Inclusive Dialogues Advance Conservation Across the US-Canada Border

Transboundary Recommendations Web 072622 Cover

The Canada-US border is the longest international land border in the world. However, this political frontier bisects enormous landscapes and cuts through many Indigenous communities whose territories were historically connected. This political divide has important implications for conservation and cultural resilience—not just in the narrow ribbon of the border region, but for landscape connectivity throughout North America. Taking a more holistic, transboundary approach across this national border offers a tremendous opportunity for increasing landscape and cultural connectivity, improving the efficacy of existing conservation efforts, and helping both Canada and the US reach ambitious national conservation targets. 

To help foster these outcomes, representatives from conservation organizations, Indigenous communities, government agencies, and civil society working near or across this boundary came together in 2021 to organize and participate in a series of four virtual Dialogue events. The Dialogues sought to explore common opportunities, challenges, success stories, and future needs around transboundary conservation. They included several hundred attendees, and each session focused on a different geography and/or themes relevant to transboundary conservation across the US–Canada border. As such, the Dialogues are a representative snapshot of the numerous transboundary efforts already underway.

To better capture the learnings from the Dialogues, a small task force worked together to distill their common themes and key ideas into a summary report. The task force worked closely with Indigenous speakers and participants from the Dialogues to co-produce the report and ensure it appropriately and respectfully reflected the diverse views expressed in the Dialogues. The resulting report is a starting point for launching further conversation and stimulating concrete actions toward achieving durable conservation outcomes for the peoples and ecosystems that span this critical area. 

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Project Partners:

Alaska Conservation Foundation
Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society
Center for Large Landscape Conservation
IISAAK OLAM Foundation
Nature Canada
The Nature Conservancy
Northern Latitudes Partnerships
Salazar Center for North American Conservation
The Wilderness Society
Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative

VIDEO: Transboundary Conservation: Lessons learned from US-Canada transboundary dialogues

2021 Salazar Center Symposium panel featuring Jodi Hilty, Eli Enns, and Leanna Heffner, and moderated by Center for Large Landscape Conservation President Gary Tabor. This was part of the third annual International Symposium on Conservation Impact hosted virtually by the Salazar Center, Sept. 28-29, 2021.

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