News release

Wildlife Habitat and Watercourse Regulations

Nova Scotia's Wildlife Habitat and Watercourses Protection Regulations come into effect on Monday, Jan. 14. They will impose new guidelines for forestry operations on all forest lands in the province.

The regulations will help ensure the sustainability of woodland diversity, water quality and wildlife habitat on all lands in forest production. For example, they will require that a strip of natural vegetation at least 20 metres (66 feet) wide be left along watercourses that are 50 centimetres (20 inches) or more in width when trees are harvested in the area. Some harvesting is allowed inside this special management zone under certain conditions.

"The regulations were developed with the expertise of government, non-government, industry and public representatives," said Natural Resources Minister Ernest Fage. "These new regulations reflect the minimum harvesting standards that all agreed are necessary to help maintain diversity of wildlife and water quality in Nova Scotia."

The Department of Natural Resources will work with industry and landowners to implement the new regulations, which evolved from the Forest/Wildlife Guidelines and Standards of 1989 and which are now law.

Since the department received approval for the regulations in November 2001, staff have conducted numerous field days for landowners, contractors and forest industry representatives to show how the new harvesting techniques should be conducted. The department has also established demonstration sites across the province open to anyone who wishes to see the results of the habitat and watercourse protection regulations.

For more information about the regulations, the public can contact a local Natural Resources office or visit the department's Web site, at www.gov.ns.ca/natr/forestry/strategy . A brochure is also available at all Natural Resources offices as well as Access Nova Scotia centres and public libraries.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

New regulations guiding forestry operations in Nova Scotia come into effect Monday, January 14th.

The regulations will help ensure the sustainability of woodland diversity, water quality and wildlife habitat on all lands in forest production.

Natural Resources staff have held field days to show how to use the new harvesting techniques. They also set up demonstration sites to show the results of the new regulations.

The department will work with industry and landowners to put the new regulations into use.

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Contact:

Tony Duke
Natural Resources 902-679-6148 E-mail:
Anne Perigo
Natural Resources 902-424-2354 E-mail:
nwc            January 11, 2002         12:20 P.M.