For the first time ever, a crowdfunding campaign has raised enough money to buy out a new swath of Canadian wilderness as a protected park. More than $3 million was raised through individual donations to protect 2,000 acres (800 hectares) of the Princess Louisa Inlet on British Columbia’s Sunshine Coast.
The crowdfunding campaign was launched by the BC Parks Foundation, a nonprofit that works in collaboration with BC Parks to protect the province’s pristine landscapes. After several months of fundraising, the last chunk of donations needed to purchase the land from a private seller came in just before the campaign’s deadline last week.
Once the sale is finalized, the land will be transferred to BC Parks for conversion into a Class A Provincial Park so it will be forever protected from logging and development.
BC Parks Foundation CEO Andrew Day wrote a letter to the campaign’s supporters thanking them for their “miraculous” success.
“We still have to finalize the sale with the vendor (now September 3rd), and there are more steps to come, but in donating the funds you have scaled a substantial peak on this amazing expedition,” wrote Day.
“We know people want to keep B.C. beautiful, and we know our parks are the core of our identity. They are our cathedrals, our towers, our pyramids; the wonders of our world. But we couldn’t have predicted such a fabulous outpouring in such a short time from so many different people and places. We are in a state of awe and gratitude.
“We will keep you posted when the deal is finalized. Any funds that continue to come in will be put in our Parks Bank to protect more areas in Princess Louisa and British Columbia,” he concluded.