JIM VIBERT: Finally, Nova Scotia hits land protection landmark, barely

Jim Vibert
The Chronicle Herald
February 6, 2021

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It’s a classic case of better late than never.

This week the provincial government announced 20 sites for designation as parks or protected natural areas, bringing the province – barely – to its long-held goal of protecting 13 per cent of the province’s land for nature, and for people to connect with and enjoy nature, respectfully.

… Nova Scotia attainment of the 13 per cent goal is still only notionally, because a dozen of the named sites will undergo a period of public comment before they are officially designated, but that’s considered largely a pro forma exercise.

All the sites in the Parks and Protected Areas plan – including the 20 announced this week – got there after extensive consultation, so the places in question have already cleared that hurdle once.

Plus, most folks living near those sites will likely be surprised to learn that they aren’t already protected, just as folks on the Eastern Shore were shocked to learn that Owl’s Head provincial park wasn’t a park at all, but prime real estate for a golf resort.

The Liberal government surreptitiously removed Owl’s Head from the Parks and Protected Areas list a couple of years back to clear the way for a golf development, unleashing a firestorm of protest that still rages on.

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