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CIFQ sets out chief forester mandate


June 6, 2005
By Pulp & Paper Canada

A recommendation set out by the Coulombe Commission is being followed up on and will see the creation of the positi…

A recommendation set out by the Coulombe Commission is being followed up on and will see the creation of the position of Chief Forester. In an attempt to foster a situation whereby the holder of the position can operate in an independent, neutral and autonomous environment, the Conseil de l’industrie forestire du Qubec (CIFQ) is insisting the Chief Forester be nominated by the National Assembly of Quebec by a nomination process, similar to that of the Quebec Auditor General.

"In appointing a Chief Forester, the government must be sure to establish all the conditions so that there is no doubt whatsoever in the minds of the people that the person who will assume this position will enjoy complete independence," said Guy Chevrette, chief executive officer of the CIFQ.

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The Chief Forester will see his mandate limited to aspects of forestry management and will in all likelihood be obliged to seek public consultation before determining annual allowable harvesting levels. Two additional conditions that will presumably be attached to the mandate include accountability to all affected parties with regards to decisions made and availability of all the data upon which the forester based such decisions.

The CIFQ further indicated that, "it is essential that the person who occupies the position of Chief Forester be independent, that the results of his projects as well as of the studies that he conducts or assigns are made public in total transparency and finally, that he is accountable to the government."


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