New Brunswick’s New Forest Plan to Protect More Crown Forest

New Brunswick Natural Resources Minister Mike Holland announced new steps the province is taking to protect more Crown forest, consult First Nations on forestry management, and allow for use other than timber harvesting, according to CBC News (8-30-23).

Minister Holland announced a long-term strategy for Crown forests that he said will see the percentage of protected Crown forest increase from 23% to 30%. At the same time, practices such as herbicide spraying and clear cutting—which the forest industry has used over the past 40 years—will allow cutting to continue at the current rate, or a potentially higher rate, without expanding where the timber can be harvested intensively.

“We’re going to create more opportunities for the industry to benefit and grow from the same footprint,” Holland said, referring to about 20% of Crown forest, according to CBC News. About another 50% will also allow timber harvesting, but with “an eye towards natural regeneration, an eye towards hardwood, an eye towards ensuring structure stays in harvested areas so that we have different age structures going forward.”

The strategy will also see a reduction in the amount of hardwood that is destroyed to “long-term sustainable levels,” by leaving more residual canopy and legacy trees, according to a recent report cited by CBC News.

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