A scientist’s perspectives on NSDNR Science

Helga Guderley with anti-forest biomass petition at NS Legislature, Nov 1, 2016

Helga Guderley, a retired but still very active biologist, was one of the founding members of the Healthy Forest Coalition and was the instigator of a petition against clearcutting for biomass that quickly garnered over 20,000 sign-ons in early 2016. She expresses some views on DNR Science in a recent op-ed, and in more detail in a recent submission to the Independent Review.

From:
OPINION: DNR’s ‘science-based’ forestry mantra is a smokescreen
HELGA GUDERLEY
Published February 13, 2018

In the following, I consider two important roles that forests play in areas outside of the review’s narrow terms of reference: mitigating climate change and favouring tourism. Furthermore, government claims that current forestry practices are science-based are missing a crucial point. Different assumptions and values underlie pure and applied science. Each can claim to be scientific, but their prescriptions are radically different. Rather than arguing whether one science is superior to another, our society needs to identify the core values that should guide our decisions as to how to manage our environment.

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“It’s not all industrial strength clearcutting and biomass devastation out there”

So reads an introduction by Woods and Waters Nova Scotia (public Facebook group) to a message and photos forwarded from a worker for a woodlot in Upper Rawdon, N.S.

“I work for a woodlot owner co-op that manages this lot in Upper Rawdon. One of the pictures shows hemlock biomass and the end result of the harvest. I don’t mind this wood going as biomass. It certainly won’t be going to the disaster in C.B. though. Taylor lumber has a small biomass plant at their mill and that is where this wood will be going. I’m not sure of the efficiency of their plant but I know it is a lot better than the one in C.B. and they aren’t clear cutting hardwoods to feed it. We also got some fine sawlogs off the lot and more importantly it made room for the best of the trees to keep growing.
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Pannozzo: Proper EA for Northern Pulp Mill effluent thwarted

The diffuser for the new treatment system would be about here
Click on image to enlarge (from Google Earth)
Fishers in both Nova Scotia and PEI are concerned about impacts on lobster and other fisheries,
with good reason

UPDATE Feb 17, 2018: P.E.I. MLAs question N.S. pulp mill officials over wastewater plan CBC News, Feb 16

A legislative committee hearing in Charlottetown was packed to overflowing on Friday for a presentation about the potential impact of a wastewater treatment plant in Nova Scotia on P.E.I.’s fishing industry.

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There continue to be unpleasant winds and waters of various sorts emanating from the Northern Pulp mill in Pictou.

Tim Bousquet writing in the Halifax Examiner cites investigative journalism by Linda Pannozzo as a followup of her earlier piece Dirty Dealing: Northern Pulp Mill and the province are set to roll the dice with Boat Harbour’s replacement, but a cleaner alternative exists
(Halifax Examiner, Nov 22, 2017) which was a comprehensive examination of the options for managing the effluent from the Northern Pulp mill.

Writes Bousquet about new info obtained by Pannozzo concerning the EA for the “proposed” effluent system: Continue reading

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Great Northern gears up Musquodoboit Pellet Mill

Shuttered plant in May 2017

The last I heard about Great Northern Timber’s interest in the Musquodoboit Pellet Mill was back in August when the Chronicle Herald reported that “Nova Scotia forestry company Great Northern Timber Group is poised to buy and restart the shuttered Musquodoboit pellet mill Atlantic Biomass Company.” (CH, Aug 12, 2017).

Now Great Northern is advertising to hire a millright, a lead hand (Posted Feb 12, closes Feb 19, 2018; start date March 3, 2018) and other positions.

View also ‘Looks like the Musquodoboit, Nova Scotia, pellet plant will reopen
Post, Aug 12, 2017

shopify analytics ecommerce

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Game sanctuaries still fair game for industrial forestry and miners

Possibly in a Game Sanctuary near you

An article in the Chronicle Herald today provides some of the history of our Game Sanctuaries and highlights the fact that except where they overlap with formally protected lands, clearcutting and mining can still take place; hunting and trapping cannot.* The Game Sanctuaries can encompass both private and public lands. View Nova Scotia’s game sanctuaries protect game, but not their habitat by Aaron Berwick, Chronicle Herald, Feb 12, 2018.
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*However muzzleloader, bow and crossbow appear to be permitted in the Liscomb Game Sanctuary, and Chignecto Game Sanctuary, perhaps others.
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Carbon Opportunities Conference in Port Hawkesbury, Nova Scotia March 7 & 8, 2018

Choices: two approaches to forest management in Nova Scotia; one could benefit financially from carbon offsets AND conserve biodiversity, one would not

A notice has been circulating about a Maritime Forest Carbon Opportunity Conference, sponsored by the Nova Scotia Landowners and Forest Fibre Producers Association (NSLFFPA) and the Cape Breton Privateland Partnership (CBPP) to be held in Port Hawkesbury March 7 and 8th with a rain date of March 9th.
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Loon Lake clearcuts continue, illustrate lack of landscape level planning

The conflict over clearcutting in Nova Scotia could hardly be presented more graphically than in the poster above, which I just received.

In May I posted an item about proposed clearcuts near the Loon Lake Nature Reserve in Guysborough Co. Although many protests were likely sent in to NSDNR, looking at the Harvest Plan Map Viewer now suggests they had little if any effect, and the proposed cutting is taking place now much to the chagrin many who know and love that area, and threatening the integrity of the Loon Lake Nature Reserve.

View More cutting near Nova Scotia Protected Areas…now Loon Lake Nature Reserve (Post May 24, 2017). Continue reading

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Saturday responses to Black, continued…Feb 10, 2018

tree-hugger

Why denigrate someone who hugs a tree?

Bill Black went for a repeat of his anti-tree hugger performance (Black Jan 20) with his reference to a ‘tight-knit posse of activists’ in last Saturdays BLACK: How can rural N.S. prosper without resource extraction? (CH, Feb 3, 2018)

Writes Peter Ritchie in COUNTERPOINT: Environmental activism a broad-based movement, not a ‘tight-knit posse’ (Chronicle Herald, Feb 9, 2018):

I’d like to suggest to Mr. Black that the “tight-knit posse” of which he speaks is actually a steadily growing, provincewide movement of like-minded, educated, and scientifically-informed citizens who have had their fill of how this province “takes care of business.” We are not a ragtag group of tree-huggers trying to stifle economic growth through wide-eyed, misplaced environmentalism.

Ritchie goes after Black on his facts, e.g. Continue reading

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Will our governments enable Forest Smart, Climate Smart and Dollar Smart opportunities for private woodlot owners in Atlantic Canada?

Choices: two approaches to forest management in Nova Scotia; one could benefit financially from carbon offsets AND conserve biodiversity, one would not

New Brunswick based Forest International’s efforts to promote carbon offsets as an income generator for private woodlot owners in Atlantic Canada is featured in the business section of today’s Chronicle Herald.

Atlantic Canada’s woodlot owners could benefit from the growing tendency of jurisdictions to require businesses to offset their carbon emissions, said Daimen Hardie, executive director and a co-founder of Sackville, N.B.-based Community Forests International.

Atlantic Canada has between 70,000 to 80,000 family woodlot owners who are ideally placed to form carbon offsetting partnerships with polluting companies, said Hardie.

He said carbon offset initiatives are being led by California, where companies that emit excessive carbon must pay a penalty or invest in projects that draw carbon from the atmosphere.

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Bancroft on the real costs and dismal returns to Nova Scotians of running the PHP biomass plant 24/7

Why waste it on wildlife when you can burn it?

It had been rumoured that the PHP Biomass plant had returned to 24/7 operation.

Now Bob Bancroft confirms that we are back at it, burning 50 to 60 tractor-trailer loads of wood per day to generate electricity at 21% efficiency…

That’s the same operation that set off the Stop destroying Nova Scotia’s forests for biomass power generation campaign just under two years ago. On April 8, 2016, the NS Government announced that the Nova Scotia Power biomass plant will no longer be required to run 24/7, which the Ecology Action Centre and others called ‘a great first step’ to eliminating biomass… Continue reading

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