While we learned last week that China’s log inventories have doubled in Q1, turns out that country’s impressive inventory of planted trees is seemingly on the same trajectory. In fact The Vancouver Sun reports here that in the last five years, China has planted a staggering 13 million hectares of new forest – roughly the same area as Greece – or about four times the size of Vancouver Island. We’re told “China is committed to increasing forest cover to more than 23% of its territory, in accordance to a promise made at a United Nations climate change summit in 2009. That process, officials say, is currently 60% complete.”
Meanwhile here in B.C., 35 million hectares of forest were devastated by the Mountain Pine Beetle. A quick search of this blog’s archives confirms that of an estimated two million hectares that urgently need to be replanted, the government plan calls for just 400,000 hectares to be replanted over the next 20 years. In this Vancouver Sun report here, it’s suggested we simply don’t have the sufficient checks and balances in place here to ensure the long-term sustainability of our forest. “The province has cut back the ranks of professional foresters by more than a quarter in the past five years, which is reducing its ability to monitor logging and enforce forest practices,” we’re told.