In Canada, we're known for our incredible system of national and provincial parks and conservation areas. The wilderness forms an important part of Canada’s national identity.
In 2001 Shell became the first global energy company to adopt a biodiversity standard. Today, protecting biodiversity is an integrated part of how we operate. We consider biodiversity early in new projects, develop biodiversity action plans, and collaborate with biodiversity experts to help protect areas with rich and delicate eco-systems. We also work with some of the best conservation partners around the world on initiatives.
Land conservation plays a key role in managing biodiversity. To date Shell has helped conserve over 31,000 acres of land in Canada and we continue to support initiatives that will preserve our natural heritage for future generations. Our leadership in land conservation began in 1992 with establishment of the Mount Broadwood Heritage Conservation Area near Fernie, British Columbia. At over 22,000 acres, the property remains the largest donation of conservation land in Canadian history.
In 2011, we partnered with ACA to conserve over 1,800 acres of northern boreal land with the creation of the Shell True North Forest near Grande Prairie, Alberta, and in 2013, Ducks Unlimited Canada and Shell celebrated the launch of the Shell Buffalo Hills Conservation Ranch which protects critical native grasslands in South Eastern Alberta.
Working with the Alberta Conservation Association (ACA), we've provided $2 million over a ten-year period (2007-2016) to acquire land in the Hubert Lake Wildland Park area North East of Edmonton, Alberta. These lands will help provide an important corridor for wildlife to connect to the provincial park.
On June 8, 2016 Shell announced the contribution of over 860,000 hectares of offshore exploratory permits in the waters of Baffin Bay, near Lancaster Sound to the Nature Conservancy of Canada. This represents an area larger than Banff National Park.
Most recently, on September 13, 2018 Shell announced its intent to voluntarily release about 50,000 km2 of exploratory permits off coastal British Columbia to support marine conservation. More than one and a half times the size of Vancouver Island, the acreage is located in the Queen Charlotte and Tofino basins covering vast and environmentally rich areas.