In late August, a licensee was working near Lake Panuke under approval from the Natural Resources Department. The site was located in a zone that has been designated as “Environmentally Sensitive” under “A conceptual plan for Western Nova Scotia”. As a result of being within an “environmentally sensitive zone” special forestry practices were put in place such as allowing for a travel corridor for wildlife, including the mainland moose. Since then, some environmental groups contend the land was improperly harvested. This led, in part, to the posting of harvest maps (found here) on the department’s website, and the option for members of the public to voice any concerns they had about those harvest plans.
On October 31, the government asked the Mersey Woodlands Advisory Committee to review the Panuke Lake harvest (see press release about this panel). Their report was received in January 2015 and the government’s response was released in February.
The adoption of a hierarchal forest management and planning system is integral to achieving the Province of Nova Scotia’s commitment to Implementation of Sustainable Forest Management as outlined in the Code of Forest Practice. This layered approach to integrated forest planning allows for consideration of multiple values including wildlife, biodiversity, timber, recreation and water. The relationship among the planning components is shown in the Forest Management and Planning System Flow Chart. The overall responsibility for the implementation of this system lies with staff at the Department of Natural Resources, with responsibilities of licensees outlined in the relevant license agreements that are in place. Public engagement takes place at various stages in this system.
Download the Panuke Lake 12 Month Progress Update
Download the Panuke Lake Six Month Progress Update
Download the South Panuke Harvest Report
Download Guidelines for Biodiversity-Rich Landscapes July 2015
Download the Panuke Government Response
Download the Forest Planning System