What Is the Pulp Industry Really Doing to Nova Scotia & New Brunswick Forests?

Last week, I attended a meeting between Northern Pulp and the Truro Chamber of Commerce in central Nova Scotia.  The Northern Pulp bunch waxed eloquent for half an hour about all the money they pump into the local economy.  They stated they employ 339 people and spend $31 million paying them.  They stated that averaged out to $83,000 salaries (a significant error in the actual average).  They stated they exported some 6325 tons of pulp per week.  They stated they put $10 million in taxes into federal and provincial coffers each year (and that’s one hell of a tax break).


65% of the woodlands surrounding Matatall Lake in central Nova Scotia have been recently clear cut and a toxic algal bloom immediately followed.

They did not go into the woodland lakes now dying and turning green with algal blooms due to massive clear cutting.  They did not discuss the impact of cutting down native Acadian hardwood forests and replanting them with mono-crop conifer plantations.  They did not discuss the impacts of such widespread destruction of Earth’s second best carbon capture device: mature forest.  The pretended ignorance on the impact of spraying the woodlands far and wide with glyphosate to kill native herbaceous foliage and hardwoods. They entirely skirted discussing the true cost of their industry to taxpayers after the enormous government subsidies to keep their plant operating, or the cost to the health system as the people of Pictou County have to breathe the air and drink the water suffering vast pollution from their pulp plant.  The did not even touch upon the millions of liters their plant draws from the small local river per day and the utter destruction that polluted water has created where it is dumped: Boat Harbour.

I think it’s time to let the world know what the pulp industry is really doing to Nova Scotia.  There will be a long series of brief, revealing videos on what is really going on. They aren’t pretty, but the world needs to know.  And Nova Scotians and New Brunswickers need to open their eyes.

The scale of the damage was even larger than I thought it was, as revealed in this aerial footage below.

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How Small Forests Can Help Small Woodland Owners & Save the Planet


Click to see the New York Times article.

While Nova Scotia Premier McNeil and his sycophant, Dept. of Env. minister Miller, pretend that private forests mean nothing in terms of global environmental health, remove regulation and would like to urge private landowners to cut down their forest for a quick buck, more progressive thinkers have realized that private forests are of huge necessity to the ecosystem. In the USA alone, private forests constitute over 50% of the nation’s total forests. Instead of just regulating such forests, ways are being created to allow private owners of woodlands to profit from their forests without destroying them.

I’ve often advocated for forest farming and the development of highly selective logging in concert with a complete industry, i.e., instead of Canada cutting and selling its forests abroad as fast as possible for the lowest tier of wholesale profit, instead, cut a tree, reduce it top grade wood, recycle the pulp, manufacture every part into an intermediate product (such as a musical instrument or furniture), finish the furniture all with local products and labor, then market the furniture through wholesale and final retail tiers, thus creating layers of homegrown industry and jobs that provide direct income, as opposed to operating on Northern Pulp’s and ForestryNS’ hazy “trickle down effect”–their notion their 339 FT jobs create a vast trickle down of income into the local community.

Of the many progressive ideas being proposed is one mentioned in this article: measuring carbon capture of private forests, and allowing forest owners to sell those carbon units to industry. This provides direct income of as much as $45 CAN dollars per acre per year to family owners of forests, regular income as opposed to the $3.50 per acre per year one would get for logging a forest.

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Jeff Bishop of ForestryNS, I Challenge You to a Duel of Mind & Facts

Once again, I challenge Jeff Bishop, aka Mister Forestry, of ForestryNS, to a public debate. Two men, two mics, live online, to answer and address publicly fielded questions regarding the state of environment, ecology and forestry in Nova Scotia.

forest kill

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LENORE ZANN: Woodlands spraying program throws caution to the wind

From an article by Lenore Zann:

“I even asked the minister questions about this problem in the House last spring and she gave me no tangible response as she felt it is not her duty or that of her department to protect the environment — only to “regulate.” It would seem the main mandate of the department is now to allow industry to get away with doing whatever it wants.”

Notice what Margaret Miller, Nova Scotia’s utter failure of a Minister of Environment (some say she should be dubbed Minister of Exploitation) says: It is NOT her’s nor the Department of Environment’s responsibility to protect the environment, only to regulate.


Marge might want to read her department’s mission statement. Here’s the FIRST LINE!  Click the image to see the Nova Scotia Dept. of Environment’s full mission statement, because someone needs to be informed.  Margaret Miller sure isn’t.

Well, Marge, what exactly are you good for?  Seriously, what the hell is that load of sophistry supposed to even flippin’ mean?


Maybe one of Marge’s many advisers might advise her of her department’s mandate–it’s right in her own department’s mission statement.

Nova Scotians, the mystery is resolved.  Now you know where Marge is coming from and why her department is an utter failure at its mission, which is to protect Nova Scotia’s land and people.  Margaret and her paymaster, Premier Stephen McNeil, feel their obligation is to big business.  Nova Scotians are just the pawns that get in the way of their grand corporate dreams.

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You Should Tour Nova Scotia Today!

This year, treat your family to the Nova Scotia experience.  You’d have to go to China to see nature like this.


Immerse yourself in the logging genious of Watson Mill Bridge State Park, where portions of old growth forest have been gently cleared to make way for log loading trucks.


Visiting hikers can stagger through the stumplands, a new craze the director of Northern Pulp is certain will replace mountain climbing.


Touring families can stand in freshly replanted clearcuts and enjoy a cooling spray of glyphosate from passing pulp company helicopters.


Wildlife watchers can marvel as displaced animals try to find food and cover in irrelevant dots of habitat kindly left behind by the concerned folk at ForestryNS.


Aerial tourists can enjoy spectacular panoramas of clear cuts to the horizon.  See the land unspoiled by tree pollution.

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The Long Hike

One fine September day, Daphne and I set out to explore the deeper woods and farther reaches of the hinterlands of Nova Scotia. Along the way we camped deep in the back woods, enjoyed some tasty forageables, and shared moments with amazing wildlife.


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Trudeau & McNeil; Deception & Ecocide

cameron blockedUnder Harper, business was king. Money was god. And any environmental problems that got in the way of making money were shuffled under the carpet. Federal environmental investigators were quietly silenced simply by not assigning them cases. Scientists had their research destroyed and their jobs threatened.

During the Harper era. the Nova Scotia NDP and Liberal governments each worked in collusion, allowing the spraying of woodlands with glyphosate and the expansion of fish farms and pushed for fracking.

Yesterday, the NS provincial Liberal government approved the use of glyphosate on Nova Scotia forests again. On the same day, CBC news discovered that in New Brunswick the top researcher on the impacts of glyphosate was silenced by sending her on “mandatory, unrequested leave” during the time the approvals were done.

When persons have asked NS Minister of Environment, Margaret Miller, about her “research” showing glyphosate to be safe, she has blocked them. But screen capture covers a multitude of sins.

Harper may be gone, but under the federal and provincial Liberal leaders, the dishonourable Trudeau and McNeil, it’s business as usual as our provinces continue their traditions of ecocide and lying to the public.  Once again, in the name of Monsanto.

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The Anti-Civilization Movement–They Never Get Us

earth mother resist 2The Anti-Civilization movement . . . people never get us. Often, they’re afraid of us. At best, they don’t understand us and regard us with suspicion.

I’ll try to illuminate you. We aren’t violent. We aren’t going to war or going to become anarchist terrorists because we don’t believe humans organize good societies much beyond hunter/gatherers. Ergo, we aren’t going to fight for any human systems.

We often seek to escape humans and every trapping of civilization. We have a strong dislike of civilization and people, though we tend to like individuals well enough.

We tend to be either strongly politically active or absent, rarely between, and rarely from motives that most persons are going to understand. We have no political ambition and we aren’t trying to better civilization. We see it as a 5000 year failed experiment that humans keep doing, so our main interest is limiting its harm. Once that’s done, we’ve had enough of the failed game that is politics in every flavor.

People often tell us (more often yell at us) that we shouldn’t give up on civilization. We recognize that civilization has wrought more harm on humans and the environment than the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs, and its only getting worse. So when you tell us we shouldn’t give up on civilization, to us it’s like hearing, “Let’s keep playing with the nukes til something good happens.”

We’re typically anti-tax. We don’t really need civilization. We don’t want it. But we’re forced to pay for the experiment.

While we don’t wish harm on others, we’ll be glad when the civilization experiment is done. We don’t need it, we won’t miss it and it’ll be better for Earth and humans as a whole when it’s gone. You might think of us as optimistic apocalypsists.

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August 27 End-of-Season Foraging Class

gloaming boletesLast reminder. The August foraging class is next Saturday, August 27. There are only three openings remaining. In this end-of-foraging season class, we will focus on late harvest forage: mushrooms, wild seeds and grains, wild fruits, late blooming herbs, as well as discussing late season concerns such as coping with bears fattening up for winter.

Some of you have messaged that you wish to attend, but I haven’t yet received your registrations or deposits. Please be aware I cannot hold slots open without this. Classes are small to provide the best learning experience for each student. Once the slots are filled, they’re gone for another year.

Click the image to learn more about the class.

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The Penalty of Being An Ecologist

grandmother birch of the Old Wood small

A truly ancient birch or massive proportions, growing in a secret place deep in the Old Wood. Unlike the forest service, I will not cut it down to see how old it is.

“One of the penalties of an ecological education is that one lives alone in a world of wounds. Much of the damage inflicted on land is quite invisible to laymen. An ecologist must either harden his shell and make believe that the consequences of science are none of his business, or he must be the doctor who sees the marks of death in a community that believes itself well and does not want to be told otherwise.”

Aldo Leopold

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