New Brunswick’s important natural areas were given new protections in 2001, following a years-long debate throughout the province. The Protected Natural Areas Act created areas in the province that were protected mainly for nature conservation purposes, with no development, new roads, mining or forestry allowed. Most outdoor recreation could continue, with some restrictions to protect nature.
At the time, 10 large areas were designated as protected. Since then, other smaller sites have been added to the list. The total amount of land protected under the act is almost 272,000 hectares or 4.7% of New Brunswick’s 7 million hectare land base. In 2019, the Government of New Brunswick launched the Nature Legacy Initiative, committing to protecting 10% of the province by 2023.
In July of 2022, the Government of New Brunswick announced 84 new protected areas in the province (almost 100,000 ha), bringing the provincial total of land protected to 6%. On Dec.13, 2022, a new announcement added 277,900 ha of protected lands, the largest addition in New Brunswick’s history. These new areas will be protected under the Conservation Easements Act ensuring they will be safe from development and natural resource extraction. People will still be allowed to enjoy these spaces and participate in outdoor recreational activities. You can view the location of the new areas on our protected areas map.
This map contains the areas protected under the Protected Natural Areas Act, the Conservation Easements Act and the provincial parks of New Brunswick. The map is fully navigable: you can move around the map by holding down the left button of your mouse, and zoom in and out using the controls in the top left. As well, by clicking on a specific site, you get the name of the area and other information, and you can zoom in closer.
Purple areas are PNAs. The green areas are new conservation areas announced in 2022.