Author: Forteck Team | March 31st, 2021
This blog refers to the work that Forteck would complete as part of a standard layout contract with our clients.
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Curated information is derived from a combination of Forteck crew members with first-hand experience and verified online sources or government sites. We work very hard to provide quality educational information relevant to the forestry industry to promote forestry and the great things foresters can do. Please let us know if you find any misinformation and we will correct it immediately. It takes a village to educate! Thank you for reading and working together in further teaching people about forestry. #forestryproud
Where we plant
When working in the forest industry in western Canada, sometimes you can’t help but think about how many trees are in the forest, maybe not the number but just the amount of area covered by trees. But what about all of the new trees being planted each year. There are tens of thousands of hectares of land being planted with seedlings in Alberta each year. This number is primarily achieved through the Forest Management Agreement holders in the province. A smaller but still crucial number is tree planting that occurs on reclaimed oil and gas sites.
Why we plant?
Planting or reforestation as it often referred to, is a requirement for forest companies and oil and gas operators that once the primary activity on the site has been completed, the land area within designated forested areas are returned to its previously vegetated state. Depending on the pre-disturbance species present, this dictates what species is to be returned. As a company, Forteck has been able to work with multiple oil and gas operators and environmental companies over the last few years to help reforest reclaimed dispositions, thus beginning to return the land to its forested state. Another purpose of planting, when looking at oil and gas sites specifically, is to ensure wildlife protection targets are being met. Caribou species continue to be a large focus for protection in Canada. As such, companies have found ways to continue to operate with the expectation that disturbed areas are forested in the following season. Seedlings planted on these dispositions are strategically planted to ensure sight lines are minimized. This will ensure that in future years, there is sufficient forest cover to protect these species from predators.
What we plant
As mentioned above, the liability to reforest rests with the agreement type made for the specific disposition being created on the land. Forest companies have mandates to reforest within a small percentage variance by species-area for what is removed during their operations. For oil and gas operators, the mandate is a bit different, but they are required to have woody species present to receive their reclamation certificates. Many companies are headed in the right direction by ensuring the tree species removed from the site are planted back upon reclamation. Traditional species planted in Alberta include but are not limited to white spruce, black spruce and lodgepole pine as these are the dominant conifer species found within the province. Trembling aspen and balsam poplar are sometimes planted as well.