Significant natural heritage lands to be conserved



    Ontario Heritage Trust approves applications for funding

    TORONTO, Sept. 12 /CNW/ - Today, the Ontario Heritage Trust announced the
approval of four more funding applications to acquire significant natural
heritage lands through its Natural Spaces Land Acquisition and Stewardship
Program.
    "Ontario's natural heritage is a precious resource," said The Honourable
Lincoln M. Alexander, Chairman of the Ontario Heritage Trust. "By bringing
together willing landowners and conservation partners, we are working together
to ensure that these lands are protected."
    The four approved applications were submitted by conservation authorities
and non-government private conservation organizations. The proposed land
acquisitions include approximately 177 hectares (nearly 436 acres) of
provincially significant natural heritage lands. The Trust's financial
contribution to these proposed land acquisitions is $1 million, to be matched
by the partners. The properties and conservation partners will be announced at
a later date, once the acquisitions are finalized.
    "Securing and enhancing a system of natural heritage areas helps us
protect Ontario's rich natural diversity and meet the challenges of climate
change," said Natural Resources Minister Donna Cansfield. "Through ongoing
funding, this government is supporting the efforts of partners across the
province to conserve ecologically significant lands."
    The Natural Spaces Land Acquisition and Stewardship Program supports the
acquisition of natural heritage lands - which the Trust may hold title to
directly or protect through a natural heritage conservation easement - and
land stewardship activities on newly acquired lands. This was the third round
of funding approved through the program. To date, the Ontario Heritage Trust
has approved 54 applications.
    "Ontario's green spaces are an important part of our legacy," said Aileen
Carroll, Minister of Culture. "Protecting the province's natural heritage
ensures that our unique landscapes are preserved for the future and supports a
healthy environment."

    The Ontario Heritage Trust is an agency of the Government of Ontario
dedicated to identifying, preserving, protecting and promoting Ontario's
built, cultural and natural heritage for the benefit of present and future
generations.

    
    Quick facts:
    -   The Ontario Heritage Trust began implementing the Natural Spaces Land
        Acquisition and Stewardship Program in 2006 with a $6-million grant
        from the Ministry of Natural Resources.
    -   The program covers southern Ontario below the Canadian Shield.
    -   While 90 per cent of the land in this area is privately owned, it
        also home to Ontario's greatest diversity of plants and animals.

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For further information:

For further information: Catrina Colme, Marketing and Communications
Coordinator, Ontario Heritage Trust, Telephone: (416) 325-5074, E-mail:
catrina.colme@heritagetrust.on.ca


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