CORNER BROOK Congregating in the forest centre at Grenfell Campus, overlooking Corner Brook Pulp and Paper and surrounded by the natural forest environment, the Canadian Forestry Service and Memorial University entered into a collaborative research agreement Friday.
© Star photo by Cory Hurley
Tom Rosser, assistant deputy minister of Forest Services Department of Natural Resources, addresses the audience at the signing of a collaborative research agreement Friday.
The federal Forestry Service’s Department of Natural Resources and the university in Corner Brook will share resources, facilities and expertise to support a common vision to enhance the forestry sector.
It is not necessarily a new partnership between the institution which has been in place at Grenfell since 1997 as much as an opportunity to better recognize and increase the effort being made.
It is a vision also shared by the provincial Department of Natural Resources, according to Anthony Card, the associate vice-president for research at Grenfell.
“This agreement will enhance research productivity and spur integration; create and mobilize new knowledge for the betterment of the forestry sector, forestry environment and society; attract and train highly qualified personnel; and attract outstanding international collaborations,” he said during the official signing at Grenfell.
Grenfell has a new $8 million facility which will house three environmental laboratories and is in the process of hiring five new research professors to support the development of forestry and agriculture in the province. The facility and expertise will be shared under this agreement, said Card.
Gary Kachanoski, president of Memorial University, said the partnership ensures there is a critical mass of research expertise and resources to develop and support effective and improved approaches for innovative land management in the province.
Land resources are precious, according to the president.
“They are very precious because they are in very specific locations, and we need to ensure they are wisely managed and utilized — not only for the sustainable development of forestry sector, which is crucial for the province, but also for the needs of the province for its growing agriculture and food production strategy and ensure food security for the province,” he said.
Tom Rosser, assistant deputy minister of Forest Services Department of Natural Resources, said forests and forestry has vplayed an integral role in the economic history of Canada.
“I think we all know the forest sector is facing significant challenges, and they are increasingly complex and multidisciplinary in scope,” he said.
“The need for scientific expertise to make sound decisions and effective policies to support responsible resource development and transformation is more important now then ever before.”