Newfoundland: Rare lichen leads to layoffs
A story reminiscent of a Simpsons episode in which Homer is forced by a Government Agency to care for an annoying Rare Screaming Caterpiller discovered in his yard. Now, Art imitates Life when a Rare Fungus is discovered growing on trees has resulted in more layoffs on the "Rock" (Newfoundland), resulting in loggers collecting Unemployment benefits and or leaving the Province for job opportunities elsewhere.
One wonders if Newfoundland Politicians 60 years ago could foretell their Fate when Newfoundland gave up it's independance for a lifelong career of dependence when joining Canada as our 10th province. In the last few decades Resource Rich Newfoundlanders feel they signed away their birthright, Fishing, Oil and Mineral Resources to Canada and Big Corporates in exchange for very little.
Rare lichen find leads to layoffs of 11 loggers
Peter Walsh, St. John's Telegram
Published: Friday, September 07, 2007
ST. JOHN'S, N.L. -- The discovery of a rare species of lichen has caused a Newfoundland company to lay off 11 loggers, and the bad news for employees isn't over.
"There's more [layoffs] to come," said Paul Garland, owner of Forest Products.
"We've been told [by the Forestry Department] that because there's a moss or a lichen or whatever that's on a tree, we're not going to be allowed to cut anymore. It's as simple as that."
The company's employees are angry and bewildered by the news.
"I have recently gotten engaged and have been very comfortable in the fact that my job is only five minutes away from my front door knowing that I won't have to leave here. But now it looks like I was wrong," said William Barrett.
Colin Lundrigan says that "for the past three years I have watched my brothers leave their families and head to Alberta for work. Now I have to face the fact that the next person saying goodbye to their family may be me. It is unfair and sad that we are being forced to go elsewhere to survive when we are capable of doing it here."
The lichen in question is called Erioderma pedicellatum, also known as Boreal Felt Lichen. The website for the Newfoundland Lichen Education and Research Group describes the lichen as "a model species in lichen conservation biology as an indicator species, or early warning indicator, of boreal forest ecosystem health."