Earth Matters by Jacqueline Milner – Christmas Gifts that Give to the Environment – December 12, 2011

CFN – I was out doing a little local Christmas shopping today and ran into a former colleague I hadn’t seen in some time.  In our conversation she mentioned how a certain district in Eastern Ontario had a tree coverage amounting to about 5%.  This is well below the healthy target of 30% which is necessary to maintain bio-diversity.  Think about it.  Many animals and plants depend on trees for food and cover to survive and move about in safety.So what can we do about it?  Plenty.  We could gift more “stuff” this Christmas Season however these are seldom things that enhance our life or well being on a long term basis.  How about a paper gift certificate (please stay away from plastic) for a tree or bush which can provide much needed habitat and food for birds and small animals.   This will effectively also provide you and your friend with some priceless well being.  Think about how great you feel watching a bird fly and sing about or watching a squirrel or chipmunk run around with their mouth full of nuts or fruit.  Isn’t the heart uplifted watching the bumblebees and butterflies dart from flower to flower?  All this life requires a diverse array of habitat; meaning a diversity of trees, grasses and uninhibited space to stay healthy.

Of course there are many other larger animals such as the lynx, bear and certain owl species which at one time lived more abundantly here in Eastern Ontario which require space and a diversity of trees, grasses and other smaller animals to thrive.  Without these they are forced to relocate or die.  They too are feeling the ever increasing stresses of mans encroachment on their habitats.  This is due to our growing populations and increasing demands on their habitats.

There are organizations that work specifically to maintain habitat for species so that we can continue to co-exist with species of plants and animals and the benefits they give.  Enter The Nature Conservancy of Canada.  85% of funds donated to this non-profit organization goes to acquiring “ecologically significant land through purchase, donation or conservation easement” and ensuring “high standards of land stewardship over the long term”.

Gifts of Canadian Nature - giftsofnature.caEarth Matters appreciates your consideration in giving a Gift of Canadian Nature this Christmas Season.  There are various gift giving options available through the Conservancy which can accommodate anyone’s budget.

 Wouldn’t your friends, family or colleague be thrilled to know that your gift helped to sustain habitat for caribou, the northern saw-whet owl, the Newfoundland marten or the grizzly bear?  Each gift of Canadian Nature includes a beautiful colour calendar featuring our beautiful Canadian Landscapes, a personalized gift certificate, and a letter from the President and CEO informing the recipient of your gift of protecting a Canadian wildlife habitat on their behalf.  Please visit for further details or call 1-800-465-8005.  Our own well-being is ultimately tied to maintaining a healthy environment for all living things.We would like to know what you are doing to eliminate plastic and Styrofoam from your daily routines.  Your share could provide inspiration for other.

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