Eastern Ontario Model Forest E-News

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Eastern Ontario Model Forest E-News

Welcome to the January issue of the EOMF E-News!  This e-letter will help us keep our members, partners and communities current on all the latest news and events on a regular basis.

Missed the December 2020 EOMF/CIF Webinar?  It's now available online
From the Eastern Ontario Model Forest… For those of you who missed the December 2020 EOMF/CIF Webinar, you can view the recorded session here or download the presentations (PDF format) here.
E-lecture Series: The Canadian Forest Service Research to Support Climate Change - Winter 2021
From the Canadian Forest Service… The upcoming CFS-CIF E-Lectures starting January 27, through to March 3, 2020, is a collaboration with the Canadian Institute of Forestry, featuring researchers from the Canadian Forest Service, Natural Resources Canada, with a focus on Climate Change solutions.   Stay up to date by regularly visiting here and you can register online for E-Lectures here.
Algonquin Park commercial logging plan up for renewal in 2021
Mike Crawley, CBC News… “Algonquin is the oldest and most famous of Ontario's provincial parks, and it's also the only one where commercial logging is permitted.  The forestry management plan for Algonquin Provincial Park for the next decade is up for renewal in 2021. Environmental activists are using the occasion to demand an end to logging in the park, or at the least a severe reduction in logging activity.  "The vast majority of Ontarians, including visitors to the park, are unaware that 65 per cent of the park is actually leased for logging activity," says Katie Krelove, Ontario campaigner for the Wilderness Committee, a national non-profit focused on preserving wilderness and protecting wildlife.  Although logging is permitted on two-thirds of the land within Algonquin's boundaries, the annual harvest covers roughly one per cent of the park's territory.  It's a mix of both softwood and hardwood logging, predominantly white pine and maple, headed both to sawmills and pulp mills.”  More details
Genetically engineered trees could help fight climate change — here's how
Jade Prévost-Manuel, CBC News…  “Armand Séguin planted his first genetically modified tree — a poplar — more than 20 years ago at a research station north of Quebec City. A few years later, it would be joined by hundreds of spruces he designed to be immune to pests that kill them.  Séguin, a research scientist in forest genomics with the Canadian Forest Service, inserted bacterial DNA into spruces that effectively made them immune to spruce budworm, a pest that can chew needles off tens of millions of hectares of trees in a single outbreak.  While there is controversy over genetic engineering, some scientists say it could also help fight climate change by creating trees that grow bigger, faster, resist disease and can even turn carbon into a stable white powder that falls to the ground — in other words, trees that would be better at pulling carbon from the atmosphere.”  More details
Masters of the “Bushido” Tree-Planting Technique: Dirk Brinkman, keynote speaker at Forests Ontario’s conference, on reforestation in Canada
From Forests Ontario… “Fifty years ago, Dirk Brinkman secured one of British Columbia’s first tree-planting contracts. Out on the rugged landscape, he would swing a hoedad blade attached to an adze handle to make a hole. Then he would pull a seedling from an old canvas bucket wired to his fireman’s belt, put its roots in the soil, and repeat.  A few years later he founded Brinkman Reforestation Ltd. The company has planted over one-and-a-half billion trees, making it Canada’s top tree-planting firm. Through a lifetime of example and advocacy, Brinkman has created a vision of how we can restore our natural landscape to enhance its resiliency in the face of climate change.  Dirk Brinkman will deliver the keynote speech at Forests Ontario’s 2021 Annual Conference, Growing Our Future. His address will look at ecosystem-based management as a way to guide the world’s forced march of adapting to climate change and its staggering array of unintended consequences.  His voice is vital as the Government of Canada seeks to plant two billion trees over the next decade.”   More details
Wood burners triple harmful indoor air pollution, study finds
Damian Carrington, The Guardian… “Wood burners triple the level of harmful pollution particles inside homes and should be sold with a health warning, says scientists, who also advise that they should not be used around elderly people or children.  The tiny particles flood into the room when the burner doors are opened for refuelling, a study found. Furthermore, people who load in wood twice or more in an evening are exposed to pollution spikes two to four times higher than those who refuel once or not at all.  The particles can pass through the lungs and into the body and have been linked to a wide range of health damage, particularly in younger and older people.  The research was conducted in 19 homes in Sheffield over the course of a month at the start of 2020.  More details
Minister O’Regan Launches Canada’s Plan to Plant Two Billion Trees
From Natural Resources Canada… “The Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources, launched the Government of Canada’s plan to plant two billion trees over 10 years, with an investment of $3.16 billion.   Canada’s plan to plant two billion trees over the next ten years is projected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 12 megatonnes by 2050. It will create up to 4,300 good jobs.  While planting a tree may sound simple, ensuring that it can be done on a large scale and in a sustainable, inclusive manner requires careful planning. The tree planting process takes several years, and begins with ordering the seeds of the desired tree species. From there, we must expand nursery capacity; grow seedlings until they’re big enough to plant in the ground; identify and prepare available land in both cities and rural settings for adequate access and soil conditions; and monitor the health and survival of the planted seedlings.  The Government’s plan also includes work to ensure we are able to monitor the trees planted for survival and report on the carbon they sequester.”  More details
Ontario Announces Working Group to Better Focus Conservation Authorities
From the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks… “The Ontario government is creating a working group to help implement changes to conservation authorities. Hassaan Basit, President and CEO of Conservation Halton will chair the new group which will provide input on the development of proposed regulations under the Conservation Authorities Act, and on how conservation authorities are governed.  "As we move forward together, we want to build stronger relationships with conservation authorities so we can work together to ensure consistent best practices, good governance and appropriate accountability to best serve the people of Ontario," said Jeff Yurek, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks.  As part of the government's commitment to ensuring conservation authorities focus and deliver on their core mandate of protecting people and property from flooding and other natural hazards and conserving natural resources, the province introduced legislative changes through Bill 229, Protect, Support and Recover from COVID-19 Act, 2020, which received Royal Assent on December 8, 2020.”  More details
These Trees Are Not What They Seem
Ben Elgin,… “At first glance, big corporations appear to be protecting great swaths of U.S. forests in the fight against climate change.  JPMorgan Chase & Co. has paid almost $1 million to preserve forestland in eastern Pennsylvania.  Forty miles away, Walt Disney Co. has spent hundreds of thousands to keep the city of Bethlehem, Pa., from aggressively harvesting a forest that surrounds its reservoirs.  Across the state line in New York, investment giant BlackRock Inc. has paid thousands to the city of Albany to refrain from cutting trees around its reservoirs.  JPMorgan, Disney, and BlackRock tout these projects as an important mechanism for slashing their own large carbon footprints. By funding the preservation of carbon-absorbing forests, the companies say, they’re offsetting the carbon-producing impact of their global operations. But in all of those cases, the land was never threatened; the trees were already part of well-preserved forests.”  More details
Most direct forest jobs in GTA: ministry
Carl Clutchey, North Shore Bureau… “When the Ontario government went to bat in late November for the province’s lumber sector, it was mainly sticking up for workers in an area that has most of the votes.  According to a Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry backgrounder, the majority of direct forestry-sector jobs — more than 16,000 — were located in the Greater Toronto Area.  Northern Ontario came second, with just over 11,000 jobs in the forest industry based on data collected in 2019.  More details
Conservancy group wants large chunk of Manitoulin Island protected
Ian Campbell, CTV Sudbury… “The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is on its way to securing what might be one of the largest protected areas of its kind in Ontario, a large parcel of land on Manitoulin Island.  The group has been working with local leaders on Manitoulin Island and is currently working to secure the $16 million necessary to make it happen.  “We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to protect the Vidal Bay forest and shoreline property,” said NCC Program Director mid-western Ontario Esme Batten.  “It’s located on the western side of Manitoulin Island which is the largest freshwater island in the world and it’s kind of an opportunity in Ontario that’s really rare.”  More details
‘It can no longer be free to pollute:’ Updated climate plan includes carbon tax hikes
The Canadian Press… The federal government has released a $15-billion plan to meet its climate change commitments that includes steady increases to its carbon tax in each of the next 10 years.  The plan includes money to encourage heavy industry to reduce its emissions, for communities to make buildings more energy efficient, and for remote communities to get off diesel-generated power.  The aim is a 32 per cent reduction in emissions by 2030, slightly more than Canada’s 30 per cent Paris agreement commitment. Ottawa hopes to reach 40 per cent reductions when provincial programs are layered on.  But the plan’s centrepiece is an increase in the federal carbon price.  That price will continue to increase by $10 a tonne a year until it reaches $50 in 2022. Trudeau announced increases will carry on and get steeper after that — $15 a tonne per year.  By 2030, the price is to be $170 tonne — enough, say federal officials, to increase the price of gas at the pump by 27.6 cents a litre.”  More details
In photos: see old-growth go from stand to stump on B.C.’s Vancouver Island
Carol Linnitt, The Narwhal… “Photographer TJ Watt has seen more than his fair share of clearcuts through his work for the Ancient Forest Alliance.  Still, the sudden transformation of an old-growth forest in the Caycuse watershed on Vancouver Island into a “bleak grey landscape” caught Watt off guard.  His before and after photos, published on Instagram and featured in The Guardian, also struck a nerve with the public.  “I think it’s just with the before and after it’s very plain and simple: you can clearly see what was there and what was lost,” Watt told The Narwhal.”  More details
Canada’s Forest Sector Offers Recommendations to Government on Green Recovery
The Working Forest… “The Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) released Innovative, Sustainable, Resilient: Recommendations from Canada’s Forest Sector to Drive Economic Recovery and a NetZero Carbon Future.  The report, submitted to the federal government, outlines how Canadian forestry workers, forest management, and forest products can help kickstart a green economic recovery.”  More details
Township takes pass on joining gypsy moth battle in Lambton Shores
Max Martin, Timmins Times… “Residents of a Lambton County township dealing with a massive outbreak of gypsy moth caterpillars will be left on their own to fight the tree-destroying critters.  Lambton Shores, located along Lake Huron, won’t spray private properties to control the pests next summer but has agreed to take “control measures” on some municipal land.  Council voted unanimously to support a contentious gypsy moth action plan Tuesday night, adding a new recommendation that funds be included in the 2021 budget to undertake spraying on municipal land adjacent to private properties.”  More details
Province Misses Chance to Respond to Ontarians’ Concerns About the Environment
From Conservation Ontario… “The Province just missed a chance to show they are
listening to Ontarians who care about their environment.  Ontario’s Budget Measures Act (Bill 229) was passed today with Schedule 6 intact, and in fact, bolstered with the addition of Minister Zoning Orders' which could force a conservation authority to issue a permit even if it goes against their provincially-delegated responsibility to protect people, infrastructure and the environment. This is in addition to the already concerning amendments which included new powers for the Minister to bypass conservation authorities and issue permits as well as curtailing the CAs’ ability to appeal to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal.”  More details
Our Changing Seasons: Guardians of Peterborough County’s hemlock forest
Katie Krelove, Special to The Examiner… “It’s been one year since I first hiked into the Catchacoma Forest in Peterborough County with ecologists from Ancient Forest Exploration and Research (AFER) and wrote about it in this column. We were in there to visit some of the 150- to 350-year-old hemlock trees the researchers had recently surveyed as part of a project to document old-growth forests in the region.  This is what they do — as a non-profit research group they find old-growth forests with the aim of conserving them, and yes, many of the old-growth trees we visited that day were marked for logging.  In the pursuit of this goal we held public hikes to raise awareness of the conservation values of the forest — as a rare forest type and likely home to at least ten endangered species — and the threat to those values by planned logging operations which would remove 40 per cent of the trees.”  More details
The information and opinions expressed in the articles posted in the e-letter are those of the authors, they do not necessarily reflect the policy of the EOMF.

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