Friday, January 15, 2010

Canada's Species At Risk Act Has a Lot of Potential

Last weekend's Edmonton Journal featured a detailed article by Ed Struzik about Canada's Species At Risk Act (SARA). The story covers the history and current status of SARA, highlighting examples of the Polar Bear, Nooksack Dace, Greater Sage-Grouse and Woodland Caribou as species that the existing legislation has failed to protect. In two of these cases - the Nooksack Dace and the Greater Sage-Grouse - legal action has been necessary to move forward protection of these species.

In the article, our conservation ecologist Ted Cheskey says:
The Species at Risk Act "itself has a lot of potential ...

"It requires the government to identify and protect habitat in which species need to survive and recover. And habitat loss, we know, is the reason why 84 per cent of the species on the list are in trouble. But so far, we've seen little progress in this area."

The mandatory 5-year parliamentary review of SARA has started, but is another important piece of business stalled by the current prorogation of parliament. Nature Canada is one of several organizations that has presented to the Standing Committee reviewing the Act. We are looking forward to the review process continuing when parliament resumes this spring.

As this news piece shows, Canada's Species At Risk need action now.


mike said...

gee, i guess consensus is more art than science. you say that polar bears are threatened, other scientists say they're increasing. you say the polar ice is vanishing, others say it's increased by 400k sq miles and is back to it's old levels. but i guess if there wasn't a crisis, that would be bad for donations.
yes please save the planet, but not if it means i'm out of a job!

WildPhotos said...

If the "northern passage" is found I'd say the ice can be proven to have decreased.

I appreciate the Act's attempt to protect wildlife. Canada has at least done a pretty good job at requiring mining companies for example to do restoration.