News release

Nova Forest Alliance Leases Crown Land Woodlot

Nova Forest Alliance will manage an area of Crown land in Halifax Regional Municipality under a five-year lease agreement with the Department of Natural Resources, Minister Ernest Fage announced today, May 10.

The 69-hectare (171-acre) Antrim woodlot, located at Carroll's Corner, will be operated and maintained as a demonstration woodlot. The management program will take into account the resource's many values and the ecological integrity of the land.

"This lease agreement with the Nova Forest Alliance is an opportunity for this organization to manage a working woodlot," said Mr. Fage. "This woodlot will serve as an educational tool to demonstrate good forest management practices."

Nova Forest Alliance is Nova Scotia's model forest. It was established in 1998 as part of Canada's Model Forest Program to promote sustainable forest management. The alliance is a diverse group that includes landowners, government, industry, environmental and academic organizations, tourism associations and non-government groups. The project is being conducted on a 458,000-hectare (1,131,260-acre) area in Central Nova Scotia that is bordered by Truro, Halifax, Windsor and Upper Musquodoboit.

A management team -- including representatives from industry, environmental organizations, a woodlot owner and government -- will manage the woodlot.

"Landowners want to know how they can support a full range of social and environmental values on their woodlots, while making the profits they naturally expect from such an important asset," said Eldon Gunn, chair of the Nova Forest Alliance. "The challenge for the Antrim team is to demonstrate how these results can be achieved on private lands."

The alliance started managing the woodlot in 2000. During that time, several surveys of the woodlot have been carried out to learn about the habitats the land supports. These include a bird survey, a lichen and mosses survey and a survey of the wildlife species and habitat diversity. This information -- along with details about the species, ages, distribution and heights of the trees -- has been used to develop a management plan for the woodlot. There is also a planned harvest of 7 hectares (17.3 acres) at Antrim this year.

Other initiatives carried out at the Antrim woodlot are an open house and field tour held on-site in 2000 and the development of a walking trail and interpretive brochure for visitors.

For more information on the Antrim woodlot, visit the Web site www.novaforestalliance.com.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

Nova Forest Alliance will lease 69 hectares (171 acres) of Crown land from the Department of Natural Resources for five years. The woodlot is located at Antrim in Halifax Regional Municipality.

The land will be operated as a working woodlot and will demonstrate good forest management practices.

Nova Forest Alliance is Nova Scotia's model forest project. The project is being conducted on more than 400-thousand hectares (one million acres) in central Nova Scotia.

The alliance has managed the woodlot since 2000.

Surveys of birds, lichens, mosses and wildlife species and habitat have been carried out. Seven hectares (17 acres) of forest will be harvested this year. A walking trail and interpretive brochure for the public have also been developed.

-30-

Contact:

Bill Smith
Natural Resources 902-424-4445 E-mail:
Kelly Cowper
Nova Forest Alliance 902-639-2921
njm            May 10, 2002        1:20 P.M.