A Cranbrook area property home to a wide variety of wildlife has been acquired by the Province, thanks to a partnership with the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC).
The property consists of:
- 0.6 hectares at Elizabeth Lake Conservation area near Cranbrook, which includes a bird sanctuary, hiking trails and wetland and shoreline habitat.
It is among four ecologically-sensitive properties the Province recently assumed ownership of through the partnership with the NCC. These properties all contain diverse habitats.
“It was important that the Province stepped in with the funds to ensure that Elizabeth Lake remains undeveloped," said Bill Bennett, MLA Kootenay East.
"Thanks also to the Nature Conservancy for helping out.”
The additional properties include 64 hectares along the Fraser River near McBride as part of the West Twin Protected Area, featuring fish and wildlife habitat, including a rare stand of cottonwood; 63 hectares of low-lying wetland, upland forest, trails and interpretive signage at the Natasha Boyd Conservation Area, near McBride, and 3.2 hectares of upland forest, including second-growth coastal Douglas fir forest, at Cusheon Cove in Ruckle Provincial Park on Saltspring Island.
Formerly owned by The Land Conservancy of BC (TLC), these four high-priority conservation properties were transferred from TLC to the Nature Conservancy of Canada last year, as part of TLC’s debt management plan.
The Province’s recent acquisition supports the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s efforts to ensure the ongoing conservation status of 26 ecologically-important properties. The arrangement required a cash contribution to assist in the repayment of TLC’s creditors.
The properties are in addition to four other properties the Province previously acquired through its $1 million commitment to preserving and protecting conservation lands, announced in October 2015.
Those acquisitions included two properties along the Cowichan River on Vancouver Island, the Similkameen River Pines property in the South Okanagan and the Woods Family property near Castlegar.
- In British Columbia, there are 1,032 provincial parks, recreation areas, conservancies, ecological reserves and protected areas covering more than 14 million hectares or approximately 14.4% of the provincial land base.
- One of the largest park systems in the world, British Columbia has the highest percentage of its land base dedicated to protected areas of all provincial Canadian jurisdictions.
- Since 1962, NCC and its partners have helped protect more than 1.1 million hectares of land across Canada.