Areas of Cumberland County Receiving Wilderness Protection

The province is making the largest addition to its protected areas system since 1998 with the designation of Kelley River and Raven Head in Cumberland County as the newest wilderness areas.

Cumberland North MLA Brian Skabar, on behalf of Environment Minister Sterling Belliveau and Natural Resources Minister Charlie Parker, announced the new protected areas on June 6 in Amherst.

Twenty-three additions are also being made to nine existing wilderness areas. The new protected lands bring the province to 9.4 per cent of its goal to legally protect 12 per cent of lands by 2015.

The province worked closely with local, provincial and regional environmental organizations, off-highway vehicle groups, and others to plan the new wilderness areas.

"The Kelley River and Raven Head wilderness areas will protect the living legacy of coastlines, forests, rivers and wetlands at the heart of Cumberland County, ensuring a vital future for the plant, animal and human communities who call this place home," said Harry Thurston of Cumberland Wilderness.

"We want to thank the many volunteers and environmental organizations whose dedication to conservation made this day possible, as well as the government itself for its commitment to the province's natural heritage."

The new wilderness areas will provide opportunities for recreation, camping, sport-fishing, hunting, canoeing, education, research, community stewardship and other activities. Some vehicle access will be permitted on existing forest access roads and trails.

For more information on the new wilderness areas, a list of the 23 additions and the province's goal of protecting 12 per cent of its lands by 2015, visit Percent by 2015 - Department of Environment .