Celebrate the role of forests in ensuring sustainable products this International Day of Forests!
By Javier Cappella, R.P.F.
This International Day of Forests we celebrate the role of forests in ensuring sustainable products. The International Day of Forests (IDF) has been celebrated annually on March 21st since is was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in 2012.
The forests of Muskoka are dominated by a closed canopy of shade tolerant hardwood trees, with Sugar maple and American beech the most common associated tree species. The forests along the shorelines of lakes, rivers and streams are our most biodiverse ecosystems and create the link between the water and the land. These riparian forests are where you’ll see Eastern white cedar, Eastern hemlock and the majestic Eastern white pine. Here in the Muskoka River Watershed, we can be proud of our forests and the rich biodiversity of plants, animals and other species that provide for Muskoka’s forests and many economic, social and environmental benefits.
Those who own forest land in Muskoka can promote sustainability and stewardship of their forest through the province’s Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program or by contacting local forestry professionals to learn more about their forest land.
Muskoka’s Crown land forests are managed by Westwind Forest Stewardship Inc. a community-based, not-for-profit, forest management company. Westwind holds the sustainable forest license to provide for the economic benefits of Muskoka’s forests while conserving biodiversity, protecting ecological values, improving forest health and promoting resilient forests in a changing climate. Muskoka was the first large public forest in Canada to receive Forest Stewardship Certification. FSC certification provides added assurance that wood products from Muskoka are sustainably harvested through a forest management plan developed in partnership with Indigenous communities, biologists, foresters and community partners.
This year, Westwind is celebrating 25 years of sustainable forest management in Muskoka!
- Key Messages for the International Day of Forests
- 7 Actions Woodlot Owners Can Take for Climate Change
- Caring for Your Woodlot in Muskoka, Haliburton & Parry Sound
- Forest Health Position Paper (2015)