The Gouvernement du Québec approved the designation of the Réserve de territoire aux fins d’aire protégée du Bassin-Aval-de-la-Broadback following the submission in the fall of 2020 of a joint brief from the Minister of the Environment and the Fight Against Climate Change, the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, and the Minister of Forests, Wildlife and Parks. The legally protected status contemplated for this territory is that of a “biodiversity reserve,” which is governed by the Natural Heritage Conservation Act.
Geographical location, boundaries and dimensions
The Réserve de territoire aux fins d’aire protégée du Bassin-Aval-de-la-Broadback is associated with the community of Waskaganish. It encompasses numerous cultural sites, especially sacred sites, sites linked to stories and legends, historic sites, cultural camps, former camps, gathering places, travel routes, navigable waterways, and hunting, fishing and trapping areas. Data on the use of the territory by the Cree identify several areas with abundant wildlife. The territorial reserve for protected area purposes includes a wood and plant harvesting cultural area called “little lake.” In the past, community residents went there to harvest cedar to make canoes when there was a canoe factory in Waskaganish. This territory is situated in the Nottaway woodland caribou population distribution area.
Protection measures applied in the territory
No natural resource exploration or exploitation activity (mining, energy and forests) is allowed in the territory of the territorial reserve for protected area purposes. The Minister of Energy and Natural Resources and the Minister of Forests, Wildlife and Parks will ensure the maintenance of the administrative and legal provisions that their prohibition requires.