Deploring an increasingly difficult cohabitation between outfitters and the forest industry, the Fédération des pourvoiries du Québec (FPQ) is asking political parties to commit to modifying the regulation on the sustainable development of forests in the State for the October 3 election.
“It is important to put in place simple rules to ensure sustainable forest management of the territories used. Concretely, this involves setting the level of resource extraction with a sustainable rate and ensuring planning adapted to each outfitting territory, including the road network,” said the chairman of the board of directors of the FPQ, Bruno Caron, in a press release.
Concretely, the FPQ would like a modification of the regulation on sustainable forest management, the objective of which would be to ensure the maintenance of conditions favorable to the preservation and development of outfitters. This would include requiring forestry and outfitting stakeholders to develop a long-term vision of the road network.
Such a regulatory amendment is entirely in the spirit of the Sustainable Forest Development Act, according to the president of the FPQ. “At present, it is the application by the Ministry of Forests, Wildlife and Parks (MFFP) of this already established legal framework that is problematic, and not the spirit of the law”, has argues Bruno Caron.
However, while the FPQ agrees that there used to be a balance and mutual respect between the forestry and outfitting sectors, it considers that the management of logging by the MFFP has ensured that the sharing territories is now too often done to the disadvantage of outfitters.
“Territorial planning and the development of the road network is not planned according to the outfitters, explained Bruno Caron in an interview. Currently, all logging is planned first, and it is only then that harmonization takes place. But it is difficult to harmonize when everything is already decided in advance.
The president of the FPQ recalls that outfitters generate economic spinoffs estimated at 249.4 million annually. They also welcome 510,270 people a year, 90,000 of whom come from outside Quebec. This tourist network thus represents the largest offer of accommodation and services in a natural environment in the province.
"If nothing is done, there will be significant economic problems," he slipped.