To the editor,

Hello, yes, it’s me again. I learned an interesting fact this summer. It was at a Champlain Township meeting where South Nation Conservation put on a presentation on the loss of forestation in the area and how we had already been down this exact road before.

Post-European settlement dramatically altered the landscape with incentives for newcomers to clear the land. By the late nineteenth century, Eastern Ontario experienced severe flooding, droughts and erosion due to declining forest cover of less than 30 per cent in 32 townships and in some, a forest cover of less than 10 per cent.
Severe deforestation, in addition to land management practices and flooding, led to the creation of Conservation Authorities (CAs).

With the support of government agencies, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry and CAs land restoration activities, through intense replanting efforts, increased the forest cover to 30 per cent or above.

At this time it seems we are being brought down that very same rabbit hole one more time, the only changes are the clear cutters are more efficient, the tile drainage is more prevalent, and all this is being done at a time of climate change and global warming. Think about it: 17 months of record-breaking heat in a row, it has to give you something to think about.

As I stand by the side of the road, I’ve been accused of telling farmers what to do, when I am doing nothing of the sort. I stand on the road to give a voice to the trees and the children of the forest because to watch the disappearance of such vital creations without bringing attention to this massive loss is unacceptable. If we choose to protect the trees and wildlife, we extend our own time of existence.

If we allow them to disappear then so do we. If we are not part of the solution, then we are part of the problem.

Thank you,

Andy Perreault
Vankleek Hill