A number of wood products industry associations have just launched a new website extolling the virtues of Canadian wood as enviromentally responsible.
I suppose it's inevitable that, as an environmentalist, there would be claims on such a marketing site that I find problematic. Afterall, my blog almost certainly contains some claims that others would not agree with... probably including my posts on wood products.
But when I come across a site like this I lament the inefficiency of positional arguments and wish instead that we could get together and hash out our perceptions, understandings and evidence so we could at least both be communicating balanced information, and hopefully whatever policies or actions we think should result.
Here are a couple of examples of views from the site that conflict with mine:
Wood products sequester more carbon dioxide than is emitted during harvesting, transportation, and manufacturing. I believe this to be untrue. My understanding is that, if you take carbon stored in wood products into account, it reduces the recorded emission, but it is still a net emission.
As a proud leader in forest management... Canada has the most protected forest in the world. This statistic is misleading because Canada is the second largest country in the world, so it's easy to have more land than anyone else in any category of land use. Canada also has more forest than most other countries. Less than 10 percent of Canada is protected.
What would happen if both sides were to sit down and agree to a bunch of balanced facts and characterizations about the state of Canada's forests and how forestry affects our climate. I think the problems with our forests and the benefits of wood are both real enough that a broadly supported portrayal would still argue for outcomes both sides are trying to achieve. This probably applies more broadly as well, and not just to Canada.
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