Canada's vast boreal Forest: "the world's last great forest"

The International Boreal Conservation Science Panel, which is made up of leading environmental experts, released a report today which calls for at least 50% “strict protection” of Canada’s sensitive Boreal Forest. The scientists point out that 50% of the forest must be completely off-limits to industrial development in order preserve and restore its ecological functions.

Calling Canada’s Boreal Forest “the world’s last great forest”, the science panel points out that an area the size of Texas has already been destroyed by industrial activities, such as destructive logging, and that much more aggressive conservation targets must be set in order for the Boreal Forest to be maintained. They argue that older targets of 10-12% protection of a landbase are “now known to reflect major underestimates”, and that vast protected areas must be created.

Yet the panel argues that solutions are possible. Its recommendations are consistent with Greenpeace’s call for rigorous land-use planning with priority given to intact areas currently under threat, and lead by aboriginal communities. Greenpeace made these recommendations in its report Boreal Alarm, released in early 2013. The report’s findings are also consistent with Greenpeace’s call for 50-70% conservation in Canada’s Boreal Forest.

View the report

Find out what you can do to help save Canada’s Boreal Forest