Environment

“Seeing the Forest and the Trees:

Engaging in Environmental Responsibility

in the Canadian Boreal Forest”

Policy, law, economics, science and engineering have been considered indispensable towards understanding and resolving environmental problems for decades. However, while abundant knowledge about environmental issues has come from these spheres, it is still not sufficient to engage in long-term change. Thus, there is a growing realization that policy and lawmakers, politicians, religious, spiritual and First Nations leaders and groups can and must make important contributions, in collaboration with science and policy, to address complex ecological issues.

This breakout session will examine those contributions, acknowledging both the problems and promise of each while focusing on the Canadian specific example of the deforestation and conservation of the boreal forest.

Discussion/Question: What are we doing and where are we going? (i.e. actions, consequences, responses and solutions to the deforestation and conservation of the Canadian boreal forest).

Purpose & Goal: Sustainability has become a co-opted word and rhetorical tool in the debate on the environment. All sides seem to have their own definition and there is little, if any, crossover. The intent of this breakout session then is to remove some layers of ambivalence on the matters of sustainability. It will also aim to instil an understanding that cooperation amid all stakeholders (developers, environmentalists, the government, First Nations, religious and spiritual groups, Canadians, etc.) involved is required in order that we can live now without jeopardizing the potential for future people to meet their needs.

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