Environment Canada

Environment Canada

October 14, 2010 10:21 ET

Government of Canada Investing in Community Action to Preserve Local Habitat and Species at Risk in Nova Scotia

BRIDGEWATER, NOVA SCOTIA--(Marketwire - Oct. 14, 2010) - Gerald Keddy, Member of Parliament for South Shore—St. Margaret's, on behalf of Canada's Environment Minister, Jim Prentice, today announced funding from the Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk. In total, $768,952 in federal funding will support environmental action focusing on conservation and protection of species at risk and their habitats, helping to preserve Canada's biodiversity.

"As part of the International Year of Biodiversity, Habitat Stewardship Program project funding in Nova Scotia will generate awareness of an array of important and at-risk or protected species across the province, such as the roseate tern and the blanding's turtle," said Member of Parliament Gerald Keddy. "This funding will also promote land conservation and foster industry and community engagement in activities that protect land and marine species and their habitats."

"Through the Habitat Stewardship Program, the Government of Canada is supporting local groups and agencies to do on-the-ground, critical work for our ecosystems and species at risk," said Greg Kerr, Member of Parliament for West Nova. "Habitat Stewardship Program work will help to preserve our natural heritage for generations to come."

"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 World Wildlife Fund Canada 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 unintentional catch of whale, turtle and shark species at risk in Atlantic Canadian waters is an ongoing threat to the recovery of these species. World Wildlife Fund Canada is working together with fishers and their regional associations, managers and seafood traders to encourage stewardship and implement measures that protect the marine environment and these species within it. This project will enable fishers to apply their knowledge and experience to identify solutions that will significantly reduce the unintentional catch of non-target species at risk in Atlantic Canadian waters.

"Habitat Stewardship Program funding is critical for protecting marine species, such as whales, turtles and sharks," said Dr. Robert Rangeley, vice-president of the World Wildlife Fund Canada – Atlantic Region. "Together with fishers and other collaborators, the World Wildlife Fund is working to reduce the unintentional catch of non-targeted species in commercial fishing gear in Atlantic Canadian waters. For many years, Habitat Stewardship Program funding has enabled us to work for solutions to recover and protect species at risk. The valuable support from the Habitat Stewardship Program has been critical to the conservation successes we have achieved."

The goal of the Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk is to contribute to the recovery and protection of species listed as endangered, threatened or of special concern under the Species at Risk Act

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 efforts to reduce the entanglement of species at risk in fishing gear, and the 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, Steller sea lion, swift fox, and 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. 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