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NB online map shows details of Crown forests


March 18, 2015
By Pulp & Paper Canada

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A new online map released by the New Brunswick Department of Natural Resources shows, in detail, Crown land conservation areas as well as changes in those areas in relation to the Crown Land Forest Management Strategy released by the province…

A new online map released by the New Brunswick Department of Natural Resources shows, in detail, Crown land conservation areas as well as changes in those areas in relation to the Crown Land Forest Management Strategy released by the province one year ago.

“This is a continuation of our commitment to be more transparent and open with the public in relation to Crown forests,” said Natural Resources Minister Denis Landry. “In December we posted all the forestry agreements with forestry companies online. We will continue our work in reviewing the forestry plan as well as our discussions with stakeholders.”

The map displays national and provincial parks, as well as protected natural areas. Protected areas are protected from all types of industrial resource extraction including forestry, mining, and gas extraction. Some sites protect large ecosystems while others focus on rare or unique conditions. In the majority of cases, low-impact recreational activities such as hiking, hunting, and fishing are allowed.

The online map also indicates watercourse and wetland buffers, deer wintering area, other habitats, conservation sites and special management areas.

When announced last year, the New Brunswick government’s forest management strategy resulted in immediate investment announcements by local forest products companies, but drew criticism from certain quarters for not being sustainable. The plan is expected to lead to the harvesting of an additional 660,000 cubic metres of softwood on Crown land.

Part of the approach taken by New Brunswick for Crown forest management is to maximize the use of complementary objectives. A particular site may simultaneously be serving multiple values. For example, parts of a protected natural area may also be providing old-forest habitat. By turning on and off the layers in the interactive map, viewers can see how certain zones co-exist.