The Nature Conservancy of Canada launches exciting step towards the protection of Nova Scotia's biodiversity



    HALIFAX, Oct. 23 /CNW/ - The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) unveiled
today one of the most ambitious conservation planning projects ever initiated
in Nova Scotia: the Conservation Blueprint for the Northern
Appalachian/Acadian Ecoregion, the first comprehensive analysis of its kind.
    This Blueprint determines natural areas of special concern that have not
yet been protected through existing conservation measures. The document will
help NCC focus on the species and ecological communities of highest priority
in Nova Scotia, and will provide a solid scientific basis for identifying the
most crucial properties for conservation. It also provides a framework for
other organizations and partners to work together to conserve the natural
heritage and biodiversity in the region.
    "With the completion of this six-year project, the Blueprint represents a
major step forward for conservation in the Atlantic Region," said Linda
Stephenson, NCC's Regional Vice President, Atlantic Region. "Identifying the
most significant areas of biodiversity is the critical first step in devising
effective conservation strategies and building consensus on where we need to
focus our efforts."
    The Blueprint also evaluates past and existing conservation efforts and
the effectiveness of these efforts. The resulting gap analysis identifies
biodiversity hotspots which have not yet been effectively protected and should
be considered when planning for land use, resource management and
conservation.
    "The Government of Nova Scotia is pleased to be part of this initiative
that will help guide the way for planning and developing strategies to protect
Nova Scotia's natural heritage while encouraging sustainable development,"
said Minister Morse, Nova Scotia's Minister of Natural Resources today at the
event. "The Blueprint also provides a framework that will encourage
collaboration and help to focus our conservation efforts."
    "Conserving Nova Scotia's biodiversity will help protect what sustains us
so we will continue to enjoy clean water and air, an abundance of wildlife and
places for recreation in Nova Scotia for generations to come," said the
Honourable Mark Parent, Minister of Environment and Labour for Nova Scotia.
    The results of the Blueprint will be shared as widely as possible among
conservation practitioners and decision makers, with the goal of promoting
cooperative approaches to biodiversity conservation in the Northern
Appalachian/Acadian Ecoregion.
    "This document significantly advances NCC's efforts to conserve Nova
Scotia's biodiversity and supports the development of a conservation vision
for Atlantic Canada," said Steve Rankin, Government & Public Relations Manager
for Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline. "Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline is pleased
to have supported this science driven approach to conservation."

    The Nature Conservancy of Canada is a non-profit, non-confrontational
organization that takes a business-like approach to land conservation and the
preservation of biological diversity. Its plan of action involves partnership
building and entering into creative conservation solutions with any
individual, corporation, community group, conservation organization or
government body that shares its passion. Since 1962, NCC and its supporters
have protected nearly two million acres of ecologically significant land
nationwide. Visit www.natureconservancy.ca.

    NCC has scientists available for media interviews, stunning still photos
available via FTP, and B-roll available to be couriered.





For further information:

For further information: Crystal Folkins, Communications Manager,
Atlantic Region, Nature Conservancy of Canada, Tel: 1-887-231-4400 ext. 234 or
(506) 450-6010, Cell: (506) 292-5118, Crystal.Folkins@natureconservancy.ca; OR
Philip Greyson, Acting Coordinator, Conservation Science, Nature Conservancy
of Canada, Tel: 1-887-231-4400 ext. 230 or (506) 450-6010,
www.natureconservancy.ca

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