Progress on Ecological Forestry

first_imgScientists, researchers, and subject-matter experts are working with Department of Lands and Forestry staff to improve Nova Scotia’s Crown land forests. These individuals are members of the department’s project teams that are addressing changes recommended by Prof. Bill Lahey in his review of forest practices in Nova Scotia. “The teams, which include highly respected external experts, are focused on the priorities that will move us forward in our goal of achieving ecological forestry in Nova Scotia,” said Minister of Lands and Forestry Iain Rankin. “Experts such as Bob Seymour, Laird Van Damme and Peter Duinker helped Prof. Lahey with his recommendations and add great credibility to this work.” Harvest improvements are already happening on Crown land, with more trees being retained on site. It is preferential to retain longer-lived species, with the objective of a greater mix of species, sizes and ages. “I’m pleased with progress being made on the ground and more improvements are coming,” said Mr. Rankin. “Many stakeholders are equally interested in these priorities, and we will be asking for their feedback regularly.” The project teams are focused on: reviewing the current pre-treatment assessment process and updating the forest management guide a peer-reviewed assessment of Nova Scotia’s natural disturbance agents, like fires, floods, insect infestations and large storms and their impacts on harvest planning reviewing the old forest policy and criteria, and revising policy following input from stakeholders defining high-production forestry and develop procedures and criteria for implementation on Crown land, followed by a framework for site selection and designation investigating the efficiency of small-scale wood energy projects and a converting some government buildings to wood heat energy for the 2019-20 heating season establishing a manual that includes priority policy and procedures to govern the Endangered Species Act and completing outstanding recovery plans and status reports as needed for species solely listed in Nova Scotia designing an outcomes-based approach to Crown forest management. For more information on the latest progress, visit https://novascotia.ca/natr/forestry/Forest_Review/ .last_img read more

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Albertas credit rating cut after confirming 103billion deficit 42billion debt

EDMONTON — Alberta has been hit with another credit downgrade one day after it confirmed it remains on track for a $10.3-billion budget deficit this year.The credit rating agency DBRS say it has downgraded Alberta‘s long-term debt rating to AA from AA (high) and has adjusted or maintained other ratings indicators on a negative trend.The agency said the downgrade reflects the high operating deficits and Alberta’s rapidly accumulating debt, which is pegged to surpass $42 billion by the spring.Alberta still on track for $10.3B deficit, but signs point to growing economyAlberta Premier Rachel Notley’s pro-pipeline tour well-received in CalgaryIt’s one of a number of credit downgrades or warnings that have resulted from the province’s fiscal direction under Premier Rachel Notley’s NDP since 2015.Although the economy has been hammered by low oil prices, Notley’s government says it makes sense in the short term to take on debt to catch up on long-delayed infrastructure projects.Finance Minister Joe Ceci, responding to the downgrade, says Alberta still has the strongest debt-to-GDP ratio among provinces and the province’s credit rating remains among the highest in Canada.“The fiscal update released yesterday shows that Alberta’s economy is growing faster than forecast, the deficit is coming down, and significant cost savings are being realized,” Ceci said in a statement.“The government will continue to take a steady and responsible approach that avoids extreme and risky cuts that would hurt families, cost jobs and damage our recovery.” read more

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