The federal government has just passed an emergency decree to protect endangered species in Quebec. This is the second time in five years that such an action has been taken for the little frog chorus frog, which has once again been threatened by a development project.
The decree went into effect on Monday and will cover the working area for the Boulevard expansion in Langueil, which has threatened the species’ critical habitat. The protected area now covers about 20 hectares in Saint-Hubert Borough.
It should be noted that the work of extending Boulevard Béliveau was authorized by the Quebec Ministry of Environment through a limited limitation process rather than a formal authorization request through simple “compliance statements”. According to documents filed in the Quebec Superior Court, the Ministry of Forests, Wildlife and Parks (MFFP) withdrew a request for permission to allow the city of Languele to proceed with its project at the behest of the Ministry of Wildlife.
The chorus frog has endangered species status in Canada and is endangered in Quebec. According to the MFFP report, ethnic decline in the province continues at a rapid pace. Less than a quarter of the population that still exists today will “be able to sustain themselves in the medium term if conditions remain the same.”
The MFFP considers the population of the Tremble Wooded area where the municipal work took place to be of “regional importance”. Only a population of six species is still viable in Monterrey. In recent decades, the chorus frog has lost 90% of its historical range in Quebec.
Species decline is closely related to the fate of the wetlands in the south of the province. The chorus frog, which is less than 3 cm in height, breeds in temporary swamps in the spring.
In 2016, Ottawa passed a similar decree to protect the chorus frog in the La Prairie, where the species and its habitat are threatened by a major habitat development project. The case went to the Supreme Court, which refused to hear arguments from a developer who felt it was suffering from the Ottawa decision. Prior to the two federal court decisions, the council had stated that the council had not instituted a disguise boycott.
“The scope of the decree does not satisfy us, the decree mainly protects areas that have already been destroyed,” said Alain Branchaud, director general of the Society for Nature and Parks in Quebec. It is hoped that this federal intervention will quickly and truly lead to the protection of the critical habitats of the species. ”
A month ago, Press Boulevard revealed that the city of Langueil has residential subdivision projects on both sides of the Béliveau extension. According to the plans, the entire sector south of Béliveau will be affected, where many housing structures will be formed. It will almost completely destroy the last wetlands left for the species.
The new mayor of Langueil, Catherine Fournier, said she had made her intentions clear to the federal environment minister. “I told Steven Gilbelt that our administration’s intention was to take all necessary measures to permanently protect the natural environment by preventing real estate development, especially on the lands adjacent to Boulevard. We want to conclude a tripartite agreement with the Government of Quebec to achieve this. ”