National Parks of Canada

National Parks of Canada are protected natural spaces throughout the country that represent distinct geographical regions of the nation. Under the administration of Parks Canada, a government branch, National Parks allow for public enjoyment without compromising the area for future generations, including the management of wildlife and habitat within the ecosystems of the park. Within Parks Canada’s administration is a wide range of protected areas, encompassing National Historic Sites, National Marine Conservation Areas (NMCA), and National Park Reserves.

Canada’s first national park, located in Banff, was established in 1885. Tourism and commercialization dominated early park development, followed closely by resource extraction. Commodifying the parks for the profit of Canada’s national economy as well as conserving the natural areas for public and future use became an integrated method of park creation. The process of establishing national parks has included the often forced displacement of indigenous and non-indigenous residents of areas within the proposed park boundaries. The conflicts between the creation of parks and the residents of the area have been negotiated through co-management practices, as Parks Canada acknowledged the importance of community involvement in order to sustain a healthy ecosystem.

A transition towards developing parks as a place of preservation began with the National Parks Act of 1930. This event marked a shift in park management practices. Revised in 1979 under the National Parks Policy, the Act placed greater emphasis on preserving the natural areas in an unimpaired state through ecological integrity and restoration, moving away from development based heavily on profit. Acting as national symbols, Canada's National Parks exist in every province and territory representing a variety of landscapes that mark Canada’s natural heritage.

Read more about National Parks Of Canada:  Timeline, Creation and Development

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