World Heritage Committee decision commends Canada’s plan to protect Wood Buffalo National Park World Heritage Site
Ottawa, Jul 3 (Canadian-Media): A comprehensive Action Plan to protect Wood Buffalo National Park World Heritage Site (WBNPWHS) was developed the Government of Canada, in collaboration with provincial and territorial governments, Indigenous communities, and stakeholders at the request of the World Heritage Committee (WHC) to ensure its safety for current and future generations, media reports said.
Wood Buffalo National Park. Image credit: Facebook page
Implementation of the Action Plan includes over 140 measures to increase protection of ecosystems, improve understanding and water management of the Peace-Athabasca Delta, strengthen relationships with Indigenous partners, and support the recovery of iconic species for which the World Heritage Site was established, such as Whooping Cranes and Wood Bison.
Canada is home to several of UNESCO World Heritage sites and the Government of Canada is committed to their ongoing protection.
The World Heritage Committee’s annual meeting is currently taking place in Baku, Azerbaijan
World Heritage sites represent some of humanity’s most outstanding achievements and nature’s most inspiring creations.
Today, at its annual meeting, the WHC adopted a decision on the state of conservation of WBNPWHS and did not inscribe Wood Buffalo National Park on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
The Government of Canada was aware that climate change and external development pressures are having serious impacts on the WBNPWHS at Peace Athabasca Delta.
Canada is taking measures including strengthening relationships with Indigenous peoples, protecting the ecological integrity of the park and surrounding ecosystems, and taking action to improve water management in the Peace Athabasca Delta and has invested $27.5 million through Budget 2018.
This funding is part of the historic $1.35 billion investment by the Government of Canada to protect Canada’s nature, parks, and wild spaces – a true legacy for our children and grandchildren.
Decision has been taken to create new Wildland Provincial Parks by the Government of Alberta in collaboration with Indigenous groups to conserve more than 6.7 million hectares of boreal forest, the largest protected boreal forest in the world. This would provide significant buffers and landscape connectivity to support the conservation of the Peace-Athabasca watershed and the recovery of iconic species such as Whooping Cranes and Wood Bison.
Through ongoing collective action with provincial, territorial, and Indigenous partners, the Government of Canada will preserve the Outstanding Universal Value of Wood Buffalo National Park World Heritage Site so that it remains a treasured place for generations to come.
“While we are pleased that the World Heritage Committee’s decision has recognized the... value of Wood Buffalo National Park World Heritage Site; there's a lot more work to do...Through ongoing collaboration and action, including with eleven Indigenous communities in the region, we will preserve Wood Buffalo National Park World Heritage Site for the benefit of Canadians and the world,” said Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada.