June 3, 1921 (13th Parliament, 5th Session)


Lawrence Geoffrey Power



Last year I urged upon the Minister of the Interior to add to the grant of $4,000 to the Canadian Forestry Association, $4,000 or $5,000 more, and I also suggested, as my hon. friend (Mr. Jacobs) has suggested, that we cut out the $1,000 which we granted the Alpine Club.
. I am sure that if the minister were aware of the good work done by the Canadian Forestry Association to preserve our forests he would take more interest in it and be willing to grant a larger sum. The Forestry Association has a car which goes from one end of Canada to the other demonstrating the best means of fire protection and tree culture. They also have moving pictures and they go among the settlers, the colons as we call them in Quebec, teaching them the best means of setting fires in order to clear the land. By means of lectures, they impress upon the people the extreme importance of preserving to our country one of its greatest natural resources, namely, the forests. If there is one object which ought to be aided by the Government, it is the work of the Canadian Forestry Association. This association has been in existence for some time, and through its efforts the provincial governments and others hqve been aroused to the great importance of forest conservation. When the Forestry Association was first instituted, I doubt whether any of the provinces had taken steps to conserve this natural heritage. Now, owing to the efforts of this association, and some of the zealous members of it in particular, we have, in nearly all of the provinces, laws which eventually will make for the adequate protection and preservation of our forests for future generations. I wish to impress once more upon the minister the fact that the Alpine Club gets a grant of $1,000 which is not justifiable. What good that club does the country, I do not know.

Last year I was told by the present Prime Minister that it brought a lot of tourists. That may be true; but so do the Canadian Pacific Railway and all the other railways and shipping lines. We might just as well give $1,000 to the Canadian Pacific Railway, or to any of the steamship companies, as to the Alpine Club, in so far as bringing strangers to the country is concerned. The lumber business certainly brings capital into the country to help to develop it, and if we could help the Forestry Association in their efforts to preserve the resources we have, we should be better off than by bringing in a few tourists to spend a few dollars in the country.

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