“Keeping Nature in Our Future“, a new report compiled by Okanagan Collaborative Conservation Program, provides a good outline for conservation and biodiversity planning in the Okanagan region. It places a high value on the connection between habitat connectivity and local community well being. It discusses that water purification, fire control and lower soil erosion in the area will be improved with the following strategies:
– Conserving corridors that can help serve multiple functions (recreation, water quality, supply management, temperature moderation,carbon storage, erosion reduction, and other ecosystem services).
– When designing connectivity at the regional/sub-regional scale, encouraging participation by First Nations, affected governments and stakeholders, including U.S. representatives where plans are adjacent to the border.
– Planing for connectivity in your community even if partners in surrounding areas are not available to collaborate.
A national park in the South Okanagan-Similkameen will be a step towards this kind of connectivity in the region.