I am excited to have the opportunity to attend the World Forestry Congress in Durban – the first in Africa – and to talk to the leaders of the forestry community about how the CBFA is changing forestry in Canada.
Since the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement (CBFA) was signed in 2010, it has proven that collaborative solutions to sustain Canada’s boreal forest are possible when forest companies and environmental groups sit down at a table and work together.
We at the CBFA have partnered with the Royal Canadian Geographic Society to create a giant map of the Canadian Boreal, which we are bringing to the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre so we can illustrate the scale of this majestic landscape.
The Canadian Boreal is a vital part of Canada’s economy, environment and cultural identity. Canada is home to 25 per cent of the world’s remaining intact forest ecosystems. Our boreal forest stores twice the carbon of tropical forests and contains the world’s most extensive network of freshwater lakes, rivers and wetlands. Canada’s forestry industry brings in nearly $60 billion in annual revenues. More than 200 communities across the country depend on forestry for their continued survival, and more than 600 First Nations communities call the boreal home.
While touring the giant floor map, from Cornerbrook, Newfoundland, to Northeastern Alberta, my colleagues and I will explain how the CBFA’s signatories – six leading environmental organizations and 20 forestry companies – have been working together to find lasting solutions to ensure the health and success of both Canada’s boreal ecosystem and forestry industry.
Mark Hubert, Vice President of Environmental Leadership, Forest Products Association of Canada, will speak about how the CBFA’s work is keeping the Canadian forestry industry at the leading edge of demand for sustainable wood products. Then, Éric Hébert-Daly, National Executive Director, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS), will discuss how the relationship between conservationists and forest-dependent communities has evolved.
Dr. Mariteuw Chimère Diaw, Director General, African Model Forest Network (AMFI) and Fernando Carrera, General Manager, Ibero-American Model Forest Network (IAMFN), with then share with the audience their countries’ experience in moving from conflict to collaboration, adding a global dimension to the discussion.
We are all looking forward to bringing the Canadian Boreal to Durban! – Join the side-event: The CBFA: From Conflict to Collaboration, Sept. 9, 2015 at the Congress