Ontario’s forest sector welcomes new Forest Biomass Program
May 29, 2023 By Ontario Forest Industries Association
The Ontario Forest Industries Association (OFIA) was in Atikokan last week, standing with the Hon. Graydon Smith, Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry, who announced the creation of a new $19.6 million Forest Biomass Program. The new program will support implementation of Ontario’s Forest Sector Strategy and Forest Biomass Action Plan.
“Increased use of biomass will assist Ontario’s transition to a net-zero economy, reduce pressure on landfills, support the ongoing sustainable management of Ontario’s public forests, improve industry competitiveness, and strengthen the circular bioeconomy,” said OFIA’s president and CEO, Ian Dunn.
Forest biomass electrical generating facilities are integral to Ontario’s forest sector and sustainable management framework. These facilities provide clean, green electricity and energy while benefiting forest operations, regional industrial clusters, and the environment.
“As a small family-owned sawmill in Rural Ontario, we are very pleased to see the Government of Ontario’s commitment to increased biomass utilization. In our area of Ontario, developing markets for all tree species and products will benefit the entire integrated forest sector. A future of increased biomass utilization in heating, power generation, and product manufacturing will be great news for small communities in Rural Ontario,” said Jamie McRae, vice-chair of the OFIA.
“The world’s leading forestry and carbon reduction jurisdictions have embraced forest biomass and innovative biomaterials to secure a net-zero future,” noted Dunn. “This is good news for Ontario and the communities our members operate in. We applaud this announcement and look forward to continued implementation of Ontario’s Forest Sector Strategy and Forest Biomass Action Plan in partnership with the Ontario government,” he added.
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