Boundaries Released for Proposed Wilderness Areas in Cumberland County

Environment

April 21, 2011 11:42 AM

Nova Scotians are invited to comment on two proposed wilderness areas in Cumberland County.

The consultation is part of government's commitment to conserve and protect the diversity of Nova Scotia's wild spaces.

"I encourage all Nova Scotians to become involved in shaping our province's protected areas," said Sterling Belliveau, Minister of Environment. "Protecting these areas will ensure that our valuable lands are preserved for generations to come."

Initial consultation was done by the departments of Environment and Natural Resources with interested parties, including municipal, community, industry, recreation, business, Mi'kmaq and environment organizations. Feedback helped government identify two proposed wilderness areas for further consultation.

The proposed Kelly River Wilderness Area is 20,567 hectares of forest and river and will be the province's third largest wilderness area. It includes most of the Kelly River watershed and extends to Maccan River.

Along Chignecto Bay, the proposed Raven Head Wilderness Area is 4,753 hectares. This includes 36 kilometres of Bay of Fundy coast between Apple Head and Shulie River.

"We are committed to listening to Nova Scotians and using that input to help make informed decisions about these proposed boundaries for these two candidate wilderness areas," said Charlie Parker, Minister of Natural Resources. "We will work with the Department of Environment to help satisfy many interests while protecting these lands."

The Crown lands are important for conservation. They are valued for hunting, sportfishing, canoeing, off-highway vehicle riding and other outdoor recreation. They are significant for forestry and other resource development. Public comments will help to ensure the diverse values are considered in the final designation.

"We know that local residents are very passionate about these lands," said Cumberland County Warden Keith Hunter. "People need to become involved in the consultation process to make sure that their interests are considered as the province proceeds with conservation and protection in the area."

Consultation details will be available May 11 in a newsletter, at http://www.gov.ns.ca/nse/protectedareas, or by calling 902-424-2117. The public consultation will run from May 11 to Aug. 12, and will include opportunities to meet with government staff, written submissions, information displays and open houses in Southampton, Joggins, Advocate Harbour, Parrsboro, Amherst and Halifax.

Feedback will be used to help determine the final boundaries.

Once designated, the new wilderness areas could add more than 25,000 hectares to the province's protected areas inventory, helping to reach the province's goal of legally protecting 12 per cent of Nova Scotia's lands by the year 2015.


FOR BROADCAST USE:

     Nova Scotians are being invited to comment on two proposed

wilderness areas in Cumberland County.

      The proposed Kelly River Wilderness Area and Raven Head

Wilderness Area could add more than 25,000 hectares of land to

the province's protected areas inventory.

     Environment Minister Sterling Belliveau encourages Nova

Scotians to become involved in shaping the province's protected

areas to ensure valuable lands are preserved for generations to

come.

     The public consultation runs from May 11th to August 12th.

     Feedback will be used to help determine the final

boundaries.

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Media Contact: Jodi Sibley
              Department of Environment
              902-424-7420
              E-mail: sibleyjm@gov.ns.ca