April 10, 1915 (12th Parliament, 5th Session)


Robert Laird Borden (Prime Minister; Secretary of State for External Affairs; President of the Privy Council)

Conservative (1867-1942)


Perhaps I might be permitted to give to the House some information with regard to the Commission of Conservation, which was asked for while we were in Supply, but which was not available at the moment. The following memorandum has been handed to me by the secretary of the Commission:
The work to be carried on in 1915-16 can best be described as being, substantially, a continuation of that undertaken during the year which has just elapsed, although investigatory work of a nature not entered upon heretofore Is being instituted by one of two committees and later developments may further modify the proposed work. In 1914-15, investigations have been carried out under the direction of the various committees as follows:
Waters and Water-powers.
The preparation of reports based on information secured by field work conducted by the commission in preceding years constituted the main task of this committee during 1914-15. Mr. Denis has been engaged in assembling and arranging in proper form the material to be embodied in a comprehensive report on tse water-powers of Manitoba and Saskatchewan

and Alberta, The collecting and collating of data from all available sources to supplement that obtained from reconnaissance surveys has been a task of considerable magnitude. The report is now being passed through the press, as expeditiously as possible.
Mr. Denis has practically completed the preparation of a second edition of " Water-Works of Canada," which, it is anticipated, will be published early in the ensuing year. In addition to the original material, revised and corrected, the new edition includes information relative to sewerage arid sewage disposal.
Special effort has been made to advance the completion of the proposed report dealing with the water-powers of British Columbia. The work of collecting data has been completed and Mr. A. V. White will direct his attention to the preparation of the manuscript, for the printer.
Early in the past year, the Trent watershed report was issued. It is of special value in respect to the conservation of the water-supply of the Trent canal and of the water-powers along the Trent river. The area selected also typifies the large portion of central Ontario which has been nearly denuded of forest wealth; fires have raged practically unchecked and nothing has been done in the way of reforestation, although the agricultural resources are known to be extremely limited.
During the past summer, Dr. Whitfcrd and Mr. Craig continued the inventory of British Columbia's forest resources commenced in 1913. Data respecting over 200,000 square miles has now been secured. During the summer, Mr. J. C. Blumer was engaged on similar work in Saskatchewan. In British Columbia, the provincial forestry branch, and, in Saskatchewan, the Dominion forestry branch are giving valuable assistance. It is hoped to complete ttus work in the coming year.
Dr. Hcwe has submitted a report embodying the results of his studies undertaken in the summer of 1913, with special reference to the rate of growth of timber trees and to the damage done by the disastrous fires of 1913 in the Trent regions. It will be published shortly together with the results of an investigation conducted last summer by Dr. Howe to determine the most favourable conditions for the reproduction of commercial tree species in the coastal regions of British Columbia, more particularly of Douglas fir, the most valuable and most widely-distributed species in the province. Dr. Howe emphasizes, that reliance cannot be placed on nature alone to provide adequately for the replacement of commercial forests on cut-over and burned-over areas.
As chief fire inspector of the Railway Commission, the chief forester, Mr. Leavitt, has again supervised the patrol work of the railway lines of western Canada, the immediate supervision being entrusted to the field staff of the Forestry Branch of the Department of the Interior, and of the chief forester of British Columbia. In organizing this work throughout the Dominion, co-operation has been effected with the governmental fire-protective forces of every province, except Nova Scotia. Through the action of the provincial governments and through the reorganization of the Canadian Northern railway system, nearly all provm-cially chartered lines have been subjected to fire-protective requirements similar to those

imposed by the Railway Commission upon lines operating under Domnion charters.
Public Health.
The outstanding feature of the work of this committee last year was the development of town-planning activities. In May the commission acted as host to the National Town Planning Association at the convention held in Toronto. During the early part of the year, Dr. Hodgetts was engaged chiefly in the study of town-planning legislation until called in September to take the place of Colonel Burland as Canadian Red Cross Commissioner to England. His absence has necessitated the temporary abandonment of public health work of the nature usually undertaken. Subsequent to the convention in May, it was decided to create a town-planning branch of the commission, and the services of Mr. Thomas Adams, the foremost English authority on the subject, were engaged. Since taking up his duties in October, Mr. Adams has been investigating Canadian problems and conditions and has conducted an educational and publicity campaign. His services and advice have been eagerly sought by municipal and provincial bodies.
An agricultural survey has again been carried on, the work being conducted along the same lines, in the same districts and by practically the same staff as in 1913.
The illustration farms, thirty-three in number, have been carried on as in the previous year. The travelling instructors visited the farms as often as possible to confer with and discuss methods and results with the farmer on each one. During the summer months, meetings were held on many of the farms and the work undertaken by the farmers was closely supervised and inspected. As the purpose of the commission has been achieved in placing this illustration work on a sound basis, the farms have been turned over to and will hereafter be conducted by the Department of Agriculture. The commission intends to continue the survey work, although along lines somewhat different from those hitherto followed.
During recent months the agriculturists of the commission's staff have participated in the platform work connected with the " patriotism and production " campaign.
A report on " conservation of coal in Canada " was published early in the fiscal year. During the year, substantial progress has been made by Mr. Dick on a power survey of Canada. The information collected will be published in a report showing the amount, proportion, source, cost and purpose of utilization of the various kinds of power, water, steam, electric, etc. The completion of the report will require the greater portion of the ensuing jtear. During 1914, the mining engineer has furnished brief reports relative to briquetting of coal in Western Canada, mine-rescue work, first-aid, trade with Germany, etc.
Fish, Game and Fur-Bearing Animals.
A third edition of "fur-farming in Canada " has been issued. Two editions of this report, first published in 1913', had been quickly exhausted and the third edition, thoroughly revised and somewhat enlarged, has met with a heavy demand despite the check imposed upon the expansion of the fur-farming industry by present financial conditions.
Special attention has recently been paid by the editorial staff to fisheries questions, particularly to a publicity campaign to popularize the use of fish for food purposes. In the ensuing fiscal year, the committee intends to prosecute active study of practical fisheries problems.
Press and Co-Operative Associations.
The value of the commission's investigatory work depends largely upon efficiency in publishing and distributing reports embodying the results of the field investigations. During the ensuing year the publishing work will be unusually heavy. Manuscript for the following reports is now either being passed through the press or undergoing final preparation for that purpose: Sixth Annual Report, Water-Powers of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta, Forest Protection in Canada, 1914, Water-Works of Canada (2nd edition), Water-Powers of British Columbia, and Power Survey of Canada. In addition to these bound reports, two periodical bulletins, Conservation, a monthly, and Conservation of Life, a bi-monthly, are published and widely circulated.
I beg to submit herewith the estimates for salaries for the Commission of Conservation for, the fiscal year, 1915-16, which includes recommendations for increase of salary.
The present staff, with salaries recommended for 1915-16, consists of:
White, James, assistant to chairman and deputy
Leavitt, Clyde, chief forester and chief fire inspector to Railway
Commission 2,900 00
Master, Oliver, assistant
secretary and editor... 2,800 00
Denis, L. G., hydro-electric engineer
2,475 00Dick, W. J., mining engineer
2,475 00
Nunnick, F. C., e xp e r t
agriculturist * 2,400 00

, fisheries expert... 2,200 00

, assistant agriculturist
2,100 00Grindlay, Thos., draughtsman
1,812 50
Baldwin, P. M., assistant
1,800 00Donnell, A., assistant editor
1,700 00
Johnston, Miss N. F., secretary to assistant to
chairman 900 00
Macdonald J. A., clerk in
charge of Distribution. 900 00
Grange, Miss H., librarian 900 00
Morris, Miss O., accountant 900 00
Campbell, Miss I., clerk. 700 00
Hawkins, Miss L., Stenographer 700 00
Pepper, Miss N., stenographer 65000
Burwash, Miss L., stenographer 63750

[DOT], stenographer. 600 00

2.575 00
2.575 00
2,500 00 2,300 00
2,200 00
1,862 50
1,850 00
1,750 00
950 00
950 00
950 00
950 00 750 00
750 00
700 00
687 50 650 00

Miss A. Beaulieu, stenographer 600 00 650 00
McElroy, Miss K., steno-
grapher 600 00 650 00, stenographer.. 500 00 550 00Carroll, James, messen- ger and packer . . .. 600 00 650 00O'Connor, W. J., messen- ger and packer 550 00 600 00Corp, P. J., messenger and packer 500 00 550 00$37,900 00 $39,400 00

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