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Green Mountains Nature Reserve, QC (Photo by La Halte Studio)

Green Mountains Nature Reserve, QC (Photo by La Halte Studio)

Nature lover hands down land in Estrie to future generations

December 18, 2023
Sutton, Qu├ębec

 

Incredible gift from a Glen Sutton resident just in time for the holidays

A 34-hectare parcel on the southern flank of the Sutton Mountains, the equivalent of 214 NHL -sized hockey rinks, is now conserved by the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC).

Thanks to a generous resident of Glen Sutton, Estrie, who handed over his land to NCC by donating half of its value, as well as funds from the Governments of Quebec and Canada, the richness of this natural area will be protected for the long term.

This jewel of nature is located in the Northern Green Mountains, one of the last major regions in southern Quebec that still has large wilderness areas relatively untouched by human activity. The land adds to over 16,300 hectares already conserved by NCC and its regional partners.

A nature lover, Arnold Raymond has always felt a strong connection to his land. Having spent over 45 years caring for it, Raymond is a familiar presence to the many species that call it home. “It’s their world just as much as ours,” he says. “We should protect as much wildlife and vegetation as we can for generations to come. If we don't start now, we won't have it.”

Largely forested, the area to be conserved by NCC is home to eastern wood pewee, a bird designated as a species of special concern by Canada’s Species at Risk Act . The land is also crossed by a stream, an important habitat for many amphibian species. Spring salamander, designated vulnerable by Québec’s Act respecting threatened or vulnerable species  and threatened according to the SARA, has been spotted in the stream.

This land with its tremendous ecological value is being added to the mosaic of natural environments conserved by NCC and its partners in Estrie, consolidating an important connectivity core in the region. The Green Mountain chain is a vast ecological network that stretches from Vermont to Quebec.

This project showcases how NCC is accelerating the pace of conservation in Canada. In the past two years alone, NCC has influenced the protection of more than one million hectares (over 168 times the area of the Parc national du Mont-Orford), coast to coast to coast. Over the next few years, the organization will double its impact by mobilizing Canadians and delivering permanent, large-scale conservation.

In the face of rapid biodiversity loss and climate change, nature is our ally. There is no solution to either without nature conservation. When nature thrives, we all thrive.

Quotes

“By handing over his land to the Nature Conservancy of Canada, Mr. Raymond’s gesture is one of hope. His love of nature and his desire to protect it as well as the species that call it home are inspiring. In southern Quebec, much land is privately owned. Conserving nature in this region largely depends on donations like this one.”
– Cynthia Patry, Project Manager for Northern Green Mountains, Nature Conservancy of Canada

“Our government supports the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s work to conserve 34 hectares of land in the Green Mountains region in southern Quebec through the Nature Smart Climate Solutions Fund. Ecosystems such as these forests act not only as important stores of carbon, but also provide habitat for several species at risk and nature at large. By making investments such as this, we are making progress toward Canada’s 2030 and 2050 climate change objectives and benefitting biodiversity.”  – The Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change

Facts

  • The land bequeathed by Arnold Raymond is located near the Green Mountains Nature Reserve, a private territory of over 78 square kilometres, which is accessible to the public. People can visit its new website, rnmv.ca, to find out more.
  • The forests that cover the land conserved by NCC include two types of maple forests and one hemlock forest.
  • Northern dusky salamander and pickerel frog, both likely to be designated threatened or vulnerable in Quebec, are also present on the land conserved by NCC.
  • Wood turtle, designated vulnerable in Quebec and of concern in Canada, was spotted near the property.
  • Arnold’s parents-in-law, Hugh and Dorothy Sherrer, bought the land in 1949. Entrusting it to NCC is a way for him to honour their memory.
  • The land is located in an important connectivity zone identified by partners of the Quebec Ecological Corridor Initiative (QECI). The QECI was launched by NCC and is led by 10 organizations and their many partners.

Acknowledgements

This conservation success was made possible by Arnold Raymond, land donor, the Government of Canada, through the Nature Smart Climate Solutions Fund, and the Government of Québec, through financial aid of over $53 million over four years granted to NCC for its Projet de partenariat pour les milieux naturels (partnership project for natural environments). We would also like to thank Mr. Paul Luc Girard, Residential real estate broker, for his involvement and dedication to this project, as well as the neighbors for their cooperation.

About

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is the country’s unifying force for nature. NCC seeks solutions to the twin crises of rapid biodiversity loss and climate change through large-scale, permanent land conservation. As a trusted partner, NCC works with people, communities, businesses, and government to protect and care for our most important natural areas. Since 1962, NCC has brought Canadians together to conserve and restore more than 15 million hectares. In Quebec, close to 50,000 hectares have been protected. With nature, we build a thriving world. To learn more, visit natureconservancy.ca.

Canada’s Nature Smart Climate Solutions Fund (NSCSF) is a $1.4 billion, ten-year fund (2021–2031) administered by Environment and Climate Change Canada to help conserve, restore, and enhance the management of ecosystems such as wetlands, forests, and grasslands, in order to help tackle the dual crises of climate change and biodiversity loss. The NSCSF will focus on three main objectives: (1) conserving carbon-rich ecosystems at high risk of conversion to other uses that would release their stored carbon; (2) improving land management practices to reduce their greenhouse gas emission-causing impacts on Canada’s ecosystems; and (3) restoring degraded ecosystems. Overall, these projects will contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and increased carbon sequestration, while also providing benefits for biodiversity and human well-being.

The Projet de partenariat pour les milieux naturels (PPMN) is a four-year grant of more than $53 million from the Gouvernement du Québec to The Nature Conservancy of Canada. It provides support for voluntary conservation initiatives to ensure the protection of natural areas of interest by establishing financial partnerships with conservation organizations in the province. The PPMN thus aims to develop and consolidate Québec's network of protected areas located on private land.

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) launched the Quebec Ecological Corridors Initiative (QECI) in 2017 to accelerate the conservation of natural areas connected by ecological corridors. The initiative is coordinated by NCC, led by a group of 10 organizations and supported by some 100 experts and stakeholders who are offering a collective approach to land use planning throughout southern Quebec, as well as funds from the Governments of Quebec.

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Elizabeth Sbaglia
Communications Manager, Quebec Region
Nature Conservancy of Canada
1 877-876-5444 x6240

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