Conservation Successes in Canada
This withdrawal of land and water from industrial activity, announced by the Government of Canada, was made at the request of local First Nations. This interim protection, for a period of four to five years, will allow local people to plan areas for permanent protection around Great Slave Lake and along a northern stretch of the Mackenzie River in the Northwest Territories (NWT).
Map of Northern Land Withdrawal Areas
This interim protection is excellent news for an area facing accelerating industrial activities such as the Mackenzie Gas project (including a proposed gas pipeline right down the Mackenzie Valley) and unprecedented uranium exploration east of Great Slave Lake. These areas are culturally significant to the First Nation who call this area home. They are also significant for the wildlife in the region, including barren-ground caribou, wolves, lynx, grizzly bears, moose and huge populations of migratory ducks, geese, swans, shorebirds and loons.
WWF-Canada’s support for these protected areas has included having a full-time office in Yellowknife; providing direct financial, technical and moral support to northern communities; partnerships with First Nations, territorial and federal governments; and testimony before the Joint Review Panel examining the Mackenzie Gas Project.