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Readout – Co-chairs’ Summary: Meeting of federal-provincial-territorial Ministers responsible for conservation, wildlife, and biodiversity – Federal-provincial-territorial Ministers commit to implementing the Global Biodiversity Framework in Canada

Press Release

From: Environment and Climate Change Canada


June 26, 2024

Today, federal, provincial, and territorial ministers and representatives responsible for conservation, wildlife, and biodiversity, met in Ottawa to renew their commitment toward enhancing nature conservation and sustainable use of nature in Canada. We know the importance of this work and the benefits that people will receive, now and in the future.

The ministers and representatives met last May 2023, when they committed to collective efforts toward halting and reversing biodiversity loss by 2030 and putting nature on a path to recovery by 2050. They also discussed collective efforts toward achieving Canada’s goal of protecting 30 percent of land and water by 2030, in response to the adoption of the Kunming-Montréal Global Biodiversity Framework at the 15th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity. Today, the ministers and representatives shared their respective initiatives to address biodiversity conservation and discussed the importance of accelerating the pace of action.

Participants discussed how Canada’s 2030 Nature Strategy’s successful and ambitious implementation requires coordinated action and depends on whole-of-society, whole-of-government approaches. They agreed that collaboration between the federal, provincial, and territorial governments; Indigenous organizations and governments; local governments; civil society; academia; and industry is essential. This inclusive, multi-pronged approach will help ensure that human needs are met, our use of nature’s services is sustainable, and that we are meeting our responsibilities to future generations.

Participants acknowledged the significant contributions that each jurisdiction is already making to shared priorities and objectives. They recalled that each jurisdiction has unique circumstances, sets their own plans and priorities, and implements various tools and partnerships. They reflected on how efforts can be enhanced through collaboration on biodiversity, inclusive land-use planning, species at risk, area-based conservation, invasive alien species, and wildlife health.

In continued recognition of the central importance of protected and conserved areas in halting biodiversity loss, participants acknowledged the importance of innovation, using a variety of tools to accelerate area-based conservation. They also committed to continue efforts toward the expansion of protected and conserved areas in their respective jurisdictions and look forward to continued collaboration in the spirit of increasing coordination and efficiencies.

With 662 species at risk in Canada, the participants also discussed how they can achieve better outcomes for species protection and recovery. They recommitted to working together to implement the Pan-Canadian Approach to Transforming Species at Risk Conservation in Canada, agreed to by the federal, provincial, and territorial governments in 2018—an approach which shifts efforts from a single-species conservation to one that focuses on multiple species and ecosystems by targeting priority places, sectors, and species. Participants welcomed a panel of experts who shared options to accelerate the pace of change that could be considered by jurisdictions.

Participants recognized the critical role Indigenous governments, communities, and organizations play in conservation initiatives and in tackling biodiversity loss. Indigenous peoples are the original stewards of the land, often best positioned to support the restoration of healthy ecosystems in Canada. The Nature Agreements developed to date reflect this highly valued partnership between federal, provincial, and territorial governments and Indigenous organizations toward conservation and restoration. Participants also agreed that Indigenous knowledge and science, in combination with Western science, is essential to successfully implement the federal, provincial, and territorial nature strategies, and shared a common desire to keep supporting Indigenous leadership and efforts toward the country’s nature recovery.

Heading into COP16, Canada has an opportunity to continue being a global leader in halting and reversing the biodiversity crisis. To that end, federal, provincial, and territorial ministers remain committed to working together on shared objectives for the conservation and sustainable use of Canada’s biodiversity, in accordance with each government’s priorities and jurisdiction.

The ministers will meet again next year to review Canada’s progress toward its objective of halting and reversing biodiversity loss by 2030 and putting nature on a path to recovery by 2050.

Quick facts

  • Participants recognized key relationships and outcomes achieved through the Pathway to Canada Target 1 National Steering Committee, including definitions and guidance for recognizing and reporting protected areas and other effective area-based conservation measures (OECMs) and guidance on Indigenous protected and conserved areas (IPCAs). These resources and guidance will be vital in expanding Canada’s conservation network.
  • To advance action for nature and improve inter-jurisdictional collaboration and coordination, the participants and representatives responsible for conservation, wildlife, and biodiversity agreed to adopt a co-chair model for their forum and to meet annually. Co-chairs will consist of the minister for Environment and Climate Change Canada and a minister from one of the provincial or territorial governments on a rotating term basis.
  • Provinces and territories were represented by Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador. Observers were present from Quebec, Saskatchewan and New Brunswick.



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