Forests in Canada: Survey shows support for better protections

Canadians of all political backgrounds and from all regions are more supportive of protecting the country’s forests but concerned about what that could mean for the economy, according to a new survey.

The survey, conducted by three environmental groups the day before Ottawa announced its climate plan, found that 83% of Canadians agree the federal government should do more to protect forests and wildlife .

Support reached 89% in Quebec. Even on Prairies, where support is lowest, almost three-quarters of respondents agree.

Two-thirds of Conservatives want more protection, which has risen to 91 and 95% among Liberals and New Democrats.

Nature Canada’s Michael Polanyi, who commissioned the Ekos poll with the Nature and Natural Resources Defense Council of Quebec, said: “The broad support across regions and political parties is a bit surprising. course.

But the same poll found that 67% are at least slightly concerned about the economic impact of those protections – a remarkable 86% for the Conservatives.

“There are some concerns,” Polanyi admits, though he points out that more than a quarter of those who answered that question rate their concerns as mild.

The poll, which surveyed 1,036 Canadians between March 11 and 18, comes days before the federal government is expected to unveil its Emissions Reductions Roadmap, a formal plan to achieve emissions reductions. net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Polanyi said if those goals are met, forestry will need a tougher look.

“It has lacked attention.”

While the national greenhouse gas inventory says forestry emits 140 megatons of carbon dioxide a year, Polanyi says that number is too low. In October, Nature Canada published research showing that’s an underestimate of 80 megatonnes.

Polanyi says that replanting harvested trees does not make the industry carbon neutral. It takes a decade for a seedling to even begin to sequester carbon, while the carbon stored in an adult tree will eventually enter the atmosphere no matter how it is used.

For that reason, Polanyi said, companies that burn wood pellets for energy pay the same carbon tax as companies that burn coal or gas. The poll found that three-quarters of Canadians agree.

“Canadians want a level playing field.”

An industry spokesman said the carbon footprint had been fully calculated through methods developed by federal scientists. They say Canada’s accounting methods have been adopted by 25 countries and approved by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

The Forest Products Association of Canada says forest management mimics natural processes such as fire damage in an attempt to keep ecosystems functioning properly.

However, the survey shows strong support for more forest protection.

Nearly two-thirds said preserving the old growth rate was important. Nearly three-quarters say it is important for Canada to lead the world “by protecting the remaining intact forests” – an opinion shared by nearly half of Conservative respondents. shall.

Polanyi said the Liberal Party’s plan to reduce total greenhouse gas emissions would have to include measures for the forestry sector if it were to be effective.

“This report coming out next week will be very important,” he said.

“Introducing actions to incentivize a lower-carbon mining industry is an opportunity to ensure that all sectors are contributing.”

This Canadian Press report was first published on March 27, 2022

Source link


News7h: Update the world's latest breaking news online of the day, breaking news, politics, society today, international mainstream news .Updated news 24/7: Entertainment, the World everyday world. Hot news, images, video clips that are updated quickly and reliably

Related Articles

Back to top button