Nature Conservancy of Canada
Shell Canada and the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) have been ‘natural partners’ in land conservation projects for 30 years.
The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) works closely with all levels of government, and many organizations, including Shell, to protect natural areas and the species they sustain across Canada. As a supporter of NCC’s conservation program, Shell has contributed more than $6.5 million in financial resources, land and mineral rights to NCC over the past 30 years.
From coast to coast, Shell has provided NCC with resources to help conserve special lands and endangered ecosystems. Preserving the richness and diversity of biological life (biodiversity) is expected by society and is important for truly sustainable development. Shell also values wise land stewardship because the company’s success is in part dependent on the land. Following are examples of NCC projects Shell has supported.
Conservation Projects Supported
Some of the past projects that received Shell Canada's contributions were:
- Shaughnessy Cohen Memorial Savanna, Pelee Island, Ontario
- La Fabrique, Île de Grâce, Québec
- Elkington Property (Garry Oaks ecosystem), Vancouver Island, B.C.
- Tabusintac Lagoon, New Brunswick
- Grasslands National Park, Saskatchewan
- Cross Conservation Area, Alberta
- Big Hill Springs, Alberta
- Francis Nose Island, Nova Scotia
- MacFarlane Woods, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia
Shell Conservation Internship Program
The former Shell Conservation Internship Program (SCIP) allowed NCC to hire environmental students in the summer to do vital stewardship work on its properties. Over 220 university and college students received support from Shell through this internship program.
Other Shell Contributions
In 1997, Shell Canada was one of four oil companies to relinquish mineral rights to 320,000 acres off the west coast of Canada. This was the first step to establish the Gwaii Haanas National Marine Conservation.
Celebrating Canada's 125th birthday in 1992, Shell donated 22,100 acres of land to establish the Mount Broadwood Heritage Conservation Area. Grizzly bear, elk and big horn sheep are some of the species that roam this area, described by the NCC as a "wildlife paradise.” This land donation was valued at over $1.8 million.
In 2001, Shell took a creative approach to support by providing $250,000 for research and a three-year land conservation position for NCC. The Land Conservation Representative secured properties and conservation easements valued at $8 million. This resulted in much greater gains for conservation than a more traditional contribution towards the purchase of land.
Most recently, on June 8, 2016 Shell gifted NCC with over 860,000 hectares of offshore exploratory permits in the waters of Baffin Bay, near Lancaster Sound to support government and Inuit aspirations to expand a proposed conservation area off the coast of Nunavut.
The contribution of Shell’s permits, located outside of these boundaries, could clear the way for a larger National Marine Conservation Area. The proposed Lancaster Sound Marine Conservation Area would protect a representative portion of Lancaster Sound’s vital marine ecosystem while also allowing human uses to continue in an ecologically sustainable manner. It would also support the sustainability of coastal Inuit communities and protect this marine heritage for present and future generations of Canadians.
Shell has been a supporting partner of Ducks Unlimited since 1986.
In that time we have worked with them on a number of conservation intiatives, supporting the conservation of wetlands across the country.
In 2013 Shell and Ducks Unlimited developed a biodiversity tool that has led to the ongoing development of an exciting new tool that can be used to more accurately assess impacts on wetlands, including information on carbon accumulation, biodiversity and other areas. This GIS tool will help Shell assess impacts that different mine plans will have on an area, helping to reduce impacts through better planning.
Shell Buffalo Hills Conservation Ranch was also established in 2013, with the help of Ducks Unlimited. Nearly 6,000 acres located one hour southeast of Calgary, this land is used for breeding, migration or wintering by 159 bird species that use both native prairie and the boreal forest of Alberta. It includes 4,130 acres of pristine, native grasslands, as well as an additional 1,769 acres of tame hay lands.
Shell has supported Tree Canada since 1998, supporting programs to maintain a healthy environment through sustaining urban and rural forests. Since partnering, we’ve planted over 2 million trees together!
Since 1998, this partnership has resulted in over 2 million trees being planted, sequestration of over one million tonnes of CO2 (based on estimations) and the initiation of 38 diverse projects. In 2011 the Shell received Tree Canada’s Ultimate Award, recognizing partners who have contributed more than $1 million towards the stewardship of trees with Tree Canada.
Together Shell and Tree Canada have:
- Helped restore habitat when ice storms ravaged Eastern Canada in 1998 and windstorms swept through Vancouver’s Stanley Park in 2006.
- Completed schoolyard greening at nearly 70 Canadian schools, which beautify school grounds and provide shelter to children from harmful UV rays.
- Undertaken urban forest plantings within the City of Calgary.
- Enhanced the Fort Saskatchewan's river valley through various projects, including three tree plantings as part of a three-year, $400,000 social investment celebrating Scotford's 30th Anniversary.