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St. John’s resident Sean Callahan concerned about impact of clearcutting on tourism sector

Some residents are concerned about the possibility of clearcutting being conducted on the Great Northern Peninsula.
Some residents are concerned about the possibility of clearcutting being conducted on the Great Northern Peninsula. - file photo

Travelling the nooks and crannies of the province Sean Callahan gets a pit in his stomach when he sees clearcutting destroying the beauty that draws people from all over the world to this place.

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The St. John’s native believes the tourism industry is huge in this province with its pristine nature and it should be protected at all cost.

He felt compelled to voice his concerns about the way clearcutting is carried out after reading about residents of Port Blandford taking a stand against the provincial Forestry and Agrifoods Agency’s plan to allow a clear cut in the area last month.

Callahan recalls driving up the Northern Peninsula toward Gros Morne Park about 15 years ago and his eyes opening wide when the first thing he saw on the hill was the ugly eyesore of clearcutting in plain view.

He has seen it happen in some of the most pristine places in this province and wonders who is making the decisions on where to clear cut because it makes no sense to him.

“I don’t understand how we can allow clearcutting to happen on the roots that bring us into these tourism locations,” Callahan said. “Do it well in behind the mountain where you can’t see it from the naked eye driving along, but don’t do it so you ruin the beautiful landscape that has been there for hundreds of years.”

He believes that every time there is a decision to be made on an area there must be a buffer zone between the highway and the view scape.

“If we don’t protect our ways to all of our key tourism areas then who would?”

he said.

The Star contacted Corner Brook Pulp and Paper for comment on clearcutting practices, but a company spokesperson said nobody could be available for comment on Friday.

The Star also contact the provincial government for comment, but a representative was  not available prior to deadline.

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