- Created on Wednesday, 02 April 2014 14:25
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Toronto - Under intense pressure Minister of Natural Resources David Orazietti has reversed his position on logging in Grassy Narrows Territory this year. A logging plan made final by the MNR on December 23rd showed large clearcuts throughout Grassy Narrows Territory scheduled to take effect on April 1st. The Minister now says that no clearcutting will happen this year on a huge area 18 times the size of the City of Toronto (11,304 sq km). The decision comes on the heals of boycotts, a request for environmental assessment from Grassy Narrows, and calls for renewed blockades by Regional Chief Beardy and the Grassy Narrows Youth Group.
In a written statement sent to media on March 26th, Minister Orazietti stated that “no harvesting activity is planned within 60km of Narrows First Nation until at least April 1, 2015.”
This is a complete reversal of his ministry's recent position on this contentious issue.
On February 3rd the CBC reported that "the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources confirmed to CBC by e-mail on January 31st that clear-cut logging would start on April 1st" in Grassy Narrows Territory south of the English River – the half of the Territory closest to the community site which is not subject to Grassy Narrows' Supreme Court case scheduled for May 15th.
- Created on Wednesday, 26 March 2014 04:58
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Toronto - EACOM Timber Corporation has committed not to use conflict wood from Grassy Narrows First Nation Territory, home of Canada's longest running Indigenous logging blockade. The promise comes just one week before Ontario's contentious new ten-year clearcut logging plan for Grassy Narrows Territory in the Whiskey Jack Forest is scheduled to take effect. Ontario Regional Chief Stan Beardy has called for immediate blockades if logging resumes under the plan.
"To hear a huge logging company commit not to use trees from our territory is such good news in our struggle to protect the forest and to keep our culture alive." said Judy Da Silva, a Grassy Narrows mother of five, clan mother, and blockader. "I am hoping that Weyerhaeuser Corp. will do the same and listen when we say 'no' to logging. This is for the good of all future generations who need clean water and air."
Grassy Narrows First Nation has rejected Ontario's new Whiskey Jack Forest Management Plan, which plans for a decade of clearcut logging throughout their Territory, on the basis that it does not respect their rights and is damaging to their environment. The final plan was posted online by the Ministry of Natural Resources on December 23, 2013, and is scheduled to take effect on April 1, 2014.
EACOM owns 10 mills in Canada, with six sawmills in Ontario, including the large Ear Falls sawmill which is located in close proximity to Grassy Narrows Territory in Northwestern Ontario. This commitment leaves Weyerhaeuser and Kenora Forest Products isolated as the only large regional forest products companies who have not committed publicly to avoid Grassy Narrows conflict wood.
The commitment was made in a letter to environmental group Earthroots sent Monday afternoon. In the letter Keith Ley, EACOM Manager of Forest Planning and Environment, states that "EACOM will not knowingly source wood fiber from the self-declared traditional territory of the Grassy Narrows First Nation on the basis of the ongoing dispute and efforts at resolution."
- Created on Tuesday, 25 March 2014 21:54
Raveena Aulakh, The Star
EACOM Timber Corp., one of Ontario's biggest lumber companies, won’t use wood from Grassy Narrows First Nation Territory, a week before logging plan takes effect
One of the biggest lumber companies in Ontario says it will not use wood from Grassy Narrows First Nation territory, just a week before a controversial new 10-year logging plan comes into effect.
EACOM Timber Corporation said Monday that it will avoid wood fibre from the reserve.
It owns six sawmills in the province.
David Sone, an environmentalist with Earthroots, called it a victory for the people of the reserve.
“If even logging companies are willing to respect Grassy Narrows’ right to say no to logging, then why won’t Ontario stop trying to force clearcuts on the community,” said Sone, adding that if companies don’t buy the wood, the plan is bound to fail.
- Created on Tuesday, 28 January 2014 21:14
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Clearcutting will elevate mercury poison in fish
Grassy Narrows – Grassy Narrows First Nation is calling for a thorough environmental assessment of the newly approved plan for clearcut logging on their Territory – an important test of Ontario’s environmental laws. Grassy Narrows is concerned that the planned logging could harm the health of their families by raising mercury poison levels in local fish. The logging plan makes no mention of mercury, even though Grassy Narrows Territory is the site of Canada’s most infamous case of mercury poisoning arising from 9,000 kg of mercury that was dumped into a local river by a paper mill upstream in the 1960’s. Scientific studies indicate that clearcut logging in the boreal forest can raise mercury in fish to unsafe levels.
“Ontario has ignored our voices, and is planning to force more devastating clearcuts on our people,” said Joseph Fobister, a Grassy Narrows hunter and businessman. “Our people will become even more sick if the government knowingly allows the logging industry to poison the fish that we eat.”
Grassy Narrows’ request is an important test of Ontario’s environmental laws. Logging plans in Ontario are generally exempt from Environmental Assessment, but concerned people and groups can request an Individual Environmental Assessment (IEA) of a plan if they believe that environmental and human health are not being protected. Such requests have almost ever been granted.
- Created on Tuesday, 31 December 2013 19:00
- Created on Saturday, 28 December 2013 04:58
Toronto Star editorial supports Earthroots' stance against old growth logging in Temagami. Earthroots brings together a coalition of conservation organizations and local camps to oppose the proposed logging plan for Temagami.
- Created on Wednesday, 06 November 2013 20:20
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Will Wynne force clearcuts on Grassy Narrows knowing that they release mercury poison?
Grassy Narrows - Today Grassy Narrows Chief Fobister is calling out Minister Orazietti for false statements made yesterday about planned logging in Grassy Narrows Territory.
In a written statement sent to news media the Minister of Natural Resources said:
"The minister's statement is false, and completely misrepresents Ontario's plans for another decade of clearcut logging on our territory against our will," said Grassy Narrows Chief Simon Fobister. "It is time for the Minister to clear up the confusion that he has cause with his false statement and to answer once and for all: Will the Wynne government force logging on our community against our will, knowing that logging would release more mercury into our food chain?"
- Created on Tuesday, 05 November 2013 20:06
Rob Ferguson Queen's Park Bureau, The Star
Ontario's environmental watchdog warns endangered species at risk because of changes made by minority Liberal government
Endangered species such as the grey fox and dwarf iris are at greater risk because of changes Premier Kathleen Wynne’s government made behind closed doors, Ontario’s environmental commissioner warned Wednesday.
- Created on Thursday, 31 October 2013 13:40
Donovan Vincent, The Star
Grassy Narrows' Chief and council members tell the Toronto Star's editorial board they're girding for battle against Ontario's forestry plan.
Members of the Grassy Narrows First Nation say Ontario’s logging plans would adversely affect forests in their community and worsen the mercury poisoning issues residents have been grappling with for decades.
Chief Simon Fobister, “clan mother’’ Judith Da Silva, and band councillor Rudy Turtle met with the Toronto Star’s editorial board Wednesday and spoke out against the province’s long-term forest management plan for their area.
Grassy Narrows rejects Forest Management Plan for the Whiskey Jack Forest 2012 – 2022 on the basis of failure to consult and infringes on Aboriginal and Treaty Rights
- Created on Thursday, 31 October 2013 13:25
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Today Grassy Narrows Chief and Council sent an open letter to Premier Wynne rejecting Ontario's Forestry Management Plan 2012 - 2022 for another decade of clear-cut logging on Grassy Narrows Territory. The Forest Management plan for the Whiskey Jack Forest 2012-2022 is in the final stages of approval and is currently posted for public comment.
The plan sets out a schedule to clear-cut much of what little mature forest remains on Grassy Narrows Territory after decades of large scale industrial logging. This will further erode the Aboriginal, Treaty Rights and the ability of the community to sustain their families and to practice their culture through fishing, hunting, trapping, medicine harvesting, ceremony and healing for all generations.
"Premier Wynne, it is within your power to ensure that the mistakes of the past are not repeated at the expense of another generation of Grassy Narrows children," said Grassy Narrows Chief Simon Fobister. "I call on you to ensure that never again will Ontario attempt to force decisions on our people and our lands."
- Created on Sunday, 13 October 2013 13:54
Jim Moodie, The Sudbury Star
An excerpt from Jim's article about his journey to Wolf Lake:
"At the moment, Wolf Lake is still very much a grey area in the overall greenery of the Chiniguchi wilderness -- it's protected from logging, but open to mineral exploration -- and yet for any visitor who arrives by wheel or foot or canoe, or some combination thereof, descriptions would lean towards clarity: Transparent water, bright quartz rock, stark trees, crisp stars at night."
Learn more about the world's largest ancient red pine forest - visit www.savewolflake.org
- Created on Thursday, 19 September 2013 21:13
Published in The Globe and Mail
The Supreme Court of Canada has agreed to hear a challenge to the Ontario government’s right to permit industrial logging on the traditional lands of the Grassy Narrows First Nation.
The First Nation appealed after Ontario’s highest court ruled in March that the province has the right to “take up” treaty land for forestry and mining.
The northwestern Ontario First Nation has spent nearly 15 years in court fighting the province’s decision to issue a licence for clear-cut operations in parts of the Keewatin portion of Treaty 3 territory.
- More than one million Ontarians call for an end to unwanted logging in Grassy Narrows
- Ontario should stop logging of old-growth forest: Editorial, The Star
- Changing of the Seasons Gathering in Temagami
- Coalition to host "pARTners for Wolf Lake Art Camp"
- Study: Wolf Lake Ancient Forest is Endangered Ecosystem
- Scientists find 210 species at Wolf Lake