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Recovery Strategy for the Woodland Caribou, Southern Mountain population (Rangifer tarandus caribou) in Canada - 2014 [Final]

9. Statement On Action Plans

As required by SARA, the Minister of the Environment and the Minister Responsible for the Parks Canada Agency will complete one or more action plans under this recovery strategy, which will be included on the Species at Risk Public Registry by December 31, 2017. Action plans provide the public and stakeholders with details on how the recovery strategy will be implemented. They include a broad spectrum of subjects such as: measures to address threats and to achieve population and distribution objectives; an evaluation of socio-economic costs and benefits to be derived from its implementation; and, an approach for monitoring and reporting. An action plan is not necessarily range-specific; instead it could cover multiple ranges.

Consideration will be given to the development of range plans, where desirable and appropriate, for low elevation winter range and Type 1 matrix range within Northern or Central Group LPUs. Such plans would outline the measures and steps to be taken to manage the interaction between human disturbance, natural disturbance, and the need to maintain sufficient suitable habitat. Range plans may be stand-alone documents, or may form part of other planning documents including action plans under SARA.

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9.1 Coordinated Approach

9.1.1 Provincial Jurisdictional Leadership

Provinces have the primary responsibility for management of lands and wildlife within southern mountain caribou distribution. Range plans and/or action plans will inform broader land-use planning and decision making, and will require substantial inter-agency communication and cooperation. Coordination will be particularly important for range and/or action plans that address southern mountain caribou recovery in transboundary ranges, and for ensuring that connectivity within annual ranges and across the species current distribution is maintained.

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9.1.2 Aboriginal Involvement

SARA requires the Minister of the Environment to cooperate with affected Aboriginal organizations for recovery strategies and action plans. Across Canada, cooperation with Aboriginal governments and communities will be key to success in developing and implementing action plans.

Environment Canada acknowledges existing Aboriginal and treaty rights. To the extent possible, details of caribou harvesting plans for LPUs will be addressed (where consistent with the principles of conservation) in action plans flowing from this recovery strategy. When applicable, harvesting plans will follow the required process under Land Claim Agreements or provincial laws. Aboriginal involvement will be required to determine population targets that ensure stable southern mountain caribou LPUs are maintained and recovery of LPUs that are not self-sustaining is achieved, while moving to allow for traditional harvesting practices consistent with conservation and existing Aboriginal and treaty rights of Aboriginal peoples of Canada.

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9.1.3 Stakeholder Engagement

Success in the recovery of this species depends on the commitment, collaboration, and cooperation of many different constituencies that will be involved in implementing the broad strategies and general approaches set out in this recovery strategy and will not be achieved by Environment Canada, or any other jurisdiction, alone. All stakeholders, including the industry sector, environmental organizations, and private landowners should be engaged where appropriate in developing and implementing action plans.

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