New Brunswick’s forestry sector is an important economic driver for the province, employing more than 24,000 people. Ensuring the long-term sustainability of our forest and maintaining the competitiveness in this important sector requires a balance of renewal, harvest and regeneration.
Herbicides are an important vegetation management tool and are used as part of a strategic approach to forest management. The products used in today’s forestry sector have been widely studied and widely-used for 40 years. Modern forestry practices are designed by professional foresters and biologists using state-of-the-art technology and best management practices.
The use of registered herbicides is designed to free young conifer trees from immediate competition by suppressing undesirable overtopping or surrounding vegetation and is often necessary during the critical years of establishment.
Extensive oversight is in place for the use of herbicides in New Brunswick forests, including:
- The application of herbicides is regulated by both the federal and provincial governments. They work in partnership to ensure safe and responsible herbicide use.
- All pest control products used in New Brunswick must be registered by Health Canada's Pest Management Regulatory Agency.
- The Department of Environment and Local Government provides additional safety by requiring applicator certification in relation to knowledge testing and permitting for the use of non-domestic pesticides to ensure that pesticides are used correctly and safely.
- The permit outlines terms and conditions aimed at protecting the environment, and include such conditions as requiring setbacks to sensitive environmental features, restrictions on application during windy conditions and the requirement to notify the public.
- Additionally, aerial spray units are fully calibrated and equipped with modern spray equipment technology, using GPS guidance systems.
It is important to know that the Government of New Brunswick relies on the expert evaluation and decisions from Health Canada to make decisions based on facts and scientific data.
Glyphosate undergoes routine re-evaluation by Health Canada. The re-evaluation decision announced on April 28, 2017 concluded that products containing glyphosate do not present unacceptable risks to human health or the environment when used according to the label directions.
More information about the use of herbicides in New Brunswick is available at www.ForestInfo.ca.