Environmental groups suspend further work with Resolute Forest Products under Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement
Commitment to ongoing work with other forestry companies remains strong
On the third anniversary of the signing of the historic Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement (CBFA), environmental signatories are suspending further work with Resolute Forest Products. They remain committed to continuing their work with other signatory companies to plan for protection of critical Boreal woodland caribou habitat and sustainable forest management practices.
"We are very pleased with the groundbreaking solutions for conservation we have forged under the CBFA with companies such as Tembec, Alberta Pacific Forest Industries, and Millar Western Forest Products in northeastern Ontario and Alberta respectively," said Janet Sumner of the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS).
"We are also optimistic about advancing conservation and sustainable forestry plans through our on-going work with Tolko, Weyerhaeuser, and Corner Brook Pulp and Paper in Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Newfoundland.
"However, despite three years of work we feel we have not been able to make meaningful progress towards science-based conservation and sustainable forestry plans with Resolute Forest Products on its large tenures in Quebec and Northwestern Ontario. After creating and revising numerous conservation analyses, and putting several workable proposals on the table, we have come to the sad conclusion that Resolute will not do the minimum that the science says is required to protect our forests and the threatened caribou that call them home," adds Sumner.
"We believe that Resolute is not meeting its commitments to ensure caribou survive on the forests it manages. In our opinion, it has so far proven itself unwilling to strike a balance between its economic interests and the local survival of a nationally threatened species," added Todd Paglia of ForestEthics.
The environmental groups' assessment, based on federal government science, is that Resolute's forestry plans would severely diminish the chances that any caribou herds within their tenures will survive after their logging operations. The federal recovery strategy under the Species At Risk Act requires that all caribou herds in Canada be managed to create a minimum likelihood of 60% survival.
All environmental signatories to the CBFA are suspending further work with Resolute until it can commit to scientifically defensible conservation plans that would give caribou a reasonable chance of survival.
"The CBFA has proven itself a workable model with companies that honour their commitments. Last year, signatories announced a joint caribou action plan for northeastern Ontario that proposed an 8,000km2 logging-free zone to protect critical caribou habitat and an increase of wood supply for local mills," adds Sumner.
In Northeast Alberta, signatories supported the establishment of the proposed Dillon River Wildland Park and the Gipsy-Gordon Wildland Park, and this month have agreed on an approach for Caribou Action Planning in the Athabasca and Cold Lake regions. They are now commencing outreach to Provincial, Aboriginal, municipal and energy sector leaders to move forward.
The Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement was signed in 2010 by all member companies of the Forest Products Association of Canada and nine environmental groups. Environmental groups continuing to implement the CBFA are the Canadian Boreal Initiative, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, David Suzuki Foundation, ForestEthics, Ivey Foundation, The Nature Conservancy and the International Boreal Conservation Campaign.
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For more background on the CBFA, visit http://www.canadianborealforestagreement.com/
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Thousands expected to join 30×30 Nature Challenge during May
TORONTO - The David Suzuki Foundation is launching the 30×30 Nature Challenge today — a national campaign to get Canadians outside for 30 minutes a day for 30 days during May.
"I urge Canadians to join the 30×30 Nature Challenge," said David Suzuki, award-winning broadcaster, author and co-founder of the David Suzuki Foundation. "Commit to getting outside for 30 minutes a day, for 30 days. Whether it's in a local park or backyard garden, getting your daily dose of nature is a key ingredient for a happy, healthy lifestyle."
Canadians have become increasingly disconnected from the natural world. Symptoms of our nature deficit are easy to spot: stress, obesity, heart disease, asthma and depression. However, it is now well documented that time spent in nature can improve physical and mental health — dramatically reducing stress and mental fatigue while boosting creativity and vitality. Throughout the month of May, participants of the 30×30 Nature Challenge will receive tips about how to reap the benefits of nature by adding more green time to their schedules.
"Fitting a daily dose of green into our busy routines doesn't need to be daunting," said David Suzuki's Queen of Green, Tovah Paglaro. "It can be as simple as holding your next work meeting outdoors, having lunch in a park or walking the kids to school. And since you will have more energy and increased concentration, the time spent in nature will pay off in spades."
The 30×30 Nature Challenge is being presented in partnership with Genuine Health, with generous support from Cisco Systems Canada, Interface Canada, Harvest Power, the Arcangelo Rea Family Foundation and Nature's Path Foods. CBC Live Right Now will be supporting the 30×30 Nature Challenge through its new Get Outside campaign at LiveRightNow.ca starting May 1st.
Stewart Brown, CEO of Genuine Health said, "In 2012, we supported the launch of Your Brain on Nature, a revolutionary book that addressed the importance of nurturing our health with nature. The reality of modern life is that many of us spend several hours each day in front of electronic screens and very little time outside in green space. This is why, for the second year in a row, we are proud and excited to partner on the David Suzuki Foundation's 30×30 Nature Challenge!"
As part of the 30×30 Nature Challenge, the David Suzuki Foundation will work with university researchers to analyze how time in nature affects well-being. By filling out surveys before and after taking the 30×30 Challenge, participants will help to document the benefits of getting outside.
"Through this research, we will explore the impact nature has on our lives," said David Suzuki Foundation spokesperson Aryne Sheppard. "We will test the theory that being more connected to nature goes along with greater environmental awareness and ecologically friendly behaviour — not to mention feeling happier and healthier."
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For more information, please visit www.davidsuzuki.org/30×30challenge or contact:
Jode Roberts, David Suzuki Foundation (Toronto) cell.647 456 9752 email@example.com
Manon Dubois Crôteau, Fondation David Suzuki (Montreal) 514-871-4932 poste.453 cell.514-679-0821
Theresa Beer, David Suzuki Foundation (Vancouver) 604-732-4228 ext.1239 cell.778.874.3396
The 30×30 Nature Challenge
- The David Suzuki Foundation is challenging Canadians to join the 30×30 Nature Challenge by signing up at www.davidsuzuki.org/30×30challenge.
- Participants start by signing up as an individual or workplace at www.davidsuzuki.org/30×30challenge/sign-up
- They will receive tips for how to add nature to their daily routine through the 30×30 website, hashtag #30×30challenge and David Suzuki Foundation social media (@davidsuzukiFDN and www.facebook.com/davidsuzuki)
- As part of the 30×30 Nature Challenge, the David Suzuki Foundation will work with researchers at the University of Trent to analyze how time in nature affects well-being through surveys before and after the challenge.
- Participants will also be eligible for weekly prizes through the 30×30 Photo Contest and if they complete the opening and closing surveys will be entered to win a $500 prize package from Genuine Health.
Benefits of connecting with nature
- Spending an hour in nature can improve memory performance and attention span by 20 per cent. Natural views at work result in increased job satisfaction, better concentration, decreased mental fatigue and lower stress levels.
- Plants in a workplace can reduce feelings of anger, anxiety and fatigue by about 40 per cent and stress levels by 50 per cent over three months.
- Spending four nature-filled days away from electronic devices can increase your creativity by 50 per cent.
- Only a few minutes of exposure to nature can immediately reduce stress levels, blood pressure and muscle tension.
30×30 Nature Challenge partners
- Genuine Health
- Cisco Systems Canada
- Interface Canada
- Harvest Power
- The Arcangelo Rea Family Foundation
- Nature's Path Foods
- Bullfrog Power
- Usability Matters
- CBC LiveRightNow.ca
A multi-media exhibit exploring services provided by nature on eight Metro Vancouver beaches
Vancouver, CAN, April 8, 2013 — Students in Emily Carr's Community Projects course, in partnership with the David Suzuki Foundation, and in collaboration with the Ontario College of Art and Design University (OCADU), launch an interactive community mapping and storytelling project today.
The Natural Capital Beaches Exhibit, which runs until August 2013, opens tonight from 6 — 9 pm at the Gulf of Georgia Cannery and features guest speakers, screenings and an artist talk.
The project is the second in a series of collaborations that focuses on natural capital, the economic, non-market value of services provided by nature. It includes a series of eight digital narratives that bring to life research by the Foundation on the value of the Lower Mainland's natural water areas. The study estimates that the region's wetlands, beaches and coastal areas provide at least $30 billion in economic benefits to residents every year.
"The goal of the project is to awaken and teach our community to value the aquatic benefits of BC's Lower Mainland beaches, and, to teach them about possibilities we can create together," says instructor (and alumna) Sarah Van Borek, Faculty of Culture + Community.
Students from a range of disciplines worked together, applying their skills to help the Foundation engage the public to view the nature that surrounds our urban environment in a completely different way: through economic analysis that demonstrates the high value of intact ecosystems for services such as water filtration and carbon sequestration.
"We love what the students are doing," said Michelle Molnar, Environmental Economist and Policy Analyst with the Foundation. "They've animated our research and provided a way for our local community to recognize the bounty of natural wealth we have in our backyards."
Narratives feature stories from diverse community members who, by sharing their unique relationships and/or expertise, highlight the priceless and often lesser known ecosystem services (ie. flood control, habitat, spiritual, educational and cultural) that these beaches provide. The videos are integrated into the Natural Capital Map Application, on the Foundation website.
The exhibit also offers visitors a virtual experience through a video installation with panoramic images and sound walks of the beaches. Interpretive signage includes a series of posters that were designed in collaboration with students from OCADU and illustrate the definitions and importance of ecosystem services provided by Lower Mainland beaches.
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About Emily Carr University of Art + Design
Emily Carr University of Art + Design, established in 1925, is a world leader in education and research. Encouraging experimentation at the intersection of art, design, media and technology, our learning community merges research, critical theory and studio practice in an interdisciplinary environment. Alumni and faculty are internationally recognized as award-winning creators and thought leaders who have enormous impact on both the cultural sector and economy. We engage students, industry, and society to continuously explore and think differently about creativity and how it shapes our world. Emily Carr is building a state-of-the art campus for 21st century learning at Great Northern Way. The University will be at the centre of a new social, cultural, educational, and economic engine for British Columbia. Find out more at ecuad.ca.
About The David Suzuki Foundation
We find solutions for living within the limit of nature. Through sound science, education, research and public engagement, we motivate Canadians to take action in overcoming our shared environmental challenges. www.davidsuzuki.org
Theresa Beer, Communications, David Suzuki Foundation
604.732.4228 (Ext. 1239), firstname.lastname@example.org
Roxanne Toronto, Communications Officer, Emily Carr University