REPORTS OF COMMITTEE ON FORESTS 93 years would in the aggregate be heavy, while there is, at the same time, a strong demand for the surplus revenues for purposes of general
governmental administration, the problem is undoubtedly a difficult one. It seems probable that the situation could best be met by the adoption of a definite policy which would result in the reservation and placing under protection each year of a limited but definite area of young forest growth, found upon examination to be most suitable for this purpose. An excellent step in this direction was the addition last year of 2,000 square miles to the Mississagi forest reserve, and 811 square miles to the Algonquin park; but this constitutes only the beginning of what should be adopted as a definite and continuing policy.
The necessity for further protection of important
Protection watersheds must also be considered. Water-power
development is now a vital factor in the industrial life
of the province, and this importance is bound to increase tremendously in the future. For the intelligent protection of this great interest, forest preservation is absolutely essential. A concrete example of this relationship was brought to the attention of the Commission at the annual meeting a year ago, by Mr. J. B. Challies, Superintendent of the Dominion Water Power Branch. As a result of the representations made by Mr. Challies, a resolution was adopted by the Commission, favouring the establishment of a forest reserve on the tipper waters of the Winnipeg river, and especially on the watershed of the lake of the Woods. So far as known, however, no action has been taken by the Ontario Government.
At the last two annual meetings of the Commission, there has been full discussion of the situation on the watershed of the Trent canal, and resolutions have been adopted and transmitted to the Ontario Government. However, so far as known, there has been no action taken, and the situation remains unchanged.
The land surface of this watershed comprises some 2,000 square miles, of which about one-third, or 725 square miles, still remains in the ownership of the Provincial Government. Of this, 450 square miles are still under license, while 275 square miles, or 176,000 acres, represent limits which have reverted to the Crown, after the licenses had lapsed or been abandoned. These Crown lands are practically all non-agricultural, and are chiefly valuable for forestry purposes.
It is understood that, on account of financial considerations, and the existence of very large areas of similar or better forest lands in the province, for which it is impracticable at the present time to pro-