Quebec's premier recently announced that the province would set aside another 4.5 million acres distributed over 14 new national parks.
The Quebec government has added 18,000 square kilometres of land to the amount already protected in the province, bringing the total to 135,326 square kilometres - the size of new Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island combined.The new preserves in Quebec's boreal forest are especially important given the sizable bird populations that call it home. According to the Boreal Songbird Initiative, the province plans to preserve more land within the next few years. This move, combined with Obama's signing of the major public lands bill, makes for a very encouraging week for land preservation.
The increase, announced yesterday by Premier Jean Charest and Line Beauchamp, minister of sustainable development, environment and parks, brings the percentage of protected land in the province to 8.12 - just over the eight-per-cent goal the government set in 2003.
The latest protected swaths comprise half of Quebec's Boreal Forest in the northern part of the province, including more land around George River and eight sites in Nunavik.