Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Our largest intact old-growth forest is turning into toilet paper

Even as NRDC fights in scores of courtrooms to save our environment from the Trump administration, we continue to wage many other important campaigns as well. Today, I want to update you on our longstanding effort to protect Canada's spectacular boreal forest from destruction at the hands of giant timber and consumer product companies.
1. The Big Picture:
  • Canada's boreal forest is our planet's largest intact old-growth forest. But logging, oil, gas, and mining companies are clearing more than one million acres each year. That's more than seven NHL hockey rinks a minute, threatening hundreds of Indigenous communities, iconic caribou, and billions of migratory birds, all of which call this ancient forest home.
  • As for the ancient trees? Many of them are being turned into toilet paper, paper towels, and facial tissues.
2. Why It Matters:
  • Know what else calls the boreal forest home?
  • 300 billion tons of carbon, stored in the boreal region's soils, plants, and wetlands. That's equal to more than three decades' worth of fossil fuel emissions. And it means every acre exploited by industry makes climate change even worse — not to mention putting in peril the people and wildlife who've thrived in the boreal for centuries.
3. What We're Doing:
  • Protecting the world's largest old-growth forest takes sustained commitment. But NRDC has been in the fight for two decades — and as we round the bend into 2019, we're more committed than ever to:
    • Pressuring the Canadian government to work with Indigenous communities to protect the boreal forest from unsustainable logging and save the threatened boreal caribou — before it's too late.
    • Turning up the heat on companies like Procter & Gamble, Kimberly-Clark, and others to say no to making throwaway tissue products from trees that come from the boreal forest, and urging these companies to use recycled content instead.
    • Educating consumers on what products to avoid that are made with boreal wood.
4. Learn More:
  • See what the boreal forest looks like. Check out this video to grasp the full beauty of the boreal forest and learn more about how carbon sinks — like the boreal — work and why they're critical.
  • Learn about the ways in which Indigenous Peoples are leading the fight to protect their forest homelands. Meet the Innu forester working to save Canada's boreal forest.
  • Discover what it's like to study one of North America's most elusive mammals. Meet the wildlife ecologist who is researching ways to help boreal caribou survive.
  • Find out which companies are calling for protection of Canada's boreal forest. Read the letter from industry executives urging the Canadian government to step up and take bold steps to save the boreal forest.
Stay tuned! We'll keep you updated on our fight to protect the boreal forest. But in the meantime, get even more info at NRDC's boreal forest headquarters.

- Rhea Suh, President, NRDC

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