Outdoor Recreation

Government investment in Alberta Parks infrastructure is encouraging, but 175 parks still set to be removed

Calgary – CPAWS Northern and Southern Alberta Chapters are pleased to see the government’s investment in parks infrastructure. However, we are dismayed to hear the Minister continues to move forward with removing 175 parks from the Parks System. The Premier stated in the announcement that “Albertans are a stubborn bunch” and we agree. Albertans from across the province continue to ask for a commitment from this government that all of these parks will remain protected within the parks system. Read more about Government investment in Alberta Parks infrastructure is encouraging, but 175 parks still set to be removed

Losing protection where we need it most

The Government of Alberta’s plan to remove 164 sites from the provincial parks system will take a significant cut out of Alberta’s most endangered and least protected Natural Regions: the Parkland, Grasslands and Foothills. Between these three regions, 85 sites will lose their protected status, resulting in the loss of nearly 9,000 hectares of protection – equivalent to around eight times the size of Ghost Lake or one-half the size of Elk Island National Park. Read more about Losing protection where we need it most

“Optimizing” Parks… What Happened to the List?

On February 29, 2020 the Government of Alberta published a list of 164 parks and provincial recreation areas it intends to remove from Alberta’s parks system. That list has vanished from the government’s website. Read more about “Optimizing” Parks… What Happened to the List?

Albertans always care about their parks, not just during a pandemic

Edmonton – 17 of the 20 parks that were slated for closure at the beginning of this summer, will temporarily be operated this camping season, according to the Alberta Parks COVID 19 response page which was quietly updated last week. This is an important step in the right direction that demonstrates that the voices of Albertans, saying how much they value Alberta Parks, are making a difference.  Read more about Albertans always care about their parks, not just during a pandemic

Rescinding the Alberta Coal Policy opens headwaters in the eastern slopes of the Rockies to open-pit coal mining

Calgary – The Government of Alberta has rescinded A Coal Development Policy for Alberta (1976; the Coal Policy). CPAWS Southern Alberta is concerned about the impacts this will have on Alberta’s treasured mountains and foothills along the eastern slopes of the Rockies. “There are currently no other land use plans or policies that directly replace the environmental zoning and restrictions under the Coal Policy” says Katie Morrison, Conservation Director for CPAWS Southern Alberta. “This leaves sensitive headwaters regions and treasured landscapes that provide habitat for species like grizzly bear, elk, and threatened native trout, at risk to the disturbances that come with surface coal mining and increased exploration.”

Since 1976, the Coal Policy has provided important land use zoning frameworks which have informed management and development of coal mines along the eastern slopes region of Alberta.

The Coal Policy’s Land Classification System prevented coal development on Category 1 lands and restricted development to underground or in-situ mining under Category 2 lands along the eastern slopes. The Coal Policy Category 2 covers 1,458,000 ha of the headwaters areas that provide the majority of drinking water to downstream communities in Alberta and across the prairies. With the removal of the coal policy, open-pit coal mines will now be permitted on these sensitive lands. Read more about Rescinding the Alberta Coal Policy opens headwaters in the eastern slopes of the Rockies to open-pit coal mining

Alberta Coal Policy scrapped, making open-pit coal mining more accessible than ever along the eastern slopes of the Rockies

Alberta is cancelling a long-standing coal policy that provided broad protections within our mountain and foothill regions, making it easier to develop open-pit mines in more ecologically sensitive areas. 

Edmonton – On May 15, 2020 the Government of Alberta announced that they were rescinding  A Coal Development Policy for Alberta (Coal Policy) which has provided sweeping environmental protections for coal development since the 1970’s. This has raised concerns about how this will impact Alberta’s treasured mountains and foothills along the eastern slopes of the Rockies. Read more about Alberta Coal Policy scrapped, making open-pit coal mining more accessible than ever along the eastern slopes of the Rockies

Defend Alberta Parks - Virtual Town Hall

Apr 28 2020 - 7:00pm

From the Eventbrite page:

Join CPAWS Southern and Northern Alberta chapters to learn about how parks cuts are impacting Albertans.

As you may know, Alberta Parks announced the removal of 164 parks sites and the closure of 20 sites in early March. CPAWS Northern and Southern Alberta chapters have been pushing for this decision to be reversed, but protecting Alberta’s parks is not possible without you! Read more about Defend Alberta Parks - Virtual Town Hall

Defend Alberta Parks - Virtual Town Hall

Apr 8 2020 - 7:00pm

From the Eventbrite page:

Join us to hear from Albertans affected by the closure of and cuts to Parks.

Join us via zoom to hear from Albertans affected by these cuts. We will be joined by representatives from the conservation, recreation and youth communities. Presentations will be followed with an opportunity to hear from you! How are the cuts to parks impacting you? Read more about Defend Alberta Parks - Virtual Town Hall

Strong Majority of Albertans Oppose Government Changes to Parks

Edmonton – A new public opinion survey shows the vast majority of Albertans oppose the changes to Alberta parks announced with the 2020 provincial budget.

On March 2, 2020 Alberta Environment and Parks announced the full or partial closure of 20 parks and the removal of 164 parks from the Alberta Parks System resulting in the loss of 39 percent of Alberta’s parks and removal of the protections to conservation values and quality of recreation experience that are provided through a parks designation. Read more about Strong Majority of Albertans Oppose Government Changes to Parks

Defend Alberta’s Parks!

From the CPAWS Southern Alberta website:

The Alberta Government announced they are eliminating or privatizing 184 sites from the Alberta Parks system, including 20 parks that will be completely or partially closed immediately. Other impacts include closing visitor centres, discontinuing popular groomed cross-country ski trails, shortening the operating season for many campgrounds and increasing camping and service fees at all sites. Read more about Defend Alberta’s Parks!

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