Following their day in court on Jan 26, 2021 to argue their case for “continuance of a court order against protesters who have been trying to stop clear cutting in public forests” (CBC, Jan 26, 2021), WestFor posted a video on YouTube defending its practices:
“The issue is not with forestry, writ large, but instead with the HOW majority forestry is being done on public land and within known habitat for Species At Risk.
“This video depicts selection harvests but the concern is with clearcuts (variable retention, etc., even-aged harvests in general) and their over-perscription across the province, contributing to the perpetuation of lower quality forests.
“It seems that WestFor’s defense here is largely that they are just following the requirements under the Special Management Plans for moose management as determined by the Department of Lands and Forestry. This case falls apart rather quickly when you apply the context that the courts recently determined that these measures are not sufficient to uphold the legal obligations of the Species at Risk Act.
“If there wasn’t an inarguable need for change in how public forestry is conducted in Nova Scotia we wouldn’t have two multi-million dollar reports within 10 years, two Auditor General reports, and a successful, precedent-setting lawsuit showing this systemic failure.
The need, and subsequent calls, for change should no longer be dismissed as being “anti-forestry”.
“Working in opposition to something is easier than working to facilitate lasting change. In this regard, we must all play a part in supporting local forest co-ops, buying local wood products from ecologically-sustainable harvests, and be willing to pay the additonal associated costs.
“We must spend time focusing on, and promoting the forestry that meets these objectives as the more we do this the less effective the disingenuous charge of being “anti-forestry” becomes to the general public.”
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