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BC NDP MLA Ronna-Rae Leonard welcomes $2 million in funding for Puntledge River timber reservation

June 28, 2024 at 2:23 pm  Politics, Provincial

PUNTLEDGE RIVER – Courtenay – Comox MLA Ronna-Rae Leonard is welcoming $2,000,000 from the Old Growth Nature Fund that will protect 32 hectares of timber reservation on the BC Hydro property at Puntledge River.

“I am so thrilled that over 300 hectares of land have been secured to conserve old growth forests and protect at-risk wildlife, including 32 hectares of timber reservation along the Puntledge River,” says Ronna-Rae Leonard, MLA for Courtenay – Comox. “I am grateful for the commitment and capacity of the Comox Valley Land Trust to identify needs and work positively with our government, as it has been instrumental in achieving our shared goals to conserve old growth and protect at-risk wildlife.”

The B.C. government, the federal government, and seven land trust and conservancy organizations have collaborated to protect 316 hectares of critical old growth and habitat for species at risk across eight sites, including Puntledge River.

Funding for this initiative included $7.9 million from the Old Growth Nature Fund and $8.2 million from private donors and organizations. Environment and Climate Change Canada is providing $50 million over three years to support the preservation of old growth forests in BC.

These biodiverse sites, located in densely populated areas, are essential refuges for wildlife such as cutthroat trout, band-tailed pigeons, and horned grebes.

To date, the province has allocated approximately $31 million from the Old Growth Nature Fund to prevent harvesting or development in these areas, aligning with the Old Growth Strategic Review.

 

Government News Release: https://news.gov.bc.ca/31197

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