MISE & Agrave; DAY
An emergency decree was adopted Monday by Ottawa to save the chorus frog in Longueuil, a gesture long demanded by environmentalists to help keep the critical habitat of this habitat healthy. endangered species.
“Scientific data confirms that the protection of this particular population is essential for the survival and recovery of the species in general,” said Minister of the Environment Steven Guilbeault.
The decree prohibits a host of works, including “digging, removing, tamping or plowing the earth”, which until now had the objective of extending a portion of the Béliveau highway to connect it to another boulevard.
The new segment required the destruction of part of Boisé Du Tremblay, where one of the most important habitats of this small amphibian is found.
The work was suspended for the first time by a decision of the Superior Court of Quebec at the end of October.
The new mayor of Longueuil, Catherine Fournier, announced on Twitter that she intended to “take all the necessary measures to protect the natural environment “. She “wishes to reach a tripartite agreement with Quebec to achieve this”.
Environment Canada has indicated that its decision is “based on the best information available, in particular the most recent scientific opinions as well as all the data and documentation provided by the government of Quebec, the City of Longueuil and non-governmental organizations”./p>
Ottawa adopted a similar emergency decree in 2016 to end a residential development project in La Prairie, which threatened one of the species' habitats.
The chorus frog was listed on the official endangered species list in 2010.
Not enough, according to environmental groups
Although the decree was welcomed by the Center québécois du droit de l'Environnement (CQDE) and SNAP Québec, its content does not meet the expectations of these two groups who have long campaigned for its adoption.
“The scope of the decree leaves us unsatisfied. The decree mainly protects areas already destroyed or disturbed, without including the main breeding ponds in the area. It is to be hoped that this federal intervention will give momentum to real protection of the species' critical habitat in Longueuil, ”Alain Branchaud, biologist and general manager at SNAP Québec, declared in a press release.
The organizations stressed that they would like to see the different levels of government take the issue head-on.
They also want a modernization of the Regulation respecting wildlife habitats as set out in Quebec law.