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Million-dollar forest research program launched by Northern Pulp Nova Scotia (June 29, 2010)


June 29, 2010
By Pulp & Paper Canada
Mike McLarty

Northern Pulp Nova Scotia is creating a new Forest Research Program in the province. Northern Pulp’s initiativ…

Northern Pulp Nova Scotia is creating a new Forest Research Program in the province. Northern Pulp’s initiative and $1 million investment over five years will drive research to study the impacts of current forest management practices and help shape and improve forest management strategies in the future.
“As one of Nova Scotia’s largest forest products companies, the health and sustainability of the forest ecosystem is extremely important,” said Michael McLarty, timberlands manager at Northern Pulp Nova Scotia. “We believe the best way to maintain a healthy forest and ecosystem, while producing forest products to meet society’s needs in a safe and economical manner, is to continually gain more knowledge and understanding of the impacts of applied forest management strategies.”
The Forest Research Program will be chaired by Dr. Peter Duinker, director and professor, School for Resource and Environmental Studies and associate dean research with Dalhousie University’s Faculty of Management.
“I am deeply impressed that a Nova Scotia forest-products company would make such a huge commitment to improving forest-management knowledge through research”, said Dr. Duinker. “There is strong potential to match the company’s research funds with money from Canada’s granting councils, so we are anticipating a vigorous research program on sustainable forest management.”
Over the next several months, Dr. Duinker, along with Northern Pulp, will invite members of industry, academia and other stakeholder areas, including government, to join the Forest Research Program Advisory Committee. The next step will be a needs assessment to ensure the research conducted delivers relevant, meaningful and defensible results while maximizing resources.
“For more than 40 years, our team at Northern Pulp has successfully used existing science in managing Nova Scotia forests,” said Wayne Gosse, CEO and CFO for Northern Pulp. “We have learned over this time that society’s needs and our natural systems are ever-evolving and there is a need for up-to-date in-depth forest research like this Forest Research Program.”
Northern Pulp also recently announced its participation in a working demonstration forest. The forest, in the Mooseland area at Otter Ponds in the Halifax region, will promote the philosophy, science, and practice of uneven-aged forest management in the Acadian Forest. It was established by the province, Northern Pulp, and the Nova Scotia Woodlot Owners and Operators Association, with help from community and environmental groups.
A new division under the woodlot owners and operators association, the Otter Ponds demonstration forest division, will manage the initiative. The demonstration site will be managed and operated as a working woodlot, producing timber for processing and maintaining a sustainable ecosystem.
This project will test resource management options, and build on best practices. The working forest will also allow for field testing silviculture techniques and restoration practices.
“With time, the Otter Ponds forest will become an ‘open air’ classroom for anyone interested in learning and sharing ideas about forestry and ecology, on-the-ground and in the woods,.” said Jamie Simpson, forestry program co-ordinator with the Ecology Action Centre.

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