Nova Scotians are invited to community meetings in May and June to share their ideas about the future of the province’s natural resources. The meetings will be hosted by the Voluntary Planning Natural Resources Citizen Engagement Committee. The volunteer committee is gathering Nova Scotians’ views to help government develop a long-term natural resources strategy for the province. “Our mandate is to engage the citizens of Nova Scotia in discussions about what they value in terms of natural resources, so we really encourage people to participate,” said Rick MacDonald, co-chair of the committee. “We want to hear Nova Scotians’ long-term vision for natural resources in the province — specifically for biodiversity, forests, minerals and parks.” At the meetings, participants will be encouraged to express their ideas in small- and large-group conversations. Meetings will be held in French in Tusket, Saulnierville and Cheticamp. The scope of the citizen engagement process and questions to help start conversations are on Voluntary Planning’s website at http://vp.gov.ns.ca . The documents will also be available at community meetings and Access Nova Scotia centres in May. The documents will also provide a framework for written submissions, which will be accepted until July 31. They can be submitted on the Voluntary Planning website, by fax at 902-424-0580, or by mail to: Voluntary PlanningSuite 600, 1690 Hollis St.Halifax, N.S.B3J 3J9 Nova Scotians can also call Voluntary Planning at 902-424-8644 or toll-free at 1-866-858-5850 to give comments. Information gathered will be used in phase two of the development of a natural resources strategy. In phase two, an independent panel will conduct a more detailed analysis of the Voluntary Planning project committee findings. Phase three will be the development of the long-term strategy itself by the Department of Natural Resources. Nova Scotia aims to have one of the cleanest and most sustainable environments in the world by 2020. To help reach that goal, new strategies are being developed for water, natural resources, energy, climate change and coastal management. To learn more, or take part, see The New Nova Scotia: A Path to 2020 at www.gov.ns.ca/2020 .