Species at Risk Protection in Canada is Entering a New Century

Species at Risk Protection in Canada is Entering a New Century with the Emergency Order on the Western Chorus Frog Ottawa – The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society welcomes the Canadian government’s decision to take an emergency order to protect the remaining habitat of the chorus frog in La Prairie Quebec. This is a landmark decision for Species at Risk Act in Canada, as it is the first decree to target habitat found on private lands. “This decision sends an important message,” says Éric Hébert-Daly, Executive Director of the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS), “while the spirit of the federal law is first and foremost to act in tandem with provincial laws, it also provides a safety net for our species at risk in situations where there are serious shortcomings in the content or in the enforcement of existing laws.” The battle for the survival and recovery of the chorus frog in Canada, and Montérégie in particular, has not yet been won however. “As a next step, we would like to see the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change to continue to evaluate protective measures in place to protect critical habitat designated in December 2015, and quickly publish in the species at risk public registry the reports of progress as required by the law,” said Alain Brauchaud, Executive Director of the Quebec chapter of CPAWS. “We know the Quebec government needs to review its regulations on wildlife habitats, especially on private lands, and that municipalities may also need to be involved. It’s important that steps in this direction continue and are tracked.” The publication of these reports are required for any species where critical habitat has been identified and is not yet protected. “The publication of these reports is an important part of implementing the Species at Risk Act,” says Florence Daviet, CPAWS’ Forest Program Director. “It is a key mechanism to ensure transparency and accountability by all governments for the protection of our species at risk. We have also been calling for these reports to be completed with regards to the boreal woodland caribou.” “We are finally seeing indications that the Species at Risk Act is being increasingly implemented as intended in Canada,” said Hébert Daly. “Its implementation is key for Canada to be able to protect its biodiversity, and key for all Canadians.” -30- For interviews: Alain Branchaud Executive Director, SNAP Québec 514 278-7627 ext. 226 or 514-603-3085 (mobile) Éric Hébert-Daly Executive Director, CPAWS National 613-569-7226 ext. 228