For Immediate Release
September 2, 2016
Happy Valley – Goose Bay, NL – The Town of Happy Valley-Goose Bay and Healthy Waters Labrador held an official Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signing today at Birch Island to solidify its partnership on the Birch Island Restoration and Trail Project.
As part of the event, the Town made a $50,000 funding announcement for the project, as well as in-kind services valued at $15,000.
“The restoration and protection of Birch Island is important for the historical and ecological preservation of this wetland conservation area,” said Mayor Jamie Snook. “Long-term sustainability, protection and promotion of the rich history of our town remains a priority for Council. We are very pleased with our partnership with Healthy Waters Labrador on such a worthwhile community project.”
“Healthy Waters Labrador is very pleased to sign this MOU with the Town, it signifies the value of Birch Island as a wetland ecosystem, and shows a willingness to protect that for the long term. Upon completion, the Birch Island Project will restore important wetland habitat for wildlife, and offer place to enjoy nature at its best, right in the heart of our community,” said Jim Purdy, Chair, Healthy Waters Labrador. “We would like to thank the Town of Happy Valley – Goose Bay for their continued support, and commend their commitment to revitalizing the health and history of the island.”
The Town and HWL are partnering towards the completion of the Birch Island Restoration and Trail Project. The project is expected for completion in the fall of 2017.
When finished, the Birch Island area will have a scenic walking trail along the creek for residents and visitors, a dedication to the former residents of Birch Island, natural environment interpretation, town history interpretation, and an outdoor classroom to assist students in learning and understanding the importance of environmental conservation and enhancement.
The Town signed a Municipal Stewardship Agreement in 2004 with the Provincial Government to conserve wildlife habitat within the municipality and became a member of the Stewardship Association of Municipalities (SAM).
“The Town, in collaboration with SAM and other partners, seeks to promote stewardship and conservation of important wetlands located within the Town’s municipal boundaries,” said Councillor Tony Chubbs, Chair, Environmental and Emergency Preparedness Committee. “This MOU is an integral step in the conservation and enhancement of wetland habitat in our community and the creation of a natural space that will showcase our community for years to come.”
The Birch Island Restoration and Trail Project is supported by the following partners and contributors: Healthy Waters Labrador, Town of Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Government of Canada (ACOA, DFO, ECCC), Government of Newfoundland and Labrador (BTCRD, Dept. Environment and Conservation – Wildlife Division and Water Resources Division), Labrador Institute, Labrador North Chamber of Commerce, World Wildlife Fund, Labrador Hunting and Fishing Association, Ducks Unlimited Canada, Stewardship Association of Municipalities as well as numerous business and individual contributors.
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Public Relations & Special Events Manager
Town of Happy Valley – Goose Bay
o) 709-896-3254 ; c) 709-896-1609