Resolute can respect Indigenous rights, sustain jobs and conserve critical forest areas. That comment comes from Richard Brooks, who is the Campaign Coordinator at Greenpeace.

The remarks come on the heels of a massive LED truck screen stopped outside of Resolute’s Annual General Meeting in Georgia last week. The truck broadcast photos of the Boreal Forest, thousands of social media posts slamming the company, and the names of the campaign’s supporters. They are continuing to campaign against the company in an effort to stop the harvesting of the Boreal.

However, an unprecedented move had Northern Ontario and Quebec mayors join up to push back against the Greenpeace campaign. They were at Parliament Hill last week to talk to the feds about stepping up their effort to promote the forestry industry internationally.

They say if other countries stop buying products from the Boreal Forest because of the misleading campaign, thousands of workers will be in danger. Cochrane’s Mayor Peter Politis was among the group of 20 Mayors. He says the real story is the world renowned forest management that takes place in Northern Ontario, and that it preserves some of the countries last remaining sustainable development opportunities.

Another big part of the Greenpeace campaign claims that the Caribou are becoming endangered because of habitat loss. However, Politis, and other Northern politicians, say this isn’t the case and is another example of the misleading campaign.

The group says that the idea of Caribou endangerment is being questioned. They cited recent research which claims that extremists divide the population numbers into eco-types, to give the illusion of endangerment.

From a press release:

“The notion of Caribou even being “endangered” was questioned by the Mayors citing recent research by Ontario (who spent $11 million seeking science to support their embattled caribou policy) that actually demonstrates that caribou range recession has been minimal since the 1950s and puts into question the validity of the woodland caribou ecotype theory, which divides Ontario’s woodland caribou into two ecotypes, one that is questionably listed provincially as ‘threatened’.

The research also brings into question the multiple classification tactic being used by extremists like Greenpeace who simply keep dividing the population until “ecotypes” are reduced to the point of creating an illusion of endangerment. The science (including the $11 million just spent by Ontario) has yet to prove that there exists a genetic difference between “Eco Type, Forest Dwelling Woodland Caribou and other Tundra Dwelling Caribou – In effect suggesting that genetically “Caribou” are Caribou.

The Mayors pointed out that in reality, the best perspective is gained when understanding that in fact, the Caribou is most abundant wild hoofed animal in Canada. With 3.89 million caribou spread across the country, there are more caribou than deer, moose, and elk combined.”

Politis says the Greenpeace campaign in front of the Resolute Annual General Meeting continued to misinform the public by leaving out thesekey facts.

– Less than 1⁄2 a percent of Ontario Forests are harvested annually
– More than half of the forest is not available for harvest at all
– 40% of the entire worlds environmentally certified forests are in Canada
– 95% of the forest cover that existed 200 years ago still exists today

“The misguided agenda of extremists who live thousands of kilometers away and who are consumed with their own interests, has taken away from the real story of the world renowned forest management that actually takes place in Northern Ontario, preserving some of the countries last remaining sustainable development opportunities,” says Politis. “They insist on making this an either or proposition that environmental health and thriving socioeconomic communities somehow can’t coexist together and by doing so, they’re attacking the very essence of the pioneering spirit that Canada is built on along with the reputation Canadians have as a progressive, responsible country.”

Photo: A Greenpeace photo of their LED truck stopped outside of the Resolute AGM in Augusta.