Ontario investing $60M in forest access roads
By Pulp & Paper Canada
May 5, 2015 - Ontario is investing in the forest roads which connect industry to Ontario's natural resources, as part of the largest infrastructure investment in Ontario's history. The provincial govement is committing $60 million to the program in 2015-16.
The government is also making the province's forestry sector eligible for the $2.7 billion Jobs and Prosperity Fund to help increase production capacity and expand into new markets, while ensuring resources are managed sustainably. This will also help modernize the forestry sector and facilitate the production of value-added products by supporting new technologies.
The government will continue with reduced stumpage rates for 2015-16 for poplar and white birch trees to further assist the competitiveness of Ontario’s forest sector.
“I am very pleased with our government’s unprecedented support to the forestry industry in Ontario," said Bill Mauro, Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry. "The $60-million investment to the forest access roads program, the continued reduction in stumpage for poplar and white birch, and the fact that the forest industry will now have access to the Jobs and Prosperity fund, are a huge win for an industry that generates $11 billion in economic activity in 260 communities across Ontario.”
Over the past ten years, $605.2 million has been provided toward the forest industry’s expenditures on the construction and maintenance of public forest access roads that support forest harvest activity.
Annually, Ontario invests in the construction and maintenance of over 21,000 km of forest access road infrastructure. This is equivalent to travelling across Canada and back.