“Nova Scotia Needs Forestry” 21Nov2019

So reads a sign being distributed by Forest Nova Scotia. Reads the post on the ForestNS website:

You may have recently seen a lawn sign or a bumper sticker with the message ‘Nova Scotia Needs Forestry’ on it, and wondered “What does that mean?”

We’ve been talking with our members and others involved in forestry, and got the feeling it was time to show a little pride in our sector – together.

There’s many reasons why people take pride in their connection to forestry: they may be small woodlot owners, may work for a mill, harvest maple syrup or Christmas trees, be involved in silviculture, or own a business that works with a forestry business…the list is endless.
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“So many clearcuts” in SW Nova Scotia (continued) 20Nov2019

And with no Landscape Level Planning for Biodiversity Conservation and No Nutrient Management on the severely depleted soils

The feelings many Nova Scotians have expressed when they return to a site where once stood a mature forest and now a sloppy clearcut as at Higgins Mt are universal (View video). The [bad] feelings are compounded by rising global concern over climate change and biodiversity losses.

In a few words and photos, the author of the blog My Acadian Forest paints a devastating image of  forest degradation along the backroads of Lunenburg County.

The fall colours were stunning, so many beautiful lakes, hilltop farms, gorgeous old stone work.

And clearcuts.

So many clearcuts.

…I appreciate that we need forestry.  I live in a wooden house.  And neighbours work in the sector.

But is this kind of cutting sustainable?  Please, let me know.

Because from the seat of my vehicle, it looks like its going fast.

Read more of  ‘Scenic Drives’ by Tom Rogers.

I guess much of what T.R.  is seeing is on Private Lands, where Nova Scotians have the right to conduct major environmental alterations with no EA (Environmental Assessment) or even a forest harvest PTA (Pre-Treatment Assessment as required on Crown lands).
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CTV News on Hemlock Wooly Adelgid in Keji Park, Nova Scotia & social media on moving wood and hemlock nostalgia 14Nov2019

Thanks, CTV & Keji Park,  for an informative video about HWA in NS, especially given the apparent lack of effort by Lands and Forestry and Big Forestry to raise awareness around it

Click on image to go to the CTV video (4 min, after ads)

“Enjoy them now”, says Maria Panopolis introducing CTV’s News’ Nov 8, 2019 piece on the Hemlock Wooly Adelgid (HWA, aka the Hemlock Vampires). Co-host Jason Baxter continues: “We travelled to one of the hardest hit areas, Kejimkujik National Park where ecologists like Matthew Smith are racing against time.”

Dr. Smith explains that hemlock are an iconic tree at Keji; the oldest stands in the park are hemlock. It changes the environment, making it darker and cooler, providing shade for streams; he guesses the oldest trees are 2-300 years old. They survived hurricanes and other pest infestation, but HWA is a real problem for them.

He goes on to provide an illustrated description of HWA, how it infests trees…what symptoms to look for.
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The gentle music of teens’ fingers clicking in approval at the Law Amendments Committee Public Hearing 31Oct2019


The proceedings of the Law Amendments Hearing for the public on the SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS ACT (Bill 213), held on Monday Oct 28, 2019, are now available on YouTube, at least up to the point where it was prematurely terminated (about 5:15 pm) as the video people prepared for the evening session of the House. From there on there is audio only (see below for the YouTube links).

Over the time I was there, approx. 4:15 to 5:45 pm, nine adults (6 male, 3 female) and 7 teens (6 female, one male) spoke. After listening to the latter, I am questioning the adult-teen distinction.

Aged 13 to 15, the teens were incredibly well spoken, passionate, logical and highly knowledgeable about the topic. They were not grandstanding, they were (are) concerned and wanted the committee members to connect with their concerns. About 15 in their age group were attending; they were obviously highly interested in the goings on, they were not there just to cheer on those who spoke.
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Hemlock Vampire Denial in Nova Scotia 31Oct2019

Contributed photo of hemlock stand in the Tusket ravaged by wooly adelgid, winter of 2017/2018.
Skull of vampire bat by Mokele on Wikipedia.
Click on images for larger versions

Perhaps the ghosts of the hemlock wooly adelgid in the form of those dead grey trees could have a benefit, which is to remind ‘adults’  of the costs of denying our real impacts on our natural world and we will begin,  as ‘the kids’ are demanding, to take the radical steps necessary to save what we can.

A few days ago, I was given a lesson on how to look for early signs of the Hemlock Wooly Adelgid (HWA), aka the Hemlock Vampires.

Nova Scotians (and the Feds) were taken by surprise by this exotic pest which was first reported in in NA in Virginia is 1951 and is now found spread through 20 eastern states (Limbu et al, 2018).
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Mon Oct 28, 2019: Law Amendments Public Hearing on Nova Scotia Sustainable Development Goals Act 27Oct2019

A thorough sham – and shame – of process

View Update Oct 29, 2019

Just received:

The provincial government quietly posted on their website on Friday afternoon that there is a Law Amendments Hearing for the public, on Monday morning at 11:45, on the SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS ACT (Bill 213)…they have given citizens barely any time to organize people to speak up

This is the LAW that the Province will go by, for the next 5 years, on what they will work towards for reducing carbon emissions!
This is it!
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Nova Scotia L&F announces Ministerial Committee to advise on implementation of Lahey recommendations 18Oct2019

Modified Oct 19, 2019 a.m.

The composition of The Committee is good news; Significant changes in the L&F website for the Lahey Report/Ecological Forestry; and Landscape Level Planning for Biodiversity Conservation still under the radar.

The Press Release:

Moving Nova Scotia toward an ecological forestry management approach will consider the best available science and perspectives from people and organizations from across the province.

Lands and Forestry Minister, Iain Rankin, has appointed a new advisory committee with 14 members from environmental non-government organizations, industry, the Mi’kmaq and academia.

“Nova Scotians are deeply connected to the natural environment and should understand how and why decisions are being made related to the stewardship of our forests,” said Mr. Rankin. “I look forward to working with this group as we adopt an ecological forestry approach in Nova Scotia.”

The committee will advise the minister on the policies and priorities related to implementing the model recommended in Prof. Lahey’s independent review of forestry practices.
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Update on Nova Scotia Crown land logging licenses 8Oct2019

I appreciate the quick response of L&F to my inquiry about license renewals. I have to wonder, though, why such info is not routinely made available on the web page for the Forest Harvest Allocation Maps – along with the landscape maps showing where harvests are planned (or proposed) over the periods covered by the agreements.

The WestFor license includes some lands in the Pockwock Watershed which has created a bit of stir on Social Media recently, re: a post on Woods and Waters Nova Scotia

On Sep 30, 2019, I wrote the media contact L&F with this request:

Subject: License renewals for WestFor, Northern Pulp, GNTI

Can you give me any info on these renewals? When are they effective, for how long?

Any other details as can be made available to the public, e.g. the actual agreements.

Thanks

She replied promptly that she would look into it and got back to me today (Oct 8, 2019) with this response:

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Travails of Forests and Forestry on the West Coast 8Oct2019

Perhaps there are some lessons to be learned

John Zada’s Big Lonely in Canada’s Disappearing Giants

We are worried about losing The Mill, or for some, about the possibility of not losing it.

Perhaps there are some lessons to be learned from the west coast where this year “more than 4,000 forestry workers have lost their jobs according to the province”.  So Lee Wilson writes in Forestry forum tries to find solutions to a struggling industry published on APTN News Oct 4, 2019.

Writes June Ross in a Letter to the Ed in Castanet a few days later: Forestry crash no surprise

As a tax-paying citizen, I am writing about all the complaining about forestry job losses.

Why does this now, after 40 years of inaction by any government, come as a surprise?

There are forestry acts (Private Managed Forests Lands Act, Forest and Range Practices Act) and regulations that have done nothing for us citizens.They have done nothing to save our watersheds from clear cutting that is decimating many drinking water watersheds across this province.
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Focus Report for the Northern Pulp Replacement Effluent Treatment Facility released to the public, written comments invited 3Oct2019

On March 29, 2019, theNova Scotia Environment minister directed Northern Pulp to submit a Focus Report to address deficiencies in its Registration Document for its proposed Replacement Effluent Treatment Facility.

In a news release yesterday (Oct 2, 2019), NSE announced that NP had submitted the report, and that “The report will be available online within 14 days once department staff have done a preliminary check to confirm it is complete.”

Evidently, that didn’t take long: the full focus report was made publicly available today (Oct 3, 2019)

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