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Boreal Shield and Newfoundland Boreal ecozones+ evidence for key findings summary

Conclusion: Human Well-Being and Biodiversity

Human communities in the Boreal Shield and Newfoundland Boreal ecozones+ depend heavily on natural resources whose economic value are subject to global markets. Aboriginal communities in particular depend on healthy ecosystems and the goods and services they provide. Forestry was a major employer in these ecozones+, and fisheries were important both recreationally and as a source of food for many communities.

A changing climate and ecological pressures from the spread of invasive non-native species are challenges for boreal ecosystems and the people who depend on them. Non-native species have recently invaded the Boreal Shield Ecozone+ and their impacts are largely unknown. Invasive species, particularly mammals, have altered food webs and the structure and composition of forested ecosystems in the Newfoundland Boreal Ecozone+.

The Boreal Shield Ecozone+ will undoubtedly play an important role in Canada's future in a changing climate. Its vast forests and wetlands store huge amounts of carbon. Properly managed, these carbon stores can help to mitigate the effects of climate change. Conversely, losses in this sequestration capacity would be a great threat to Canada's ability to adapt and thrive. Ecological goods and services provided by the Boreal Shield Ecozone+ are important Canada-wide.

The Newfoundland Boreal Ecozone+ has many of the same environmental and resource management issues as the Boreal Shield. Here there are some added socioeconomic and environmental challenges due to declining fisheries and the rapid rise of offshore oil development.

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