December 2021
Media Newslettters
Dec 02, 2021 post image

Dear all,

I want to wish everyone safe and relaxing holidays. I also want to express my sincere appreciation for the ideas, knowledge, and questions that you have contributed to the Canadian KBA initiative, which have served to regularly improve our process and outcomes. We still need your help: to determine where KBAs are located, to interpret data and share knowledge about how species and ecosystems are distributed on the landscape, and to improve our ability to include all communities and stakeholders in this work in order to make it relevant to everyone.

As we make progress on identifying and delineating KBAs across the country (revisit 2021 highlights in newsletters from the past year), our focus is expanding to include more outreach and communication around conservation and stewardship of KBAs. In June of this past year, we gathered a large number of KBA partners and supporters to discuss how to make this initiative as effective as possible for biodiversity conservation. Many great ideas were suggested that require communication and outreach as a first step, with the goal of creating awareness and action on the ground. To date, outreach has focused on building awareness of KBAs within governments, NGOs and expert communities. Dozens of webinars, meetings and presentations have been delivered to this end. At smaller scales, we have also reached out to local and Indigenous communities and stakeholders about specific KBAs, building understanding of what a KBA is and how it could be used in management. There is still a lot of work to do to build awareness of KBAs at the local level, within decision-making contexts, and with broader audiences – including all Canadians who should know about the remarkable and unique biodiversity found across the country.

We will be ramping up discussions with stewardship organizations, Indigenous organizations and communities and other rights holders and stakeholders in the new year. We hope to learn more about the Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA) caretaker program and explore how it could be expanded to include the stewardship and monitoring of all KBAs. We are looking to partner organizations and their networks to provide leadership on outreach and communication and would like to hear from you:

  • Are there concrete steps that you are aware of, or initiating, to increase the utility of KBAs to conservation and related decisions?
  • If you are not yet engaged in promoting KBAs, or involved in stewardship of sites, could you send us your ideas and plans for how you think you could help make KBAs more effective as a conservation tool in Canada?
  • Finally, we would like to know if there is anything that the KBA Canada Secretariat can do to help enhance or expand your role within the KBA initiative.

We look forward to hearing from you in the New Year, and to working with you in 2022. Stay well!

Sea otters (Enhydra lutris). Courtesy iNaturalist and Doc Sharpe.

As always, please get in touch if you have questions or if you want to learn more.

Ciara Raudsepp-Hearne

Director Key Biodiversity Areas / Directrice Zones Clés pour la Biodiversité 

Dec 02, 2021