Recover burned wood in Quebec for commercial purposes

Recover burned wood in Quebec for commercial purposes

Recovering burned wood in Quebec for commercial purposes

< p class="sc-v64krj-0 dlqbmr">The Society for the Protection of Forests Against Fire (SOPFEU) says that several weeks could pass before it gives its approval to access the forests that have burned. (File photo)

Even though forest fires still cause headaches for authorities, Quebec is working to ensure that the burned wood is harvested by forestry companies as soon as possible.

Province-wide, blazes have ravaged more than 725,000 hectares of forest so far this year.

The Legault government wants the forestry industry to quickly map the extent of burned forests in the territory.

It's going to be a race against time. As soon as the fires are contained […], we will have to send teams to look for the wood as soon as possible, explains the Minister of Public Security, François Bonnardel.

The Quebec Minister of Public Security, François Bonnardel, made the announcement Saturday morning during a press conference.

He specifies that Quebec is awaiting authorization from the Société de protection des forests against fire (SOPFEU) to allow harvesting.

The role of SOPFEU is to determine if the territory is safe to access, comments spokesperson Karine Pelletier. […] For the rest, it is really up to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forests to make a plan to reallocate all these territories, she says.

A SOPFEU tanker plane (File photo)

Boisaco President, Steeve St-Gelais, says he is ready to deploy the necessary resources now to harvest burned wood.

The fires that we see are on very large areas. In this context, we must do everything we can to recover the maximum area [of wood], he believes.

< p>“We also need to be able to put these timber lands into production [for the next few years].

—Steeve St-Gelais, President of Boisaco

Steeve St-Gelais is president of Boisaco, a forestry company that generates hundreds of jobs on the North Shore. (File photo)

After the passage of a fire, it can be very long before the forest can come back. The intensity of the fires means that the vegetation cover is deeply affected. We must ensure that the forest can come back quickly, this is what is most desirable, he adds.

For his part, the spokesperson of Resolute Forest Products, Louis Bouchard, says that harvesting wood after a disaster, including a fire, is part of their obligation.

We cannot harvest green wood in the context of a burnt wood harvesting plan. This is part of our supply guarantee, he states in writing.

To preserve good quality wood, manufacturers must act quickly.

Hundreds of insect species are attracted to wood when it is burned , notes the research scientist in forest ecology at Natural Resources Canada, Yan Boulanger.

Longhorn beetles have a jaw that allows them to dig through wood.

One ​​speaks among others of the black longhorn beetle, which, in the form of a larva, will make holes in the wood . This species will arrive very soon, as soon as the fire is out, he says.

“The life cycle of the insect is one to two years. It is especially during this period that the damage will be done. »

— Yan Boulanger, research scientist in forest ecology at Natural Resources Canada

Natural Resources Canada forest ecology researcher Yan Boulanger

There is also everything related to wood splitting, which can occur when the wood, following the fire, will dry out very quickly. The quality of the wood deteriorates over time, the scientist points out.

However, he specifies that salvage logging will also have consequences, in particular on the natural regeneration of the forest.

With the passage of machinery, there may be impacts on regeneration, which takes place immediately after the fire. On the other hand, in other places, germination will promote regeneration. So it all depends on where the cuts are going to be made, warns Yan Boulanger.

Secondly, Quebec also wants to measure the extent of the damage caused by fire on forestry equipment.

However, SOPFEU claims that several weeks could pass before it gives its approval to access the forests that have burned.