Environment Canada

Environment Canada

September 13, 2010 13:36 ET

Government of Canada Investing in Community Action to Preserve Local Habitat and Species at Risk in British Columbia's Okanagan

KELOWNA, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Sept. 13, 2010) - The Honourable Stockwell Day, President of the Treasury Board and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, on behalf of Canada's Environment Minister, the Honourable Jim Prentice, today announced funding from the Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk. In total, $418,907 in federal funding will support 11 projects focusing on conservation and protection of species at risk and their habitats, helping to preserve Canada's biodiversity.

"Because 2010 is the International Year of Biodiversity, I am particularly encouraged to see strong action at the community level promoting environmental stewardship in the Okanagan region," said Minister Day. "Providing funding to local organizations means British Columbians will see impacts in their own neighbourhoods."

"These projects will help to protect Canada's rich biodiversity for generations to come, said Minister Prentice. "The Government of Canada is proud to support these 11 worthy projects through the Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk. Your actions, large or small, will help to protect the abundance and variety of life that is part of our natural heritage."

The Land Conservancy of British Columbia (TLC) is one of 11 recipients, and it will receive $122,128 in federal funding for its South Okanagan Similkameen (SOS) Stewardship Program: Landowner Contact and Species at Risk Stewardship. This program provides stewardship assistance to private landowners to manage their properties to improve the survival and recovery of species at risk. The TLC has been conducting stewardship projects in the Okanagan area for about 16 years.

With over one-third of the land-base in the South Okanagan-Similkameen being privately owned, both the funding we receive and landowner participation are crucial to the recovery of many species at risk" said Alyson Skinner, area manager for the Land Conservancy of BC in the Okanagan. "Our work with landowners include fencing, native plant restoration, and stewardship agreements as well ecological assessments and management plans which assist in the recovery of a number of species at risk," she said. 

National projects that will receive funding this year include stewardship actions to conserve habitat for plant species at risk, negotiations with landowners to develop voluntary Land Care Agreements, targeted educational outreach to reduce species at risk entanglement in fishing gear, and enhancement of water quality and aquatic habitat on private lands to benefit aquatic species at risk. They will be undertaken with many partners such as agricultural producers, private landowners, and commercial fishers. These projects will benefit many species at risk, including the North Atlantic Right Whale, the Steller Sea Lion, the Swift Fox, and the Small White Leek.

The Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk is administered by Environment Canada and managed cooperatively with Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the Parks Canada Agency. The goal of the Program is to contribute to the recovery and protection of species listed as endangered, threatened or of special concern under the Species at Risk Act

More information on the Species at Risk Act and the Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk can be found on the Internet at: http://www.sararegistry.gc.ca/ or http://www.ec.gc.ca/hsp-pih/default.asp?lang=En&n=59BF488F-1.

For more information and to view a backgrounder on this announcement, please visit the Web site of Environment Canada, at http://www.ec.gc.ca/.

(Également offert en français)

Contact Information

  • Office of the Minister of the Environment
    Pascale Boulay
    Press Secretary
    819-997-1441
    or
    Canada's Environment Minister Twitter page:
    http://twitter.com/jimprentice
    or
    Environment Canada
    Media Relations
    819-934-8008 or 1-888-908-8008
    or
    Environment Canada's Facebook page:
    www.facebook.com/environmentcan