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Conservation groups see mounting success in B.C. with private land acquisitions

Donations from $5 to $500,000 offer ‘direct’ results toward protecting biodiversity

Conservationists in the business of raising money to buy and protect private lands in B.C. say the approach is resonating with people wanting to take direct action against biodiversity loss and climate change.

Andrew Day, CEO of the B.C. Parks Foundation, which was created in 2017 as the independent, charitable partner of B.C.’s parks system, said thousands of people across the province have given donations from as little as $5 up to $500,000 to protect land from development.

“There’s no more direct way to halt habitat loss and mitigate climate effects than to protect land. It is by far the most effective means of doing that,” he said.

Over the past two years the foundation has purchased and conserved about 4,450 hectares (11,000 acres) of land in B.C. One of its first land acquisition projects bought 800 hectares of land in a remote coastal wilderness on the Sunshine Coast.

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Dreaming Of A White Christmas? How Climate Change Could Impact The Chance of Snow

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Deadmen Valley, Canada was one of the coldest places on Earth on Christmas Eve

A lobe of the Polar Vortex, which is an area of cold air and low pressure that is always circulating around the poles, is creeping down from the Arctic and spilling over parts of Canada.

Western and northern regions of the country normally see particularly chilly temperatures at the end of December, but the temperatures that are currently being recorded are amongst the coldest on the entire planet.

Deadmen Valley, Northwest Territories recorded a brutally cold temperature of -45°C (-49.0°F) and the only place that was colder was Jakutsk, Russia at -48°C (-54.4°F) at 4:00 p.m. EST on December 24. In fact, the bone-chilling air that sent temperatures tumbling so low in Deadmen Valley originated in Russia before it migrated over the North Pole.

Temperatures are ranging from the low minus teens to nearly -30°C (-22°F) across British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. This region also has wind in the forecast, meaning that temperatures will feel several degrees colder.

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