.
The Crowsnest Pass region is characterized by a rapid ecological
transition from prairies to alpine. This compressed environmental
gradient, and the influence of the Chinook winds, result in a rich
diversity of flora and fauna.
The vegetation of Crowsnest Pass is a mosaic of grasslands and of
deciduous and conifer woodlands; it hosts a wide variety of rare plant
Crowsnest Pass is a critical area for overwintering elk and deer, and
provides habitat for important wildlife species such as grizzly bear,
gray wolf and cougar.
Crowsnest Pass is an essential wildlife passage through a chain of
north-south mountains and valleys in the Canadian Rockies.
The Nature Conservancy of Canada works in many forest ecosystems from
coast to coast: from the Fog Forest of Newfoundland and Labrador, to
the beautiful deciduous forest of the Carolinian Life Zone in
southwestern Ontario; from aspen parkland in the prairie provinces, to
lush rainforests on the west coast.
Canada is home to 10 percent of the world's forests, covering one third
of our country.
Forests represent so much more than just trees. Each forest type
supports a rich diversity of plant and animal life that relies on a
healthy ecosystem to thrive.
TD is a long-time supporter of NCC, especially through the TD Friends of
the Environment Foundation, which has supported many NCC
community-based projects across the country.
TD Bank Group announced The TD Forests Program in 2011. To learn more
about this program visit: http://www.td.com/forests.
The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is the nation's leading 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 (more than
1 million hectares), coast to coast. To learn more visit: www.natureconservancy.ca/ab.
The Government of Canada's Natural Areas Conservation Program is a $225
million investment to assist non-profit, non-government organizations
to secure 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
raising matching funds for each federal dollar received.
Launched in 2012, TD Forests is a major conservation initiative built
around two pillars - reduce (paper use) and grow (forested areas). The
reduce pillar will focus on providing an increased selection of
e-banking options for customers and on reducing paper usage in TD's
business operations. The grow component of the initiative brings
together TD's environment, community and employee programs related to
forests and trees. These include TD Tree Days, TD Green Streets and
local community initiatives, along with a major new conservation
program conducted through the Nature Conservancy of Canada and The
Nature Conservancy in the United States. This program focuses on
increasing the area of protected forest habitat in North America. For
more information, visit TD Forests.
INTERVIEWS AVAILABLE ON REQUEST
SEE A MAP
Video with caption: "Video for Lusicich and Backus Woods addition properties". Video available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/cgi-bin/playback.cgi?file=20121003_C3561_VIDEO_EN_18772.mp4&posterurl=http://photos.newswire.ca/images/20121003_C3561_PHOTO_EN_18772.jpg&clientName=Nature%20Conservancy%20of%20Canada&caption=Video%20for%20Lusicich%20and%20Backus%20Woods%20addition%20properties&title=NATURE%20CONSERVANCY%20OF%20CANADA%20%2D%20Douglas%20fir%20forest%20conserved%20by%20Nature%20Conservancy%20of%20Canada&headline=Douglas%20fir%20forest%20conserved%20by%20Nature%20Conservancy%20of%20Canada
Image with caption: "The lush forest of the Lusicich property (CNW Group/Nature Conservancy of Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20121003_C3561_PHOTO_EN_18752.jpg
Image with caption: "Looking out over the Lusicich property across the lake (CNW Group/Nature Conservancy of Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20121003_C3561_PHOTO_EN_18749.jpg
Image with caption: "Looking east from the Lusicich property (CNW Group/Nature Conservancy of Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20121003_C3561_PHOTO_EN_18750.jpg
Image with caption: "A quiet lake view on the Lusicich property (CNW Group/Nature Conservancy of Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20121003_C3561_PHOTO_EN_18751.jpg
SOURCE: Nature Conservancy of Canada
For further information:
Senior Communications Coordinator, Alberta Region - Nature Conservancy of Canada