Forests Ontario looks to safely plant trees this spring
Posted: April 15, 2020
By Rob Keen, RPF
CEO, Forests Ontario
Forests Ontario wants to acknowledge and deeply thank the frontline workers: those in hospitals and public health units, and those that service our retail stores and home delivery services. Most of these individuals have families and no doubt would prefer to be home safe with them. Regardless, they are putting themselves in harm’s way to help flatline the spread of this virus. We all need to work together. Let’s do our part by just staying home.
At Forests Ontario, our top priority is the health and safety of our staff, our partners, our members and our community. Our staff are working from home. Even so, we are seeking ways with our partners and nurseries to safely deliver our tree planting programs this spring, albeit likely with a longer season given operational constraints to ensure physical distancing. We have postponed our spring community tree planting events to the fall. We will deliver our education programs, such as Ontario Envirothon, through virtual means.
During this trying time, Canadians have shown an impressive capacity to pull together. This gives me hope that we can continue to team up to combat other global threats: climate change and biodiversity loss. Some call this pandemic a symptom of our planet’s need for healing. World leaders have advocated that nature-based climate solutions, such as increasing natural landscapes, forests, grasslands and wetlands, are key mitigation measures. Climate change will continue to impact our health, our safety and the resilience of our natural environments. We must find ways to enhance the planet’s health through strengthening our natural systems. It speaks to the axiom: healthy ecosystems sustain healthy people and a healthy economy. It is not the other way around.
Even with our staff all working remotely, FO continues to be fully functional. We are available to communicate with you through email, texting, video conferencing, etc. Thank you for your continued support to ensure a healthy future for us all. Please feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions about our programs or events.