Friday, 15 March 2002
2.1 Million Acre Certification in Canada Completed
FSC-accredited certifier SGS Qualifor recently certified 2.1 million acres (855,000 ha) of public forest in Ontario from Georgian Bay to Algonquin Park, the largest FSC-certification of public land in Canada. Westwind Forest Stewardship Inc. (SGS-FM/COC-0931), a not for profit community based forest management company manages the land for the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (OMNR).
The forest, named the French/Severn forest for the rivers that form its northern and southern borders, is located in the Parry Sound district in the southern and central portions of the province. The OMNR retains authority for policing, licensing, and directing the new wood commitments, and is responsible for wood measurement, collection of stumpage fees, and coordination with local citizens. Westwind delivers management planning, compliance, and silvicultural operations. A range of forest industry partners and independent operators harvest the timber.
Tembec, Westwind’s largest industry partner, is entitled to 43% of the total available harvest. Production focuses primarily on sawlogs, the majority of which are processed in local facilities. Pulpwood and chips are also produced. Total annual production is around 127 million board feet (300K cubic meters). Historical logging activities and fire events up to the 1930’s have created an abundance of degraded forest types, low quality stands, off site stands and reduction in historical species composition. The existing management plan addresses these issues through management strategies aimed at improving stand quality and restoration of off site forest cover, using silvicultural systems that emulate natural patterns and processes and encourage natural regeneration. The certification marks a great achievement for FSC in North America and around the globe. For more information on this certification, visit SGS Qualifor online at www.qualifor.com/main/fmr.htm