As you may have seen in the media in early April, the Alberta government has released a draft land use plan for the Lower Athabasca region. Over the next two months, the public will have an opportunity to submit comments on the plan to the government.
CPAWS is studying the government's proposal and will respond to it in detail within the next few weeks. We've been seeking a plan for the Lower Athabasca that will honour commitments to aboriginal people and protect the health of its ecosystems. This is an area that is under intense industrial pressure. It's also of critical importance to at least six threatened Boreal woodland caribou herds.
Our initial impression: the government's proposed plan does not meet all of our goals. For example, it doesn't include conservation areas for many of the threatened caribou herds in the Lower Athabasca.
We'll be letting you know more about our assessment of the plan shortly.
CPAWS and three other national environmental groups released the results of a survey today that we sent to all of the major parties during the election period, asking them where they stand on wilderness conservation, and other issues including climate change and reducing toxic chemicals. All parties except the Conservatives responded to the poll and we were pleased to see that all are committed to doing more to protect public land and water - especially increasing the amount of marine protected areas and national parks.
There's an amazing place in Nova Scotia called Chignecto. Here, you'll find miles and miles of wilderness coastline on the shores of the Bay of Fundy and some of the largest remaining intact forests in the province. If you're lucky, you may also spot a mainland moose, which is an endangered species in Nova Scotia.
The Nova Scotia government has promised to protect Chignecto by creating a "large" protected wilderness area on these public lands, but so far has not yet released a proposed boundary for the protected area. What's left outside of the boundary will likely be clearcut.
To find out more about Chignecto and how you can help protect this amazing place, check out: www.cpawsns.org/chignecto
Whether we like it or not, the federal election campaign is in full swing as the country prepares to go to the polls on May 2nd.
As candidates make their rounds and engage with their constituents, we suggest that you ask them one simple question:
If elected, will you support protection of at least half of Canada’s land and water?
Find out where your politicians stand on wilderness conservation and make your environmental concerns a priority.
Learn more: What your federal government can do to protect more of Canada’s precious and irreplaceable wilderness.
Let us know what your candidates have to say!