Environment and Conservation Minister Perry Trimper will bring a strong belief in science to his portfolio and dealing with the resources vital to outfitters in this province.
While it is a method Newfoundland and Labrador Outfitters Association president Ron Hicks was pleased to hear, it is also one that has often been criticized by outfitters. That is why it was of importance to those gathered at the convention and annual general meeting in Corner Brook Wednesday to hear the new minister say he also believes in working closely with hunters and outfitters in the field.
“A key mandate for my ownself, and coming into politics and getting into this portfolio, is to use science,” Trimper said. “Let the evidence speak for itself.”
In his address to the outfitters Wednesday morning, the start of the three-day event, he said the emotions of the industry cannot cloud that science. To ensure everybody is aware of why certain decisions are made — whether they favour outfitters or not — he said communication is key.
Trimper is the representative for the district of Lake Melville, and studied forestry and wildlife management in New Brunswick. His focus on science is not unusual given he was former principal scientist with Stantec, where he worked on environmental assessment, research and land-use patterns associated with resource development projects.
“They key word in this whole discussion is sustainability,” he said. “Outfitters and resource managers of this province are all concerned the resources we are using — whether consumptively or otherwise — persist well into the future.”
That is reflected in the allocation of quotas, according to the minister. That is something that should be appreciated within the outfitting industry, he said, who will rely on the resources for years to come.