Environment Canada received 800 square kilometres of land
By Diego Flammini
Two levels of government recently finalized a deal on pastureland.
The federal government and Saskatchewan’s provincial government completed a $64-million deal that sees Environment and Climate Change Canada receive a portion of the Govenlock, Nashlyn and Battle Creek pastures.
The federal environment ministry will acquire 800 square kilometres (197,684 acres) of pastureland.
In return, 55 former federal community pastures that are now controlled by Saskatchewan producers will receive upgrades including fencing, barns and corrals.
The agreement between the two parties will benefit farmers and the environment.
“This land exchange allows for access by the ranching community and patrons to continue for sustainable cattle grazing and other activities,” Cameron Newbigging, a spokesperson with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, told Farms.com. “This will allow for continued management of the pastures in an economically, socially and environmentally responsible way that will support livestock production, wildlife habitat protection, and local and Indigenous community interests.”
Overall, the transaction is an example of multiple parties working together for a common goal, he added.
The land deal is part of the federal government’s plan to protect 25 per cent of Canadian land by 2025.
Within the pastures are ten species at risk including the swift fox, sage grouse, burrowing owl and ferruginous hawk.
Producers are proud to play a role in the lives of animals that are in danger.
“The certainty of continued access to the pastures for sustainable cattle grazing while maintaining the ecological and environmental benefits of these grasslands is important for ranchers,” David McLeod, a patron of the Battle Creek pasture, said in a statement.