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Tis the season for forest fires


June 19, 2007
By Pulp & Paper Canada

The summer season is ushering in an unwelcome guest. According to a report by the Globe and Mail, both British Colu…

The summer season is ushering in an unwelcome guest. According to a report by the Globe and Mail, both British Columbia and Quebec are playing host to a throng of raging forest fires.

The report confirmed that a total of 164 firefighters from BC made their way to Quebec last weekend, in order to combat infernos in the Val dOr and Roberval areas. It marks the third time this year that fire crews from the western province have made their way to Ontario in Quebec, however, as the report noted, the time spent away from home doesnt indicate a lack of need on BC soil. In fact, roughly 2,000 wildfires ravage British Columbias forests every year. The Mountain Pine Beetle infestation has compounded the challenge, the Globe notes, because of fire-suppression efforts over the past 100 years, B.C. has about three times more mature lodgepole pine trees than it did more than 90 years ago. Pine beetles prefer older trees. Wood killed by pine beetles presents a fire risk, which is one of the reasons the province is pushing a bioenergy strategy that would see such wood used as fuel.

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