Manitoba Earns B Grade from
World Wildlife Fund Canada
The grade reflects efforts by First Nations, the Mining Association of Manitoba, the Heavy Construction Industry Association, and other partners who participated in the review of sites. Total land protection amounted to over 200,000 hectares, with water and islands also included.
Currently more than fifty areas are under review for protection,
with consultations ongoing. Three of these became park reserves in April
2000. They were based on ecological design, nominated by a First Nation
community, and reviewed by other stakeholders.
"All signs indicate that the Manitoba government will
continue to make important protected areas decisions. The government renewed
its Action Plan for a Network of Protected Areas and extended the agreement
with First Nations for establishment of protected areas, while creating
new park reserves. These steps show an understanding that in creating
new protected areas we are securing both our natural heritage and the
economy for future generations," said Gaile Whelan Enns, Manitoba
Endangered Spaces Coordinator for WWF.
The Endangered Spaces Campaign - a ten year national campaign for establishment of protected area networks - ends on Canada Day, July 1, 2000. WWF Canada issued a challenge to the Manitoba government in November l999 to protect one million hectares before July 1, 2000. Recent decisions to create these park reserves is a positive step to meeting this challenge. WWF Canada will comment in two months time regarding the status of protected area decisions in Manitoba. The Lowlands national park components, and other areas, including First Nations nominations, are a priority this spring.