July 2019
Médias Bulletins
Jul 02, 2019 post image

Time to start identifying Canadian Key Biodiversity Areas…

Dear KBA community,

We have been learning a lot about Canadian biodiversity from partners, experts and governments in the past few months. We’ve also continued to gather and analyze data, and test out the KBA methodology on case studies, to see what data, information, expertise and resources are needed to do this work. A huge thanks in particular to those of you who filled out our survey to identify potential sites for some of the trickier KBA criteria, the effort resulted in a long and interesting list of potential Key Biodiversity Areas for all different taxa and across all Canadian regions. This scoping phase culminated in a Science Strategy workshop in late June, where representatives from provinces, territories and NGOs got together to better understand the process of identifying and delineating Key Biodiversity Areas and to suggest what it will take to get this work done across Canadian jurisdictions and communities. A few key outcomes:

  • more communication/outreach is needed about what Key Biodiversity Areas are:
    • KBAs are not another tool for species at risk, these sites capture unique elements of biodiversity that exist nowhere else in the world – rare and endemic species and ecosystems, large aggregations of species, areas of high ecological integrity, as well as threatened biodiversity.
    • KBAs represent an information layer that can be used to inform many conservation approaches (including the selection of protected areas), but they are not protected areas.
  • we need a set of proof-of-concept Key Biodiversity Areas to reflect the above message, and will develop a set of 10-15 KBAs in the coming months that are geographically distributed and represent the different elements of biodiversity captured by the tool. This will be done in parallel to developing longer term plans to systematically identify all KBAs across Canada.
  • There is a need for training materials so that KBA partners can engage in the work effectively and lead different parts of it. We will develop these also in the coming months.

These were some main outcomes of the workshop, but there are many additional activities that we are developing in collaboration with government, academic, NGO and Indigenous partners, and we will keep you informed of them as we go. As always, please reach out to me with ideas and feedback. We hope that you may soon be engaged directly in the identification of new sites.

A final word: the first Global KBA community newsletter has been released, take a look to see what’s going on around the world on KBAs, and find details in the newsletter about a Webinar on the Guidelines for using the KBA Standard on Thursday, July 10th. This is late notice but we’ll be offering Canada-focused KBA webinars soon if you can’t attend this one.

Happy summer!


Canada Key Biodiversity Areas Coordinator / Coordonnatrice Zones Clés pour la Biodiversité

Jul 02, 2019