Nova Scotia delays new biodiversity legislation, saying more work required

The Nova Scotia government is delaying an act that would give it more powers to protect biodiversity, including wild animals, plants and water species.

The Liberal government had planned to pass the bill this session, saying it lacked the authority or regulatory powers it needs to manage the province's biodiversity.

However, Lands and Forestry Minister Iain Rankin said Friday that the government recognizes the bill may require more work, and it's being sent back to committee.

The legislation as written would have given the government broad scope to create regulations to help manage threats to rare ecosystems and better protect wildlife against invasive species.

Rankin says the bill will still pass during the current government's mandate, but there will be more consultation with industry, private landowners and environmental groups.

Proposed measures in the bill would allow the government to prevent the import, selling or distribution of an invasive species, and prevent the destruction or disturbance of rare ecosystems and habitats.