“Those of us who live and work in Western Canada know how powerful its landscapes are. They are the economic drivers and environmental jewels that support our communities and connect us to the world. Ensuring they remain healthy and productive is a responsibility we all share.”
Ian Balfour is the Vice President, Gas Services for Pembina Pipeline. The Calgary-based corporation is leading by example as it teams up with Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) to deliver important conservation across Alberta and Saskatchewan. It’s a partnership that promotes sustainable industry practices, acknowledges a working landscape and delivers essential environmental benefits to all who call the region home.
Conserving wetlands and grasslands in Alberta and Saskatchewan
Pembina’s $1-million investment will conserve approximately 2,000 acres (809 hectares) of important wetland and grassland habitat in key areas of Alberta and Saskatchewan.
“We look forward to witnessing this important conservation work come to life in the backyards of our family, friends and stakeholders,” says Balfour.
Alberta and Saskatchewan are among DUC’s top priority areas. Their expansive landscapes are home to thousands of shallow wetlands that provide critical habitat for millions of North America’s migratory birds. But these wetlands aren’t just for ducks, they’re for everyone.
Delivering big environmental benefits
The wetland and grassland areas Pembina is helping conserve are some of the most important ecosystems on the planet. They protect our communities and our way of life.
- Wetlands naturally filter harmful nutrients and pollutants from water, keeping lakes and rivers clean.
- They reduce the harmful effects on communities from costly and devastating floods.
- Wetlands store large amounts of carbon, keeping it from being released into the atmosphere as greenhouse gas.
- Their natural habitat provides homes for wildlife and opportunities for outdoor recreation year-round.
Rewards of safeguarding these natural areas are well worth the effort.
A gift that keeps giving: DUC’s Revolving Land Conservation Program
Conservation activities funded by Pembina will be delivered through DUC’s Revolving Land Conservation Program. It’s an innovative approach that engages landowners and other partners to fuel a perpetual cycle of conservation. Here’s how it works:
- DUC purchases land with high conservation value and restores the wetlands and grasslands on the property.
- The land is then sold back to producers with a conservation easement placed on the title.
- The easement protects the natural habitat, while allowing subsequent owners of the property to use the land in their operation through haying or grazing.
- Funds from the sale of the land provide DUC with the capital to repeat the cycle.
“The revolving model allows Pembina’s support to be continually leveraged, funding conservation for years to come,” says Guyn. “It’s a powerful way to forge an environmental, economic and social legacy.”
Supporting agriculture and local communities
By supporting DUC’s Revolving Land Conservation Program, Pembina is helping keep land in the hands of private owners. It allows agricultural interests to stay on the land, while protecting important areas for conservation. Given high demand for land across the Prairies, DUC’s Guyn says this is important.
“Partnerships with companies such as Pembina and initiatives like the Revolving Land Conservation Program showcase our commitment to collaboration,” she says. “We believe in finding solutions by working together with those with whom we share our land, water and wildlife.”
Conservation projects coming this spring
Pembina’s $1-million commitment to DUC will fuel conservation on the Prairies over the next three years. Several Revolving Land Conservation projects in Alberta and Saskatchewan will begin this spring, which will kick-start a cycle of environmental sustainability and economic success across this important region.
Learn more about important partnerships that are supporting DUC conservation efforts across the country.Learn more