The Gouvernement du Québec approved the designation of the Réserve de territoire aux fins d’aire protégée des Caribous-de-Nottaway 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 des Caribous-de-Nottaway was established to protect part of the Nottaway woodland caribou herd’s habitat. In this perspective, the territorial reserve for protected area purposes responds to an objective specified by the Grand Alliance, which is to identify new protected areas conducive to the connectivity of the territory’s wildlife habitats. Furthermore, it advantageously rounds out the Réserve de biodiversité projetée de la plaine de la Missisicabi and the Réserve de biodiversité projetée des collines de Muskuchii.
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.
Note 1. Land covered by mining titles is landlocked in this territory. The holder of the titles can continue to access the land as was previously the case. The construction or creation of a new road is usually incompatible with the objectives of a territorial reserve for protected area purposes. However, in the case of the mining titles covering landlocked lots, the holders can build a road to access the land that their rights cover. They must inform accordingly beforehand the Ministère de l’Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques, which may then impose mitigation measures on the natural environment and the implementation conditions.