MTRI is a non-profit co-operative with a mandate to promote sustainable use of natural resources and biodiversity conservation in the Southwest Nova Biosphere Reserve and beyond through research, education, and the operation of a field station.
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The Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resources (NSDNR) has recently been promoting the concept of private land services throughout Nova Scotia being delivered by "Service Areas" developed from regional partnerships of organizations and businesses onvloved in providing services to woodlot owners. One such service area is currenetly being piloted: the Cape Breton Private Land Partnership, a three year pilot funded by NSDNR to coordinate the activities of landowner groups and service providers in Cape Breton.
In recent months, several partners have received funding from NSDNR to develop a business plan for the provision of woodlot management services in western Nova Scotia. The vision of the group includes services such as timber cruises and harvesting, assistance with silviculture, roads and boundary line work, management plans, certification, training, and advice on other values such as wildlife habitat and non-timber forest products. The outcome of the business plan will guide the scope and structure of a western service area.
Check out the Private Land Sevices Survey to see what woodland management services woodlot owners would like to see in western Nova Scotia!
FSC is an internationally recognized certification and labeling system that guarantees that the forest products you purchase come from responsibly managed forests. Forests are certified against a set of strict environmental and social standards, and fibre from certified forests is tracked all the way to the consumer.
In November 2009, MTRI received $150,000 from the Federal Government’s Community Development Trust Fundto promote Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification of small woodlot owners in Nova Scotia. In 2011, Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resources allocated a further $100,000 to MTRI to continue the certification program and deliver research, training and education that promotessustainable forest management.
MTRI has been guided throughout the project by a SmallWoodland Certification working group, with professionals coming from a variety of backgrounds and interests including representatives from woodland owners and operators organizations, foresters, and ecologists. The working group meets regularly to provide advice and guidance in the project’s planning, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation. We would like to thank them for their advice and support!
In 2011, MTRI partnered with the Federation of Nova Scotia Woodland Owners (www.fnswo.ca) to help woodland owners to certify their woodlands under one collective FSC group certificate. This helps to keep costs of certification down, and has a number of benefits to woodlot owners.
Under the MTRI/FNSWO program, there are two main parts to the cost of certification:
If you are interested in learning more about this project, or if you are a small woodland owner in southwestern Nova Scotia interested in FSC certification, please contact Jane Barker (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 902-682-2371, or visit www.fnswo.ca for more information on the program. You can also visit www.fsccanada.org to learn more about the Forest Stewardship Council and their standards.
Another great way to find out more about becoming certified is to read MTRI's "Guide to FSC Certification for Woodlot Owners in Nova Scotia". Contact us for a copy, or:
The initial phase of the project involved the development of a feasibility analysis to provide information to parties interested in becoming Resource Managers for pools of small woodland owners interested in FSC certification.
Little woodland in Nova Scotia resembles the Acadian forests of the past. Early settlers harvested the best quality trees heavily for ship building and other early industries. The bounty of the forest seemed limitless. However, the poorer quality trees left intact seeded more freely, and so the diversity and quality of woodland was altered. Subsequent harvests did the same, so that what we see today is a poor cousin of the original forest.
Today we realize that forests are one of the earth’s most precious renewable resources, and one that our future is closely bound with. More and more people understand that many harvesting techniques are damaging this precious resource, but also that alternatives exist. By encouraging a more uneven-aged growth and diverse species mix suited to the local environment, forests can be managed sustainably for future generations, safeguarding woodlands of high conservation value, as well as soils and wetlands.
The forests of Nova Scotia are a part of the Acadian Forest, a unique mixed forest type lying to the north of the Northern Hardwood forests, and south of the Boreal Forest. In Nova Scotia, around half of all productive forests are small, privately owned woodlands. The way these are managed can, therefore, have a significant impact on the health of Nova Scotia’s forests overall. However, pressures from national and global markets can make harvesting these woodlands sustainably uneconomic, an important consideration for many landowners. This makes it harder for landowners to justify the time and resources in managing their woodlands in a sustainable way.
As public awareness increases, so does demand for environmentally sound products. One way of fulfilling this demand is to track wood and woodland products from forests that are checked regularly to make sure they are managed in a way that ensures their long-term health. These woodlands are certified to guarantee to the consumer that woodland management techniques are monitored regularly and audited by a third party. As demands for certified wood increase, so does the opportunity for woodland owners to both benefit from growing market whilst working their woods in an environmentally sound way. Although premiums are not always paid for certified products, market access is more secure as the demand for certified wood and wood products continues to grow.
MTRI is promoting FSC as it is the certification system that is most closely aligned to its mission. FSC certification is an internationally recognized system that has a growing consumer demand, and ensures the health of the forest for future generations whilst protecting social interests. FSC also has a forest management certification system that allows many small woodland owners to form a group, bringing the cost of administration and annual audits down. It has regionally-specific Maritime standards that take into account local environmental and social factors and forest types.
Amos Wood Moulding and Millwork
Siding, cabinet making and furniture wood, flooring,
trim, moulding, stair components and countertops.
AFT Sawmill Limited
Meteghan River, 902-769-3368
Green and kiln dried hard and soft wood lumber,
pallets, lobster trap runners and framing.
Finewood Flooring and Lumber Limited
Flooring, trim, moulding, stair components and
J.A.Turner and Sons Ltd.
West Northfield, 902-543-7404
Lumber, decking, siding, and bark mulch.
Ledwidge Lumber Company Ltd.
Soft wood lumber.
Payzant Home Hardware
Lower Sackville, 902-864 -0000
Taylor Lumber Company Ltd.
Spruce, Pine and Fir lumber, shavings, and
New Germany, 902-543-6955
Specialty lumber, flooring, decking and
Advocate Printing and Publishing
Bro Moc Print and Litho
Repracorp Graphic Design and Printing
New Minas, 1-888-323-7833
Transcontinental Inc. Printing
Halifax and Dartmouth, 1-877-468-9002
The Federation of Nova Scotia Woodland Owners
and the Mersey Tobeatic Research Institute
Nova Scotia Landowners and Forest Fiber
Acadian Forest Keepers
Picea Forestry Consulting
West Northfield, 902-527-1222