Dec 8 & 15, 2018: Workshops at MTRI, Bear River, Nova Scotia on how to ID Hemlock Wooly Adelgid

I was relieved a few days ago not to see signs of the “Hemlock Vampire” on this hemlock in Halifax Co., but will keep on looking.

Received from MTRI today: “We will be hosting 2 workshops on identifying Hemlock Woolly Adelgid on December 8th at MTRI, and on December 15th at Bear River! Join us if you are interested in learning how to identify this invasive species, especially if you have hemlock that could be at risk on your property!

Click here for a larger version of the poster.

Hemlock Woolly Adelgid. “Their name comes from waxy white filaments they make to protect themselves from drying out. In a heavy infestation, hemlock trees can look gray from all the “wool” on twigs and branches. They can’t fly, but are spread by wind and also hitch rides on the feet of birds, which can carry hemlock wooly adelgids for long distances. These “hemlock vampires” were first discovered in 1951 in Virginia, and by 2005 had spread to fifteen other states.
Source: Paul Hetzler, Cornell Cooperative Extension
Photo source: Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, Bugwood.org


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We need a cost-benefit analysis of the Northern Pulp situation

So comments Paul Pross in an op-ed in the Chronicle Herald yesterday (Nov 26, 2018), responding to a CH editorial on Nov 22 titled “N.S. stuck in a muddle”.

Unfortunately, neither item is publicly available. Here are a couple of extracts from the CH editorial:

The Northern Pulp cost-benefit equation gets harder to evaluate by the day. Since 1967, the kraft pulp mill at Abercrombie Point has represented an uneasy balance between employment and environment in an economically precarious region…

If Northern Pulp misses the 2020 deadline, would the province really order a shutdown? History suggests otherwise. Governments of all stripes have bent every effort to keep pulp and paper alive in Nova Scotia. It is too big to fail.

So unless it becomes an election issue, the province will likely muddle along, spending money but never escaping survival mode for an industry perpetually under pressure.

I asked Paul Pross if he would send me a copy of his original submission to post on NSFN. Here it is as submitted:

Your editorial ‘Northern Pulp Dilemma’ (November 22, 2018) is as muddled as the situation it describes.
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New manager of biodiversity for the Nova Scotia Department of Lands and Forestry downplays significance of clearcutting for biodiversity losses

Forest cover loss in a section of land just south of New Glascow, Nova Scotia, from map at forests.foundryspatial.com
Click on image for larger version.
Is it conceivable that clearcutting in Nova Scotia, likely the most intensive in Canada, is not a major threat to biodiversity?

Early in the year, I attended the first stakeholder meeting held by DNR (now L&F) for the new Biodiversity Act (still to be hatched) as a rep for Nature Nova Scotia. The potential areas for Regulation Development were listed as
– Invasive Species
– Biodiversity Management Sites
– Wildlife health and disease
– Non-traditional use of biodiversity
(View Slides)

I expressed some dismay that “habitat loss” (mainly associated with clearcutting) was not in that list. Several others participating also expressed concern and there followed an extended discussion around this topic.

There was no acknowledgment from DNR/NSE staff that loss of biodiversity associated with clearcutting is a matter of concern. Nor did they see any need for it to be addressed in the Biodiversity Act – DNR staff said that was not necessary because there are already regulations that address this issue, the Report of the AG apparently notwithstanding.
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Can Dalhousie/AC lead the way on proper accounting for bioenergy in Nova Scotia?

Dal/AC’s revamped biomass plant provides heat and power for the Truro campus and generates over a million dollars annually from exporting electricity. But is it truly carbon neutral and will it stay that way?

UPDATE: Comment from Rochelle Owen Executive Director, Office of Sustainability at Dalhousie University
View below

———————-

Curved arrows represent biologically mediated flows of GHGs: the straight arrow, industrial emissions of GHGs; and the symbols at bottom right, long term sequestration of carbon in the oceans. Carbon dioxide is the most important GHG in relation to forestry.

There has been recent publicity around the Dalhousie University/AC’s revamped Biomass Energy Plant, Dal touting it as “a (Bio) Massive Achievement” and “a North American First” (AC: Agricultural Campus)

Dal’s Agricultural Campus has its sights set on being completely carbon neutral — a goal highlighted at the opening of the new Biomass Energy Plant, which celebrated its grand opening Tuesday morning (Nov. 20).

The renewed [30 year old] plant and district energy system, a $26.5-million project that began operation this summer, burns biomass fuel in a thermal oil heater. This heat moves a new 1 MW turbine to create electricity — an organic rankine cycle (ORC) system that’s the first of its kind on a North American university campus. It’s technology that places Dal on the leading edge of sustainable technology and renewable energy practices.

View A (BIO)MASSIVE ACHIEVEMENT: NEW AG CAMPUS ENERGY PLANT A NORTH AMERICAN FIRST
by Ryan McNutt in Dal News (Nov 21, 2018)
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Bill Lahey presentation in NB (Nov 19, 2018) on the Independent Review of Forest Practices in Nova Scotia available online

Slides from the presentation provide a convenient overview of the background and process of the Independent Review and of the Report itself


On UNB Forestry and Environmental Management Facebook Page:

– View Video Recording
The audio is somewhat rough in spots and the slides are not clear, however… “The slides used during this presentation can be viewed here: https://goo.gl/fNNj2f

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Burned, the Movie, igniting some passions in Nova Scotia

View Trailer
View Burned – The Movie
View this post for a listing of showings in NS – two left in current sequence, at Centre Burlington on Nov 22, 2018, and Tantallon on Nov 28, 2018

Bev Wigney wrote the following after viewing a showing of Burned: Are Trees The New Coal? on Sun Nov 18, 7:00 p.m., at the United Church, Annapolis Royal:

REVIEW and SUMMARY of “Burned: Are Trees The New Coal?”

For those of you who missed the screening of “Burned” and the discussion that followed, I’ll try to provide a summary while the thoughts are still fresh in my mind. I’ll do this in two posts — one about the film, and one about the discussion.

Burned:
This documentary addresses the unsustainable use of forests to create biomass as a “green” alternative to fossil fuels. Most of the forests and the biomass plants shown in the film are located in the eastern United States. The largest biomass processing plants are along the eastern seaboard, or on the eastern part of the Gulf of Mexico. The reason behind their location is that most of the biomass is processed into wood pellets to be shipped out of various ports, bound for England and Europe — where they will be burnt to produce electricity.
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Prof Lahey’s concerns about the Nova Scotia government’s delay in responding to the Independent Review are reflected in frustrations expressed about cuts proposed for Hardwood Hill, Annapolis Co.

“The health and well-being of the natural world around us is a very important part of who Nova Scotians are…The more activity that takes place in the forest without clarity on whether or not the shift that we have called for is going to be implemented, the more skepticism there will be… “ – Bill Lahey, author of the Report on the Independent Review.

Photo by Bev Wigney of a woodpecker tree on Hardwood Hill. View Bev Wigney’s Photo-essay of Life on Hardwood Hill, Annapolis Co..

In a recent CBC Interview, Professor Lahey, author of the Report on the Independent Review, expressed concern that “the more activity that takes place in the forest without clarity on whether or not the shift that we have called for is going to be implemented, the more skepticism there will be about whether or not that activity lines up with the approach that the report calls for.”

Listen to the full CBC interview (Nov 16, 2018)
View an Abbreviated Transcript below.

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Prof Lahey to talk to New Brunswick’s professional foresters about the Independent Review and how the report has been received by the government, media and civil society

From website of The Association of Registered Professional Foresters of New Brunswick:

Topic
Nova Scotia’s Independent Review of Forestry Practices: Paradigms, Ecological Forestry and Triads

Date/Time
November 19, 2018 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Location
Wu Centre Auditorium | UNB

Description
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Chronicle Herald further restricts online access to news and opinions

I am sorry to see that the Chronicle Herald now blocks most of its online content – even letters to the editor – with the message “Don’t miss out on stories like this one. Get unlimited digital access for $4.99/month * for the first 3 months” or “Thanks for checking out our premium content. Enjoy unlimited access, subscribe today.”

That comes on top of the CH changing to a new platform in mid-September and not providing access to older content, making many links to CH items published before mid- September 2018 non-functional. That’s a big issue for nsforestnotes.ca where I have attempted to provide “a [public] record of events, news and opinions on the subject of forests and forestry in Nova Scotia as they unfold, beginning on June 21, 2016” and many of the news links on this blog/website are to items in the Chronicle Herald.
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An eloquent appeal to save Hardwood Hill in Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Co.

Click on image for larger map

A letter from an Annapolis Co. resident appealing to the Premier and others to reject or greatly modify proposed  Crown land tree harvests on Hardwood Hill has been circulating in social media.

It is as eloquent a statement of how Nova Scotians value our landscapes, and our forests in particular, as I have read anywhere.

It is reproduced below.

Thanks, R.F.
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