Preservation and protection
Town and province sign Municipal Habitat Stewardship Agreement; focus on Bottom Brook Estuary
LEWISPORTE, NL — For several years now there has been an effort underway by the Town of Lewisporte to establish a Municipal Habitat Stewardship Agreement.
Those efforts have paid off as last Wednesday the Town joined with the Department of Fisheries and Land Resources by signing the agreement that will help protect valuable wetland and coastal habitats located in the community.
Lewisporte is the 39th community in the province to have entered into such an agreement with the Province.
Signage will be placed at Bottom Brook Estuary in Lewisporte, recognizing that it is a management unit of Municipal Habitat Stewardship.
By entering into the agreement, the Town and Province agree to several things, including the protection of wetlands for waterfowl and other wildlife.
Outgoing Lewisporte Mayor Brian Sceviour spoke of the dedication of those involved to see the agreement become a reality. He also referred to the four goals of the agreement (see related sidebar information).
“These are goals we found as council we could support,” he said.
Sceviour noted his pride in the town, and the hope that the agreement increases the benefits for wildlife.
Lewisporte-Twillingate MHA Derek Bennett noted that the signing of the agreement is an important first step in meeting and keeping the goals it contains and in being responsible stewards for the environment.
“I am pleased that the Town of Lewisporte has joined the many communities across our province committed to habitat conservation and environmental stewardship,” Bennett said. “Entering into such an important agreement will ensure wetland and coastal habitats in this area are protected for residents and visitors to enjoy for many years to come.”
Fisheries and Land Resources Minister Gerry Byrne said that wildlife is the soul of Newfoundland and Labrador.
“And habitat is the heartbeat of wildlife,” Byrne said.
The Minister noted the importance of the agreement in sending a signal today and to future generations.
“We do have a responsibility to protect our wildlife resources,” he said. “One of the best ways to do that is habitat protection… we are here to do something important — not just for today, but something permanent.”
Ducks Unlimited executive director Paul Wood was noted for his input into the process to achieve the agreement.
“This (Bottom Brook Estuary) is one of the best birdwatching areas I know of in the province,” Wood said. “This is a great place to have protected.”
The Town of Lewisporte signed became the 39th town in Newfoundland and Labrador to sign a municipal habitat stewardship agreement with the provincial government on Wednesday. Taking part in the signing were Mayor-Elect Betty Clarke (standing, left), Lewisporte-Twillingate MHA Derek Bennett (standing, right), outgoing Mayor Brian Sceviour, (seated, left) and Fisheries and Land Resources Minister Gerry Byrne.
This poster shows the area of Bottom Brook Estuary that is included in the municipal habitat stewardship agreement.