February 28, 2002
Letter to Editor: North Bay Nugget - Feb 23
Re: Nugget story "Earthroots plans return to Temagami"
I just read Arnie Hakala's article on Earthroots stand on Temagami and want to comment. I am normally on the side of business on these issues, but I find myself siding with the environmentalists here because of the economic damage this logging will do to Temagami's economy. The idea that the logging industry should be permitted to damage the eco-tourism industry in the area is baffling and indicates that the MNR is behind the times in its understanding of what makes Temagami's economy tick. In my view, it is immoral for a government to destroy the economy of one town for the sake of another town.
I sincerely hope The Nugget's reporters do some research into this issue before attempting to publish the right-wing point of view, for things are not as stereotypical as they seem here.
February 21, 2002
Bear Island removes chief
February 19, 2002
Bear Island tensions high with chief
Temagami First Nation Chief Raymond Katt was barred from the band office on Monday by six or seven members, according to a North Bay Nugget story yesterday.
On February 5, 77 of 78 members present at a meeting voted to oust the chief. However, the Nugget reported that the constitution requires a majority of the 157 eligible voting members to be present and support such a vote. With 79 non-confidence votes needed, a second vote has been scheduled.
February 18, 2002
Snowmobile trails open
Ice conditions have improved sufficiently to open the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) trails on Lake Temagami. We have an unconfirmed report that the trail between River Valley and Lake Temagami (via Gull Lake) is open. Caution is still advised and conditions continue to change.
February 16, 2002
Snow bears of Temagami
Phil Koistinen (that's him in the middle) with his Temagami Winter Carnival buddies in front of Dad's store, downtown Temagami.
Logging west of Sharp Rock is like demolishing the Sistine Chapel and leaving the altar.
— Alex Mathias
February 15, 2002
Mathias accuses Ontario of religious persecution over logging near Chee-skon-abikong
aboriginal Alex Mathias accuses Ontario of religious persecution over its
plan to allow logging around a sacred site this year.
spiritual beliefs come from the forest for miles around the Spirit
Rock," says Mathias. "For the Anishnabai, logging west of Sharp
Rock is like demolishing the Sistine Chapel and leaving the altar."
will come within 650 metres of the Spirit Rock, called Chee-skon-abikong
in Ojibway. Mathias is the head of the Misabi family. "They did not
ask my permission to build roads on my family land or log it," he
says. "If they ask, I will never give permission."
"My people have been coming to the spiritual site for thousands of years," Mathias says. "It is my duty to protect its integrity."
The Spirit Rock is located at the eastern boundary of the Obabika River Park. Earlier this week, environment group Earthroots denounced the clear-cutting (see Feb 11 story) adjoining the park because it threatened an endangered old-growth ecosystem within the park, and required re-opening the Red Squirrel Road. In 1989, 344 people were arrested blockading construction.
Alex Mathias is the last Temagami aboriginal living off the reserve on ancestral family land. In 1992, he became family head and the following year he moved back to the land. He lives on Obabika Lake, just west of Lake Temagami, four kilometres from the sacred site.
BACKGROUNDER: Alex Mathias
February 11, 2002
Triangle logging opposed,
environmentalists call for public's help
Earthroots is opposing logging and new road construction in the Wakimika Triangle area. Either activity could begin as early as April 1. Access to the stands west of Sharp Rock require re-opening the west end of Red Squirrel Road. That road has been abandoned for ten years.
Earthroots opposes the logging for the following reasons:
The timber will be exported to mills outside of Temagami and all bush work will be done by non-Temagami companies.
Wakimika Triangle old growth
ministry says it is leaving a 200-meter reserve next to the old-growth
stand. "We really don't know what a safe buffer is in this
case," says old-growth scientist Dr. Peter Quinby. "Research
has shown that highways can adversely affect fisher and black bear
populations for several kilometers away from the highway. Until we have at
least a basic understanding of the impacts of clear-cutting on adjacent
old-growth ecosystems and their resident species, logging should be
Ministry forester Kevin Rankin says an alternative to the Red Squirrel Road and the road across the reserve is to build a road from the south. "We discussed the option of a road across the Obabika Inlet." The result of these new roads would be the road encirclement of Lake Temagami.
Red Squirrel Road
MNR forester's job is to cut," says Richard Brooks of Earthroots.
"His only alternative is to find a way to do it under the public's
radar, so he dwells on roads, as they are the most visible. You go to his
superiors to stop the clear-cutting."
is calling on the public to contact MNR's district manager. The
group is asking for the public's help in calling for a halt to logging of
blocks 30 and 46. "It is important to give two or more reasons for
your opposition," says Richard Brooks. "The timing on this is urgent,
so comments should be sent in right away."
The group is asking for the public's help in calling for a halt to logging of blocks 30 and 46. "It is important to give two or more reasons for your opposition," says Richard Brooks. "The timing on this is urgent, so comments should be sent in right away."
Dave Payne firstname.lastname@example.org
District Manager 705-475-5599
Ministry of Natural Resources
3301 Trout Lake Rd
February 8, 2002
Slush on Lake Temagami
February 7, 2002
Ottertooth wins second award
February 6, 2002
Migratory birds harmed by logging
Up to 85,000 bird nests are being destroyed annually in Ontario by logging, says a coalition of nine environment groups.
“The lack of protection for migratory birds is a national embarrassment,” says Richard Brooks of Earthroots. “The expansion of clear-cutting in Ontario will only lead to further loss of birds in coming years."
An access-to-information request by the coalition to the Canadian Wildlife Service revealed no charges have been laid against logging companies for destroying bird nests.
February 5, 2002
Temagami old growth threatened, says scientist
Logging in the vicinity of old-growth forest is a threat to its survival, says old-growth scientist Dr. Peter Quinby.
Logging is planned adjoining the ancient stands in the Wakimika Triangle. "Any further damage from logging could be irreversible,” Quinby says.
“Research shows that old-growth forests surrounded by uncut wilderness areas regenerate better than small islands of old-growth surrounded by logging roads and clear-cuts.”
Environment group Earthroots is calling on the Ontario government to create protected areas around the ancient forests.
M A P: Planned logging
February 2 (left) — Ice road, looking north toward the Mine Landing (right background).
Photo: Tim Gooderham
February 1 (right) — Loon Lodge, yesterday near Manitou Landing.
Photo: Tim Gooderham
February 1, 2002
Dispatch from Temagami Tim
We have finally had some cold weather, which has produced a barely adequate amount of ice. But it is not a good idea to go where no one has not gone before.
Yesterday afternoon I went down the Northeast Arm by snowmobile and it was pretty rough. There are frozen pools of slush and old track ruts through the slush that are frozen solid and about a foot deep. One would be very foolish to try to go faster than 30 mph. Most travellers have been freelancing far off the staked "trail." Snow is forecast for tonight and tomorrow. That should smooth things out a bit. Maybe Temagami Trails will be able to bring the small snowmobile-trail groomer up the arm. It is highly unlikely that the large groomer will see the lake this winter — it needs about 16 inches of solid ice and we don't have that yet.
Nevertheless, John Moskwa of Loon Lodge has been working diligently to produce the normal nice parking area in front of the lodge (above photo). You will note that the cars are not parked very close together. That is prudent!
— Tim Gooderham
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