Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Eco-paper policies contribute to protection of millions of hectares of rainforest

Photo: Andrew Wright

The Great Bear Rainforest’s 2 million hectares have been formally protected, thanks in part to the support of the Canadian magazine industry and all the eco-paper policies spearheaded by Markets Initiative (MI).

The forest is a boon in terms of carbon stored per hectare, and with its protection, First Nations communities have the chance for a prosperous and sustainable future.

Over the past ten years Markets Initiative has worked closely with its environmental allies working to secure protection in the Great Bear Rainforest. MI engaged many publishing and print partners to encourage the BC government as well as the pulp and paper producers in the region to (initially) reach the GBR Agreement, and in more recent years, to actually live up to that commitment. Over the past ten years, many of the companies we work with have participated in this campaign.

As part of the Great Bear Rainforest Agreement:
• 2.1 million hectares of British Columbia's Great Bear Rainforest has been formally protected

• $120 million in new financing is already flowing into local and First Nations communities to kick start new conservation economies in the region

• Regulations set for ecosystem based management (or “lighter touch logging”) – these regulations put an additional 700,000 hectares of high value forests off limits to logging

Congratulations to all the environmental organizations involved for their tenacity and commitment to providing a legacy and leader for the world.