The Green Budget Coalition recommends establishing a new Habitat Infrastructure Renewal Fund aimed at rebuilding or renewing existing conservation projects across the country. The Fund would seek to extend the lifespan and functionality of existing conservation assets on public and private lands across Canada in order to meet international and national criteria and standards for protected areas. A new Habitat Infrastructure Renewal Fund could contribute to achieving Canada’s domestic and international environmental commitments such as Aichi-target 11 under the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and Budget 2021’s commitment of over $3.3 billion for five years to deliver on Canada’s target of protecting 25% of land and ocean by 2025, and 30% by 2030.
Many conservation areas in Canada were enhanced and secured prior to the establishment of more recent publicly funded conservation support mechanisms and are in decline, requiring immediate remedial infrastructure renewal investments. This is especially true for those areas employing intensively built infrastructure to support ecological functions and integrity, and which now require major renewal, replacement, conversion to more naturally functioning designs, scientific monitoring, and new management strategies to ensure their viability.
Without proper investment, these conservation areas will continue to decline and will be less likely to count towards our protected area commitments. Therefore, a new habitat infrastructure renewal fund is required to ensure that these areas are well-maintained, managed, and fully restored. This fund will ensure that the size and biodiversity of conservation areas is preserved, or renewed and restored.
$150 million over four years [ECCC]