Canada’s largest World Heritage Site is under threat from oil-sands development and hydro dams on the Peace River — where the B.C. government is now planning to build the massive Site C dam.
While contaminants from the oil-sands are affecting water and air quality, water flows (from the Peace River) through Wood Buffalo National Park are being strangled by dams, according to the highly critical report by the UNESCO World Heritage Centre and International Union for Conservation of Nature
The report warned that, if there is not a “major and timely” response to its recommendations the organization will recommend that Wood Buffalo National Park be included in the list of World Heritage in Danger, a list usually reserved for sites in war-torn countries or those facing other disasters. UNESCO is meeting this week in Bahrain and will consider adding Wood Buffalo to the list of of site in danger.
Wood Buffalo National Park covers almost 45,000 square kilometres of grasslands, wetlands and waterways. It is the breeding grounds for the only self-sustaining population of Whooping cranes.