British Columbia is home to many nationally and internationally significant natural and cultural values. Through the establishment of parks, ecological reserves and protected areas, an important first step has been undertaken to ensure that these values are afforded legal protection. The legal framework for protecting these important areas includes the:
Parks and protected areas are managed for important conservation values and are dedicated for the preservation of their natural environments for the inspiration, use and enjoyment of the public.
Places of special ecological importance are designated as ecological reserves for scientific research and educational purposes. Scientific research and study of values contained in protected areas are part of BC Parks’ ongoing commitment to knowledge and information gathering. This includes the sharing of knowledge through publishing reports such as our occasional paper series.
Conservation lands that are not parks or protected areas are the responsibility of the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations (FLNRO) and here is a link to their conservation lands pages. These lands are made up of a variety of land types that all give priority to the conservation of wildlife, fish and their habitat, while often providing for other resource uses.
BC Parks undertakes an approach of active conservation management to ensure the ecological integrity of the natural values within our diverse system. Our philosophical approach to protecting these important values is embodied in our conservation principles. Our guidelines for how conservation management shall be undertaken are expressed in our conservation program policies that include guidance on topics such as wildlife, vegetation, cultural heritage, geology and marine values.
BC Parks encourages community involvement in helping to conserve natural values through participation in the ecological reserve warden, conservation steward programs, and the development of protected area management plans.