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Biodiversity Act Helps to Protect Ecosystems

Government introduced legislation today, March 14, that makes it easier to protect the province’s wild animals, plants and water species.

The Biodiversity Act creates a platform for regulations to manage threats to rare ecosystems and better protects wildlife against invasive species.

“Nova Scotia does not have the authority it needs to manage a range of challenges and opportunities facing biodiversity,” said Lands and Forestry Minister Iain Rankin. “This legislation sets the stage for new regulatory powers to better conserve and make sustainable use of our biodiversity.”

Nova Scotia will be the first province in Canada to create stand-alone legislation on biodiversity.

The Biodiversity Act has several new measures, including allowing government to prevent the import, selling or distribution of an invasive species not yet listed in a regulation, and preventing the destruction or disturbance of a rare ecosystem or a habitat.

The legislation provides authority to create a Biodiversity Management Zone, which allows an area of land to be managed for a set time period to support the conservation or sustainable use of specified biodiversity values.

The new act sets the stage for regulations that will be developed in consultation with the Mi’kmaq, conservation partners and all Nova Scotians.

Nova Scotia’s Biodiversity Council helped to craft the new legislation and will assist with drafting regulations.

Developing a Biodiversity Act is a commitment in government’s response to the Independent Review of Forest Practices, submitted by Professor Lahey, and the provincial Natural Resources Strategy.

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Source : Media Release

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