In the News

Update Apr 14, 2021
‘Resuming In the News, but I will not attempt to catch every item (as I did previously).

May 8, 2021:
Finding the Mother Tree by Suzanne Simard review – a journey of passion and introspection
Tiffany Francis-Baker in The Guardian. Book Review

May 7, 2021:
One of Canada’s biggest carbon sinks is circling the drain
Barry Saxifrage in the National Observer. “Canada’s continent-spanning forest used to remove massive amounts of CO2 from the air each year. It was a hugely valuable “carbon sink”, slowing the pace of climate change and benefiting our logging industry. But that carbon sink has steadily collapsed to the point where the forest now emits CO2. That adds fuel to our accelerating climate crisis, and spells trouble for Canadian logging.”

May 6, 2021:
ANNOUNCEMENT: Can Geo Talks: Discovering the Wisdom of the Forest
Event by Canadian Geographic. Online Event. Thursday, May 6, 2021 at 9:30 PM UTC-03 – 12 AM UTC-0. Price: Free · Duration: 2 hr 30 min. Public · Anyone on or off Facebook “It’s not about how we can save the trees, but about how trees could actually save us. Tune in on May 6 at 8:30 p.m. EST for a conversation with Dr. Suzanne Simard, a professor of Forest Ecology at UBC and world-leading expert and pioneer on tree connectivity and communication.”

May 5, 2021:
Northern Pulps withdraws EA, Plans being developed to overhaul mill operations including an advanced ETF
Paper Excellence Press Release
Environment minister concerned P.E.I. forests ‘drastically reduced’
Kevin Yarr · CBC News
Archibald Lake delay angers river group
By Alec Bruce in guysboroughjournal.com
– The St. Mary’s River Association (SMRA) is “frustrated” that the province is delaying the protection of 684 hectares of woodlands, wetlands and lakes near Sherbrooke from environmental harm, says the group’s president, Scott Beaver.” View image on WWNS

From p 9 in Summary Report:
What we heard during
Nova Scotia Wilderness
Areas Consultations
January 9th through March 9th, 2020.
Prepared by Nova Scotia Environment

Also view Archibald Lake Wilderness Area (New) on novascotia.ca /parksandprotectedareas. “About 10 ha around Archibald Brook is subject to mineral exploration rights. These rights can be honoured under the Wilderness Areas Protection Act, provided activities do not degrade the wilderness area. Archibald Lake is also identified in Atlantic Gold’s description for the proposed Cochrane Hill Gold Project: https://ceaa-acee.gc.ca/050/evaluations/proj/80159?culture=en-CA. The company’s proposed
use of Archibald Lake cannot be permitted within a wilderness area.”

May 4, 2021:
The birds of Owls Head need a wingman
Lindsay Lee in The Coast. “The government puts the piping plover on license plates, but will it help the plovers on our beaches?”
W-SPF 2×4’s at $2,000?
Russ Taylor, President on russtaylorglobal.com/ “Ongoing Surge in Lumber Demand Is Creating Unbelievable Prices!”

May 3, 2021:
Only intact forests can stave off climate change
Tim Radford on Climate News Network

Old-Growth Forest Logging Approvals Are Soaring in BC
By Amanda Follett Hosgoofor The Tyee “New mapping released today by the Wilderness Committee indicates the province approved significantly more old-growth logging over the past 12 months than it did the previous year. According to the report released today, the province approved logging in 84,669 hectares of old-growth forest over the past year compared with 59,228 hectares the year prior. Advocates speculate that the 43-per-cent increase could signal the forest industry’s push to secure harvestable timber as the province promises tighter restrictions on old-growth logging.”
The Woman Who Looked at a Forest and Saw a Community
By Jonathan C. Slaght in the NY Times, Book review: FINDING THE MOTHER TREE Discovering Wisdom in the Forest By Suzanne Simard Illustrated. 368 pp. Alfred A. Knopf. $28.95. “In her new book, Suzanne Simard contends that at the center of a healthy forest stands a Mother Tree: an old-growth matriarch that acts as a hub of nutrients shared by trees of different ages and species linked together via a vast underground fungal network.”

Apr 30, 2021:
California’s Carbon Offset Program Is a Complete Disaster
Molly Taft in Gizmodo “On Thursday, ProPublica and MIT Technology Review published an investigation into forest offset programs in California, based on an analysis created by CarbonPlan, a nonprofit that specializes in looking into carbon removal programs. The story shows the issue of relying on offsets, a tactic increasingly favored by all sorts of businesses, rather than cutting emissions in the first place.”

Apr 29, 2021
Sawmills are selling boards faster than they can cut them
By Marcy Nicholson, Bloomberg News in the Financial Post

Apr 27, 2021:
Lack of answers on proposed wilderness area raises concerns for environmental group
Michael Gorman · CBC News “Proposed gold mine project would not be permitted in Archibald Lake wilderness area”

Apr 26, 2021:
Paris climate agreement overlooks wood pellet loophole
Cameron Oglesby for Environmental health News
JIM VIBERT: Is Nova Scotia Premier Iain Rankin’s environmentalism real or rhetoric?
Chronicle Herald.(Subscription required). Also view by JV: JIM VIBERT: The ‘Rankin government’ is all about good news (Apr 2, 2021)
Owls Head: Economic driver or ecological disaster?
Francis Campbell in the Chronicle Herald. Image on WWNS
Researchers ask public for herp atlas help
Stuart Peddle in the Chronicle Herald (subscription required) Image on WWNS

Apr 25, 2021:
All hail the woods: How and when forests store carbon
Zack Metcalfe in the Nova Scotia Advocate
Concrete capture, Part 2: The murky world of air emissions testing and why monitoring pollution is not the same as mitigating it
Linda Pannozzo in the Halifax Examiner. “…as was laid out in Part 1 of this series, while the province originally decided that using tire-derived-fuel (TDF) wasn’t in the cards, at least not in the “foreseeable future,” it did an about-face in 2017 when then Environment Minister (now Premier) Iain Rankin approved Lafarge’s one-year pilot to burn roughly 350,000 tires in its kiln, despite concerns raised by government scientists in the internal review of the company’s EA registration document.”

Apr 22, 2021 (EarthDay):
N.S. announces a slew of new properties to receive legal protection
Michael Gorman · CBC News
How to plant two billion trees: Finding utility in a feel-good story
Zack Metcalfe in the Nova Scotia Advocate

Apr 21, 2021:
Is burning biomass the answer?
Janet Whitman in Halifax Magazine

Apr 20. 2021:
How the Biodiversity Act was killed
Joan Baxter in the Hlifax Examiner. Subscription required. Intro. given in Morning File. “Forest Nova Scotia, which represents the biggest forestry players, gets an awful lot of public money — including millions of dollars to administer a forest roads program panned by the auditor general. It also has a paid lobbyist swaying the policies of the very government that funds it, and who started working on its behalf just as the Biodiversity Act was gutted.”

Apr 19, 2021:
Northern Exposure: The Unseen Loss of Northern Forests
Jennifer Skene on nrdc.org “In Canada, even a barren stretch of stumps counts as a perfectly healthy forest”

Apr 17, 2021:
Depleted Soil
Letter by Tom Miller in the Chronicle Herald (view image on WWNS) responding to – Cassie Turple’s Apr 10 Opinion piece of Apr 10 (view image on WWNS)

Apr 16, 2021:
Breck Stuart will be the new General Manager at WestFor Management Inc
WestFor Facebook Page
How the Biodiversity Act was killed
Halifax Examiner Morning File Rankin “happy where we landed” on the Biodiversity Act

Apr 15, 2021:
We know the science of forestry – we should do better
Norris Margeson Wiston in the Truro News. Viewed on PressReader
DALE SMITH: Nova Scotia’s Rankin must end bait-and-switch routine on forestry reform
In the Chronicle Herald. View image on WWNS”The switch occurs when responsibility for implementation is turned over to an entrenched and reluctant bureaucracy…”
Alan Shaw on The Natural Resources Strategy 11 years later & The Biodiversity Act
Maritime Noon interview 2.48 to approx. 10 mins (part of a larger interview). Also the whole noontime segment on ‘development vs land protection’ is available as an audio file.

Communications specialist: “hundreds of thousands of dollars” were spent to produce “blatant lies” for the campaign against the Biodiversity Act
Joan Baxter in the Halifax Examiner

Apr 14, 2021
Healthy Forest Coalition Briefing Notes
Prepared for MLAs as the legislature reconvened

Progress report on N.S.’s effort to shift to ecological forestry expected in June
Michael Gorman · CBC News “Lands and Forestry Minister Chuck Porter said during budget debate on Tuesday at the legislature that University of King’s College president Bill Lahey will provide an update to his department this month and have a finalized review complete for public release about two months later.”

Biodiversity Act passes at Province House, regulations still to come
Michael Gorman · CBC News “…The changes Rankin announced to the bill came in the face of a highly co-ordinated lobby effort bankrolled by industry lobbyists that attempted to pit landowners and environmentalists against each other. NDP forestry critic Lisa Roberts noted it was left to landowners, environmentalists and others who supported the bill in its original form to find a way to push back against the lobby effort…NDP Leader Gary Burrill said the changes the Liberals made to the bill, reducing it from 19 pages to seven, robbed it of its promise..uBrrill accused the Tories of buying into the lobby effort talking points, posturing for the sake of politics and being outdated and out of touch with the realities of climate change and the requirements to respond. Houston, meanwhile, shot back that his party was the only one willing to stand up for rural landowners and questioned the relevance of the NDP.”

Northern Pulp poised to submit revised plan for effluent treatment facility
Paul Withers · CBC News. Also view CH article.

UPDATE  Apr 5, 2021. This page  provided a list of links to news items related to forests and forestry in Nova Scotia beginning Jan 1, 2021,  as I was  able to catch them (other pages, cited below carried news items back to June 21, 2016). I stopped this effort on March 25, 2021, overwhelmed by the frequency of news items related to forestry in NS, many of them redundant; most of them ‘bad news’, at least from my perspective.

I am providing some ‘In the News’ Updates in these two posts:

These two posts illustrate the pretty dismal state of discussions about forestry in NS. It was all brought to a head by our new, young, ‘environmentalist Premier’, Iain Rankin, who promised big, pro-environment changes in his run-up to the Liberal Leadership vote on Feb 6, 2021.

However, within weeks of being elected as the new leader and Premier of NS, he backed down in the face of a Trump style disinformation campaign by the Big Forestry lobby against his Biodiversity Act, which he gutted. The Biodiversity Act had been a major plank in his campaign for the leadership and one reason many environmentally-oriented NS liberals voted for him.

I am still figuring out what to do with this website; it will remain but with a new focus.

For older items  see
In the News 2020
Older News

The dates cited below are the dates of publication of the news items (not the dates on which I accessed them).

View Also:
Social Media Posts
All NSFN Posts
GHGs in the News

Reminder, February 3 to April 13, 2021
Protected Areas Consultation

March 2021: News related to Biodiversity Act is given under Updates to Mar 16 Post

Letter in the Chronicle Herald today (Mar 12, 2021)