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Those responsible for negotiating and extending the 2010 Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement (CBFA) are on a charm offensive, claiming that the agreement has been a great success, and should be a template for similar agreements in industries such as oil and gas.
No word if they are also pushing a Canadian Flying Pig Agreement (CFPA).
Under the CBFA, members of the Forest Products Association of Canada, FPAC, were forced into bed with a group of radical anti-development environmental NGOs — including the Suzuki Foundation, Greenpeace and ForestEthics — to negotiate development of one of the largest forests in the world.
Avrim Lazar, the former bureaucrat who headed the association when the deal was signed, is doing the media rounds explaining how boffo the CBFA has been. Also on the promotion circuit are Bruce “Slow Death by Rubber Duck” Lourie, a renowned chemophobe and environmental alarmist, and Aran O’Carroll, the CBFA’s interim executive director. Mr. Lourie, as president of the Ivey Foundation, helped “broker” the CBFA, along with the giant U.S.-based Pew Charitable Trusts, the ironic legacy of the Pew family that pioneered commercial development of Canada’s oil sands.
The charm offensive landed at The Globe and Mail recently, where it met with great enthusiasm and prompted the Globe‘s editorial board to hail the boreal agreement as a “great achievement” without once mentioning that there are more than a few flies in the boreal forest PR beauty cream. Or should that be pig lipstick?
Not only has the CBFA achieved little or nothing in the past three years — a fact acknowledged by an unreleased internal audit — it set a disastrous example of corporate appeasement. The forest association’s corporate members signed up mainly in return for the ENGOs promising to call off their Do Not Buy campaigns, which featured disinformation and intimidation of customers.
Subsequently, the ENGOs have viciously attacked any corporate signatory who refused to fold to their demands. The company that has attracted the most flak — and demonstrated the backbone that appears sorely lacking among other corporate members of FPAC — is Resolute Forest Products.
Earlier this year, Montreal-based Resolute sued Greenpeace — which had withdrawn from the CBFA citing its lack of progress — for “defamation, malicious falsehood and intentional interference with economic relations.”
For the rest of this article, click here: http://opinion.financialpost.com/2013/10/02/peter-foster-the-boreal-flying-pigs-agreement/