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NS Government: New and Expanded Protected Areas Around Province

Press Release

September 30, 2019

Protected areas protect biodiversity and habitat and offer opportunities for recreation, education, research and tourism. That’s why government is designating 17 new and expanded protected areas around the province.

Environment Minister Gordon Wilson announced the new sites today, Sept. 30.

“Protected areas benefit nature, build resilience to environmental changes and support a green and inclusive economy,” said Mr. Wilson. “I thank the private landowners who offered land for protection and all our partners who helped us take another step toward our goal of protecting 13 per cent of our land.”

Other partners include the Nova Scotia Nature Trust, the Nature Conservancy of Canada, Nova Scotia Power and Georgia Pacific Canada.

Ten more sites will be designated in the near future. Some of them need consultation and some need survey work before they can be officially designated.


“As we adopt ecological forestry in Nova Scotia, it is essential that we protect land that has the highest biodiversity value in the province. While we implement the other two legs of the triad approach recommended in the independent review of forestry practices, these areas that contain critical habitat for wildlife and species at risk will be fully protected for generations to come.” Iain Rankin, Minister of Lands and Forestry

“We’re very pleased that the province continues to make progress protecting Nova Scotia biodiversity and wilderness areas. We applaud the new designations including those at Silver River Wilderness Area in southwestern Nova Scotia and River Inhabitants and the incredible Mabou Highlands on Cape Breton Island.” Craig Smith, Nova Scotia program manager, Nature Conservancy of Canada

“These sites now connect and complement important land trust conservation lands, from the St. Mary’s River to the Mabou Highlands and McGowan Lake. We look forward to continuing to work with the province, land trusts, and our Indigenous partners as we continue to build on our protected areas network across Nova Scotia.” Bonnie Sutherland, executive director, Nova Scotia Nature Trust

Quick Facts:

  • the 17 designated sites total about 7,400 hectares. They include four wilderness areas, 10 nature reserves, and three provincial parks
  • the 10 sites to be designated soon total about 7,000 hectares. They include six wilderness areas, two nature reserves and two provincial parks
  • together, these will bring the provincial protection total to about 12.73 per cent or 704,000 hectares

Additional Resources:

Descriptions and locations of protected areas are available at:


Media Contact:

Rachel Boomer
Cell: 902-478-9865 Email:


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