Manitoba Wildlands Protected Areas Audit Released

Manitoba Wildlands released the 2007 Protected Areas Audit November 14,
2007. The Audit is annual, documenting all Manitoba Government actions
to establish protected lands and waters.

There were both protected areas losses and gains in the 2006 – 2007
year. The land quantum gain in protected area is 6,361 ha. The amount
of land removed from protection is 13,985 ha. The net loss in land
quantum protected from development in Manitoba for the 2007 Protected
Areas Audit is 7,642 ha.


The total amount of Manitoba’s land
base protected to date is 5,329,051 ha. By comparison, the amount of
protected land in Manitoba as of the 2000 Audit was 5,579,883 ha.

“The
failure to replace de-listed protected lands with protected lands
elsewhere in the same region shows a failure to turn each decision into
an opportunity,” noted Manitoba Wildlands Director Gaile Whelan Enns.
“We also were unable to access survey maps for some announced protected
areas, and must assume the government will clear up this situation
quickly.”

The annual Manitoba protected areas grade is based on
six World Wildlife Fund criteria, applied to Manitoba protected areas
grades since the 1992. Representation of each natural region is based
on the landscape types in protected areas, of sufficient size to
maintain ecological integrity and sustain ecosystem functions. Manitoba
Wildlands now applies the grading criteria annually to Manitoba
government protected area commitments and actions. Penalties and
bonuses highlight successes or problems. The grade is based on Manitoba
data, regulations, and commitments.

The Manitoba Wildlands
audit is based on government information in the public domain,
primarily regulations and databases associated with Manitoba Acts that
specify land use and land protection. A ‘protected area’ refers to
lands formally protected from development (hydroelectric, mining,
forestry, roads, and any other activity that would cause significant
alteration of habitat) through Manitoba regulations.

For more information see http://www.manitobawildlands.org/news_item.asp?number=899

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