Boreal at Risk
Increased logging and mining, as well as a hydro transmission corridor have been proposed for boreal forests on the east side of Lake Winnipeg. We have a grand conservation opportunity to ensure that community-led planning and a protected areas network are complete before industrial development proposals are considered in the planning process.
Clearcut logging removes and permanently alters huge sections of boreal forest and wildlife habitat. This consequently diminishes opportunities for traditional subsistence activities and for sustainable tourism ventures. One solution is increasing recycled content in paper products, rather than turning intact boreal wilderness into newsprint.
Mining claims and ongoing mineral exploration pierce the landscape on the east side of Manitoba’s Lake Winnipeg. Air and water pollution from mining operations could have devastating impacts on the east side’s delicate ecosystem. As significant portions of the east side have been identified as having low mineral potential, Manitoba can move forward with communities to make conservation and protected lands decisions here.
The Manitoba government has put communities and conservation first by not allowing a hydro transmission corridor through the east side due to environmental and community concerns. Good news – as long as this promise is kept. Manitoba Hydro once proposed a corridor that would cut a wide swath through the heart of Manitoba’s east side boreal forests. Such a corridor would fragment multiple caribou ranges, lead to increased access for illegal hunting, and create a negative imbalance in predator-prey relationships.