Declaration in favour of biodiversity and greening


The highlight of the summit on biodiversity and the greening of Montreal, held on April 27 and 28 at the Gelber Centre and hosted by the Conseil Régional Environment Montréal, the City of Montreal and Health and Social Services of Québec, was Mayor Gérald Tremblay’s luncheon address and his  signing (along with twenty other local mayors and dignitaries) of the Declaration of the Island of Montreal Community in Favour of Biodiversity and Greening.

Signatories recognized six realities on the Island and hence agreed to eight actions.

The realities having most bearing on Meadowbrook are two and five:

  • “In order to protect biodiversity and provide for a quality living environment, it is essential to make sufficient room in our urban fabric for natural environments and greenspace, which includes undeveloped areas.”
  • We must act quickly, since the more time passes, the harder it becomes to repair the damage or the loss of biodiversity”

The actions arising from the realities lead to the following undertakings. Those having most bearing on Meadowbrook are the first three.  The declaration indicates that signatories will undertake to:

  • protect biodiversity and wildlife habitat, and to take steps aiming to promote their increase in parks and green spaces
  • offer a park in proximity to every resident of the island of Montreal
  • participate in the development of green and blue corridors making for connectivity among the island’s natural heritage areas

The application to Meadowbrook seems so obvious.

Yes, we must make room in our urban fabric for natural environments and greenspace, and Meadowbrook would be a natural in the heavily built  southwestern part of the Island. We must act quickly. As far as undertakings go, conserving Meadowbrook would not only protect wildlife habitat but re-naturalizing it would increase biodiversity in one of the few spaces on the Island where this is possible. Conserving Meadowbrook would indeed help to reach to goal of providing proximity to a park for every resident on the Island of Montreal.

The third action sounds exactly like the greenway proposal for the southwest region, and other proposals for a greenway on the island of Montreal. In the former, this would link Meadowbrook, the Falaise St. Jacques, Agrignon Park and the St. Lawrence river allowing humans and biodiversity to travel from one core zone to another.

Photos by Nigel Dove

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