The Bruce Peninsula is one of the most ecologically significant regions in the Great Lakes basin. It is a critical stronghold for globally rare and endemic species and it boasts an outstanding mosaic of ecosystems and natural communities. Our environment is the foundation of a healthy, prosperous community and it requires careful and coordinated stewardship.
In September 2012, the Bruce Peninsula Biosphere Association initiated a project to develop a Community Conservation and Stewardship Plan for the Bruce Peninsula through generous funding from the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation. This project has provided a forum for community dialogue and learning, leading to a strategic, place-based action plan to protect, restore and benefit from our region’s biodiversity.
The project has also established a foundation for creating a strong network of community partners on the Bruce Peninsula by engaging property owners, businesses, farmers, community organizations, Aboriginal groups, government agencies, academic institutions, and others. With this community network and a course of action, we can come together to address immediate community issues while building our resilience to those that emerge in the future.
The Conservation and Stewardship Plan for the Bruce Peninsula is intended as a strategic framework to guide and coordinate local action to address critical issues that may compromise the ecological, social, and economic well being of our community. The plan offers a suite of recommended actions that our community can work towards in partnership over the next five years. Although the focus of the plan is to ensure the integrity of our region’s biodiversity, it recognizes the need to balance both conservation and community development objectives, and it strives to integrate both where possible. Based on broad input from our community and partners, the purpose of this plan is to:
- Create a unified vision and strategic focus for local conservation and stewardship efforts;
- Enable coordinated multi-stakeholder action to address complex and multi-jurisdictional issues;
- Compile key information on our region’s biodiversity and ensure that it is broadly accessible to our community and our partners;
- Facilitate the sharing of knowledge, expertise, and ideas; and
- Strengthen access to human and financial resources to enable action.