Kathy Abusow, President and CEO of Sustainable Forestry Initiative, explains the difference between deforestation and responsible forestry

As President and CEO of the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), Kathy Abusow understands the importance of responsible forest management and forestry practices. While she feels that forest conservation is necessary, she also explains how regulated harvesting and replanting are key components to healthy forests.

“Working forests also provide quality jobs that can sustain rural communities. Working forests provide products that improve our quality of life, like homes that give us shelter, like books and a wide variety of items,” Abusow said.

Throughout her lecture, Abusow explains that many people don’t understand the difference between deforestation and responsible forestry. She gives examples like a friend announcing they’ve saved a tree by reading an e-book instead of a printed book. By reading a printed book, she says, you aren’t killing a tree. That’s because SFI certified forests (like the ones forestry companies harvest from in North America) require harvested areas to be replanted.

“That’s the cycle of responsible forestry. For every tree harvested, another replaces it,” she said.

Abusow also uses modern infrastructure developments as an analogy to explain the difference between deforestation and responsible forestry. She asks the audience to imagine a forest – one section is turned into a mall; another is converted into a parking lot. These are examples of deforestation, since the harvested trees aren’t being replaced. Foresters working in SFI certified forests are required to replant where they harvest.

These points align closely with Forest NB’s commitment to promoting responsible forestry practices by certified industry professionals, ensuring sustainable and healthy New Brunswick forests in the future.