An Evaluation of the Ecological Reserve Program in British Columbia

Posted August 9, 1987 | Categories : ER,Reports,Research |

KrisKennettThesisKristal Dawn Kennett did this research for a Masters in Natural Resources Management at Simon Fraser University in August 1987.

See the Full PDF: at the Simon Fraser University Library website:

Abstract: British Columbia was the first province in Canada to establish an Ecological Reserve Program. (ERP) .Ecological reserves are legally protected areas established specifically for scientific research and educational use. The objective of this program is to set aside examples of both representative and unique ecosystems throughout the province to serve as research and education areas, and repositories of genetic material. The ecological reserve program grew out of the International Biological Program and was formalized in the ecological reserve act in 1971. This study evaluates the effectiveness of the ecological reserve program in fulfilling its objectives

5  Evaluative criteria  are used in assessing ERP:  legislation and jurisdiction; institutional power; funding and staffing; planning and management capabilities; and achievement of objectives. Based on these evaluative dimensions and results from preliminary questionnaires, at telephone survey of interest groups and interviews with key actors were undertaken. These findings are supplemented with case studies of reserve management. The ecological reserve program has been successful in establishing and protecting a system of natural areas. There are however some weaknesses. The ecological reserve act and regulations are partially effective but have some deficiencies. The program is limited through funding and in its power to influence decisions. These limitations, in turn, affect the planning and management capabilities of the program and its ability to meet ascribed objectives. Recent emphasis on planning and management, however, benefit of the program and further attempts to meet its mandate. Research and educational use of the program are limited. Protection to ensure preservation is incomplete.


This evaluation leads to several policy recommendations. Legislative deficiencies related to acquisition, protection, and administration can be improved by policy changes aimed at securing private land and seeking expert advice. Increased funding and staffing can improve planning and management capabilities and, in turn, assist in the achievement of objectives.

There are 132 pages in this document

See the Full PDF: at the Simon Fraser University Library website:


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