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Articles by Alison Woodley

Alison is CPAWS' National Director, Parks Program. She has more than two decades of experience in the conservation field, including eight years as CPAWS’ National Manager of the Protected Areas Program, and Northern Conservation Specialist. She coordinated CPAWS’ nation-wide campaign to protect the South Nahanni Watershed, and contributed to many other national park and northern campaigns.

Alison holds a BSc in Forestry from the University of New Brunswick, and a Masters in Geography from the University of Waterloo, specializing in parks and protected areas and community-based tourism planning. Alison is also an active volunteer with the local environmental group, ACRE, in her home community of Chelsea, QC where she lives with her husband and two teenage daughters.

Jasper National Park needs your help


Spending precious time and resources fighting infrastructure projects which should never have been proposed in the first place is a frustrating but necessary part of our job at CPAWS. However, I'm always encouraged by the passion Canadians show in defending our national parks from harm. Over and over, Canadians have stood up and said no to unnecessary and harmful development in our parks, and yes to keeping them wild.

UNESCO calls on Canada to address threats to Wood Buffalo National Park


On Canada Day, while most of us were barbequing hamburgers and veggie dogs, and enjoying family and community celebrations of our magnificent country, members of the Mikisew Cree First Nation from northeastern Alberta were in Bonn, Germany where UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee was holding its annual meeting.

World Parks Congress: rich in information and inspiring connections


My day started by attending an interesting conservation science session on achieving biodiversity outcomes in protected areas. There's a broad concensus that parks do work to protect biodiversity, but that their success depends in part on investing in strong management measures. John Robinson from the Wildlife Conservation Society reminded us that there are many large mammals, like tigers and elephants, whose ranges have collapsed into parks and protected areas, which act as their last refuges, and important sources for these species to return to the larger landscape. He also pointed out the importance of managing parks as part of the broader landscape because they are generally not big enough on their own to sustain wide- ranging species. This is certainly the case in Canada, and one of the reasons CPAWS is working on large landscape scale conservation initiatives like the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative, and the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement.

CPAWS Rocks the World Parks Congress!


On Friday night CPAWS co-hosted a hugely successful ”Nature Needs Half” event with two international organizations -- the WILD Foundation and the Zoological Society of London (ZSL). Word on the street is that it was the fun event of the Congress so far! Hundreds of people showed up, and Canadian hip hop artist Baba Brinkman pumped up the crowd with songs from his “Rap Guide to Wilderness”.

Will a national urban park strengthen protection for the Rouge?


It’s been an interesting few months for the proposal to create Canada’s first National Urban Park in the Rouge Watershed in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). In June, the federal government tabled draft legislation for the proposed park in the House of Commons, and then released a draft park management plan for public review and comment.

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