TORONTO, Oct. 12 /CNW Telbec/ - Activists with Greenpeace have prevented
a ship from off-loading several thousand tonnes of newsprint in the harbour of
Terneuzen, Netherlands. The newsprint comes from Abitibi-Consolidated, the
most important logging company in Canada, which is logging some of the last
intact areas of the Boreal Forest.
Today's shipment was destined for Dutch newspaper publishers. PCM,
Wegener and the Telegraaf Media Groep all buy from Abitibi with annual
purchases of over 26,000 tonnes of paper. Abitibi is their most important
Canadian source of newsprint. Only a small fraction of the paper is recycled.
Greenpeace research shows that the paper of Abitibi consists of over
90 per cent virgin fibers.
On the hull of the 'Finnwood', a 170-metre long ship, activists in
inflatable boats painted "No Newspapers from Ancient Forests" in Dutch and are
calling on the Dutch government to ensure that forest product imports into the
country are not coming from ancient forests.
"This action is an example of the growing international concern with the
state of Canada's Boreal Forest," said Kim Fry, a forest campaigner with
Greenpeace Canada. "Greenpeace will continue to put pressure on international
corporate customers of Abitibi Consolidated until we see protection of intact
areas and a transformation of their logging practices".
Abitibi-Consolidated is the most important newspaper producer in Canada.
The company has logging permits for more than 16.8 million hectares in Canada.
Already, an area three times the size of France has been degraded and
fragmented by development in the Boreal Forest region (175 million hectares).
More than 76% of the forests under the management of Abitibi have already been
degraded and fragmented Abitibi has also failed to certify itself to the
rigorous standards of the international Forest Stewardship Council.
The Canadian Boreal Forest is one of the largest ancient forests left on
the planet, with many large intact areas. It's a very important storehouse of
carbon, with an estimated 47.5 billion tonnes stored in its soils and trees.
The forest is also a natural habitat for many threatened species such as the
Greenpeace Canada is calling on the governments of Ontario and Quebec for
a moratorium on logging in remaining intact areas and caribou habitat until
large scale protection is implemented.
For further information:
For further information: Kim Fry, Greenpeace Forest Campaigner, (647)
406-0664; Jocelyn Desjardins, Communications - Relations publiques,
Greenpeace, (514) 933-0021, poste 17, Portable: (514) 212-5749;
www.greenpeace.ca/boreal; High resolution images avaliable on
gallery.greenpeace.ca from 6 am on October 13, 2007.