National tour to save Nahanni wilderness stops in Winnipeg

December 4, 2001

Winnipeg, Manitoba – James Keelaghan, Dr. Derek Ford, and Harvey Locke will appear at the Winnipeg Art Gallery Friday, November 18th as part of a cross-country tour to encourage Canadians to help protect the Northwest Territories’ spectacular Nahanni wilderness. The current boundaries of the Nahanni National Park Reserve – also designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site – protect only a small part of the watershed, leaving a significant portion threatened by proposed mining in the area.

“The federal government needs to commit right now to protecting the entire watershed of this globally unique and delicate landscape,” said the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) Senior Conservation Advisor, Harvey Locke. “Allowing this type of development to proceed in this earthquake and flood-prone region is just too great a risk, and collectively we need to send that message out loud and clear.”

Organized by CPAWS Manitoba, a chapter of the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, this event offers Winnipeggers a chance to learn more about the effort to save one of Canada’s most spectacular wilderness areas. The evening will include speeches, personal anecdotes, spectacular images and music.

Nahanni National Park was established by former Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau in the 1970s after he was awed by its magnificence. While the federal government committed to expanding Nahanni National Park Reserve in 2002, the process for assessing the boundary expansion is still underway and could take Parks Canada another year or more to complete – too late to stop some of the harm that industrial development might cause.

CPAWS is urging Canadians concerned about the Nahanni’s fate to contact the Prime Minister and other Members of Parliament to demand an immediate commitment to protect the South Nahanni watershed. More information is available at The Nahanni Forever national tour is part of CPAWS’ ongoing efforts to conserve Canada’s remaining wilderness. In Manitoba, CPAWS is actively pursuing protection and conservation of areas such as the Manitoba Lowlands.

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