Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

August 23, 2007 10:27 ET

Canada's new Government Announces $354,000 in Funding for Ecological Goods and Services Study in P.E.I.

CHARLOTTETOWN, PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND--(Marketwire - Aug. 23, 2007) - The Honourable Christian Paradis, Secretary of State for Agriculture, on behalf of the Honourable Gerry Ritz, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board, today announced $354,000 in funding for a pilot project with the PEI Wildlife Federation aimed at enhancing environmental protection activities.

"Canada's New Government is committed to preserving and protecting the environment and assisting our farmers to do so as well," said Mr. Paradis. "This pilot project will help to measure the feasibility of new agri-environmental practices that promote environmental protection, and identify incentives to encourage farmers to adopt these new approaches."

"Members of the agricultural community are important stewards of the land and have invested heavily in environmental initiatives," said Prince Edward Island Minister of Agriculture Neil LeClair. "This pilot project will provide critical information to establish the value of the ecological goods and services farmers provide."

The Souris and Area Branch of the PEI Wildlife Federation in partnership with the Trout River Environmental Committee will receive funds to study the excess nutrients in waterways and sedimentation in many Island streams as part of the watershed study. The Federation represents the angling, hunting, conservation, naturalist and community sectors.

"We are very pleased to participate in a pilot project that has the potential to enhance waterways in our respective watersheds," said Fred Cheverie, coordinator of the Souris River Watershed Committee. "We are also pleased to have farming operations that are willing to participate in such activities for the betterment of our environment."

The Prince Edward Island government is also providing $135,000 in in-kind support and funding for evaluation, monitoring and technical activities.

The agri-business Syngenta is investing $20,000 towards the pilot over two years. In-kind support will also come from the Prince Edward Island Federation of Agriculture, Ducks Unlimited and Cavendish Agri-Services.

John Colwill, President of the P.E.I. Federation of Agriculture, said the Federation is pleased to partner on this worthwhile project. "Farmers across the Island try their best to manage their land in a sustainable manner. This environmental stewardship also provides significant benefits to society," said Colwill. "This project will help measure the monetary value of these services and provide data on what is reasonable for society to invest to ensure the Island's environment is protected."

This study is one of the Ecological Goods and Services pilot projects being carried out across the country that will assist in measuring the feasibility and benefits of various approaches to environmental stewardship.

The funding for the pilot project comes from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food (ACAAF) Program. ACAAF is a national funding program designed to help implement innovative projects that will benefit the production and processing sector, bolster the industry's capacity to address current and emerging issues and position the agriculture and agri-food industry to seize new market opportunities.

In addition, earlier this spring the Prime Minister announced a $225 million investment in a national campaign to acquire and preserve ecologically sensitive land. Conservation groups will be identified to work towards this common goal. Also, tax exemptions are available for donations of ecologically sensitive lands to provide further incentives for Canadians to help preserve our environment.

Contact Information

  • Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Media Relations
    613-759-7972
    1-866-345-7972
    or
    P.E.I. Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Aquaculture
    Wayne MacKinnon
    Communications
    902-368-4888
    or
    Office of the Honourable Christian Paradis
    Mark Quinlan
    Director of Communications
    613-759-1107