WATERTON BIOSPHERE RESERVE ASSOCIATION

Photo by  Jen Jenkins

The Waterton Biosphere Reserve Association [WBRA] is a non-profit organization focused on linking biodiversity conservation to sustainable human use of resources in the region of the Waterton Biosphere Reserve. Established in the early 1980s, the association has worked closely with local people for over 35 years to integrate conservation values with traditional livelihoods.

WBRA objectives

  • To encourage a sustainable, community-based regional economy, with high quality biodiversity, landscape and social values.
  • To promote public awareness of resource management concerns facing residents of the Waterton Biosphere Reserve area.
  • To participate with area residents in developing projects to address local concerns.
  • To encourage cooperative resource management practices between private landowners and governments by providing a forum for the exchange of information.
Photo by Kim Pearson/NCC

Photo by Kim Pearson/NCC

One of the key objectives of the WBRA in the coming years is to continue developing partnerships with other organizations in the region to address priority conservation and sustainability issues. During the last decade, several organizations in southern Alberta and northern Montana have become involved in initiatives that focus on biodiversity conservation and the sustainable land use management in the region. These organizations collectively represent excellent opportunities for potential partnerships and collaboration.

A member of the Canadian Biosphere Reserve Association [CBRA], along with 17 other biosphere reserves in Canada, the WBRA is guided by a Cooperation Plan which was developed with input from  local community members and organizations in 2015.   The Cooperation Plan defines the WBRA’s role in the region, provides direction on the establishment of partnerships, and maps out projects and strategies to address priority biodiversity and sustainability issues pertinent to the Waterton Biosphere Reserve area.