Nature Conservancy of Canada announced this month that in partnership with the Government of Canada and with the support of other donors it has secured the conservation of more than 15,000 hectares on the historic Kenauk property (the Seigneurie Papineau) between Montreal and Ottawa.
This acquisition of land home to more than 170 species – containing vital habitat for endangered and at-risk species such as the grey wolf, black bear, and black maple – is another step forward in the many that the Nature Conservancy of Canada, and other organizations like it, have taken towards securing Canada’s natural heritage and ecological health.
Since 1962 the Nature Conservancy of Canada has secured the conservation of more than 2.8 million acres of land Canada-wide with the pace of conservation speeding up exponentially over the past decades.
The properties selected by the Nature Conservancy are done so on a scientific basis, by trying to select the key areas within a natural zone that are vital to its continued function. These areas are meant to be sectioned off from developments, or resource extraction, or human influence in most ways. They are meant to stay wild for wild’s sake.
By preserving these key habitats legally in perpetuity, the Nature Conservancy is making a tangible impact on the health of the natural areas surrounding these places. They will forever be set aside for the express purpose of helping to maintain the health of the ecosystem they support – a life line for nature that cannot be broken.
Eco-conservation is no longer just about preserving the most pristine and beautiful habitats worldwide for humans to experience but now more focused on the value of preserving nature for its own benefit. Organizations such as the Nature Conservancy, called land trusts have been a key player in ensuring that sensitive and unique natural areas are conserved for their intrinsic ecological value.
The shift in mentality from understanding land as simply useful for human consumption can now be felt within the eddies of how we as a society choose to act. It is not hard to imagine as technology and sustainability intersect, decreasing our need for intensive land use, that this idea will become all the more mainstream.
We are beginning as a society to understand ourselves as a part of nature, to understand that just as we have needs that nature provides that so nature has needs for itself in order to maintain its ability to sustain itself.
Announcements such as the one made by the Nature Conservancy this month prove that we, through our government, and through private donations as well are willing to ensure that nature has a place to flourish in our society, and that its intrinsic value is important not just as something for human being to enjoy, but as something for us to preserve.
Brendan can be reached at:
Email: Bgsuch.env @ gmail.com
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