Nature-Action Québec

Protecting and providing access to natural environments

Nature-Action Québec (NAQ) is a not-for-profit conservation organization and social economy enterprise dedicated to protecting the environment. It is the result of a citizen initiative started in Saint-Bruno-de-Montarville, more than 35 years ago. NAQ’s mission is to guide individuals and public bodies in the implementation of environmental best practices.

Since its founding, it has become a major organization that brings to fruition about 350 ecological transition projects per year. NAQ achieves this by being active in more than 100 communities. In that spirit, both in 2022 and in 2023, it put out a call for projects (in French) to municipalities seeking to conserve and offer public access to natural environments.

The primary goal here is to protect and make accessible new natural environments. For starters, these environments will generate numerous health benefits for the public. They will also help enhance biodiversity throughout the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal (CMM). Thanks to the support of FGM’s Collective Fund for Climate and the Ecological Transition, Nature-Action Québec will provide ongoing and customized accompaniment to the municipalities and MRCs (municipalités régionales de comté) seeking to launch this type of project.

Cities on the environmental front

Municipalities are indeed on the front lines of efforts to make natural areas accessible and protect terrestrial habitats and wetlands. For that reason, NAQ offers to guide municipalities as they take concrete action on their territories, so that they can incorporate best practices in sustainable management in their activities and maximize natural environment conservation. NAQ provides services such as the development of land use plans, or the planning and execution of work on the ground, for instance restoring natural environments, planting or enhancing ecological connectivity.

In 2022, a first cohort of municipalities deployed several projects aiming to support biodiversity and access to nature. Among them are an action plan for the ecologically sound management of natural environments in the Rivière-des-Prairies—Pointe-aux-Trembles borough. The revitalization of Centennial Park and the Marina in Beaconsfield also is on the list. This development project aims to promote a lasting access to water.

Worth noting as well is the conservation plan for natural areas within the “humanized landscape” on Île-Bizard. This includes its network of waterways, which connects large wetlands going from Rivière des Prairies to the Lake of Two Mountains. Then, in Carignan, the redesign of the Boisé de la Pointe Nord of Île aux Lièvres will allow for the leveling of the current pathway. This will make walking on the shores of the Richelieu River more pleasant.

A second call for projects has been launched in the spring of 2023. As of this writing, it is still possible for cities, towns and MRCs to submit an initiative aiming to protect natural spaces on their territory. To learn more about the completed projects or about how to propose one, click here (link in French).

Learn more about NAQ’s funds at FGM

Visit Nature-Action Québec’s website