A Musquodoboit Valley family has been chosen as this year’s recipient of the Woodlot Owner of the Year Award for their contribution to sustainable forest management in the province. Pat and Janet O’Toole, who run a 243-acre woodlot in Carrolls Corner, were chosen as the provincial winner, and central regional winner for their commitment to low impact harvesting. The family’s practice of partial harvesting ensures steady growth of trees of varying ages resulting in continuous tree cover. “This award is an opportunity to recognize the efforts of woodlot owners in promoting sustainability for the economic and environmental health of our forestry industry,” said Charlie Parker Minister of Natural Resources. “This year’s recipients have demonstrated best practices in woodlot management.” The O’Toole woodlot also features a maple syrup operation, and numerous hiking trails which have been used by local scouting and 4-H groups for exploring and learning opportunities. The O’Tooles will be presented with the award at a public field day on Sept. 29. Other regional winners include Jim and Ann Crooker of Caledonia, Queens Co. in the western region, and Mike and Mary Penny of Lochaber Lake, Antigonish Co. in the eastern region. They will each be presented with awards during separate field days on Sept. 15 and Sept. 22 respectively. The Department of Natural Resources has presented the Woodlot Owner of the Year Award program since 1990. Nominations are evaluated by department staff for regional winners, while the provincial winner is selected by a committee of foresters, wildlife specialists, industry representatives, previous winners, and environmental or forestry undergraduate students. Nova Scotia residents who own 20 to 800 hectares of woodland in are eligible for woodlot owner awards. Nominations are accepted at Department of Natural Resources offices until April 15 each year. More information is available on the department’s website at http://www.gov.ns.ca/natr/woodlot/woya/ . FOR BROADCAST USE A Musquodoboit Valley family has been awarded the 2012 Woodlot Owner of the Year from the Department of Natural Resources. Pat and Janet O’Toole were recognized for their sustainable forest management practices and diversity of forest management techniques on the family’s 243-hectare property. Natural Resources Minister Charlie Parker says the O’Toole’s woodlot is a showcase of best practices in forest management. The award will be presented to the O’Tooles during a public field tour on their woodlot on September 29th. -30-
In its largest-yet donation to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), Thailand has contributed 3,000 metric tonnes of rice for the agency’s relief efforts in Afghanistan, a WFP spokesman announced today.”The rice from Thailand, worth $678,000, is enough to feed some 360,000 Afghans for one month,” WFP spokesperson Jordan Dey told reporters in Islamabad.WFP Deputy Country Director David Fletcher said the food would “assist a nation struggling to be reborn.” Welcoming the donation, he called on other countries to follow suit. “WFP needs all the help it can get to feed millions of Afghans both within and outside of their country,” he said.The agency, which has been working in Afghanistan for over three decades, is currently running a $230 million emergency operation to assist 7.5 million hungry people in Afghanistan and neighbouring countries.