The Lahey independent review of Nova Scotia forestry practices makes 45 recommendations after a year-long study.

Lahey recommends that the province adopt what is known as the triad model of ecological forestry.

“It seeks to combine conservation of nature with a productive and profitable forestry industry,” says William Lahey, a former deputy minister of Environment before becoming president of University of King’s College.

Lahey says the top priority is to protect biodiversity but the objective of the model is not to kill the forest industry.

Also, Lahey recommends big changes to the way crown lands are managed. He says before issuing or renewing the utilization agreements of forestry companies like Northern Pulp and Port Hawkesbury Paper, a legislated environmental assessment process by an independent third party should be taken to ensure companies are adhering to the principles of ecological forestry.

Lahey recommends the adoption of new regulations to prohibit full-tree harvesting combined with clearcutting on both crown land and private woodlots.

Jennifer Henderson is a freelance journalist and retired CBC News reporter.

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  1. Thank you for this, Jennifer. The recommendations you’ve highlighted sound promising; however, I would caution folks to remember that this report contains just that: recommendations. It’s been less than ten years since we already had a perfectly adequate Natural Resources Strategy supposedly adopted. The current administration did little to nothing to adhere to the recommendations of this previous, comprehensive strategy, which was arrived at through careful study by actual forest experts and unprecedented public consultation. Mr. Lahey’s report is one person’s assessment, which the government can either choose to follow, or ignore like the previous strategy.

    This government has proven itself to be so far in the pocket of the forestry industry that I wouldn’t expect either organisation (is there really any separation between them?) to go quietly into the night. The die has been cast; Nova Scotia, under the current administration, has made it clear that it is open for the business of natural resource extraction, be it the minerals in the ground, the forests above or the fossil fuels offshore.

    Exercise critical thought, folks!