Canada Forest Program – For Two Billion Trees

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OTTAWA: Natural Resources Canada is looking to engage those interested in growing Canada’s forests as a nature-based solution to support national climate change actions.

If any organization has access to land for tree planting, has trees to plant, is looking to invest in a tree-planting project, is looking to help meet the increasing demand for seedlings or are seeking to participate in this historic program, they can request for information and/or express interest in the process.

These could be for large-scale single or multiple-year tree planting projects.

Expressions of interest could be to implement new tree planting projects or add to existing tree projects for the 2021 season. The Growing Canada’s Forests (GCF) program is the Government of Canada’s response to its commitment to plant an additional two billion trees by 2030.

The government, however, pointed out that Neither the Request for Information nor the Expression of Interest is a Request for Proposals (RFP). Participation in either process does not guarantee that Natural Resources Canada will enter into a funding agreement.

The Future Participants Request for Information (RFI) seeks to identify opportunities for tree planting projects from organizations across Canada.

This RFI is for organizations:
• interested in implementing or contributing to large-scale multiyear tree planting projects
• looking to collaborate The deadline for RFI is Thursday, May 27, 2021, 5:00 pm EDT The Early Start Projects Expression of Interest (EOI) seeks to identify potential cost-sharing projects for the 2021 season.

This EOI is for organizations with:
• proven experience in delivering large-scale tree planting projects, and
• access to trees and land

The deadline for submitting EOI is Thursday, March 25, 2021, 5:00 pm EDT The Growing Canada’s Forests (GCF) program aims to motivate and support new tree planting projects. Supplementary activities (e.g. additional tree planting) to expand existing tree planting projects are included.

Trees can be planted:
• on public and private lands
• in remote, rural, suburban and urban areas
• via afforestation, which is the creation of new forest cover on lands that currently do not have trees (e.g abandoned fields)
• via reforestation, which is the regeneration of forests that have temporarily lost their tree cover through natural disturbances (e.g. wildland fire) or in areas where commercial disturbances (e.g. forestry roads and landings, mining or seismic lines) have occurred.
• to restore forest habitat, including under-recovery strategies for species at risk, conservation agreements and related planning processes (e.g. range plans). Tree planting projects must comply with provincial, territorial and federal laws that have authority over the management of most forested land in their jurisdictions.

There are many types of natural ecosystems and these environments contribute to biodiversity. To maintain a diversity of ecosystems in Canada, tree planting projects funded by Growing Canada’s Forests program cannot occur on lands where other ecosystems provide unique habitats for plants and animals.

For example, native grassland ecosystems are dominated by species of grasses and shrubs unique to these environments and some animal species have adapted to thrive in these conditions.

In this example, GCF funding cannot be used to plant trees in a native grassland ecosystem because adding trees would affect the ecological integrity of that existing ecosystem.

The program will not fund tree planting projects:
• that help organization meet their legal obligations o regenerate forests
• for which funding has already been identified
Tree planting projects to regenerate forests following commercial harvesting on public lands will not be funded as this is a legal obligation under sustainable forest management regimes.

The Government of Canada is committed to planting an additional two billion Trees over the
next 10 years as part of a broader approach to nature-based climate solutions. In its Fall Economic Statement of 2020, the Government allocated up to $3.16 billion over ten years for this effort.

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