- President - Elaine Kennedy
- Vice President - George Velema
- Treasurer - Dorothy Hamilton
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The S.D.&G. Chapter of the OWA (S.D.&G. OWA) is a Not-for-Profit service organization of private woodlot owners within the United Counties of Stormont, Dundas & Glengarry (S.D.&G.) that promotes responsible and long-term forest management practices.
The Chapter operates entirely within the boundaries of the S.D.&G. (330,646 ha) and is almost equally split between the South Nation and Raisin Region Conservation Authorities.
The Chapter’s objectives are:
• advocate for the protection of forests in Stormont, Dundas & Glengarry, while promoting their environmental, economic and social benefits.
• promote sustainable woodlot management through Forest Certification.
• provide forest based educational opportunities to its members and the general public.
• work with partners to promote business assistance to its members for their forest related endeavours.
• facilitate professional woodlot management advice to members through approved forestry consultants.
• encourage responsible resource management, of, for example air, water, soil, wildlife, by private landowners in Stormont Dundas & Glengarry through education and partnership.
Though there was a significant drop in the County’s forest cover (3.7%) between 2009 to 2014, it remains at 30.1%, which at a landscape level, is considered the minimum target to maintain a healthy watershed. Forest stands are small and highly fragmented located in populated regions amongst roads, waterways, farms and residential developments. Most local woodlots are comprised of low to medium quality wood products (firewood/pulp). Landowners face several challenges, most notably how to sustainably manage their woodlots and market their wood.
In 2005, with the closure of the Domtar mill in Cornwall, the S.D.&G. Resource Stewardship Council (RSC) felt there was a need to develop a woodlot owner’s organization focused on sustainable woodlot management. The RSC decided that Forest Certification (FSC) maintained by the Eastern Ontario Model Forest (EOMF), would provide the best solution for woodlot owners and in 2006, the S.D.&G. Certified Forest Owners (S.D.&G. CFO) was formed with 8 members.
By 2012, through an Ontario Trillium Grant, the S.D.&G. CFO grew to 55 members. However, with organizational costs rising and few market opportunities using forest certification, the S.D.&G. CFO was dissolved and the S.D.&G. Chapter of the Ontario Woodlot Association (S.D.&G. OWA) formed.
With an office in Finch, the Chapter participates with South Nation Conservation and Raisin Region Conservation to offer forestry services, workshops and tours to woodlot owners and works with other resourced based organizations such as the St. Lawrence River Restoration Council and Upper St. Lawrence River Protection Network to promote forest protection and restoration.
The S.D.&G. OWA promotes two (2) forest rebate programs. The first rebate ($500) is for landowners who submit a forest management plan under the Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program (MFTIP). The second rebate ($500) is for landowners under the Alternative Land Use Services (ALUS) program to plant woody materials. The Chapter also sponsors the annual Glengarry Wood Fair and Wood Auction in Dunvegan.
The S.D.&G. OWA currently has 76 chapter members who own over 1,460 ha (4,000 ac.) of forested land.