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CPAWS welcomes new national park for Nova Scotia

HALIFAX – The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) welcomes today’s announcement by the Government of Canada and the Nova Scotia government of the intention to establish a new national park in Nova Scotia for Sable Island. 

“Sable Island is a Canadian landmark”, says Chris Miller, a senior conservation manager for CPAWS based in Halifax.  “With its wild horses, immense dunes, and abundant wildlife it is paramount that one of the highest forms of wilderness protection be afforded the island”. 

In January of this year, a review was initiated examining which of two conservation options are preferable for Sable Island, including a national park or a national wildlife area.  Today’s announcement means that the government has selected the national park option.  Sable Island will be the first new national park created in Nova Scotia since 1967. 

During that review period, CPAWS teamed up with the Sable Island Green Horse Society and the Ecology Action Centre to call on the government to select the national park option.  

A national park offers stronger conservation measures for the island and would require the island to be managed for ecological integrity as a first priority.  It would also ensure an existing management framework is in place to conserve the island and would ensure a dedicated research program. 

“We applaud the federal government’s continued progress towards establishing new national parks in Canada,” says Alison Woodley, CPAWS’ National Conservation Director.  “In the past year alone, in addition to Sable Island, we have celebrated the six-fold expansion of Nahanni National Park, a long-awaited decision to create a new national park in the Mealy Mountains of Labrador, as well as progress on a number of other proposed national parks and marine conservation areas across the country.” 

CPAWS looks forward to an open and transparent public review process associated with establishing the national park on Sable Island. Through this process CPAWS will highlight the need to limit visitation and develop alternate visitor experiences.  The national park would also need to clearly restrict any oil and gas development from occurring on the island. 

For more information, contact:

Chris Miller
National Manager,
Wilderness Conservation and Climate Change
Canadian Park and Wilderness Society