Experimental Lakes Area gets charitable status from CRA
The group that now runs the Experimental Lakes Area in northwestern Ontario says it’s improved its chances of staying sustainable.
The Canada Revenue Agency has given the International Institute for Sustainable Development-ELA full charitable status.
IISD executive director Matthew McCandless called it an important step.
“Any donations that we receive from individuals and corporations in Canada are tax deductible,” he said.
“With ELA currently being funded, a lot of its funding coming from the government of Ontario ... we are looking to go well beyond that and make this a viable operation for the long-term,” McCandless told CBC News.
He said one donor has already agreed to underwrite all the fundraising administration costs for the ELA.
Another has contributed $1 million to create a fund supporting post-secondary educational programs for students working with the ELA.
The freshwater research facility “is enjoying a new era, with new management, research priorities, educational programs and communications outreach,” McCandless stated in a news release.
The Experimental Lakes Area, open since 1968 and comprised of 58 freshwater lakes, is the only site in the world where whole-lake experimentation (essential for optimal, accurate freshwater research findings) is carried out.
On April 2, the IISD, the Government of Ontario and the Government of Canada signed three agreements to ensure the long-term existence of the ELA, with IISD as the operator.