OTTAWA, Feb. 22, 2012 /CNW/ - The Forest Products Association of Canada
(FPAC) is telling Environment Canada that it can both fast track
caribou conservation and also ensure a prosperous forest industry.
FPAC submitted a brief to the government today, the deadline for public
comment on the draft Boreal Caribou Recovery Strategy required under
the Species-At-Risk Act.
FPAC members companies have been working in concert with environmental
groups through the landmark Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement (CBFA) on
conservation measures to protect boreal biodiversity while also
ensuring forest sector competitiveness. A significant component of the
CBFA is accelerating action plans to safeguard healthy caribou
populations across Canada while ensuring a robust forest sector.
"CBFA signatories are now leaders in caribou action planning and we
truly welcome the development of a national recovery strategy for
woodland caribou," says the President and CEO of FPAC, Avrim Lazar.
"Forest industry communities rely on the boreal forest so mills can
continue to produce lumber, pulp and paper, new emerging bio-products
and of course protect hundreds of thousands of jobs. But we are also
committed to working with conservationists to protect the environment."
The member companies and environmental groups belonging to the CBFA
agree on such issues as finding solutions that protect existing herds
and achieve recovery in highly disturbed ranges; developing a
nationally co-ordinated approach on adaptive management and effective
monitoring; supporting further scientific research on issues around
caribou habitat, and adopting measures that would be socially
acceptable and ensure a healthy forest products industry.
The FPAC brief on the recovery strategy refers to the need to respect
both economic and ecological outcomes, and it also made technical
suggestions in such areas as buffers and the role of fire.
"It won't be easy for industry and environmentalists to agree to all
aspects of caribou conservation but we are confident that
conservationists and companies can jointly find practical solutions and
develop recommendations for moving forward." says Lazar. "In this
spirit, we are hoping the federal government will help FPAC members and
the CBFA accelerate caribou action planning across Canada.
FPAC provides a voice for Canada's wood, pulp, and paper producers
nationally and internationally in government, trade, and environmental
affairs. The $57-billion-a-year forest products industry represents 2%
of Canada's GDP and is one of Canada's largest employers operating in
hundreds of communities and providing 240,000 direct jobs across the
SOURCE FOREST PRODUCTS ASSOCIATION OF CANADA
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