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tree_1.gif (15405 bytes)Expropriation?

In order to adequately protect New Brunswick wildland, should the government expropriate forest land from pulp and paper companies?


Afin de protéger adéquatement les zones sauvages du Nouveau-Brunswick, est-ce que le gouvernement devrait exproprier certaines terres forestières des compagnies de pâtes et papiers?

Sept. 25, 2004
Mr Koleszar, The spruce budworm and windstorms have done more to flatten the Christmas Mountains than the Irvings and Fraser combined. It's not been clearcut, the wood has been removed to prevent a forest fire that would have made the Mirimichi Fire look like a camp fire. The only problem I have about private land being appropriated is: where does it stop? If I own a piece of property with a significant ecological feature, will it be taken against my wishes?
Paul Martin, NB 
May 31, 2000
I think your dreaming, you will never see it, unless the big industry gets something in return they will not go for it, and don't kid yourself, the power comes from the money/industry not the Government
Jeff Taylor 
Oshawa Ont. Formely from 
Tide Head, NB 
Dec. 11, 1999
Try finding another job in northern NEW BRUNSWICK. 
Some of us still like to work.   
Lets open a casino 

Patrick J. Augustine Alquimou Consulting Group Big Cove, 
New Brunswick March 14, 1999
I am a Mi'kmag from Sigenigtog District. This is also known as Chignecto District during the treaty signing era. I do not believe in expropriation to protect land. Mi'kmaq have been 'expropriated' from their land so that 'english' have access to exploiting the resources. Today, "English Law" protects this corporate interest through subjugating aboriginal people to charges of mischief, theft, possession and whatever trumped-up charges the "Crown Prosecutor" sees fit; justifying the "Crown's" theft of Mi'kmaq Lands. These general concerns are published in working drafts of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights in Indigenous Peoples and their Relationship to the Land.

Mi'kmaq are guardians of the land, through oral tradition, we are told that we are one with the land and that we must protect it for successive
generations to come. Our ancestors remain close to their descendants
through the land. Our elders will not break this connection. The deceased return to the land; plants grow from the land, animals eat the plants - we eat the animals.
Sigenigtog means "the drainage area" or "the area peeled away", this oral tradition goes back to the ice age when the land was peeled away and later drained, from retreating ice. This area extends south of the Miramichi to Springhill, Nova Scotia. Colonial interests 'expropriated' the Mi'kmaq from their land through lies, theft, coercion, treaty making, and whatever means they saw fit. This is an isue that will not go away though many wish it will.

The Government of New Brunswick, the Irvings and the Frasers, are not the true owners of this land. Nor do they have the best interest in its
"productivity" or development. The eradication of other species for the
sake of "harvesting" of Black Spruce - is not in the best interest of the
land. This is in the best interest of the "bottom line", harvesting the
resource for minimal cost for global exportation. Meanwhile, Mi'kmaq are suicidal or suffer the social cost because they lack the resources for
adequate housing. This specific issue is documented in the US State
Department's Report on Canada (Human Rights Issues, 1996). Mi'kmaq are considered criminals for harvesting wood on land which was stolen from them. They are not even afforded access to properly provide shelter for themselves.

It is really sad to see the real issue of ownership placed on the back burner. Corporate interest fights environmental interest. Where does aboriginal/indigenous interest fit into this whole scenario? It is ingnored or excluded. The Protected Areas Strategy is a result of the Rio Conference and the Forest Stewardship Council's goal of "labeling" forest products from NB for the global economy; that these forest products are from sustainably managed forests. Never mind the fact that these "Crown Lands" are stolen; that indigenous people/knowledge" are excluded in it's management; that the moral/legal obligations to Natives are ignored: the fact remains that Canadian jurispridence justifys this theft of Mi'kmaq Land.

Very Concerned Citizen, N.B. 
Febuary 19, 1999

This is a very important subject, preservation of wild life forest . I work & live in the north-west part of new brunswick (Madawaska County) I would like to see the government of New Brunswick preserve more space make some exchange of wood lots with these big companies ( J D Irving) I do have respect for them but we have to think of the future generations

Eric Tremblay, Écologiste, St-Ignace, NB, 
April 18, 1998 
Je ne crois pas l'expropriation des grandes compagnies des terres de la couronnes soit la solution à la surexploitation de nos forêts. Nous nous devons en tant que société ré-évaluer notre mode de gestion de nos écosyst`mes. Le gouvernement devrait être proactif dans le dossier et reviser sa stratégie de gestion des forêts. Nous gérons nos forêts avec une mentalité des années 50-60 qui préconisait l'utilisation des ressources sans se poser de questions, l'abondance était prise pour acquis et le monopole accordé aux grandes compagnies.

Aujourd'hui même certaines grandes compagnies et des propriétaires de moulins questionnent le mode de gestion des forêts du NB et de la NÉ. Je suis d'accord avec un des intervenants, M. Seely, lorsqu'il dit que les gens peuvent faire la différence dans ce dossier. La population du NB critique les grandes compagnies, les amérindiens, etc... mais lors des audiences publiques pour la révision des plan quinquénaux de gestion des forêt présentés par les grandes compagnies il n'y a personne pour questionner ces même grandes compagnies. Si l'on ne questionne pas les pratiques de gestion des ces mêmes compagnies ils ne changeront jamais leur vision.

Le manque de leadership de notre gouvernement en matière de gestion des écosystèmes est flagrant depuis que la cour a attribué des droits de coupe aux autochtones. Nous avons une chance inouie de tous s'asseoir à la même table et mettre en place un mode de gestion où tous les intervenants pourraient renconter leur besoins (les compagnies, les autochtones, les propriétaires de lots boisés, les écologistes, etc...). Au lieu de saisir cette occasion le Ministre des ressources naturelles du NB décide d'en appeler immédiatement de la décision de la cour, mettant ainsi de l'huile sur le feu et élargissant ainsi le fossé qui sépare les blancs des amérindiens. Tous peuvent profité de la forêt du NB, il suffit de faire preuve de leadership, d'ouverture d'esprit et avoir une vision globale des choses. Jusqu'à maintenant le gouvernement en place ne démontre pas ces qualités nécessaires à une gestion intégrée de nos écosytèmes et la population a besoin de se réveiller.

La gestion des forêts du NB est faite selon un modèle de monopole d'une catégorie de gens, les grandes compagnies. L'arrivée des autochtones dans le portrait vient jeter un pavé dans la mare tranquille de la complicité entre le gouvernement et les grandes compagnies. Serons-nous assez sages comme citoyens du NB pour prendre cette nouvelle situation et en faire un modèle de gestion durable de nos forêts ?

Neil Seely, 
Manager SENB Forest Products Marketing Board, Shediac, NB 
April 10 , 1998
There are only two companies in NB that own a large amount of wood land - Irving and Fraser, each own about 1 million acres purchased in the late '40s from the NB Railway Company - most of the land used by the large companies is already owned by the people of NB, it is crown land managed by the Dept. of Natural Resources and Energy.

Some of your readers have commented on the Christmas Mountains. Everyone who has a comment to make about this area should first visit it. It is an over mature fir area that has been ravaged by the spruce budworm in the past and is in the process of being clear cut by nature. It is blowing down. Repap has the license to cut the area from DNRE and is doing it in an acceptable manner when you consider the present state of the forest - there is no alternative, except to leave it.

Expropriation of company freehold land is not the proper action in my opinion. These lands are among the best managed in the province. I work for the Private Woodlot owners of South East NB where we are trying to be proactive and start aggressive management programs to help the private woodlot owner learn and implement methods to sustain ably mange his land for all values including bio diversity. As individuals and as a group we are concerned about what is happening to the forests of the province and are in the process of doing our part to make things better. We believe we, the people, are the best ones to do this, not the government through regulation. I would appreciate your comments.

S. Peterson 
Trent University 
April 2, 1998 
I've been doing a lot of research into language that is used when speaking of protected areas. The lesson that has changed my views the most was simple: "wilderness is a political term". I learned it in a field school on Baffin Island. It means that truly undisturbed areas have had their native peoples removed from them. They are truly wild when once they were inhabited. With the recent judgement on Maliseet rights to crown trees the question "should we expropriate lands from corporations" may be out of date. What will New Brunswickers, who may finally have to fully aknowledge Mi'Kmaq peoples, do in this new situation? Will you rise to the challenge of making a healthy New Brunswick? What part of yourselves will you have to change?
Gina Giggie
Dieppe, NB
March 7, 1998
If expropriation is the only way to conserve wildland that is quickly
disappearing, then I believe that the government should proceed in that direction. I wish, however, that there was someway to involve the private sector, not all of whom are greedy industrialists.

Peter Wade
Vejle, Denmark
March 4, 1998
I too think the government of New Brunswick should secure private forest area which through professional and democratic means is deemed worth preserving in its natural state.  I think preservation of crown lands which meet similar conservation criteria should occur as well.  When I look around me here in densely populated Denmark and see how human civilization has robbed the land of truly natural areas through hundreds of years of agricultural expansion I think of walking in unharvested or gently harvested woods in natural decay in N.B. 

Don't let the whole of the province go the way of the Dodo ! Most of Denmark's wooded areas are created through regimented human intervention. Now the Danes are using great sums of money to attempt to recover some of the nature that was lost. New Brunswick has a last chance to prevent some of the losses other areas of the world have already suffered.

J. Emond
Nouveau Brunswick
26 février, 1998

Je ne crois pas que l'expropriation serait la solution idéale.  Il serait préférable de négocier des ententes avec les grandes compagnies forestières et continuer de promouvoir la préservation.  Il est toutefois primordial que la province du Nouveau-Brunswick pense à protéger certains endroits et un peu plus de réserve écologique.  Ceci est un manque dans notre province. Il ne faut pas attendre qu'il soit trop tard!

Gareth Davies
Saint Jonh, NB  
February 23, 1998
The government never hesitates to expropriate land from small landowners to build huge highways so that the public can be "safe" from the assault of trucks on our roads.  This expropriation is done whether the land is fertile farm land, forest, wetland or even some poor small farmer's homestead. 
Why would we hesitate to expropriate land in order to protect the future of our existence?
-- from a forester and horselogger

J. Emond
Nouveau Brunswick
25 février, 1998
Je crois sincèrement que le gouvernement devrait négocier avec les grandes compagnies forestières pour échanger des terres ou lots boisés dans certaines régions que nous désirons protéger, plus précisément dans le nord ouest du n.b.là où il y a très peu d'endroits protégés. 
La région du lac Glazier en est un en particulier qui mérite un effort de préservation, compte tenu qu'il y a déjà des efforts considérables de la part de divers intervenants qui sont déployés présentement pour garder cet endroit à son état naturel. 
Si nous voulons protéger la faune il serait temps qu'on songe à désigner une certaine zone de protection plus précisément à proximité du lac sur tout le contour.  Cet endroit est très peu développé et nous souhaitons le conserver tel quel.

Chris Carpenter
New Brunswick
February 18, 1998
In my opinion, yes the government should either expropriate these lands or use some other tool to keep some of our little remaining unlogged areas unlogged.   Why do we have to cut every little bit of land?
Why can't we leave just a little, especially when it occurs in such a slow growing, difficult to harvest area as the Christmas Mountains?

Edmunston, NB
18 février, 1998
Je crois que oui. Les grosse internationale comme Irving utilise nos ressources premières et les expédient aux E-U.. même que les profit ne serons jamais vue aux canada je crois que l’argent fait avec nos matières premières devrait être réinvestie dans la province pour crée des emplois autres que d’enrichir les Irving.
Aaron Koleszar
February 17, 1998


I've been to the Christmas Mountains - an example of New Brunswick's regressive forest management.
Have you ever seen a 12,000 acre clearcut?
The Irvings are greedy billionaires on corporate welfare and Repap sues broke students. They're all just in it for the money - short term profit! I say we take it back.

Drew Smith
Calgary, AB
January 26, 1998

I feel that this is a good idea. Give 'em hell.



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