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Ducks Unlimited Canada applauds the Province for proposed Great Lakes Protection Act

BuffleheadBarrie, Ontario, June 6, 2012Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) commends the Ontario government’s commitment to protecting and restoring the Great Lakes through a proposed Great Lakes Protection Act. The Great Lakes, and the rivers that feed them, are essential to the well-being of the Great Lakes ecosystem and to a healthy Ontario. If the new act is passed, this will be a great step forward for wetland protection in Ontario.

Science clearly indicates that the Great Lakes, and particularly shoreline wetlands, are critically important to the health of Ontario’s environment and economy. Despite a growing awareness of their value, wetlands continue to be lost. Seventy-two per cent of southern Ontario’s large inland wetlands have been lost or converted to other land uses over the last 200 years and this loss continues at an alarming rate. The decline to the wetland base has been most drastic in southwestern Ontario, parts of eastern Ontario, Niagara and the greater Toronto area, where in some regions the loss is greater than 90 per cent.

“Strong policies to conserve wetlands across the Great Lakes basin, particularly in heavily settled regions, are essential to stop and reverse wetland loss. If passed, this new act will ensure that our Great Lakes remain healthy and resilient to current and future pressures,” says Mark Gloutney, director of regional operations – eastern region, DUC.

The Province has indicated that protecting wetlands is a key theme of the proposed Great Lakes Protection Act. DUC is pleased to see emphasis placed on wetlands and coastal wetlands, in addition to a commitment to resources.

DUC looks forward to working with the Province of Ontario to ensure critical wetlands, both on the coast and within the Great Lakes basin, are protected, restored and managed for future generations. As part of a larger international Ducks Unlimited family, DUC takes a continental approach to wetland conservation and brings resources and perspectives to the Great Lakes from both sides of the border.

Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) is the leader in wetland conservation. A registered charity, DUC partners with government, industry, other non-profit organizations and landowners to conserve wetlands that are critical to waterfowl, wildlife and the environment. Learn more at ducks.ca.

For more information, contact:

Gillian Potvin, g_potvin@ducks.ca
National Manager, Media Strategy
Ducks Unlimited Canada
Office: (204) 467-3202
Cell: (204) 792-3678