Tourism & Outdoor Recreation Industry Advisory
Regarding Alberta, Canada
For financial institutions & businesses’ thinking of investing or expanding in tourism or outdoor recreation within Alberta
Do your current or future business plans involve nearby natural scenery, wildlife or outdoor recreation in natural settings on public lands, lakes or waterways within Alberta? If so, our businesses advise, be aware before investing or expanding.
Without actually being covered by the laws under Alberta’s protected areas and parks legislation, the natural state and wildlife habitat can disappear with the stroke of a pen. No public notice or consultation is required prior to such public lands being leased or sold for resource (e.g. logging, mining or petroleum), or agricultural (e.g. cultivation) development.
It is not enough to have Government of Alberta assurances in the form of:
· Land-use plans with the lands and waters zoned as Prime Protection, Critical Wildlife, General Recreation or generally as conservation areas; or
· Land-use plans stating the primary purpose of the area as watershed protection, outdoor recreation and tourism; or
· The Government adding the area to its network of protected areas or making it a Forest Land Use Zone “designed primarily to protect areas containing sensitive resources.”
Presently facing such a threat are local businesses making use of the Castle Special Management Area, located within the international Crown of the Continent geo-tourism region, on the north side of Waterton Lakes National Park, in Southwest Alberta. In 1998, the Government had added the Castle Special Place to “Alberta’s protected areas network”, referring to it as “a milestone in the preservation of Alberta’s natural heritage for future generations.” The land-base for local businesses in tourism and outdoor recreation, and for use by area residents and wildlife, seemed secure.
The Government has now slated the core of the Castle, in amongst five Provincial Recreation Areas, for commercial clear-cut or “cut-block” logging, included that zoned as Critical Wildlife and General Recreation. The logging operation is to begin June 10, 2011. An estimated 3,750 truckloads are expected to be cut by Spray Lake Sawmills and hauled outside of the region, more than four hours north, to a mill located west of Calgary. As done inside parks, any risk of wild fire or infestation, such as a pine beetle outbreak (of which such an occurrence is low in the area) can be effectively reduced without the need for commercial logging.
This ‘Industry Advisory’ is issued by the following businesses, with assistance from the Alberta Foothills Network:Businesses, click here to add your name to the Advisory