Shareholders in the forestry giant MacMillan Bloedel Ltd. would make more money by investing in Canada Savings Bonds than they will by logging British Columbia’s disputed Carmanah Valley, a study says. B.C. taxpayers will also make less money from the timber harvest than politicians are leading people to believe, according to the study, to be released today by Environment Probe in Toronto.
AT FIRST GLANCE Larry Solomon seems like the answer to a businessman’s prayers. An environmentalist who believes passionately in the free-market system, his call for the privatization of Crown land and public utilities has won him the praise of the conservative Fraser Institute — and the wrath of fellow environmentalists.
Wherever trees grow on private land, forest owners seem to draw the ire of their governments. The government of Ontario has a problem with the way many of its small, private woodlot owners tend their forests: They won’t cut down their trees. The government’s surveys conclude that these smallholders – mostly farmers, professionals and retirees, who control more that 10 million acres of timberland – have what government experts call "a rather indifferent attitude" toward their land.
Robert Rivard of the Canadian Lumbermen’s Association would like to go back to “the old free trade deal.” He feels the previous arrangement reflected a more Canadian brand of free trade that better served his association’s members.