Protected areas

Cornerstones of biodiversity conservation
Country Profile: Canada
Disclaimer: The boundaries and names shown and the designations used on maps, graphics and publications do not imply official endorsement or acceptance by the United Nations. For more information please see:
pp www.protectedplanet.net

Focal point contact information

Mr. Pierre Beaufils
International Programs Advisor
Heritage Conservation and Commemoration Directorate
Parks Canada
Gatineau, Canada
E-Mail: pierre.beaufils [ at ] pc.gc.ca
Country Statistics
9984670 km² 9.40% 1.06%
total country area
terestrial area protected
(820860.02 km²)
territorial waters protected
(29076.94 km²)
Source: WDPA

Information on the reporting framework

Person completing the survey: Marc Johnson, International Programs Branch, Parks Canada
Survey completed on 4/23/2010
Multi-stakeholder advisory committee Yes No
Strategic action plan for implementing PoWPA Yes No
Lead agency responsible for implementing the action plan: Under Canada's constitution, responsibilities for natural resource management are shared between federal, provincial and territorial governments. As such, each of three federal departments and thirteen provincial and territorial protected areas agencies each manage their own protected areas networks. Each of these networks is managed independently, according to their own network objectives, systems plan, and strategic priorities.

Progress in Implementation

Element 1

Strengthening protected areas systems and sites

1.1 Progress in assessing ecological gaps and representativeness

1.2 Progress in assessing integration and connectivity

View assessment results

Progress: 2 - Activity fully underway

Variable progress amongst Canada's 16 protected areas agencies. Eight of Canada's sixteen protected areas agencies indicated as a significant constraint to their protected areas planning the lack of adequate tools for providing habitat connectivity

View actions to improve integration
Changed the legal status and/or governance in key connectivity areas

For example in 2009, the Manitoba government passed legislation to enable First Nations to develop land-use plans to provide interim and permanent legal protection of traditional lands on the east side of Lake Winnipeg. The legislation also provides a new legal tool to designate land on the east side of Lake Winnipeg as a special protected area.

Created new protected areas in key connectivity areas

For example in Quebec, the Rivière George protected area and the Monts Pyramides National Park reserve adjacent to it cover an area of approximately 9,900km2. The Quebec government is protecting this majestic river along its entire course, over about 350 kilometres from where it is joined by its major tributary, Rivière De Pas. This makes it Quebec’s largest protected river. These protected areas will help protect one of the Quebec Arctic’s largest caribou heards, with a population of 385,000 head.

Improved natural ressource management to improve connectivity

For example in 2008, Alberta established the “OH Ranch Heritage Rangeland” and developed cooperative management guidelines in partnership with a private landowner of OH Ranch, the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC), Southern Alberta Land Trust Society (SALTS) and multiple government departments. This public-private partnership represents the culmination of a collaborative effort to conserve Alberta’s native grassland ecosystems. Both the private land under conservation easement and the public land established as a heritage rangeland under protected areas legislation will continue to be managed as a single unit under one operating ranch to conserve the native grassland ecosystems. Ongoing management of the OH Ranch Heritage Rangeland represents a collaborative and cooperative effort between all partners.

Designated connectivity corridors and/or buffers

5 of Canada's 13 provincial and territorial governments have regulatory-based mechanisms for buffers or corridors

Created market incentives for promoting connectivity and PA

For example in recent years, governments have introduced incentives to encourage private land conservation. All provinces have legislation that allows for conservation easements. In addition, both the federal and some provincial governments offer tax benefits for land donations, while several provinces have established matched-funds partnerships with local land trusts. More recently, the federal government eliminated the tax on any capital gains on charitable donations of ecologically sensitive lands certified under the Ecological Gifts Program in order to remove tax and financial barriers to conservation efforts. In addition, in 2007, the Government of Canada announced that it would invest $225 million in a new Natural Areas Conservation Program to help non-profit, non-government organizations secure ecologically sensitive lands. And between 2002 and 2008, the Quebec government invested over $20 million in private lands conservation efforts, resulting in the acquisition by private conservation organizations of 166 properties representing over 14,000 ha. Almost 75% of these projects have contributed to habitat protection for species at risk.

Changed awareness and behavior of key stakeholders in key connectivity

For example, Fisheries and Oceans Canada has worked with the Canadian shipping industry to re-route some shipping lanes around the North Atlantic Right Whales' migratory path and establish a voluntary Area to be Avoided near the Roseway Basin south of Nova Scotia.

Improved laws and policies within or around key connectivity areas

For example, a number of Canadian agencies are incorporating the maintenance of ecological integrity as a key goal for their management planning efforts. Parks Canada has introduced EI monitoring and reporting programs for the entire national park system. In addition, in 2006, Ontario introduced a new Provincial Parks and Conservation Reserves Act that establishes the maintenance of ecological integrity as the first priority in the planning and management of Ontario’s system of provincial parks and conservation reserves.

Restored degraded areas in key connectivity areas

For example, in order to recreate the ecological processes linked to natural fires and grazing by large herbivores, Parks Canada and partner agencies initiated the Prairie Persists project in Grasslands National Park in Saskatchewan. Prairie grasslands are one of the most threatened ecosystems in the country. In May 2006, 71 plains bison were successfully released into the park. Combined with prescribed burns and efforts to reduce exotic and invasive species, these efforts are helping to restore the overall ecological integrity of this rare ecosystem, while bringing back one of the most enduring symbols of our nation’s history. An important element of this project’s success has been its focus on partnerships and engagement with local First Nations and with youth.

Changed land use planning, zoning and/or buffers in key connectivity areas

Integrated landuse planning measures are underway on some lands in about half of Canada’s provinces and territories. British Columbia’s Central and North Coast is a largely intact 64,000 km2 area of temperate rainforest on the coast of British Columbia. This area was the subject of protracted environmental campaigns throughout the 1990s and early 2000s. In February 2006, the province of British Columbia, along with First Nations, NGOs, and forest companies agreed to establish more than 100 new protected areas covering almost 18,000 km2 along the coast. The land use decisions also established 21 biodiversity areas, covering approximately 3000 km2. These areas contribute to the conservation of species, ecosystems and seral stage diversity by being located adjacent to protected areas and by limiting the land uses within the zones. Commercial timber harvesting and commercial hydro-electric power projects are prohibited within these areas. Other resource activities and land uses will continue, subject to existing regulations and legislation. Finally, the decision requires the joint development of an ecosystem-based management system for forestry operations across the balance of the planning area. Legislation to establish the protected areas, or conservancies, was completed in April 2008. In 2007, the Federal and BC Governments provided $60 million to support this initiative, matching contributions made by private donors and foundations. The resulting Conservation Investments and Incentives Initiative (CIII) fund will facilitate implementation of the land use plan over time by supporting economic diversification and conservation projects in coastal communities.

Removed barriers to connectivity and ecological functioning

Banff National Park's Bow Valley is a critical movement corridor for Grizzly bears and other wildlife. The Trans Canada Highway through Banff carries over 24,000 vehicles each day in summer, with attendant impacts on wildlife. As a result, the Park initiated the design of a highway twinning-mitigation project to keep key wildlife species like grizzly bears and their habitat connected. Twenty-four wildlife crossing structures have been constructed to date. There has also been a strong focus on public education with this project. Staff have visisted over 22 schools and engaged over 2,000 students in contests and projects to raise awareness.

Other actions to improve connectivity and integration

For example, a Federal Marine Protected Areas Strategy (FMPAS) was released in 2005 to enhance cooperation towards completion of the federal component of the national MPA system. The Strategy has four primary objectives: 1) to establish a more systematic approach to marine protected area planning and establishment; 2) to enhance collaboration with other jurisdictions (including Aboriginal peoples) for the management and monitoring of marine protected areas; 3) to increase the awareness, understanding and participation of Canadians in the marine protected areas network; and 4) to link Canada’s network of marine protected areas to continental and global networks.

1.3 Progress in assessing transboundary opportunities

View assessment results

Progress: 2 - Activity fully underway

Variable across Canada

View actions to improve transboundary protected areas
Created transboundary protected area/s

Canada - US transboudary protected areas include the following two World Heritage properties - Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park and Kluane / Wrangell-St Elias / Glacier Bay / Tatshenshini-Alsek

Contributed to the creation of regional-scale conservation corridors

For example, although not a government project, the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative (Y2Y) is a joint Canada-US not-for-profit organization that seeks to preserve and maintain the wildlife, native plants, wilderness and natural processes of the mountainous region from Yellowstone National Park to the Yukon Territory. Y2Y takes a scientific approach to conservation and is recognized as one of the planet's leading mountain conservation initiatives. Y2Y was officially established in 1997 and has two offices located in Canmore, Alberta and Bozeman, Montana.

Created enabling policies for the creation of transboundary protected
Established a multi-country coordination mechanism

Canada, the United States of America and Mexico signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation for Wilderness Conservation during WILD 9 in Merida, Mexico in November 2009. The MOU is the first intergovernmental agreement on wilderness conservation in the world. This non-binding agreement has as its objective the creation of a voluntary framework for cooperation and coordination among Canada, the USA and Mexico concerning the commemoration, conservation and preservation of wilderness areas. The first implementation meeting for this MOU will take place in May 2010.

Created market incentives for promoting connectivity and PA

For example, Ontario Parks has developed a structured monitoring framework including criteria and indicators for monitoring the status and health of Ontario’s system of provincial parks and conservation reserves. Based on these criteria and indicators, Ontario Parks has assembled and analyzed information on ecological, social and economic aspects of Ontario’s provincial parks and conservation reserves. The information is used to support the sustainable planning and management of Ontario’s protected areas, and to report to the public on the state of Ontario’s protected areas.

1.4 Progress in developing management plans

View assessment results

Percentage of protected areas with a management plan: 71-75%

View actions to improve management planning
Developed guidelines and tools for developing management plans

For example, Parks Canada’s 2008 Guide to Management Planning (h http://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/docs/bib-lib/~/media/docs/bib-lib/pdfs/pc_gmp2008_e.ashxttp://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/docs/bib-lib/~/media/docs/bib-lib/pdfs/pc_gmp2008_e.ashx) sets out the legal and policy foundation for management planning for all Parks Canada heritage places. This Guide explains Parks Canada’s integrated approach to implementing its mandate for protecting heritage resources, facilitating opportunities for visitor experience, and providing public education for each heritage place.

Provided training and/or technical support in management planning
Developed management plans for protected areas
Changed legislation and/or policy to allow for improved management planning
Conducted protected area resource
Other actions to improve management planning

1.5 Progress in assessing protected area threats

View assessment results

Progress: 3 - Significant progress, nearly complete

Variable across Canada's protected areas agencies

View actions to mitigate and prevent threats
Changed the status and/or governance type of a protected area

For example in 2009, the Manitoba government passed legislation to prohibit logging in 79 out of 80 provincial parks and all future parks.

Included measures to address threats in a management plan
Improved management practices to prevent or mitigate threats

For example, each of Canada’s national parks prepares a State of the Park Report every five years as part of the regular management planning cycle to: · provide a snapshot of the state of the park; · report the park’s achievement in meeting its performance expectations, as well as its contribution to the Agency’s strategic outcome; · report the results of the park’s efforts to maintain or improve the state of the park since the last management plan (i.e. progress in achieving management plan targets); and, · identify key issues facing the park for consideration in management planning.

Increased threat mitigation funding
Developed a climate resilience and adaptation plan

For example in 2007, the Ontario government published Climate Change and Ontario's Provincial Parks: Towards an Adaptation Strategy

Improved monitoring and detection of threats

For example, Ontario Parks has developed a structured monitoring framework including criteria and indicators for monitoring the status and health of Ontario’s system of provincial parks and conservation reserves. Based on these criteria and indicators, Ontario Parks has assembled and analyzed information on ecological, social and economic aspects of Ontario’s provincial parks and conservation reserves. The information is used to support the sustainable planning and management of Ontario’s protected areas, and to report to the public on the state of Ontario’s protected areas.

Evaluated the efficacy of threat-related actions
Improved public awareness and behavior regarding threats
Changed laws and policies related to threats

For example in 2009, the Manitoba government passed legislation to prohibit logging in 79 out of 80 provincial parks and all future parks.

Restored degrated areas

The Canadian Parks Council has developed Principles and Guidelines for Ecological Restoration in Canada’s Protected Natural Areas (http://www.pc.gc.ca/docs/pc/guide/resteco/index_e.asp), the first ever pan-Canadian guidance for ecological restoration practices. The approach is centred on three over-arching principles – that ecological restoration is effective, efficient, and engaging.

Developed and/or implemented strategies to mitigate and prevent threats
Other actions to mitigate and prevent threats
Element 2

Governance, equity, participation and benefits sharing

2.1 Equity, Benefits and Governance

View assessment results

Progress: 2 - Activity fully underway

View actions to improve equitable sharing
Developed and/or applied policies for access and benefit sharing

Canada's federal, provincial and territorial governments have been working towards the development of a national policy on access and benefit sharing of genetic resources. They have together identified common primary objectives for such a policy as well as a series of guiding principles. Some elements of an ABS framework are in place in certain jurisdictions and/or in certain sectors in Canada.

Developed equitable benefits-sharing mechanisms
Other actions to strengthen equitable benefits sharing

For example, a cooperative eco-tourism venture with the Vuntut Gwich’in First Nation, Vuntut Development Corporation, Yukon Parks and a local company to support grizzly bear viewing in the Ni’iinlii’Njik (Fishing Branch) Park was formally launched in 2006. This joint effort aims to promote a unique experience for tourists in ways that benefit the local Aboriginal community while protecting the bears and their habitat.

View progress made in assessing protected area governance

Progress made in assessing protected area governance: 3 - Significant progress, nearly complete

Percentage of protected areas assigned an IUCN category: 91-95%

View actions to improve and diversify governance types
Created new protected areas with innovative forms of governance

For example, as part of the coastal planning processes initiated in the temperate rain forests of British Columbia, the provincial government agreed to create a new Conservancy designation under their Parks Act that includes as one of its purposes ‘the preservation and maintenance of social, ceremonial and cultural uses of first nations’. These conservancies will be managed in collaboration with First Nations, in order to balance the protection of ecosystems with the maintenance of cultural uses and the diversification of the economies of coastal communities. First Nations are also assuming a greater role in direct operation of conservancies through community based guardian and watchmen programs.

Changed laws or policies to enable new governance types

For example in 2009, the Manitoba government passed legislation to enable First Nations to develop land-use plans to provide interim and permanent legal protection of traditional lands on the east side of Lake Winnipeg. The legislation also provides a new legal tool to designate land on the east side of Lake Winnipeg as a special protected area.

Legally recognized a broad set of governance types

For example in 2009, the Manitoba government passed legislation to enable First Nations to develop land-use plans to provide interim and permanent legal protection of traditional lands on the east side of Lake Winnipeg. The legislation also provides a new legal tool to designate land on the east side of Lake Winnipeg as a special protected area.

Other actions to diversify governance types

2.2 Indigenous and Local Communities

View assessment results

Progress: 3 - Significant progress, nearly complete

The Canadian Parks Council publication Aboriginal Peoples and Canada's Parks and Protected Areas (http://www.parks-parcs.ca/english/cpc/aboriginal.php) is a series of case studies profile innovative collaborations between aboriginal organizations, communities, park agencies, First nations and other stakeholders to conserve biodiversity and cultural heritage and share the environmental, social, cultural, educational and economic benefits of parks and protected heritage areas.

View actions to improve indigenous and local community particiapation
Improved laws and/or policies to promote participation

For example, the Northwest Territories Protected Areas Strategy (NWTPAS) is jointly administered by the governments of Northwest Territories and Canada, in partnership with Aboriginal communities, land claim organizations, industry, and non-profit organizations. Focused on protecting both special natural and cultural areas as well as representative core areas in each territorial ecoregion, the NWT PAS has become a vital mechanism for local communities to take the lead in identifying and nominating protected areas based on cultural values and traditional knowledge. Sixteen communities are currently involved in identifying and advancing 20 candidate areas throughout the territory.

Improved mechanisms for participation of indigenous and local communities

For example, recognizing how difficult it is to separate cultural and natural resources, Nunavut Parks initiated a Cultural Landscape Resource Assessment to gain a better understanding of overall landscape resources for a proposed park in the Clyde River area. The assessment included places to which oral traditions are attached, as well as places associated with living heritage including natural features, wildlife areas, archaeological and palaentological sites, graves and burial grounds, and community use or recreation sites. Through a variety of means including community consultations and interviews with elders, residents were invited to add information about what is important to them about the landscape and resources in the area to maps of the study area. The collected information was recorded in a GIS database and will be combined with other knowledge of the area to produce a comprehensive database for planning and managing the park area. In 2008, Nunavut Parks started working with residents of Kugaaruk to further develop this model through a similar study towards a proposed Territorial Park. This project will not only develop a cultural landscape resource inventory for Kugaaruk, but will also produce a framework that can be applied to all territorial parks throughout Nunavut. The project will also produce a Training Manual in order to facilitate the use of this framework by future Community Joint Planning and Management Committees as they record and analyze natural and cultural resources, capture related Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit (traditional knowledge), and maintain records of oral histories and knowledge related to all park landscapes. A further extension of this information will be the development of a new ecological and cultural landscape-based System Plan for Nunavut Parks. The fact that this process considers both quantitative and qualitative aspects of cultural heritage resources in the landscape makes the approach developed for Clyde River’s cultural heritage assessment precedent setting.

Increased participation of indigenous and local communities in key decisions

For example, New Brunswick has appointed close to 200 provincial residents to Protected Natural Area Advisory Committees to assist in developing management plans for sites within its protected areas network. And, supporting community groups within PEI’s wildlife management areas will often carry out wildlife and ecotourism projects, including providing the public with access to the area, assisting with signage and promoting public use for recreational pursuits.

Other actions to strengthen equitable benefits sharing

For example, Biosphere reserves, which are designated by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), represent a unique tool for promoting integrated planning and management approaches in Canada. Biosphere reserves typically incorporate large areas that include core protected areas with strict legal protection, along with buffer areas, and adjacent lands with agricultural or industrial development. There are currently 15 biosphere reserves in Canada, including the Frontenac Arch Biosphere Reserve, which covers approximately 2700 km2 of intersecting terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems in southeastern Ontario. The reserve works with a wide range of partners, including St Lawrence National Park, on a number of initiatives designed to maintain the ecological integrity of the area as a whole. In 2009 the Federal Government approved $5 million over the next five years to support Canada’s Biosphere Reserves.

Element 3

Protected area enabling environment

3.1 Policy, Institutional and Socio-Economic Environment

View assessment results

Progress: 3 - Significant progress, nearly complete

View actions to improve the protected area policy environment
Harmonized sectoral policies laws to suppport effective management planning and policies

For example, an innovative partnership between the Innu Nation and the province of Newfoundland and Labrador resulted in an Ecosystem-based Forest Management Plan for a 68,000 km2 area in central Labrador. This 5-year Plan includes an extensive network of no cut zones designed to protect ecological function at the landscape, watershed, and stand level throughout the Plan’s duration. In total, the 2003 approved Plan includes interim protection for candidate protected areas totalling over 32,000 km2, including critical habitat for the Redwine Caribou herd. The plan, which also called for a number of changes to forest harvesting practices in the area, was the result of a far-reaching public participation process with Innu communities.

Improved accountability and/or participation in decision-making

SK’s Athabasca Land Use Planning Process, which covers about 120,000 km2 in the far north of the province, is designed to result in management guidelines for both protected areas and sustainable development areas. The plan is the result of a unique agreement between three Dene First Nations of the Prince Albert Grand Council, the non-treaty communities of the area and the province.

Developed incentive mechanisms for private protected areas

For example in recent years, governments have introduced incentives to encourage private land conservation. All provinces have legislation that allows for conservation easements. In addition, both the federal and some provincial governments offer tax benefits for land donations, while several provinces have established matched-funds partnerships with local land trusts. More recently, the federal government eliminated the tax on any capital gains on charitable donations of ecologically sensitive lands certified under the Ecological Gifts Program in order to remove tax and financial barriers to conservation efforts. In addition, in 2007, the Government of Canada announced that it would invest $225 million in a new Natural Areas Conservation Program to help non-profit, non-government organizations secure ecologically sensitive lands. And between 2002 and 2008, the Quebec government invested over $20 million in private lands conservation efforts, resulting in the acquisition by private conservation organizations of 166 properties representing over 14,000 ha. Almost 75% of these projects have contributed to habitat protection for species at risk.

Removed perverse incentives that hinder effective management

For example in 2009, the Manitoba government passed legislation to prohibit logging in 79 out of 80 provincial parks and all future parks.

Strengthened legal systems for establishing and managing protected areas

For example in 2006, Ontario introduced a new Provincial Parks and Conservation Reserves Act that establishes the maintenance of ecological integrity as the first priority in the planning and management of Ontario’s system of provincial parks and conservation reserves.

Cooperated with neighboring countries on transboundary areas

Canada - US transboudary protected areas include the following two World Heritage properties - Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park and Kluane / Wrangell-St Elias / Glacier Bay / Tatshenshini-Alsek

Other actions to improve the policy environment

For example, large-scale ecosystem-based planning is also underway within our oceans. Five Large Ocean Management Areas (LOMAs) have been established in order to facilitate an integrated management planning approach that includes both marine protected areas establishment and effective resource management decision-making. These areas typically span hundreds of square kilometres, and reflect boundaries determined on the basis of a number of ecological and administrative factors. LOMAs may also include coastal management areas to ensure that planning efforts include estuaries and coastal areas. Within each LOMA, ecological components such as Ecologically and Biologically Significant Areas, Ecologically Significant Species, Species of Concern, and Ecologically Significant Community Properties are identified as needing particular management. These components are also used to inform the selection of candidate protected area sites and associated management decisions. Similar approaches are now being explored in coastal management areas and in offshore areas beyond the boundaries of LOMAs.

View progress made in assessing the contribution of protected areas to national economy

Progress: 2 - Activity fully underway

http://www.parks-parcs.ca/english/cpc/benefits.php . Note that work is underway to update this publication by the Canadian Parks Council.

View actions to value the contribution of protected areas
Implemented a communication campaign to value protected areas

For example, Parks Canada is developing an internal strategy for reaching out to urban Canadians, whose proximity and access to the national park system is limited. Initial directions being explored include emphasizing the role that protected areas can play as gathering places or resources for communities. Partnering with community organizations to host gatherings, festivals, and recreational activities helps root individual sites more deeply within the fabric of their surrounding communities, and connects them to new audiences who might not otherwise be exposed to the national park system. Parks Canada is also exploring new ways to facilitate lifelong learning about nature conservation among urban Canadians. Working in a sustained and collaborative fashion with a wide variety of new partners will help create an integrated web of complementary learning experiences for Canadians regardless of their point of entry, be it a protected area or historic site, a zoo or aquarium, or a museum.

3.2, 3.3 & 3.5 Protected Area Capacity, Technology and Education

View assessment results

Progress: 3 - Significant progress, nearly complete

variable amongst protected areas agencies

View actions to improve capacity, the use of appropriate technology and/or strengthen education programs
Created a professional development program for protected area practitioners

The Canadian Parks Council organizes an annual Parks System Leadership Course, designed for future park system leaders. It consists of on-line and face-to-face components and deals with aspects of Trends and Challenges in Park System Management, Ecosystem and Cultural Resource Management and the Business of Managing Parks.

Trained protected area staff
Increased the number of protected area staff
Developed a system for valuing and sharing traditional knowledge

For example, recognizing how difficult it is to separate cultural and natural resources, Nunavut Parks initiated a Cultural Landscape Resource Assessment to gain a better understanding of overall landscape resources for a proposed park in the Clyde River area. The assessment included places to which oral traditions are attached, as well as places associated with living heritage including natural features, wildlife areas, archaeological and palaentological sites, graves and burial grounds, and community use or recreation sites. Through a variety of means including community consultations and interviews with elders, residents were invited to add information about what is important to them about the landscape and resources in the area to maps of the study area. The collected information was recorded in a GIS database and will be combined with other knowledge of the area to produce a comprehensive database for planning and managing the park area. In 2008, Nunavut Parks started working with residents of Kugaaruk to further develop this model through a similar study towards a proposed Territorial Park. This project will not only develop a cultural landscape resource inventory for Kugaaruk, but will also produce a framework that can be applied to all territorial parks throughout Nunavut. The project will also produce a Training Manual in order to facilitate the use of this framework by future Community Joint Planning and Management Committees as they record and analyze natural and cultural resources, capture related Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit (traditional knowledge), and maintain records of oral histories and knowledge related to all park landscapes. A further extension of this information will be the development of a new ecological and cultural landscape-based System Plan for Nunavut Parks. The fact that this process considers both quantitative and qualitative aspects of cultural heritage resources in the landscape makes the approach developed for Clyde River’s cultural heritage assessment precedent setting.

Developed protected area curricula with educational institutions

For example, in partnership with Parks Canada, Metro Vancouver and Wild BC, BC Parks is developing a new curriculum guide (Get Outdoors!) to encourage educators and outdoor leaders to take children outside. The guide provides both outdoor activities and background information for educators. Get Outdoors! has been endorsed by the Ministry of Education and the Environmental Educators Professional Specialist Association (EEPSA).

Produced public outreach materials

For example, citizen science programs have become an important aspect of Parks Canada's public engagement work. Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site in Nova Scotia has established strong participatory monitoring programs that generate important information while facilitating opportunities for hands-on activities for both visitors and local residents. One such program is Keji Quest, which provides Grade 4 students with curriculum-linked nature activities while involving them in the park's ecological monitoring and reporting.

Conducted public outreach programs

For example, Alberta Parks is exploring innovative ways to foster meaningful relationships between marginalized or disconnected groups and the province’s protected areas, and to enhance the quality of life for these people through wilderness experiences and outdoor recreation. Using a highly collaborative approach rooted in partnerships with a wide range of organizations, a pilot outreach program in Kananaskis Country has introduced several initiatives, including: · The Alberta Access Challenge, in which 10 people with disabilities and over 60 volunteers participated in adapted backcountry camping, sea kayaking, and cycling, and are now helping to develop an educational video series about the benefits of wilderness experiences; · Nature as a Second Language, where over 700 new immigrants were introduced to parks through a digital guidebook in non-official languages, day trips, and presentations; and · Parks in the Boardroom, a program being developed with various professionals to connect the corporate community with ecological, sustainability, and stewardship principles.

Developed effective mechanisms to exchange lessons within and beyond the protected area system

For example: · The Canadian Parks Council brings Canada’s federal, provincial and territorial parks agencies together to promote excellence in park planning and management, advance park and protected areas values, and facilitate cooperation among and provide support to member agencies. · The Canadian Council on Ecological Areas is a national, non-profit organization with a mission "to facilitate and assist Canadians with the establishment and management of a comprehensive network of protected areas representative of Canada's terrestrial and aquatic ecological natural diversity" · The Science & Management of Protected Areas Association organizes conferences and facilitate opportunities for the protected areas community to work together -- to create a growing body of applied sciences and traditional knowledge for protected areas, and to advance conservation and management of natural places.

3.4 Sustainable Finance

View assessment results

Progress: 3 - Significant progress, nearly complete

Actions to improve the sustainable finance of protected areas
Developed new protected area funding mechanisms
Developed protected area business plans
Developed revenue-sharing mechanism
Improved resource allocation
Provided financial training and support
Improved budgeting process
Improved accounting and monitoring
Improve financial planning
Removed legal barriers to sustainable finance
Clarified inter-agency fiscal responsibilities
Element 4

Standards, assessment and monitoring

4.1 & 4.2 Management Effectiveness and Best Practices

View assessment results

Progress: 3 - Significant progress, nearly complete

Percent of protected areas assessed for management effectiveness: ? - Not enough information to answer this question

Unknown

View actions to improve management processes within protected areas
Improved management system and processes

For example, Nova Scotia has adopted an ecological restoration policy for its provincial parks, and is currently defining system-wide priorities for restoration.

Improved law enforcement

In May 2008, Parks Canada was authorized to create 100 armed enforcement officer positions dedicated to law enforcement. This announcement fundamentally changes Parks Canada’s approach to law enforcement. Through this new prevention model for the Agency, Parks Canada actively seeks to minimize the number of incidents that occur. Prevention is defined as proactive and reactive actions taken by trained Parks Canada employees to prevent negative incidents before they occur, or to address them in their early stages. The Agency’s law enforcement program is founded on five principles: Safe: Employee and public safety are paramount in the delivery of law enforcement services. Integrated: The integration of the prevention and law enforcement programs allows the Agency to more effectively and efficiently fulfill its mandate. Professional: Law enforcement personnel will maintain the highest ethical and professional standards. Accountable: The Law Enforcement Branch is guided by continuous performance measurement that ensures delivery of the agreed to service and provides timely advice on the effectiveness of law enforcement activities aimed at achieving field unit priorities. Mandate Driven: The Law Enforcement Branch resources will be focused in an effective and efficient way to ensure that we meet Parks Canada Agency’s mandate for visitor enjoyment and protection of natural and cultural resources.

Improved stakeholder relations

For example, Fisheries and Oceans Canada Marine Protected Areas each have an advisory committee that recommends management decisions.

Improved visitor management

Explorer Quotient is a new value-based market segmentation tool that Parks Canada is using to match visitors' interests, expectations and desires with relevant opportunities for experience. Using the EQ model is positively contributing to shifting Parks Canada's organizational processes from a product perspective to a visitor perspective. The EQ two-day workshop involves a group of park staff and partners that use their intimate knowledge of the place to identify the activities, services, products and programs that the site can offer.

Improved management of natural and cultural resources

Pikangikum First Nation in Ontario and the Pauingassi, Little Grand Rapids and Poplar River First Nations in Manitoba and the two provincial governments have established a partnership to pursue the goal of World Heritage Site designation on a boreal forest landscape encompassing First Nations traditional territories and provincial park lands. The Pimachiowin-Aki Corp. has been created to guide and administer the project.

4.3 & 4.4 Monitoring and Research

View assessment results

Progress: 3 - Significant progress, nearly complete

View actions to improve protected area research and monitoring
Assessed the status and trend of key biodiversity
Developed or improved a biological monitoring program

The principal aim of the Parks Canada Agency’s ecological integrity (EI) monitoring and reporting program is to provide a clear account of the state of park ecological integrity and the effectiveness of Agency actions in support of it. Condition monitoring provides medium or long-term monitoring data for reporting overall park EI. It is summarized in 4-8 EI indicators, which are comprised of a suite of EI measures, selected to represent the biodiversity and processes of park ecosystems, in the context of the larger scale processes that drive change. The monitoring program will track the current condition and trend of these measures. Effectiveness monitoring is designed to look at the ecological outcomes of planned management actions. It will look at EI measures specific to a project, before and after a management action, and will provide data to report on the ecological effectiveness of these actions. Monitoring information supports assessments of a range of resource conservation activities, including protecting species at risk, conducting and participating in environmental assessments, managing fire, implementing active management and ecological restoration projects, and remediation of contaminated sites.

Improved protected area research on socio-economic issues
Promoted dissemination of protected area research

For example, many of Canada’s provinces have established protected areas research forums, which are cooperative partnership between the research community and provincial and federal governing agencies to facilitate and promote parks and protected areas research.

Revised management plan based on monitoring and/or research results

For example, Ontario Parks has developed a structured monitoring framework including criteria and indicators for monitoring the status and health of Ontario’s system of provincial parks and conservation reserves. Based on these criteria and indicators, Ontario Parks has assembled and analyzed information on ecological, social and economic aspects of Ontario’s provincial parks and conservation reserves. The information is used to support the sustainable planning and management of Ontario’s protected areas, and to report to the public on the state of Ontario’s protected areas.

Changed management practices based on the results of monitoring and/or research