Canada's Environment Minister Accepts Prestigious Award

VICTORIA, June 8, 2013 /CNW/ - Canada's Environment Minister and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, the Honourable Peter Kent today accepted the Canadian Wildlife Federation Past Presidents' Canadian Legislator Award for his leadership in establishing a Canadian first - the Rouge National Urban Park. The award was handed out at the Canadian Wildlife Federation's awards banquet in Victoria.

"I would like to thank the Canadian Wildlife Federation for their recognition of our conservation leadership in protecting Canada's natural treasures and providing unique opportunities for Canadians to connect with nature not only today, but well into the future," said Minister Kent. "Our Government is as committed as ever to our ongoing leadership in conservation, which is vital to ensuring the protection of our nation's diverse environment."

Since 2006, the Government of Canada has added almost 50,000 sq km to Parks Canada's network of protected areas, and made commitments that will result in the addition of another 100,000 sq km, a 54 percent increase. This includes the six-fold expansion of Nahanni National Park Reserve and the creation of the Gwaii Haanas National Marine Conservation Area Reserve and Haida Heritage Site. The Government has also tabled in Parliament Bill S-15 for the purpose of protecting Sable Island as Canada's 43rd national park under the Canada National Parks Act.

The Government of Canada announced, as part of Budget 2012, the creation of Rouge National Urban Park and committed $143.7M over ten years for park development and interim operations, and $7.6 million annually thereafter for continuing operations.

The Government of Canada, through Parks Canada is excited with this opportunity to establish Rouge National Urban Park as a place where nature, culture and agriculture can all be protected, appreciated, experienced and supported by Canadians. With 20 percent of the country's population residing within 100 km of the park, this "Canadian first" offers an unparalleled opportunity to expose a large number of Canadians to their natural and cultural heritage.

The Past Presidents' Canadian Legislator Award was established in 1988 by the past presidents of the Canadian Wildlife Federation. This award is presented annually to an elected legislator in recognition of a significant contribution toward the conservation of wildlife in Canada.

SOURCE: Parks Canada

For further information:

Office of the Minister of the Environment
819-997-1441

Media Relations
Parks Canada
819-953-8371
www.twitter.com/parkscanada


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