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Cap and trade could mean millions for NS rural communities.

by Community Forests International on November 22, 2016

Sackville NB, November 22nd, 2016

Cap and trade could mean millions for NS rural communities.

Community Forests International of Sackville, NB says that the province of Nova Scotia has the opportunity, with their recent announcement of a Cap and Trade price on carbon, to create tens of millions of dollars per year in new exports from NS woodlots beginning in 2018. Based on the work that the organisation has undertaken since 2008 and demonstrated on their own landholdings, CFI says that under a Cap and Trade system linked to larger continental markets like the Western Climate Initiative Nova Scotia woodlot owners would be able to sell $50 million worth of carbon credits once the program takes affect.

“If you look at the millions of acres of private land in the province owned by ordinary Nova Scotians, managing our forests to capture and store more carbon could be the biggest opportunity for rural NS in a generation” says Dale Prest, CFI’s lead on developing carbon credits from well-managed forests.
 

"Dale Prest cutting wood from Community Forests International’s 705-acre carbon forest property near Sussex NB" (photo credit: Zach Melanson)

 

Prest, who grew up in NS and still works in the forest industry in the province, say that by
utilizing forest management practices that store more carbon than traditional forestry, CFI has
already been able to sell $300,000 worth of carbon credits from their woodlot to customers in
the rest of Canada. However, these markets are small and limited compared to the markets
that could be created by the government synched their Cap and Trade system to those of other
provinces.

“Today billions of dollars are trading hands every year in North American Cap and Trade
markets that include California, Quebec and soon Ontario. If the Liberal government wanted to
they could link NS’s system to these larger markets, giving our private woodlot owners – some
30,000 of them – access to a new economic opportunity. Imagine what access to a market like
that would do for our rural, resource dependent communities.”
 

"Community Forests International 705 acre woodlot near Sussex has stored carbon to the tune of $300,000." (photo credit: Zach Melanson)

Managing forests for carbon storage does not prevent the harvesting of trees for lumber and
pulp, adds Prest. “The way carbon is best stored in a forest is through careful, ongoing
management of the forest that aims to grow many different species with multiple ages,
removing short lived unhealthy trees to make space for longer lived, more valuable trees. We
will not only keep forestry contractors employed and sawmills going, but managing for carbon
improves the quality and health of our forest resource, thereby improving the prospects for the
forest industry long into the future.”

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