Nature agreements in Canada
Nature conservation in Canada
As Canadians, we all have a responsibility to steward Canada’s natural landscapes. Canada has almost a quarter of the Earth’s wetlands, boreal forests and fresh water, and the longest coastline in the world. All Canadians depend on the well-being of the natural environment to support our cultures, physical and mental health, and economy. Federal, provincial, and territorial governments, Indigenous Peoples and other partners, including municipalities, have important roles to play in conserving and restoring nature, protecting biodiversity and species at risk, fighting climate change, and rebuilding a strong and sustainable economy.
Canada’s conservation goals include:
- Conserving 25% of land and freshwater in Canada by 2025; and laying a foundation toward 30% of each by 2030
- Working to halt and reverse nature loss by 2030 and achieving a full recovery for nature by 2050
- Protecting and recovering species at risk
- Facilitating and supporting Indigenous leadership in conservation and advancing nature-smart climate solutions
Nature Agreements between the federal and interested provincial and territorial governments will include clear and strong commitments to nature conservation and protection. Agreements will include mutually agreed upon actions and financial commitments that Canada and the province or territory will take to reach their individual and collective conservation goals.
More specifically, Nature Agreements may include:
- Addressing biodiversity loss through the creation and expansion of protected and conserved areas, as well as key biodiversity areas, Indigenous-led conservation, and other effective area-based conservation measures (OECMs)
- Protecting critical habitat and adopting land use planning measures to improve outcomes for species at risk and migratory birds, including through Priority Places and Priority Species initiatives
- Supporting and expanding opportunities for Indigenous leadership in conservation and stewardship and creating a gateway for further discussions on collaborative opportunities and engagement with regional/local partners
- Facilitating data exchange and information management and seeking consistent practices in data-sharing across all provinces and territories with the aim of improving conservation outcomes
- Mitigating and building resilience to climate change by reducing land use change and practices with greenhouse gas aemission impacts, and facilitating carbon sequestration and storage through ecosystem restoration, including through coordination with initiatives such as the Nature Smart Climate Solutions Fund (NSCSF) and the 2 Billion Trees (2BT) Progrmlegacy/nature-ag
Funding and timeline
In Budget 2021, the Government of Canada made a historic commitment to invest $2.3 billion over five years in Canada’s Enhanced Nature Legacy. This included $200 million to directly support the negotiation and implementation of Nature Agreements.
Canada will prioritize funding agreements with provinces and territories that show a willingness to collaborate and where there are strong potential gains, particularly on the establishment and recognition of protected and conserved areas. Funding will be commensurate to the level of ambition shown by the provinces and territories.
Nature Agreements also draw on other ECCC funding programs, and possibly other federal department funding programs, where priorities align and where they can help achieve stronger conservation gains.
- Canada and Yukon chart new path with agreement to help protect and conserve nature
- Canada and Nova Scotia commit to shared actions to protect more nature and halt biodiversity loss
- Working with Newfoundland and Labrador to halt biodiversity loss
- Canada invests $796 million to collaborate with provinces, territories, and other partners to protect nature across the country
- Government of Canada announces $340 million to support Indigenous-led conservation
- Canada and British Columbia launch development of a new Nature Agreement
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