Making Ecological Integrity Central in Legislation and Policy

"We will work with Parks Canada employees and other partners to develop a Charter for the Parks Canada Agency that sets out the core values of the organization centred around protection of ecological integrity in national parks." (Action Plan)

Progress to Date

  • A draft of the Charter has been prepared and distributed for staff and stakeholder consultations. It underscores Parks Canada's ecological integrity mandate.

Next Steps

  • It is intended that the Charter will be finalized subsequent to its review at the first Round Table held pursuant to the Parks Canada Agency Act.

"We will ensure that ecological integrity is central to the reports to Parliament which are required under the Parks Canada Agency Act. The next State of the Parks Report will be tabled in Parliament later this year." (Action Plan)

Progress to Date

  • The recent Parks Canada Annual Report, and the 2000/2001 Corporate Plan, include increased focus on ecological integrity objectives and measures. The 1999 State of the Parks Report (now entitled State of Protected Heritage Areas Report), tabled in October 2000, features ecological integrity as a central theme, as will all future reports.

"We will accelerate the legal designation of wilderness areas in national parks across the system." (Action Plan)

Progress to Date

  • The new Canada National Parks Act requires that "Where a new or amended management plan sets out an area of a park for declaration as a wilderness area, the Minister shall recommend such declaration to the Governor in Council within one year after the plan or amendment is tabled under section 11."
  • Wilderness areas in the Banff, Jasper, Yoho and Kootenay national parks have been declared.
  • An Action Plan for the Declaration of Wilderness Areas in National Parks, to guide the designation of wilderness areas across the system of national parks, has been developed and is being implemented.

Next Steps

  • Wilderness areas in other national parks will be declared consistent with approved management plans and the new Canada National Parks Act . It is expected that this will be completed over the next five years.
Additional Actions

Several Parks Canada management guides and directives related to maintaining or restoring ecological integrity are either in preparation or have been or will be revised.

Progress to Date

  • Work has been completed on the following directives and guides
    • guide to the preparation of ecological integrity statements
    • guide on environmental assessment of park management plans
    • directive on control of hyperabundant species
  • Work is under way on other directives and guides
    • directive on invasive alien species
    • directive on ecological data management
    • directive on aquatic ecosystem management
    • guide on ecosystem conservation