Fisheries and Land Resources
Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation
October 15, 2018

Minister Announces Appointments to New Mistaken Point World Heritage Advisory Council

The Honourable Gerry Byrne, Minister of Fisheries and Land Resources, today announced the establishment of an advisory council to provide local input into the management of Mistaken Point, the only provincially-managed and funded UNESCO World Heritage Site in Newfoundland and Labrador.

The Mistaken Point World Heritage Advisory Council comprises 13 members who primarily represent the local communities of Portugal Cove South, Trepassey, St. Shott’s and Biscay Bay. Four representatives from the local communities as well as one youth representative were appointed through the merit-based appointment process. The remaining eight council members represent local development groups, municipalities and applicable federal and provincial agencies and were nominated directly by each organization.

This new advisory council will advise the Provincial Government on site conservation and presentation of the site to the public. It will help ensure the lines of communication remain open between the Department of Fisheries and Land Resources and local organizations and stakeholders.

The first meeting of the new council is expected to take place this month at which time the chairperson and vice-chairperson will be elected by the members of the council. Appointments are for a term of three years, are eligible for reappointment and can continue to serve after the expiry of their term until reappointed or replaced. The list of the newly appointed council is included in the Backgrounder below.

A second advisory group, the Mistaken Point Scientific Advisory Committee, established in 2017, comprises experts in Ediacaran paleontology, geology and earth sciences. This group provides technical and academic advice for the conservation and preservation of the Mistaken Point fossils. Establishment of both the advisory council and the scientific committee is a commitment under the Mistaken Point World Heritage Site Management Plan which was part of the nomination package to the UNESCO World Heritage Committee.

The Provincial Government is committed to working with the community development organization, Mistaken Point Cape Race Heritage Inc., to provide visitor services at Mistaken Point. Mistaken Point Cape Race Heritage Inc. owns and operates the Edge of Avalon Interpretation Centre which is the starting point for guided tours of the site and contains exhibits featuring Mistaken Point. Total annual funding provided by government in 2018 to operate the Mistaken Point site is $600,000.

A guided tour is the only way to view the fossils at Mistaken Point. Tours will end for the season on October 19. For the 2018 season, to date, 2,170 visitors have toured the site with the expectation that the total number will be similar to the 2017 season when 2,264 people visited.

Quotes
“Local input and involvement in the long-term management of the Mistaken Point Ecological Reserve is essential to sustainably manage the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Establishment of the advisory council will promote effective communication among members of the local communities, the regulatory authority, and other organizations partnering to conserve the site. I congratulate the members of the new advisory council and I look forward to meeting with them and Mistaken Point Cape Race Heritage Inc. as we continue to oversee the only provincially-managed World Heritage Site in Newfoundland and Labrador.”
Honourable Gerry Byrne
Minister of Fisheries and Land Resources

“Of the four UNESCO World Heritage Sites in our province, Mistaken Point Ecological Reserve and World Heritage Site is the only site that is provincially managed and funded. Standing with other international treasures in terms of its natural heritage significance, Mistaken Point is one of Newfoundland and Labrador’s greatest natural wonders. The establishment of an advisory council will certainly play an important role guiding us as we develop strategies to promote the site and share the Mistaken Point story with residents and visitors from around the world.”
Honourable Christopher Mitchelmore
Minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation

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Mistaken Point Ecological Reserve and World Heritage Site

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Media contacts
Connie Boland
Fisheries and Land Resources
709-637-2923, 640-6409
connieboland@gov.nl.ca

Eric Humber
Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation
709-729-4819, 725-9655
erichumber@gov.nl.ca 

BACKGROUNDER

Mistaken Point World Heritage Advisory Council

Six members nominated from local communities and organizations:

  • Jennifer Reddy, Town Council of Portugal Cove South
  • Rita Pennell, Town Council of Trepassey
  • Madonna Hewitt, Town Council of St. Shott’s
  • Gertie Molloy, Mistaken Point Cape Race Heritage Inc.
  • Kathi Stacey, Legendary Coasts of Eastern Newfoundland
  • John Boutilier, Fisheries and Oceans Canada
  • No representative was available from the Biscay Bay Local Service District
Two ex-officio members from the Provincial Government:
  • Dave Delaney, Department of Fisheries and Land Resources, Land Management Division, or designate
  • John Angelopoulos, Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation, Tourism Development Officer, or designate.
Five community representative members appointed through the merit-based appointment process:
  • Catherine Ward, Portugal Cove South
  • Viola Coombs, Portugal Cove South
  • Margaret (Peg) Ryan, Trepassey
  • Anita Molloy, St. Shott’s
  • Rachel Coombs, youth representative, Portugal Cove South
  • No representative was available from Biscay Bay.
  • Three public interest positions are vacant and open to nominations from Portugal Cove South, Trepassey and Biscay Bay.

2018 10 15                              10:30 a.m.