North America's Wetlands Need Planning and Protection

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North America's Wetlands Need Planning and Protection
(December 12, 2016)  The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (OMNRF) has a mandate to halt wetland loss in Ontario, and just released the first draft of a Wetland Conservation Strategy that is intended to fulfill this important commitment. However, the draft Wetland Conservation Strategy suffers from a number of critical weaknesses, and will not deliver on protecting wetlands in Ontario.   As it is currently written, some of the key shortcomings of the draft Wetland Conservation Strategy in...

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Auditor General Slams Ontario’s Outdated Environmental Assessment Act – Groups Urge Government to Act

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(December 01, 2016) Toronto, 1 December 2016. – In the wake of yesterday’s damning report by Ontario Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk in which she directed harsh criticism at the province’s environmental assessment (EA) program, environmental organizations are encouraged by Environmental Minister Glenn Murray’s commitment for ‘substantive reforms’ to modernize Ontario’s environmental assessment process.As noted by the Auditor General: “Ontario’s environmental assess...

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Bats Are Charged Up for Halloween

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Bats Are Charged Up for Halloween
(October 31, 2016) By Sarah Olson (via Medium)Bats have long been associated with the dark and deadly– most infamously in the form of that monstrous prowler of the night, Dracula — in search of fresh blood to feed his thirst and claim new victims. On Halloweens of late, however, it is bats who have had a monster to fear — a real one — that is devastating populations of these flying mammals in eastern North America.Click here to read more. 

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Government review of environmental and regulatory processes

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Government review of environmental and regulatory processes
(September 13, 2016) Canada’s federal environmental and regulatory processes are currently under review to restore public confidence in government decision-making by modernizing and improving key federal environmental legislation, including the Fisheries Act, the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012 (CEAA 2012), the National Energy Board, and the Navigation Protection Act. WCS Canada staff have been and will continue to be engaged with the Fisheries Act and CEAA 2012 processes. The Fisheries Act is an i...

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Planning for Change in One of the Most Intact Places on Earth

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Planning for Change in One of the Most Intact Places on Earth
(August 26, 2016) By Cheryl Chetkiewicz (via National Geographic)Ontario’s Northern Boreal Forest is a special place. Not only because of its size – which is comparable to Sweden – but also because it remains largely untouched by human development. Now, then, is the time to create responsible planning frameworks for this region which includes one of the most significant chromite deposits in the world.Click here to read more. 

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The Next Great Victory for Birds

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The Next Great Victory for Birds
(August 17, 2016)  By Hilary Cooke (via Huffington Post)2016 marked the 100-year anniversary of the Migratory Bird Treaty – a historic agreement that protected birds from indiscriminate slaughter for food and fashion markets. Dr. Hilary Cooke reflects on the legacy of this the treaty, the role WCS played in its inception, and the future of bird conservation in North America.Click here to read more. 

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Climate Change in Yukon and Northern Ontario: New Publications

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Climate Change in Yukon and Northern Ontario: New Publications
(July 29, 2016)   Climate change is already taking hold across Canada, particularly in northern regions like Yukon and northern Ontario. As one of our most pressing environmental challenges, WCS Canada is working to find solutions to climate change across the country. As part of this work, our field scientists recently published two papers in Global Ecology and Conservation.With the retreat of glaciers and melting of permafrost changing the face of northern tundra, it is not surprising that this in tu...

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WCS Canada Weighs in on Species at Risk

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WCS Canada Weighs in on Species at Risk
(July 23, 2016) Laws devoted to the protection and recovery of species at risk are meant to provide added protection measures after regular management approaches have been insufficient to stave off extinction risk. Examples of such laws in Canada include the federal Species At Risk Act (2002) and the Ontario Endangered Species Act (2007).The need for such statutes becomes obvious when we consider the ever-growing list of species at risk in Canada – mirroring global trends of biodiversity loss. Once a...

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North American Caribou Workshop

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North American Caribou Workshop
(July 15, 2016) May 16 marks the launch of the 16th Annual North American Caribou Workshop and for the first time in two decades this year the workshop is in Ontario. Taking place in Thunder Bay, the workshop is the foremost conference of its kind, addressing caribou biology, research and management. This year’s workshop theme is Connections: exploring the link between people, disciplines and ecosystems to further caribou conservation and management. More than 250 people from science, academia, indig...

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Bat White-Nose Syndrome Found in the West

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Bat White-Nose Syndrome Found in the West
(May 13, 2016) On March 31, the United States Geological Survey and Fish and Wildlife Service announced that White Nose Syndrome (WNS) had been confirmed in a little brown bat in Washington State – the first instance of the deadly disease in western North America. Biologists in western Canada and US have been working diligently since the first mass mortalities were discovered in the east in 2007 to prevent or at minimum slow the spread of this disease into western North America, in hopes that this woul...

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