A forest destroyed by fires that plagued western Nova Scotia during the summer of 2016 is getting a boost.
The UNESCO Southwest Nova Biosphere Reserve Association and its partners celebrated the upcoming June G7 Summit 2018 in the Charlevoix Biosphere Reserve in Quebec by presenting a successful education program and subsequent tree planting project on May 15. The work was carried out with the help of North Queens Community School students on the site of the 2016 Seven Lakes forest fire north of Maitland Bridge, Annapolis County.
The event also showed appreciation for the many firefighters from 24 fire volunteer departments and community organizations from throughout five counties in the biosphere region and beyond that helped extinguish the dangerous 2016 forest fire on Medway Community Forest, private and Crown lands. A plaque was unveiled in acknowledgement of the events.
The planting project was coordinated by a Southwest Nova Biosphere Reserve Association team, including Steve Malay and Cliff Drysdale, with the support of Jillian Weldon-Genge of the Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resources.
The department provided a variety of 1,200 tree seedlings typical for the area. Mary Jane Rodgers of the Medway Community Forest Cooperative helped with lectures and planting instruction. The North Queens Volunteer Fire Department provided traffic safety management and firefighting equipment demonstrations. Westfor forestry manager Marcus Zwicker arranged for the plaque installation and provided lunch.
Serge Gauvin of the nation-wide G7 Summit 2018 commemorative tree planting initiative paid a surprise visit to the event along with Kim Masland, MLA for Queens/Shelburne, and Linda Gregory of Digby County.
With everyone lending a hand, the project demonstrated the spirit of cooperation that formed the basis for the designation of the UNESCO Southwest Nova Biosphere Region in 2001.