Parks Canada

Parks Canada

August 21, 2009 14:42 ET

Canada Invites the World Heritage Committee to Send a Mission to Canada to Showcase Canadian Leadership in Conservation

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Aug. 21, 2009) - The Honourable Jim Prentice, Canada's Environment Minister and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, today announced that the Government of Canada has officially invited experts from the UNESCO World Heritage Centre and the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) to visit Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park World Heritage Site in September.

On June 26, the 21-member World Heritage Committee reviewed the state of conservation of Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park World Heritage site, one of 177 sites reviewed at this year's meeting in Seville, Spain. The Committee unanimously adopted a decision that recognized the strength of the cooperation between Canada and the USA in their management of the Peace Park.

The decision reflected suggestions made by Canada and the USA and the site visit will examine the conservation efforts of the two countries. The mission report will be used to prepare a report on the state of conservation of the property to be submitted to the World Heritage Committee in 2010.

Such visits, which are carried out at many World Heritage sites around the world on a regular basis, are a valuable tool to assist in efforts to conserve these properties. "Canada welcomes this visit and looks forward to the opportunity to showcase our stewardship of this internationally important natural treasure," said Prentice.

In the decision, the Committee also noted that there is currently no coal mining or coal bed methane extraction in the Peace Park or the adjacent Flathead Valley of British Columbia. The Committee further encouraged Canada to continue to employ its federal and provincial environmental assessment processes in the context of any future development.

"The Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park World Heritage site is one of the greatest testaments to the shared conservation ideals between the Canada and USA, and we are committed to working together to protect this magnificent area for future generations," said Mr. Rick Casson, Member of Parliament for Lethbridge.

Designated as the world's first International Peace Park in 1932, Waterton-Glacier was designated as a World Heritage site in 1995. The park is recognized for its outstanding mountain scenery and exceptionally rich plant and animal life. It is one of Canada's fifteen World Heritage sites and one of only 200 World Heritage sites with globally important natural heritage values.

The World heritage Committee is responsible for the World Heritage List, composed of outstanding cultural and natural sites, which are considered to be the common heritage of humanity.

Contact Information

  • Parks Canada
    Communications Branch
    Michele Monette
    Media Relations Officer