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    Escarpment Biosphere Conservancy is Main Mover in Land Stewardship in our Area

    Countries around the world search for solutions to stop the destruction of their forests and ecosystems habitats in order to save biodiversity, endangered species, and turn away from run-away greenhouse gas emissions. In the West we have been asked to put together action plans that balance our demand for wood, biofuel, and resource taking with the protection of huge areas of pristine forest.  These plans have been the subject of intense scrutiny by the United Nations, International Union for the Conservation of Nature to the World Bank. Deforestation and farm community fragmentation are some of the main causes for an increase in greenhouse gas emissions; we must do more to see real financial value in undisturbed forests and other natural areas that encompass so much of the Earth’s biodiversity!

    Fortunately in Bruce, Grey and Simcoe counties we have a truly heroic charitable organization working with landowners and governments to give landowners an option to the selling or logging forests and natural areas: Escarpment Biosphere Conservancy is that group! EBC obtained charitable status in 1997 in order to help create nature reserves in and around the area of Ontario’s Niagara Escarpment. They have been able to protect almost 7,000 acres in our Georgian Bay area from Manitoulin to Simcoe County by establishing conservation agreements and land acquisitions. These conservation agreements do not only apply to forests but just as importantly to conserving farms by preventing conversion to non-farm uses. (Please see

    “Many people look after their lands for thirty years and then wonder what will happen with the next generation, the next owner. It’s possible to set rules governing the way your land will be used in the future and get a very generous income tax benefit from keeping your land the way you want it in perpetuity. Sometimes a land trust can provide a long term conservation solution for your land that brings financial benefit equivalent to selling the land on the open market. We are quite excited that we have 6900 acres on our 81 nature reserves and included in those are habitat for fifty-six rare and endangered species.  Probably a million and a half trees are sequestering sixty thousand tonnes of carbon dioxide every year.” Bob Barnett, Executive Director. Please write or call 416-960-8121 to discuss how Escarpment Biosphere Conservancy can make an enormous difference for your land’s long-tern sustainability.  It does not matter if you have five acres or 500 acres. This charitable organization has the means to give you, through government programs, the means to be financially rewarded while you can safely secure your natural areas for future generations.  Mr. & Mrs. Springer from Chatsworth, Ontario did just this.  “We entered into a conservation agreement with the Escarpment Biosphere Conservancy because we are concerned about the ever increasing encroachments on the natural land in Grey County. There are more and more subdivisions, golf courses, ATV trails, gravel pits, and residential, commercial and industrial lots. The agreement contains covenants that bind future owners of our land to preserve its natural features. Restoring and extending our woodlots is of particular interest to us because forests are beneficial to climate and groundwater resources. On marginal lands, forests are at least as profitable as many other agricultural crops.”
    Canada has signed the U.N. Convention on Biological Diversity. People in our area can contribute to the 2010 CBD Canadian Targets for biodiversity by committing to the stewardship programs that the Escarpment Biosphere Conservancy provides.
    Georgian Triangle Earth Day Celebrations wishes to thank Ontario Trillium Foundation in making the funds available for these Nature articles to be written.

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