Guest letter from the editor

Lisa McLaughlin, Vice-president, Conservation Policy & Planning

Lisa McLaughlin, Vice-president, Conservation Policy & Planning

As was seen in numerous communities and landscapes across the country and the world this past summer, climate change and biodiversity loss are now indisputably two of society’s greatest challenges that threaten the health and well-being of our planet, communities and economy. In Canada, the negative effects of a warming climate — coupled with more than 200 years of intensive land use and conversion — have significantly reduced the environment’s natural resilience to recover from the stresses placed upon it. These pressures affect the way we live now and threaten the quality of life of future generations by destroying habitat critical for pollinators and other species, reducing natural protections against flooding and fire hazards, jeopardizing food and water security and destroying critical resources upon which our economy relies.

In March 2021, the United Nations (UN) declared the Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021–2030) to facilitate a restoration movement driven forward by scientific research, political support and financial investment from around the globe. The overarching vision for the UN Decade is a world where — for the health and well-being of all life on Earth and that of future generations — the relationship between humans and nature has been restored, where the area of healthy ecosystems is increasing and where ecosystem loss, fragmentation and  degradation have ended.

As Canada’s leading private land conservation organization with over 386,000 hectares (953,827 acres) under our direct protection and management, NCC is already involved in restoration work from coast to coast in areas where 90 per cent of Canadians live, work and play. This issue’s feature story, by science writer Niki Wilson, offers a snapshot of just some of the myriad ways NCC staff and volunteers are involved in tangible restoration activities on the ground. As an evidence-based organization, however, we know more needs to be done, faster. With your support, we can provide needed leadership. You can help us amplify and implement the goals of the UN Decade as leaders and champions for restoration.

Thank you for your ongoing support,

Lisa McLaughlin

VP of conservation planning and policy

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