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FPAC applauds federal government’s move toward net-zero emissions by 2050


November 20, 2020
By FPAC

Canada’s federal government tabled a bill on Thursday that will put Canada on the path to meet net-zero emission targets by 2050. Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) supports this move to chart a course for clean growth and net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Below is a statement from FPAC president and CEO Derek Nighbor:

“Canada’s forest sector is positioned to be one of the leaders in our move to a low-carbon economy. We have already reduced GHG emissions by over 66 per cent since the early 1990s and were the first major industry group in the country to put forward a plan to help achieve the federal government’s Paris Agreement targets.

Canada has an advantage that is the envy of most countries on the planet. Our forests and the sustainably sourced products they provide will be among the most powerful tools in Canada’s toolbox. Our managed forests and the wood products from them already constitute a carbon sink in Canada, and we can continue to reduce emissions and store more carbon for longer in the coming years.

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Forests are complex ecosystems and they need to be monitored and taken care of – even more so in a dynamic and changing environment. Canada’s Registered Professional Foresters are our first line of defence in the fight against climate change and play a critical ‘boots on the ground’ role in monitoring and managing our forests. With worsening wildfire and forest pest outbreaks, forest management is the best tool we have to adapt forests and build resiliency, while supporting safety and livelihoods.

Sustainable forestry powerhouses like Finland and Sweden are increasingly turning to forest products to accelerate their move to a lower carbon economy. Building with wood reduces the carbon footprint of buildings and can reduce pollution during construction by up to 45 per cent.

New technologies like mass timber construction and modernized government procurement policies can further lower emissions. And, using leftover wood chips, bark, and sawdust from Canada’s sawmills – materials that would otherwise be waste to make products like biodegradable masks and biofuels – can bring health benefits and reduce carbon emissions in a sustainable way.

As we work together to drive economic recovery and create a low-carbon economy for tomorrow, Canada’s forest sector has over 140 capital improvement projects ready to go nation-wide worth over $1.5 billion in economic value that will further improve environmental outcomes, strengthen our global competitiveness position, and create and grow family-supporting jobs that are much-needed in the face of the current economic crisis.

Canada’s forest sector and forestry workers have a huge opportunity to do so much more to build a greener economy and drive post-pandemic recovery. We welcome the government’s commitment to securing long-term investments and advancing low-carbon, climate-resilient projects and look forward being a big part of the solution on the path to 2050.”