Public Consultation Summary Report - Summary of Results

Stakeholder Focus Groups


Date and location of session
April 3, 2013, Berwick & District Fire Hall

Number of participants
10 Participants; see list of stakeholders in attendance and additional invited at end of document

Facilitator’s comments about the session
There were 10 people representing 9 different organizations in attendance at this meeting out of approximately 60 invited. Two tables were formed with focused and engaged discussion undertaken at both. There was a good mix of interests at each table - conservationists, economic development, ATV clubs and hunters & trappers. Tables seemed to easily agree on priorities to put forth for the best use of Crown lands. If multiple participants were in attendance from the same organization, they were asked to sit at different tables to ensure as much diversity as possible during discussions.

Berwick Stakeholder Comments

Question 1
How can we best use the 1.5 million acres of Crown land and the associated resources in the Western Region to most beneficially and sustainably grow and diversify Nova Scotia's economy?

Access/Recreation (5)

  • Controlled/regulated access. User based regulation and education. e.g. expand OHV association model. (ex. trail passes)
  • Western loop trail on crown lands
  • Right to roam legislation
  • Outdoor recreation, trapping and hunting fishing. Not just access but use of the land. Bear baiting should be allowed
  • Ecotourism and other alternative economic uses

Forestry/other industry (3)

  • Continue forestry operations limit protected areas
  • Potential for aquaculture?
  • Forestry: multi-year harvest plans that account for other land uses/ values

Economic Policy (2)

  • Bring outside money introduced into economy
  • Sustainability of resources income must be maintained both large and small operations

Usage Policy (2)

  • Continue diversity of use as it is now
  • Co-management and maintenance by user groups

Protection (2)

  • Identify areas of special importance, e.g. Wetlands, headwaters etc. and define acceptable uses
  • User groups monitor land and water. (OHV groups/ anglers etc.)

Question 2
What activities would be the most effective use of Crown land in the Western Region that would generate the most sustainable economic, social and environmental benefits for your community and Nova Scotia? Where would you locate these activities on these Crown lands?

Forestry/Agriculture (6)

  • Timber resources forestry
  • Weymouth timberlands – Lewis Lumber open to small operations user tender, close supervision from DNR on ground, dedicated foresters from DNR familiar with area monitoring, allow operations to manage specific parcel pre and post cut
  • First Nations forestry initiatives. New reserves, same as community forest models near commercial
  • Concentrate timber resources on existing road infrastructure.
  • Properly managed harvest of forest products. (e.g. wood/ agricultural, berries, syrup, etc.)
  • Agriculture uses in suitable soil conditions

Access/Recreation/Tourism (3)

  • Hunting, fishing, trapping, guiding recreational access tourism. 2
  • Recreation and ecotourism

Protection (1)

  • Source water protection. Flow regulation/ ground water recharge

Electric Generation (1)

  • Wind power/ renewable energy

Broad Policy (1)

  • All located based on best available information + planned appropriately to manage all uses + values

Question 3
What other points do you feel are the most important for the Department to consider as it develops the land and resource management plan?

Broad Policy (7)

  • Management or co-management by users and government in a manner that has more consistency than present, may involve non DNR resources such as consulting management. Define rolls within department, land administration, Parks Planning, regional services
  • Involve all government departments in the co-management, similar to ICT on trails, interdepartmental committee on trails
  • Review at regular interval and do past work after implementation
  • Better sector policy on quarries, wind farms, trails etc
  • Maintaining and supporting research opportunities
  • Continued information exchange
  • Education for all audiences related to rural values, resources etc

Protection/ Environmental Issues (4)

  • Species at risk (SAR)/ biodiversity (Acadian forest structure)
  • Climate change: Altered environmental response to use. Change to ecosystem
  • Invasive species, moisture requires environmental acidification. etc)
  • Wildlife corridors and connectivity

Additional Stakeholder Submissions

Additional material from stakeholders was received by DNR and is currently being reviewed.