Canadian Biomass Magazine

FSC Canada calls on Quebec to join Federal governments’ efforts for Boreal Caribou Protection

June 21, 2024
By FSC Canada

Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Canada acknowledges the recent announcement by the Government of Canada regarding the emergency decree aimed at protecting boreal caribou populations in Val-d’Or, Charlevoix, and Pipmuacan.

“The conservation of habitat for woodland caribou is not just about caribou; it’s about the health and biodiversity of the entire Canadian boreal forest,” says Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Canada president Francois Dufresne. “Woodland caribou are an important umbrella species. Healthy populations provide a clear indication that the forests can support biodiversity. FSC strongly believes that industry and caribou protection measures can co-exist.”

FSC encourages the Quebec government to collaborate meaningfully with the federal government and is open to offering their support and subject matter expertise to help Quebec achieve the goals of the Federal Caribou Recovery Strategy. Consultation and collaboration with Indigenous Peoples must also be core to any government strategy.

“As the only forest certification system aligned with Federal Recovery Strategy, and upholding Indigenous rights with free, prior and informed consent (FPIC), we are uniquely positioned to help the Quebec government, and other provincial governments, build or strengthen their caribou protection plans.” said Dufresne.

And while the FSC forest stewardship standard includes caribou conservation requirements it also extends to include high environmental requirements for forest management and community benefits, which the market is increasingly demanding to help fulfill ESG targets as well as Canada’s international commitment to protect 30 percent of lands and waters by 2030.

Right now, we are at a moment of truth. Canada has an urgent need to prioritize the conservation of critical habitat for woodland caribou, knowing that their home, the boreal forest, also plays an essential role in mitigating the harsher impacts of a looming environmental crisis.

Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Canada is a non-profit organization that provides a proven sustainable forest management solution. Currently, over 47 million hectares are certified according to FSC standards in Canada. It is widely regarded as the most rigorous forest certification system among NGOs, consumers, and businesses alike to tackle today’s deforestation, climate, and biodiversity challenges. The FSC forest management standard is based on ten core principles designed to address a broad range of environmental, social and economic factors. FSC’s “check tree” label is found on millions of forest-based products and verifies that they are sustainably sourced, from forest to consumer. 

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