Clergue Forest Management is fending off accusations by an environmental group that accuses them of skirting provincial clearcut regulations.
Earthroots claims the Sault Ste. Marie-based holder of a sustainable forest licence in the Wawa area has been allowed 15 exceptions to the Ministry of Natural Resources' regulations according to the 2000-2005 Wawa Forest Management Plan.
The group reports 46 per cent of the 16,000 hectares of poplar, spruce and jackpine harvested over five years exceeds the 260-hectares maximum limit set by the Environmental Assessment Board (EAB).
Clergue claims their practices are ecologically sound for sustainable harvesting and emulate natural disturbances such as fire forests. They add, only mature trees are taken with smaller trees left to seed.
Earthroots reports other illegal clearcuts are taking place in the Gorden Cosen forest near Timmins and in the Temagami forest.