The vast expanses of northern Quebec are home to some of the last ecologically intact environments on the planet. Occupied since time immemorial by the Inuit and by the Cree, Innu, Naskapi, Algonquin and Atikamekw First Nations, the boreal forest, taiga and tundra provide habitat for millions of nesting birds and some of the largest caribou and salmonid populations in North America. The human footprint in the area also varies substantially, with the northern section more affected by industrial activities and urbanization.
Northern Quebec is also highly prized for its mining, forestry and water resources and is beset by development projects that could permanently compromise the ecological integrity and biocultural heritage of these northern environments. Vast infrastructure projects aimed at “opening up” the territory and facilitating access to resources would also fragment territories that have been scarcely disturbed until now.
In 2011, the Quebec government committed to protecting 50% of the land north of the 49th parallel from industrial activities and to implementing ecological planning for the area. Since then, CPAWS Quebec has been working with various government bodies to monitor the implementation of ecological planning, the protection of ecological and cultural values, and the use of best practices on 100% of this land.
We are working with representatives of the Inuit, Innu, Naskapi and Cree First Nations to create and develop new protected areas.
We are also striving to reform the way in which our natural resources are managed, and to ensure that our forests, waterways and mineral resources are used in an environmentally responsible manner.
Support the protection of the Pipmuakan
Located on the Nitassinan of the Innu First Nation of Pessamit in the heart of the boreal forest, it is an essential place for the transmission of Innu heritage and for the recovery of woodland caribou.