NS NDP

February 5th, 2020

Community involvement is key to forestry transformation

HALIFAX - The NDP continues to push the Liberals to include community voices on the Forestry Transition Team. The lead for the transition team will appear before the Natural Resources and Economic Development Committee today.

“Local municipal leaders, mill workers, foresters, and other people directly impacted by the mill closure are some of the people who are most invested in a successful transition. They should be at the centre of the transition team, not the margins,” said Lisa Roberts, NDP Lands and Forestry Spokesperson. “When the Bowater mill in Liverpool closed, the former NDP government made sure there was a local transition team made up of people who were respected in their communities. That’s what is missing here.”

In 2012 when the Bowater mill closed in Queens County, the NDP government stepped in to help the industry and community make a transformation. Today, the former Bowater mill site is the Port Mersey Commercial Park, which is used by nine employers including Aqualitas, a leader in the province’s cannabis industry. Additionally, the NDP government returned the Bowater forest lands to public ownership, and allowed community forest initiatives, like the Medway Community Forest Cooperative, to begin their work.

“The closure of the Northern Pulp mill is having devastating impacts on many people, and we need to ensure there is support for people who have been impacted,” said Claudia Chender, NDP Rural and Regional Development Spokesperson. “We also need to act quickly to ensure this major change can have a transformational impact on the forestry industry in Nova Scotia, allowing us to move toward more ecological and sustainable forms of forestry.”

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For more information please contact Kyle Buott at 902-266-2068.