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Cablegate: Canada's New Forest Communities Program

VZCZCXRO9870
PP RUEHGA RUEHHA RUEHQU RUEHVC
DE RUEHOT #1334/01 1922114
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 112114Z JUL 07
FM AMEMBASSY OTTAWA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 6116
INFO RUCNCAN/ALL CANADIAN POSTS COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC PRIORITY

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 OTTAWA 001334

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

STATE FOR WHA/CAN AND EEB/BTA
STATE PASS USTR FOR MELLE AND SULLIVAN
USDOC FOR JIM TERPSTRA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETRD EAGR CA
SUBJECT: CANADA'S NEW FOREST COMMUNITIES PROGRAM


1. (SBU) Summary: The Harper government's newly announced
Forest Communities Program (FCP) is designed to help
communities adapt to economic changes in Canada's forestry
sector. The C$25 million, five-year program will fund sites
across Canada and encourage community-level partnerships to
take advantage of emerging economic opportunities. Comment:
The FCP bears investigation to see if it runs afoul of the
anti-circumvention provisions of the Softwood Lumber
Agreement such as several existing provincial and federal
assistance programs for the forestry sector may already do
so. Please give the Embassy instructions if you want us to
raise specific questions on the FCP with the Canadian
Government. End Comment and Summary.

2. (U) During a July 7 visit to Nova Scotia, Foreign Minister
MacKay unveiled the GOC's new Forest Communities Program
(FCP) to help communities develop stable local economies as
they deal with the impact of economic challenges facing
Canada's distressed forest sector due to rising energy costs,
a strong Canadian dollar, new international competition, and
reduced timber supplies. MacKay said that the program is
designed to foster collaborative community efforts to help
communities take advantage of new economic opportunities from
foreign resources.

3. (U) The C$25 million, five-year program will fund 11 FCP
sites across Canada. Each year, the funding will support
community-level partnerships and national partnership
activities and operations. Natural Resources Canada (NRCan)
will negotiate funding terms and conditions with the 11
successful FCP applicants.

4. (U) The FCP is based on Canada's Model Forest Program,
which began in 1992 and ends this year. According to the
NRCan press release, the FCP will encourage the development
of knowledge, information tools and best practices to help
forest communities meet the challenges of transition in the
forest sector. The program will help communities to
capitalize on emerging resource-based economic opportunities.
The FCP, the press release continued, will foster new
approaches to accommodate competing land uses, establish
demonstration projects for innovative forest management
approaches, and create community ventures based on new types
of forest products. These solutions will be shared with
other foreign communities across Canada and internationally
through the Canadian Model Forest network, the International
Model Forest Network and similar organizations.

5. (U) Environment Canada has supplied sketchy public
information on the parameters of the 11 initial FCP program
sites, which may help Washington agencies get a handle on the
program:

British Columbia
----------------

1. Ecotrust (Vancouver Island - Clayaquot Sound)

This partnership involves the Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations
and Ecotrust Canada. It intends to create economic
opportunities for the forest-dependent communities of the
Clayoquot Sound Biosphere Reserve, while protecting ecosystem
integrity.

2. The Integrated Resources Management Partnership of
Northern British Columbia (Prince George)

Building on the past success of the McGregor Model Forest,
this expanded partnership will help forest-based communities
in northern BC to diversify their economies and address the
many forest management issues in the region.

Saskatchewan
------------

3. Prince Albert Model Forest (Prince Albert)

The Prince Albert Model Forest will develop new approaches to
QThe Prince Albert Model Forest will develop new approaches to
capacity building in resource-based communities and
facilitate cross-sector relationships involving forestry,
agriculture, and the rapidly developing mining and energy
sectors of Saskatchewan.

Manitoba
--------

4. Manitoba Model Forest (Pine Falls)

OTTAWA 00001334 002 OF 003

The Manitoba Model Forest is developing new partnerships with
the forest industry, forest-based communities and the
Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs. The Model Forest is seeking new
opportunities for communities to participate in informed
decision-making about landscape management and to develop
alternative uses of forest resources.

Ontario
-------

5. Northeast Superior Forest Community (Chapleau)

This partnership will bring new economic dynamics to
forest-based communities in Northern Ontario. Several
communities will work together on common economic objectives
with an emphasis on developing economic opportunities
involving non-timber values of the forest. The Northeast
Superior Forest Community also intends to use technology to
stimulate economic and educational activities.

6. Eastern Ontario Model Forest (Kemptville)

Located near Ottawa, the Eastern Ontario Model Forest has a
unique opportunity to demonstrate to national audiences the
importance of forests and forestry to Canada's rural
communities. The partnership is well-positioned to address
the challenges facing rural and urban forests, including
planning issues and economic diversification.

Quebec
------

7. Hautes Laurentides (Mont Laurier)

This partnership brings together a diverse group of interests
to challenge the current economic realities of the forestry
industry in rural Quebec. Hautes Laurentides will encourage
community development through improved forest management and
explore new opportunities for recreational tourism.

8. Montagnais du Lac-St-Jean (Saguenay)

The Lac St-Jean region of Quebec has proposed a new
partnership of communities, including First Nations, to seek
new opportunities for the forest industry and economic
development. The main emphasis will be on workforce training
to ensure the long-term sustainability of the region's
communities.

New Brunswick
-------------

9. Fundy Model Forest (Sussex)

With an emphasis on innovation, the Fundy Model Forest will
advance the sustainable development of private forests and
public forests in New Brunswick. It will encourage the
development of community capacity to adjust to changes in the
forest economy and promote diversification into the
bio-economy.

Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island
------------------------------------

10. Nova Forest Alliance

The Alliance represents four distinct forest areas in Nova
Scotia and Prince Edward Island. This unique partnership
involves private landowners, First Nations, the forest and
tourism industries, and the governments of Nova Scotia, PEI,
and Canada. The Nova Forest Alliance will address the
long-term utilization of the region's forest resources and
the potential for additional social, environmental, and
economic benefits.

Newfoundland and Labrador
-------------------------

11. The Western Newfoundland Model Forest (Corner Brook)

The Western Newfoundland Model Forest will be expanding its
work with communities in watershed management and other
emerging issues facing the forest sector. It has expanded
its partnership to include an area in Labrador where it will
use its expertise to address some of the major social,
economic and environmental stresses in Innu communities.

OTTAWA 00001334 003 OF 003


This part of the program will provide an excellent
opportunity to demonstrate technology transfer and the
sharing of knowledge.

Visit our shared North American Partnership blog (Canada & Mexico) at
http://www.intelink.gov/communities/state/nap

DICKSON

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