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Parks Canada decision on proposed resort at Jasper’s Maligne Lake contravenes park rules: CPAWS

EDMONTON – In response to Parks Canada’s decision to allow Maligne Tours’ proposal for a resort at Jasper National Parks’ iconic Maligne Lake to proceed, CPAWS is warning that the decision violates park policy and could put park wildlife at greater risk. Thirteen of fourteen proposals put forward by Maligne Tours are being allowed to proceed, including commercial tent cabin accommodation that directly violates the Jasper National Park Management Plan and other Parks Canada policies designed to limit commercial accommodations in Rocky Mountain national parks.

“Although the hotel building is not going ahead, Parks Canada is unfortunately allowing the proposed resort tent cabins to proceed in violation of park policy,” says Alison Ronson, Executive Director of CPAWS Northern Alberta. “If this goes ahead, it could set a precedent that would open the floodgates to more commercial development in the Rocky Mountain National Parks and put endangered wildlife like caribou, at greater risk.”

Parks Canada policy prohibits the development of any new commercial accommodation in the Rocky Mountains national parks outside park town sites in order to limit commercial development and protect wildlife. Allowing an exception to this rule for Maligne Tours would make it much more difficult for the Agency to adhere to its policy elsewhere.

The announcement also makes clear that the proposal contravenes the Jasper National Park Management Plan, and that Parks Canada intends to change the plan to allow the development to go ahead.

“Amending a park management plan to allow commercial development to proceed is a dangerous precedent that could open the door to more commercial development in all our national parks,” notes Ronson.

CPAWS is concerned that the proposal would put sensitive wildlife like the endangered Maligne Valley caribou herd at greater risk. This endangered herd has already been reduced to only 4 individuals and is clinging to survival.

For interviews, contact:

Danielle Pendlebury (CPAWS NAB),

View Parks Canada News Release and Backgrounder