The following passage discusses some of Calgary's efforts to restore and conserve its wetlands. As you read, think about how wetland conservation might complement the efforts of urban development.
The city of Calgary is home to some of the most significant wetland areas in North America. In 1981, it was estimated that 78% of the pre-settlement wetlands in Calgary had been lost. Today, the estimate is closer to 90%. Urban development is now extending into areas of significant wetland complexes, some of which are considered provincially and nationally significant to breeding waterfowl. These wetlands also play an important role in improving water quality and quantity, reducing flooding and soil erosion, providing biodiversity, moderating climate conditions, contributing to an aesthetic urban design, and providing educational and recreational opportunities. To ensure that these benefits remain viable and sustainable for our future generations, the City of Calgary has developed the Wetland Conservation Plan, which sets priorities and explores alternatives for wetland conservation in order to guide future urban development.
- Efforts shall be made to avoid the impact from development on Calgary Wetlands that are environmentally significant and/or contribute to water quality and quantity, and that can be integrated into urban development while maintaining their ecosystem survivability and sustainability. . . .
- The City of Calgary shall ensure that there is No Net Loss of Calgary Wetlands after efforts have been made to avoid impact from development. . . .
2. Ecological boundaries of watersheds and/or aquifers do not respect political boundaries. Therefore, a regional planning perspective should be considered when unavoidable losses to existing wetlands are compensated through wetland enhancement and/or creation. . . .
3. Educating the public about the importance of wetland functions and their value in producing environmental, social and economic benefits will play an important role in wetland conservation and protection. . . .
Source: www.calgary.ca/docgallery/bu/parks_operations/wetland_conservation_plan.pdf -
1. What roles do Calgary's wetlands play?
2. What are some of the proposals outlined in the Wetland Conservation Plan?
3. Name another strategy that the city of Calgary should adopt in order to preserve its wetlands.