Nova Scotia Environment – December 29, 2015 11:05 AM
The recent designation of more than 100 properties as wilderness areas, nature reserves and parks means that 12.26 per cent of Nova Scotia’s landmass is now protected.
That meets the province’s goal under the Environmental Goals and Sustainable Prosperity Act to protect at least 12 per cent by 2015.
The newly designated sites were identified through the province’s parks and protected areas plan after consulting with municipalities, the Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq, community groups, industry, non-government organizations and hundreds of individuals.
“This is a significant achievement,” said Environment Minister Randy Delorey. “Nova Scotia is one of the most beautiful places in the country with our extensive coastline, pristine lakes, and parks. It is important that this land be kept natural to protect biodiversity and provide places for all of us to enjoy now and into the future.
“That is why we will continue to look at other areas for protection and work with partners to help manage and realize the benefits of these protected areas.”
The province’s consultations helped work out the details for each site, considering access roads, trails and off-highway vehicles routes, campsite leases, rights-of-way, forestry, petroleum and mineral exploration, and other interests.
“Nova Scotia has taken a significant step forward for conservation,” said Chris Miller, national conservation biologist with the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society. “These sites will go a long way to protecting important coastal areas, significant wetlands, intact watersheds, rare species habitat, and old forests.”
Recent designations include
— Rogues Roost Wilderness Area, Halifax Co.
— Medway Lakes Wilderness Area, Annapolis Co.
— Kluscap Wilderness Area, Victoria Co.
— Harrison Woods Nature Reserve, Cumberland Co.
— Dunraven Bog Nature Reserve, Queens Co.
Each site has unique characteristics worth protecting, such as old forests, rare and endangered plants and animals, seabird
populations and wildlife habitat, drinking-water supplies, canoe routes and opportunities for healthy outdoor recreation and tourism.
The province is creating three new parks: Indian Fields Provincial Park in Shelburne County, and Lake Charlotte and West Dover Provincial Parks, both in Halifax Regional Municipality.
More land is also being added to existing provincial parks at Cape Smokey, Five Islands, and Taylor Head.
Learn more about the designations at novascotia.ca/parksandprotectedareas/plan/progress