Province and the Nature Conservancy of Canada working together to conserve
ecologically significant lands

MONCTON, NB, May 27 /CNW/ - The Province of New Brunswick's investment of $1.5 million dollars in a conservation partnership with the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) has now protected over 1,700 acres (688 hectares) of critical habitat since the agreement was signed almost three years ago.

Today, Premier Shawn Graham celebrated the final $500,000 dollars of the partnership at a luncheon with members of the NCC Corporate Leaders in Conservation Giving Club in Moncton.

The partnership is a wonderful example of leveraging matching funds to maximize the conservation impact.

    
    -   NCC committed to matching the provincial investment with private
        funds, resulting in an additional $2 million dollars to date, to help
        protect critical natural habitat
    -   Every dollar invested in the partnership will also be matched through
        the Government of Canada's Natural Areas Conservation Program
    

This means that every dollar contributed by the Province of New Brunswick will actually result in three dollars of conservation work in the province.

Mr. Allison McCain, chair of McCain Foods Limited, and Chair of NCC's Corporate Leaders in Conservation was also on hand to celebrate the achievements to date. He spoke about the importance of corporate support for protecting natural habitat in New Brunswick. The Corporate Leaders in Conservation program provides businesses with the opportunity to play a critical role in NCC's conservation work with a minimum annual donation of $1,000.

Provincial funding, provided through the Regional Development Corporation, has been used by NCC to support land acquisitions, the ongoing care and management of the land and to ensure necessary science planning work is in place to protect critical habitat. NCC's conservation planning identifies sites which have the highest biodiversity values and are most in need of protection, so that investors' funds are focused where they will have the most impact.

The properties secured are widely distributed across New Brunswick and in most cases add significant habitat to existing NCC Nature Preserves. For example, NCC has added more than 150 acres (60 hectares) to the Johnson's Mills Shorebird Reserve, a site which supports more than 75 percent of the global population of Semipalmated Sandpipers. The Nature Conservancy of Canada has now protected more than 460 acres (182 hectares) at Johnson's Mills, thanks to private and government funding.

QUOTES:

"The land protected through the partnership with the Government of New Brunswick has given the Nature Conservancy of Canada an opportunity to act quickly and protect the most threatened habitats. Support from both the Corporate Leaders in Conservation and the provincial government is advancing critical science-based habitat conservation in New Brunswick," said Linda Stephenson, Regional Vice-President of the Nature Conservancy of Canada. "We are delighted that our corporate and political leaders have made such a strong commitment to the protection of our natural heritage for the sake of generations to come."

"This partnership will result in the long-term protection of New Brunswick's natural treasures," said Graham. "We are taking concrete action to protect species at risk, their habitat, and the scenic beauty that so many associate with this province."

LEARN MORE

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is the nation's leading land conservation organization, working to protect our most important natural areas and the plants and animals they sustain.

Since 1962 NCC and its partners have helped to protect more than 2 million acres (800,000 hectares), coast to coast. By investing in conservation we are ensuring that our natural world remains a home for wildlife, a haven for recreation and a vital resource that cleans the air we breathe and the water we drink. Through strong partnerships NCC works to safeguard our natural areas so that our children and grandchildren will have the chance to enjoy them.

For more information, visit www.natureconservancy.ca.

SOURCE Nature Conservancy of Canada

For further information: For further information: Bruce Macfarlane, Regional Development Corporation, Province of New Brunswick, Phone: (506) 444-4606; Crystal Folkins, Communications Manager, Atlantic Nature Conservancy of Canada, Phone: (506) 450-6010 x234, Cell: (506) 292-5118, Crystal.Folkins@natureconservancy.ca, B-roll and stunning still photos available upon request via FTP.

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Nature Conservancy of Canada

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