These reports summarise the number and amount of federal, provincial, and territorial government protected areas* in Canada at this time. Both terrestrial and marine areas are included, although all freshwater areas are currently not distinct from the terrestrial records. Canada’s land territory is 9.98 million km2. Canada’s marine territory includes Internal Waters, Territorial Seas, and the Exclusive Economic Zone and covers a total of 5.75 million km2.

Download the PDF version of CARTS Report

(Current as of December 31, 2017)

(Current as of December 31, 2017)

Data Publication and Limitation Notes

While every attempt has been made to provide current data from each jurisdiction, changes on the ground are ongoing and the accuracy of the summations cannot be guaranteed. Each jurisdiction should be contacted individually if there are any questions or concerns.

The methodology used here is unique in that jurisdictions provide their digital geospatial databases of protected areas, as far as privacy concerns allow, and queries are applied to the final compilation. For this and other reasons, the results here are not directly comparable to values reported in various products from previous years. We hope this more transparent procedure will ensure a more consistent level of accuracy among jurisdictions and an improved overall national result.

* Canada is a signatory to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), an international treaty that requires, among other things, reporting on protected areas. Therefore, the CCEA follows the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) definition of protected areas and reports only areas that fall under that definition. The definition, as found in the IUCN Guidelines for Applying Protected Area Management Categories, is:

A protected area is: “A clearly defined geographical space, recognised, dedicated and managed, through legal or other effective means, to achieve the long-term conservation of nature with associated ecosystem services and cultural values”.

Contact the CARTS Technical Team via the CCEA Secretariat if you have questions, concerns, or any other comments.