A-18.1 - Sustainable Forest Development Act

Full text
chapter A-18.1
Sustainable Forest Development Act
SUSTAINABLE FOREST DEVELOPMENTApril 1 2010April 1 2010
AS forests cover an enormous area and constitute a social wealth of inestimable value for present and future generations;
AS forests have helped forge Québec’s identity and must continue to be a source of pride;
AS it is important to promote a forest culture in Québec by raising public awareness so that the public may contribute to sustainable forest development and forest management;
AS forests play a crucial role in maintaining ecological processes and the ecological balance at local, national and global levels, in particular by helping to counter climate change, protect land and water ecosystems and preserve biodiversity;
AS forests also serve to meet many socio-economic needs;
AS it is important to sustain the viability of forest communities, in particular by increasing and developing forest products and services, promoting the use of wood, developing an innovative, productive and competitive industry and ensuring the perpetuity of forests in keeping with the principle of sustainable development;
AS it is expedient to establish a forest management model that is based on new approaches to forest development and that takes into account the impact of climate change on the forest, the interests, values and needs of Native communities and the regions of Québec, as well as the economic, ecological and social potential of the forest and all the products derived from it;

THE PARLIAMENT OF QUÉBEC ENACTS AS FOLLOWS:
TITLE I
GENERAL PROVISIONS
CHAPTER I
OBJECT, SCOPE AND OTHER PROVISIONS
1. This Act establishes a forest regime designed to
(1)  implement sustainable forest development, in particular through ecosystem-based development;
(2)  ensure integrated and regionalized resource and land management based on clear, consistent objectives, measurable results and the accountability of managers and users of the forest;
(3)  determine how responsibilities under the forest regime are shared between the State, regional bodies, Native communities and users of the forest;
(4)  follow up and monitor forest operations in the domain of the State;
(5)  govern the sale of timber and other forest products on the open market at a price reflecting their market value, and the supply of timber to wood processing plants;
(6)  regulate the development of private forests; and
(7)  govern forest protection activities.
2010, c. 3, s. 1.
2. Sustainable forest development must contribute, in particular, to
(1)  the preservation of biological diversity;
(2)  the maintenance and improvement of the condition and productivity of forest ecosystems;
(3)  the conservation of soil and water;
(4)  the maintenance of forest ecosystem contributions to major ecological cycles;
(5)  the maintenance of the many socio-economic benefits society derives from forests; and
(6)  the consideration, in making development choices, of the values and needs expressed by the populations concerned.
2010, c. 3, s. 2.
3. This Act applies to the forests in the domain of the State and forests belonging to private owners or held under a title of ownership by a Native landholding corporation to which the Act respecting the land regime in the James Bay and New Québec territories (chapter R-13.1) applies, to the extent provided for in this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 3.
4. For the purposes of this Act,
(1)  forest development activity means an activity related to timber felling and harvesting, the operation of a sugar bush, the construction, improvement, repair, maintenance or closure of infrastructures, the carrying out of silvicultural treatments, including reforestation and the use of fire, fire protection, the suppression of insect epidemics, cryptogamic diseases and competing vegetation, and all similar activities that tangibly affect forest resources;
(2)  ecosystem-based development means development that consists in ensuring the preservation of the biodiversity and viability of ecosystems by reducing the differences between developed and natural forests;
(3)  wood-processing plant means a set of facilities for processing rough or partially processed timber.
2010, c. 3, s. 4.
CHAPTER II
PROVISIONS SPECIFIC TO NATIVE COMMUNITIES
6. Taking account of the interests, values and needs of the Native communities present on forest lands is an integral part of sustainable forest development.
2010, c. 3, s. 6.
7. The Minister must consult Native communities specifically to ensure that sustainable forest development and forest management take into account, and accommodate if necessary, their interests, values and needs.
The Minister must ensure that the consultation policy drawn up under section 9 includes a procedure that is specific to Native communities, established in a spirit of collaboration with those communities.
2010, c. 3, s. 7.
8. The Government is authorized to enter into agreements with any Native community represented by its band council to enable the members of the community to carry out and follow up on certain forest development activities, and to support sustainable forest development.
2010, c. 3, s. 8.
CHAPTER III
CONSULTATION POLICY
9. The Minister draws up, makes public and keeps up to date a consultation policy that fosters the participation of persons and bodies affected by the priorities for sustainable forest development and forest management.
Before the policy is published, the Minister consults the Native communities and the general public. The same applies to any change in the policy.
The Minister sees that the consultation policy is implemented and establishes a Forestry Partners Panel under it. The Minister appoints the panel members and sets its operating rules.
2010, c. 3, s. 9.
10. The consultation policy sets out, among other things, its objects, a consultation process adjusted to its objects or to the persons or bodies consulted, and a consultation procedure specific to Native communities.
2010, c. 3, s. 10.
CHAPTER IV
SUSTAINABLE FOREST DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY
11. In collaboration with the Minister of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks, the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and the ministers or public bodies concerned, the Minister draws up a sustainable forest development strategy. The Minister makes the strategy public, implements it and keeps it up to date.
Before the policy is published, the Minister consults the Native communities and the general public. The same applies to any change in the policy.
2010, c. 3, s. 11.
12. The strategy sets out the approach chosen and the sustainable development policy directions and objectives applicable to forest lands, in particular with regard to ecosystem-based development.
The strategy also defines the mechanisms and means required for its implementation, follow-up and evaluation.
The strategy is to form the basis of any sustainable forest development instrument set up by the State, the regional bodies, the Native communities and the users of the forest.
2010, c. 3, s. 12.
TITLE II
FORESTS IN THE DOMAIN OF THE STATE
CHAPTER II
INCREASING TIMBER PRODUCTION
36. The Minister sets criteria for identifying areas of high forestry potential where increased timber production may be seriously considered.
2010, c. 3, s. 36.
37. The Minister sends a map showing the location of those areas to the regional conferences of elected officers, which will consult the regions, and to the Native communities concerned.
After the necessary consultations have been carried out, the regional conferences of elected officers and the Native communities concerned propose to the Minister the areas, from among those referred to in section 38, in which they would like to see timber production given priority. These proposals are taken into account in the regional and local consultation process leading to the creation of integrated forest development plans.
2010, c. 3, s. 37.
CHAPTER V
CHIEF FORESTER
45. The position of chief forester is established within the department. The chief forester exercises the functions outlined in this chapter in keeping with the principle of sustainable development and in the independent manner provided for in this Act.
The Government appoints a chief forester from among at least three persons approved by a committee following a selection process established by the Government. The committee is to be composed of three members appointed by the Government.
The chief forester holds the position of associate deputy minister, in accordance with the Public Service Act (chapter F-3.1.1), for a five-year term.
2010, c. 3, s. 45.
46. The functions of the chief forester, in keeping with the policy directions and objectives of the sustainable forest development strategy, consist in
(1)  establishing the methods, means and tools required to calculate allowable cuts in the forests in the domain of the State;
(2)  determining the forest data and ecological data required to carry out the analyses used to determine allowable cuts;
(3)  preparing, publishing and keeping up to date a sustainable forest development manual to be used for determining allowable cuts;
(4)  on the request of the Minister, providing the support needed to establish forest development strategies as part of the forest planning process;
(5)  determining allowable cuts for forest development units and local forests, given the regional and local sustainable forest development objectives;
(6)  reviewing allowable cuts every five years and, if necessary, updating them;
(7)  at the Minister’s request, changing the allowable cuts assigned to an area, if circumstances are such that sustainable forest development could be compromised without an immediate change or if, on the basis of the same considerations as were used to determine them, allowable cuts may be revised upwards;
(8)  making allowable cuts, their date of coming into force and the grounds for their determination public; and
(9)  analyzing the sustainable forest development results achieved in the forests in the domain of the State and sending the analysis to the Minister at the time and subject to the conditions set by the Minister.
The date of coming into force of the allowable cuts determined or revised by the chief forester corresponds to the date of coming into force of the tactical plans for integrated forest development. The date of coming into force of the allowable cuts changed by the chief forester under subparagraph 7 of the first paragraph is set by the Minister, but may not be prior to 1 April following the year the change was applied for.
2010, c. 3, s. 46.
47. The chief forester is also responsible for advising the Minister on policy and planning in forestry research and development, on the northern boundary line and the boundaries of development units and local forests, on the activities to be carried out to optimize forest development strategies and on any other matter that, in the opinion of the chief forester, requires government action or attention.
The Minister may entrust any forestry mandate to the chief forester and ask the chief forester for advice on any matter related to private forests or the forests in the domain of the State.
The advisory opinions of the chief forester must be available to the public.
2010, c. 3, s. 47.
48. The allowable cuts determined by the chief forester with regard to forest development activities carried out before 1 April 2018 are annual allowable cuts. They correspond, for a given development unit or local forest, to the maximum volume of timber of a particular species or group of species that may be harvested annually, in perpetuity, without diminishing the productive capacity of the forest, while at the same time taking into account certain sustainable forest development objectives having to do, for instance, with the natural dynamics of forests, including their composition and age structure, and diversified forest use.
The allowable cuts determined by the chief forester with regard to forest development activities carried out after 31 March 2018 correspond, for a given development unit or local forest, to the maximum volume of timber of a particular species or group of species that may be harvested annually, while at the same time ensuring the renewal and evolution of the forest on the basis of the applicable sustainable forest development objectives, including those having to do with
(1)  the sustainability of forests;
(2)  the impact of climate change on forests;
(3)  the natural dynamics of forests, including their composition, age structure and tree distribution pattern;
(4)  the maintenance and improvement of the productive capacity of forests; and
(5)  the diversified use of forests.
2010, c. 3, s. 48.
49. A public body referred to in the first paragraph of section 3 of the Act respecting Access to documents held by public bodies and the Protection of personal information (chapter A-2.1) must provide the chief forester with the information and documents the latter requests and that are necessary to exercise the functions of office.
2010, c. 3, s. 49.
50. The chief forester may carry out any investigations the chief forester considers necessary for the exercise of the functions of office.
For the purposes of an investigation, the chief forester is vested with the powers and immunity provided for in the Act respecting public inquiry commissions (chapter C-37), except the power to order imprisonment.
No judicial proceedings may be brought against the chief forester for acting in good faith in the exercise of the functions of office.
2010, c. 3, s. 50.
51. The chief forester must, within three months following the end of each fiscal period, send an activity report to the Minister.
The report must be attached to the department’s annual management report.
2010, c. 3, s. 51.
CHAPTER VI
SUSTAINABLE FOREST DEVELOPMENT AND FOREST MANAGEMENT
DIVISION I
RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE MINISTER
52. The Minister is responsible for the sustainable development of the forests in the domain of the State and for their management, and more particularly for forest planning, the carrying out, follow-up and monitoring of forest operations, timber scaling and the granting of forestry rights.
The Minister exercises ministerial responsibilities and powers under this Act in conformity with the sustainable forest development strategy and the allowable cut, subject to the provisions applicable to special development plans.
2010, c. 3, s. 52.
DIVISION II
FOREST PLANNING IN DEVELOPMENT UNITS
§ 1.  — General provision
53. Development units are subject to forest planning so that forest operations may be organized and carried out within their boundaries. Such planning is part of a regional and local consultation process leading to the creation of integrated forest development plans and special forest development plans.
These plans are founded on ecosystem-based development and take into account any efficiency targets and objectives the Minister sets for forest operations.
2010, c. 3, s. 53.
§ 2.  — Integrated forest development plans
54. The Minister draws up a tactical plan and an operational plan for integrated forest development for each development unit, in collaboration with the local integrated land and resource management panel set up for the unit under the Act respecting the Ministère des Affaires municipales, des Régions et de l’Occupation du territoire (chapter M-22.1). When drawing up the plans, the Minister may also retain the services of forest planning experts.
The tactical plan contains, among other things, the allowable cuts assigned to the unit, the sustainable forest development objectives, the forest development strategies adopted to ensure that allowable cuts are respected and objectives are achieved, and the location of the main infrastructures and the areas of increased timber production. This plan covers a five-year period.
The operational plan basically sets out the forest operations zones in which timber harvesting or other forest development activities are planned under the tactical plan. It also contains the harmonization measures adopted by the Minister. The operational plan is updated from time to time, to allow for, among other things, the gradual addition of new zones in which forest operations may be carried out.
The Minister prepares, keeps up to date and makes public a manual for the preparation of plans, and a guide that the Minister follows to prepare silvicultural prescriptions.
2010, c. 3, s. 54.
55. The local integrated land and resource management panel is set up in order to ensure that the interests and concerns of the persons and bodies affected by planned forest development objectives are taken into account, to define local sustainable forest development objectives and to agree on measures to harmonize the use of resources.
The composition and operation of a panel, including its dispute resolution mechanisms, are the responsibility of the regional bodies that established the panel. Those bodies must, however, invite the following persons or bodies, or their representatives, to sit on the panel:
(1)  the Native communities, represented by their band council;
(2)  the regional county municipalities and, if applicable, the metropolitan community;
(3)  the holders of a timber supply guarantee;
(4)  the persons or bodies that manage controlled zones;
(5)  the persons or bodies authorized to organize activities, provide services or carry on a business in a wildlife sanctuary;
(6)  the holders of an outfitter’s licence;
(7)  the holders of a sugar bush management permit for acericultural purposes;
(8)  the lessees of land for agricultural purposes;
(9)  the holders of trapping licences who hold a lease of exclusive trapping rights; and
(10)  the regional environmental councils.
A list of the participants on the panel, once the panel’s composition has been established, must be sent to the Minister. The Minister may then invite any persons or bodies not on the list to sit on the panel, if the Minister judges that their presence is needed to ensure integrated management of the resources and land.
2010, c. 3, s. 55.
56. For the purpose of preparing the operational plan, the Minister works with panel participants who so request and who demonstrate a specific interest in order to ensure that that interest is taken more fully into account. To that end, the Minister may take the proposals of such participants into consideration.
However, holders of a timber supply guarantee need not make a request and their specific interest is presumed in so far as the plan concerns a development unit located in a region to which their guarantee applies. To optimize operational conditions with regard to forest development activities, holders of a timber supply guarantee may present proposals to the Minister concerning forest operations zones to be included in the plan.
Before a public consultation on the operational plan is held, the draft plan is sent to the local integrated land and resource management panel to ensure that its contents are compatible with the interests and concerns of all panel participants.
2010, c. 3, s. 56.
57. Integrated forest development plans must be the object of a public consultation held by the regional bodies that established the local integrated land and resource management panel. The conduct of the public consultation, its duration, and the documents that must accompany the plans during the consultation are defined by the Minister in a manual which the Minister makes public.
The regional bodies responsible for establishing the local integrated land and resource management panel must prepare and send to the Minister, within the time determined by the Minister, a report summarizing the comments obtained in the course of the consultation and propose any solutions it deems appropriate in the case of a divergence in points of view.
2010, c. 3, s. 57.
58. Throughout the process leading to the drafting of the plans, the Minister sees that forest planning is founded on ecosystem-based development and on integrated and regionalized land and resource management. During this process, the Minister
(1)  establishes a timetable for the formulation of the plans;
(2)  ensures that the policy directions and objectives set out in the regional plan for integrated land and resource development drawn up by a regional commission under the Act respecting the Ministère des Affaires municipales, des Régions et de l’Occupation du territoire (chapter M-22.1) are taken into account in preparing the tactical and operational plans, to the extent provided for in the plan implementation agreement entered into with the regional conference of elected officers to which the regional commission concerned reports;
(3)  participates in the proceedings of local integrated land and resource management panels and takes account, in preparing the plans, of the local objectives and the harmonization measures agreed upon by those panels;
(4)  rules when there is a disagreement on a local integrated land and resource management panel, if the applicable dispute resolution mechanisms fail;
(5)  establishes a timetable for the public consultation referred to in section 57 and takes account, in preparing the plans, of the comments sent in by persons and bodies in the course of the consultation;
(6)  consults the Native communities affected by forest planning so as to be aware of their concerns relating to the possible effects of the planned activities on their domestic, ritual or social activities, and accommodates those concerns, if necessary;
(7)  adjusts the plans, if necessary, before setting the date on which they are to come into force;
(8)  establishes the silvicultural prescriptions applicable to the forest operations zones contained in the operational plan, on the basis, among other things, of the harmonization measures adopted by the Minister; and
(9)  makes the plans public on their coming into force.
2010, c. 3, s. 58.
59. Changes to the integrated forest development plans, including updates to the operational plan, must be established and finalized under the rules applicable to the initial plans.
However, updates and changes to the operational plan are subject to the public consultation process only if
(1)  they add a new forest operations zone or a new infrastructure;
(2)  they substantially change a forest operations zone, an infrastructure or a forest development standard already identified on the plan.
2010, c. 3, s. 59.
DIVISION VI
FORESTRY RIGHTS
§ 2.  — Timber supply guarantees
i.  — Granting of timber supply guarantees and establishment of register
88. The Minister may, on the conditions the Minister determines, grant a timber supply guarantee to a person or body that operates or plans to operate a wood processing plant, if the allowable cut is sufficient, if the volumes of timber available on the open market are large enough to assess the market value of timber from the forests in the domain of the State, and if the Minister is of the opinion that it is in the public interest and in keeping with the principle of sustainable development.
The Minister may also, on the same conditions, ask the timber market board to sell timber supply guarantees on the open market.
A person or body acquiring a plant that operates or operated under a timber supply guarantee, or the right to operate such a plant, is entitled to a guarantee only if the annual royalty, the amount from sales of the timber, and the assessments payable by the guarantee holder to the forest protection organizations certified by the Minister have been paid in full.
The third paragraph does not apply if the guarantee holder has made an assignment of property or is subject to a receiving order under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (Revised Statutes of Canada, 1985, chapter B-3).
2010, c. 3, s. 88.
89. The Minister enters timber supply guarantees in a public register that the Minister establishes and keeps up to date.
The Minister publishes a notice of each entry in the Gazette officielle du Québec, setting out in the notice the guarantee registration number, the name of the guarantee holder and the annual volumes of timber guaranteed for each species or group of species for each region concerned.
The guarantee takes effect on the date of its registration.
2010, c. 3, s. 89.
ii.  — Nature of the right granted by a timber supply guarantee
90. A timber supply guarantee entitles the holder to purchase, each year, a volume of timber from forests in the domain of the State in one or more specific regions to supply the wood processing plant for which the guarantee was granted, on condition that the holder performs the obligations set out in this Act and the guarantee.
The annual volumes of timber that may be purchased by the holder are specified in the timber supply guarantee by species or group of species for each of the regions concerned.
2010, c. 3, s. 90.
91. The annual volumes of timber guaranteed are residual volumes determined by the Minister, taking into account
(1)  the timber requirements of the wood processing plant; and
(2)  other available sources of supply such as timber from private forests and local forests, chips, sawdust, shavings, recycled wood fibres and timber from outside Québec.
For the purposes of subparagraph 2 of the first paragraph and, in particular, to assess the available timber from private forests that may be sold in a particular region, the Minister, before granting a timber supply guarantee, consults the boards of producers within the meaning of the Act respecting the marketing of agricultural, food and fish products (chapter M-35.1) or the organizations designated under section 50 of that Act. The consultation pertains, among other things, to the volumes of timber the Minister intends to guarantee.
2010, c. 3, s. 91.
92. The holder of a timber supply guarantee may, after so informing the Minister and in the manner specified by the Minister, send timber purchased during the year which, under the guarantee, was intended for the guarantee holder’s wood processing plant to other processing plants operating under a timber guarantee; the sum of the volumes of timber that may be sent to other processing plants during a given year may not exceed the volume of timber determined by government regulation.
The sum of the volumes of timber from other wood processing plants operating under a timber supply guarantee that are sent to the processing plant specified in the holder’s guarantee during a given year may not exceed the volume of timber determined by government regulation. Additional volumes of timber equal to the volumes of timber that the holder may have sent to other processing plants under the first paragraph may be added to that volume.
Volumes of timber whose destination was changed under section 93 are excluded in calculating volumes of timber under this section.
2010, c. 3, s. 92.
93. The Minister may, as an exceptional measure, allow part of the guaranteed volumes of timber purchased by the holder in the course of a year to be allocated to a processing plant other than the plant specified in the timber supply guarantee, in particular if the Minister considers it necessary to do so to avoid a deterioration or loss of timber or to ensure the optimal use of the timber.
The Minister may also, on the request of a guarantee holder, authorize the holder to send part of the guaranteed volumes of timber purchased in the course of a year to a wood processing plant other than the plant specified in the guarantee to make up for an inadequate supply for that processing plant resulting from the economic context, if the Minister considers that transferring the timber will prevent the temporary closure or reduce the duration of the closure of the processing plant. The Minister may also, on the request of guarantee holders, authorize exchanges of timber between two wood processing plants to reduce timber transportation costs. In making a decision, the Minister must take into account the impact the decision will have on the local and regional economy and on the marketing of timber from private forests.
2010, c. 3, s. 93.
94. A timber supply guarantee is not transferable.
2010, c. 3, s. 94.
iii.  — Annual royalty and market price for guaranteed timber
95. The holder of a timber supply guarantee must pay the Minister an annual royalty based on the rate set by the timber marketing board. The royalty is payable on 1 April of each year or according to the terms and schedule determined by regulation of the Minister.
2010, c. 3, s. 95.
96. The timber purchased by a guarantee holder is payable at the rates set by the timber marketing board and according to the terms and schedule determined by regulation of the Minister.
2010, c. 3, s. 96.
97. Interest is charged on any unpaid balance of amounts payable from the thirtieth day following the date of billing, at the rate determined for a debt owed to the State under section 28 of the Act respecting the Ministère du Revenu (chapter M-31). Interest is capitalized monthly.
2010, c. 3, s. 97.
iv.  — Waiver of right to guaranteed volumes of timber
98. The holder of a timber supply guarantee may, in the course of a year, waive all or part of its right to guaranteed volumes of timber for the year.
2010, c. 3, s. 98.
99. A timber supply guarantee does not entitle its holder to reject timber affected by a natural disturbance or human interference otherwise than by a waiver.
2010, c. 3, s. 99.
100. The Minister may, after consulting the holder of a timber supply guarantee, establish a calendar of the dates on which the holder is to decide whether or not to purchase a specified part of the annual volumes of timber guaranteed.
A holder who, when required to decide whether or not to purchase the specified part of the annual volumes, refuses, neglects or fails to do so is deemed, after being informed by the Minister of the consequences of the refusal, neglect or failure, to have waived the right to those volumes of timber for the year.
The notice sent by the Minister must state that the holder has 10 days to remedy the situation.
2010, c. 3, s. 100.
101. Volumes of timber to which a guarantee holder waived or is deemed to have waived the right may not be claimed by the holder in subsequent years.
2010, c. 3, s. 101.
102. Volumes of timber to which a guarantee holder waived or is deemed to have waived the right may be sold by the timber marketing board or allocated to one or more other wood processing plants at the rates set by the timber marketing board, as the Minister may direct.
2010, c. 3, s. 102.
v.  — Special provision regarding natural disturbances and human interference and constraints restricting or prohibiting access to forest resources
103. The holder of a timber supply guarantee may not claim an indemnity or compensation from the Government if, in the course of a year, the holder was not able to acquire all the guaranteed annual volumes of timber owing to a natural disturbance or human interference or to a decision of the Minister restricting or prohibiting in the public interest access to or travel in the forest.
In the latter case, however, the volumes of timber must be offered to the holder entitled to it as soon as they become available, if the holder continues to operate the plant benefiting from the guarantee. If there is more than one guarantee holder entitled to the volumes of timber, they are allocated in proportion to the volumes initially withheld.
2010, c. 3, s. 103.
vi.  — Term, renewal and revision of a timber supply guarantee
104. A timber supply guarantee is granted for a five-year period.
Unless otherwise specified by the guarantee holder, it is renewed for the same period every five years if the holder has performed the obligations set out in this Act and the guarantee.
2010, c. 3, s. 104.
105. If the Minister considers it expedient following the five-year review of allowable cuts and after giving the guarantee holder an opportunity to submit observations, the Minister may revise the conditions of the guarantee, including the guaranteed annual volumes of timber and the forest from which the timber may be purchased.
The Minister, exercising ministerial discretion, takes into account
(1)  the requirements of the wood processing plant;
(2)  other available sources of supply such as timber from private forests and local forests, chips, sawdust, shavings, recycled wood fibres and timber from outside Québec;
(3)  the volumes of timber, by origin, used by the plant in the last five years;
(4)  the allowable cuts assigned to the development units;
(5)  the minimum volumes of timber required on the open market to assess the market value of timber from the forests in the domain of the State; and
(6)  the volumes of timber the Minister considers necessary for the carrying out of socio-economic development projects in the regions and communities.
For the purposes of subparagraph 2 of the second paragraph and, in particular, to assess the available timber from private forests that may be sold in a particular region, the Minister consults the boards of producers within the meaning of the Act respecting the marketing of agricultural, food and fish (chapter M-35.1) products or the organizations designated under section 50 of that Act during the revision process. The consultation pertains, among other things, to the volumes of timber the Minister intends to guarantee.
2010, c. 3, s. 105.
106. The Minister may also, after giving the holder of a timber supply guarantee an opportunity to submit observations, revise, in the course of the year, the guaranteed annual volumes of timber for the species or group of species concerned and change the forest from which the timber may be purchased, when the allowable cut assigned to a development unit in a region covered by the guarantee is changed by the chief forester in accordance with subparagraph 7 of the first paragraph of section 46. The changes apply only once the new allowable cut is in force, that is, after 31 March of the following year.
The same applies when changes occur in the requirements of the guarantee holder’s wood processing plant, for instance following a change in the controlling interest of the legal person or partnership holding the guarantee, the permanent discontinuance of part of the plant’s operations, a change in the processing plant’s vocation or a restructuring of the enterprise.
For the purposes of the first paragraph, the Minister, exercising ministerial discretion, takes into account the elements set out in subparagraphs 4 and 5 of the second paragraph of section 105. If the Minister revises the volumes because of an increase in the allowable cut, the Minister also takes into account the sources of supply mentioned in subparagraph 2 of the second paragraph of section 105 and consults the bodies mentioned in the third paragraph of section 105.
2010, c. 3, s. 106.
107. Following a reduction in the allowable cut assigned to a development unit in a region covered by several timber supply guarantees, the Minister may take into account the impact on regional or local economic activity of the apportionment among the guarantee holders of the reduction in guaranteed annual volumes for the species or group of species concerned, and vary the reduction in consequence.
2010, c. 3, s. 107.
108. A timber supply guarantee may at all times be modified by the Minister with the consent of the guarantee holder.
2010, c. 3, s. 108.
vii.  — Cancellation, suspension and termination of a timber supply guarantee
109. The Minister may cancel a timber supply guarantee
(1)  if the guarantee holder fails to perform the obligations set out in this Act or the guarantee;
(2)  if the guarantee holder fails to pay the annual royalty or the amount obtained from the sale of guaranteed timber that is payable; or
(3)  if the guarantee holder’s wood processing plant ceased operations at least six months earlier.
The Minister must give the guarantee holder in default prior notice of the Minister’s intention to cancel the guarantee, unless the holder remedies the failure before the expiry of the time specified in the notice.
Moreover, in the case described in subparagraph 3 of the first paragraph, the prior notice must state that the guarantee holder has 60 days to submit a business plan for resuming operations to the Minister. If the holder submits a business plan within the 60-day period, the Minister may not cancel the guarantee before the expiry of 30 days after the plan is submitted.
The resumption of a wood processing plant’s operations for a continuous period of less than one month does not interrupt the six-month period referred to in subparagraph 3 of the first paragraph.
2010, c. 3, s. 109.
110. The Minister may suspend, under the same conditions and for the period determined by the Minister, the rights granted by the timber supply guarantee
(1)  in any of the cases described in subparagraphs 1 and 2 of the first paragraph of section 109; or
(2)  if the guarantee holder fails to join the forest protection organizations certified by the Minister or fails to pay the assessment set by those organizations.
During such a suspension, the Minister may take all the necessary measures with respect to the guaranteed volumes of timber made available.
2010, c. 3, s. 110.
111. The Minister enters a reference to the notices given under sections 109 and 110 in the public register.
2010, c. 3, s. 111.
112. The Minister terminates a timber supply guarantee without prior notice
(1)  if the guarantee holder’s wood processing plant discontinues its operations permanently; or
(2)  if the guarantee holder has made an assignment of property or has been the subject of a receiving order under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (Revised Statutes of Canada, 1985, chapter B-3) or, in the case of a legal person, has been dissolved or has been the subject of a winding-up order.
2010, c. 3, s. 112.
113. The Minister terminates a timber supply guarantee at the request of the guarantee holder.
In such a case, the holder is entitled to the reimbursement of the part of the annual royalty corresponding to the overpayment. The amount is determined on the basis of the remaining volumes of timber that the holder was entitled to purchase before the end of the year.
2010, c. 3, s. 113.
114. If the Minister terminates a timber supply guarantee, the Minister may, for the time remaining before the next five-year review of allowable cuts, either allow the timber under the guarantee to be sold by the timber marketing board or allocate the timber to one or more other wood processing plants at the rates set by the timber marketing board.
2010, c. 3, s. 114.
TITLE III
TIMBER MARKETING
119. A timber marketing board known as the Bureau de mise en marché des bois is established within the department. The timber marketing board exercises the functions conferred on it by this Title, with a view to fostering sustainable development and an open market.
A performance and accountability agreement must be entered into by the Minister, the deputy minister and the director of the timber marketing board specifying, among other things, the responsibilities of each within the framework of the timber marketing board’s mission.
2010, c. 3, s. 119.
120. The timber marketing board has the following functions:
(1)  to prepare a manual setting out the rules applicable to the marketing of timber and other forest products;
(2)  to determine the minimum volumes of timber from forests in the domain of the State that are required on the open market to assess the market value of timber;
(3)  to identify the forest operations zones from which timber is to be sold on the open market;
(4)  to carry out marketing operations for timber and other forest products from the forests in the domain of the State;
(5)  to establish a register of buyers eligible to bid on the open market and determine registration fees and conditions, as well as cases of exclusion from the register;
(6)  where required, to set the opening bid, the reserve price and the minimum bid for the sale of timber or forest products, taking account, among other things, of benchmark data on the cost and performance of forest development activities, whose efficiency is determined according to the site and the operating conditions;
(7)  to sell timber and other forest products from the forests in the domain of the State on the open market and enter into sales contracts on the conditions the board determines;
(8)  at the Minister’s request, to sell timber supply guarantees on the open market in order to assess their market value;
(9)  at the request of a board of producers within the meaning of the Act respecting the marketing of agricultural, food and fish products (chapter M-35.1) or an organization designated under section 50 of that Act, to sell on the open market products from private forests subject to the joint plan administered by the board of producers or the organization, if the plan allows it;
(10)  to compile the forest, biophysical, financial and economic data required to assess both the market value of timber and other forest products from the forests in the domain of the State and the cost and value of forest development activities, as well as the cost of forest protection activities;
(11)  to assess the cost and value of forest development activities and the cost of forest protection activities;
(12)  to assess, for each species or group of species, based on quality, size and zone, the market value of timber offered for sale to holders of timber supply guarantees, according to the methods and frequency determined by government regulation, and to set the applicable rates on the basis of that assessment;
(13)  to assess the annual royalty the holder of a timber supply guarantee must pay according to the method determined by government regulation and set the applicable rate on the basis of that assessment;
(14)  to assess, if required by the Minister, the market value of other forest products from the forests in the domain of the State;
(15)  to enter, in a manual that it keeps up to date, the instructions applicable to each scaling method determined by government regulation and covering, for instance, the different scaling and sampling techniques and the content and style of the various application forms and other types of forms relating to timber scaling, timber inventories and timber transportation;
(16)  to establish the rules relating to timber sampling in the forests in the domain of the State, carry out the sampling, compile the data, and identify, based on the sampling, the conversion factors with which to determine volumes of timber, using data gathered from weighing and measuring felled timber;
(17)  to submit invoices for timber and other forest products from the forests in the domain of the State and collect revenue from their sale;
(18)  to prevent and detect collusion and initiate complaints of collusion where it has reasonable grounds to believe that persons or bodies have acted in collusion; and
(19)  to carry out any other mandate related to a matter falling within its purview that the Minister entrusts to it.
The marketing manual, the value of forest development activities, the rates applicable to the sale of guaranteed volumes of timber and to the annual royalty to be paid by the holder of a timber supply guarantee, the instruction manual for scaling timber and the conversion factors are made public by the timber marketing board.
2010, c. 3, s. 120.
121. A further function of the timber marketing board is to advise the Minister on the planning and development of markets for timber and other forest products.
The Minister may also ask the timber marketing board for an opinion on any matter related to its functions, regarding either the forests in the domain of the State or private forests.
The advisory opinions of the timber marketing board must be available to the public.
2010, c. 3, s. 121.
122. The timber marketing board may require that holders of timber supply guarantees or enterprises carrying on forest development activities in the forests in the domain of the State provide it with the forest, biophysical, financial or economic data required for the exercise of its functions. The guarantee holders or enterprises concerned must provide the required data.
2010, c. 3, s. 122.
123. A public body referred to in the first paragraph of section 3 of the Act respecting Access to documents held by public bodies and the Protection of personal information (chapter A-2.1) must provide the timber marketing board with the information and documents the board requires to exercise its functions.
2010, c. 3, s. 123.
124. The timber marketing board may carry out any investigations it considers necessary for the exercise of its functions.
For the purposes of an investigation, the timber marketing board is vested with the powers and immunity provided for in the Act respecting public inquiry commissions (chapter C-37), except the power to order imprisonment.
No judicial proceedings may be brought against the timber marketing board for acting in good faith in the exercise of its functions.
2010, c. 3, s. 124.
125. The department’s annual management report must contain a separate section on the management of the timber marketing board.
2010, c. 3, s. 125.
TITLE X
AMENDING PROVISIONS
ACT RESPECTING THE MINISTÈRE DES AFFAIRES MUNICIPALES, DES RÉGIONS ET DE L’OCCUPATION DU TERRITOIRE
307. (Amendment integrated into c. M-22.1, heading of subdivision 1 before section 21.5).
2010, c. 3, s. 307.
308. (Amendment integrated into c. M-22.1, ss. 21.17.1-21.17.3).
2010, c. 3, s. 308.
ACT RESPECTING THE MINISTÈRE DES RESSOURCES NATURELLES ET DE LA FAUNE
309. (Amendment integrated into c. M-25.2, s. 11.2).
2010, c. 3, s. 309.
TITLE XI
TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS
CHAPTER I
TIMBER SUPPLY AND FOREST MANAGEMENT AGREEMENTS AND FOREST MANAGEMENT AGREEMENTS
DIVISION I
CANCELLATION OF AGREEMENTS
336. As of 1 April 2013, all timber supply and forest management agreements and all forest management agreements granted under sections 36 and 84.1 of the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) and in force on that date are cancelled.
However, those agreements continue to apply with regard to the following obligations until the obligations have been entirely fulfilled:
(1)  preparing and submitting to the Minister, before 1 November 2013, a report on the forest development activities carried out during the preceding year;
(2)  applying the corrective programs established by the Minister;
(3)  scaling harvested timber according to the scaling instructions provided by the Minister; and
(4)  paying the applicable dues and making the contributions to the forestry fund and to forest protection organizations.
2010, c. 3, s. 336.
337. The cancellation of the agreements does not give agreement holders the right to an indemnity, except as regards the infrastructures, such as roads, bridges and forest camps, established by them under a plan approved by the Minister.
The Government grants agreement holders an indemnity deemed fair and equitable for the infrastructure expenses for which no subsidies or credits were granted, after giving them the opportunity to submit observations.
The indemnity is based on the net value of the infrastructures after depreciation, according to the book value entered in the accounting records of the enterprise and the vouchers submitted. The indemnity may be paid to an agreement holder in a lump sum or be credited to the purchase of volumes of timber from forests in the domain of the State or be paid in any other manner determined by the Government.
2010, c. 3, s. 337.
DIVISION II
PROVISIONS GIVING ENTITLEMENT TO A TIMBER SUPPLY GUARANTEE
338. The holder of a timber supply and forest management agreement is entitled to a timber supply guarantee governed by the provisions of subdivision 2 of Division VI of Chapter VI of Title II if the holder applies for it in writing before 1 January 2012 and pays the required annual royalty before 1 April 2013.
2010, c. 3, s. 338.
339. The guaranteed annual volumes of timber to which an agreement holder is entitled are set by the Minister, who applies sections 77 to 77.2 of the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1).
2010, c. 3, s. 339.
340. The Minister sets guaranteed annual volumes of timber for each agreement holder by reducing by a percentage the Minister determines the part of the volumes that exceeds
(1)  100,000 cubic metres for species from the fir, spruce, jack pine, larch (FSPL) group; and
(2)  25,000 cubic metres for all other species or groups of species.
The volumes of timber referred to in this section are those to which the agreement holder would have been entitled on 1 April 2013 had the agreement not been cancelled.
The percentage by which the volumes are reduced may vary from one agreement holder to another depending on the species or groups of species concerned, the volumes of timber to which the agreement holder would have been entitled on 1 April 2013 had the agreement not been cancelled and the regions from which the timber comes.
The Minister makes public the reduction rates used to set the guaranteed annual volumes of timber to which each agreement holder is entitled.
2010, c. 3, s. 340.
341. Once the sum of the reduced volumes allocated to all agreement holders has been calculated, a sufficient quantity of timber must remain
(1)  for the timber marketing board to market timber from the forests in the domain of the State and determine its market value; and
(2)  for carrying out socio-economic development projects in the regions and communities.
2010, c. 3, s. 341.
342. The Minister specifies in the timber supply guarantee the guaranteed annual volumes of timber, by species or group of species, to which an agreement holder is entitled in each of the regions the Minister identifies and determines the conditions governing the application of the timber supply guarantee.
In determining the region or regions to be included in the guarantee, the Minister, with economic considerations in mind, takes into account the location over the years of the agreement holder’s sources of supply.
2010, c. 3, s. 342.
343. The Minister enters the timber supply guarantees in the public register mentioned in section 89 and publishes a notice of each entry in the Gazette officielle du Québec in accordance with that section.
The guarantees take effect on 1 April 2013.
2010, c. 3, s. 343.
DIVISION III
PROVISIONS GIVING ENTITLEMENT TO A MANAGEMENT DELEGATION AGREEMENT IN LOCAL FORESTS
344. The holder of a forest management agreement is entitled to be given the management of a land area identified as a local forest by 1 April 2013 and, for that purpose, to enter into an agreement under which the management of that land area is delegated to the agreement holder in accordance with subdivision 3 of Division II.2 of the Act respecting the Ministère des Ressources naturelles et de la Faune (chapter M-25.2), if the agreement holder applies for it in writing before 1 April 2011.
2010, c. 3, s. 344.
345. A land area is identified as a local forest in accordance with subdivision 2 of Division II.2 of the Act respecting the Ministère des Ressources naturelles et de la Faune (chapter M-25.2).
During the process leading to the identification of a local forest, the Minister consults the agreement holder to determine the holder’s interest in the different places the holder would like to see identified as a local forest. The Minister makes a decision, taking into account how close the area is to the territory of the municipality or the Native community concerned.
2010, c. 3, s. 345.
346. In the management delegation agreement, the Minister must try to maintain, as far as possible, a timber harvesting potential of a volume nearing that to which the agreement holder would have been entitled on 1 April 2013 had the agreement not been cancelled.
2010, c. 3, s. 346.
CHAPTER II
FOREST MANAGEMENT CONTRACTS
347. As of 1 April 2013, the forest management contracts signed under section 102 of the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) and in force on that date are cancelled.
However, those contracts continue to apply with regard to the following obligations until the obligations have been entirely fulfilled:
(1)  preparing and submitting to the Minister, before 1 November 2013, a report on the forest development activities carried out during the preceding year;
(2)  applying the corrective programs established by the Minister;
(3)  scaling harvested timber according to the scaling instructions provided by the Minister; and
(4)  paying the applicable dues and making the contributions to the forestry fund and to forest protection organizations.
2010, c. 3, s. 347.
348. The cancellation of the forest management contracts does not give the holder the right to an indemnity.
However, a contract holder may, before 1 January 2012, request the Minister to give the holder, by 1 April 2013, the management of the management area specified in the contract and, for that purpose, to enter into an agreement delegating the management of that area to the holder in accordance with subdivision 3 of Division II.2 of the Act respecting the Ministère des Ressources naturelles et de la Faune (chapter M-25.2). The request must be dealt with in preference to any other request made before or after that date by a person or a body other than the contract holder.
2010, c. 3, s. 348.
CHAPTER III
OTHER AGREEMENTS
349. Auxiliary timber supply guarantee agreements entered into under section 95.1 of the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) and in force on 1 April 2013 are cancelled on that date.
The same applies to reservation agreements entered into under section 170.1 of that Act.
However, both types of agreement continue to apply with regard to the following obligations until the obligations have been entirely fulfilled:
(1)  preparing and submitting to the Minister, before 1 November 2013, a report on the forest development activities carried out during the preceding year;
(2)  applying the corrective programs established by the Minister;
(3)  scaling harvested timber according to the scaling instructions provided by the Minister; and
(4)  paying the applicable dues and making the contributions to the forestry fund and to forest protection organizations.
The cancellation of the agreements does not give the right to an indemnity.
2010, c. 3, s. 349.
CHAPTER IV
MANAGEMENT PERMITS AND WOOD PROCESSING PLANT OPERATING PERMITS
350. Pending applications for management permits or wood processing plant operating permits made before 1 April 2013 under the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) for activities to be carried out after 31 March 2013 are continued and decided in accordance with this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 350.
351. Sugar bush management permits issued under section 13 of the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) and in force on 1 April 2013 are deemed to be forestry permits for the operation of a sugar bush issued under this Act and the holders of those permits are, as of that date, governed by the provisions provided for that purpose in this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 351.
352. Wood processing plant operating permits issued under section 165 of the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) and in force on 1 April 2013 are deemed to be wood processing plant operating permits issued under this Act and the holders of those permits are, as of that date, governed by the provisions provided for that purpose in this Act.
The register that the permit holder was required to keep, mentioned in section 168 of the Forest Act, is deemed to be the register a permit holder must keep under this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 352.
353. Proceedings for the cancellation or suspension of a sugar bush management permit or a wood processing plant operating permit are continued under this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 353.
CHAPTER V
TERRITORIAL LIMIT, MANAGEMENT UNITS AND TERRITORIES IDENTIFIED FOR PARTICULAR PURPOSES
354. The territorial limit determined by the Minister under the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) and south of which forest lands are divided into management units, and the boundaries of those units established by the Minister under that Act constitute the northern boundary and the development units for the purposes of this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 354.
355. Experimental forests, teaching and research forests and forest stations established under the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) are deemed to have been established under this Act.
The same applies to exceptional forest ecosystems classified by the Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife under the Forest Act and to biological refuges designated by that Minister under that Act.
All activities authorized in those land areas before 1 April 2013 are, depending on what is covered in the authorizations, continued after that date and governed, as of that date, by the provisions provided for that purpose in this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 355.
CHAPTER VI
OTHER TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS
356. Regional agencies for private forest development established under Division I of Chapter III of Title II of the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) are deemed to be regional agencies for private forest development established under this Act.
The same applies to the forest protection organizations certified by the Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife under sections 125 and 146 of the Forest Act, which are deemed to have been certified under this Act.
All acts performed and documents prepared or issued by the bodies referred to in the first and second paragraphs in accordance with the Forest Act remain valid and are governed, as of 1 April 2013, by the provisions provided for that purpose in this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 356.
357. Forest producer’s certificates issued under section 120 of the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) are deemed to have been issued under this Act.
Procedures for the cancellation of a forest producer’s certificate are continued under this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 357.
358. Orders made by the Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife under section 25.1 of the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) are deemed to have been made under this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 358.
359. The forestry fund established under section 170.2 of the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) is terminated on 31 March 2013.
The sums accumulated in the fund are transferred on 1 April 2013 to the sustainable forest development fund established under the Act respecting the Ministère des Ressources naturelles et de la Faune (chapter M-25.2).
If the sums transferred to the sustainable forest development fund are not sufficient to start up the fund, sums taken out of the consolidated revenue fund may be paid into the fund to the extent determined by the Government.
2010, c. 3, s. 359.
360. The chief forester in office on 1 April 2013 continues in office on the same terms, for the unexpired portion of the term of office, until replaced or reappointed.
2010, c. 3, s. 360.
361. The persons designated or authorized by the Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife to exercise a function under the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) are deemed to have been designated or authorized by that Minister under this Act to exercise the corresponding function under this Act.
The acts performed and the documents prepared or issued by those persons in accordance with the Forest Act remain valid and are governed, as of 1 April 2013, by the provisions provided for that purpose in this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 361.
363. The Regulation respecting sugar bush management in forests in the domain of the State (chapter F-4.1, r. 3) is, as of 1 April 2013, deemed to have been made by the Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife under this Act.
The same applies to the Regulation respecting forest royalties (chapter F-4.1, r. 12) as regards the parts that remain applicable under this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 363.
364. Unless the context indicates otherwise, in any other Act or any regulation, ordinance, order in council, order, policy, program, contract or other document, any reference to the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) or any of its provisions is deemed to be a reference to this Act or the corresponding provision of this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 364.
365. Any proceeding instituted under the Forest Act (chapter F-4.1) is continued in accordance with that Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 365.
366. To ensure the application of this Act, the Government may, by regulation, before 1 April 2013, prescribe any other transitional provision that is consistent with those provided in this Act.
Not in force
The Government may also, by regulation, after 1 January 2013, prescribe transitional provisions that are different from those in this Act to ensure the application of the Agreement Concerning a New Relationship Between le Gouvernement du Québec and the Crees of Québec, entered into on 7 February 2002 and approved by Order in Council 289-2002 dated 20 March 2002, and subsequent amendments to it.
The Government and the Crees of Québec may also enter into an agreement on measures for adapting the Agreement Concerning a New Relationship Between le Gouvernement du Québec and the Crees of Québec to the forest regime established by this Act in conformity with the principles set out in the Agreement and after considering the recommendations made by the Cree-Québec Forestry Board created under the Agreement.
A draft regulation made under the second paragraph must be submitted to the Cree community and to the Cree-Québec Forestry Board for an opinion at least 45 days before the regulation is made. In addition, it may be made only if the Government and the Crees of Québec fail to agree on transitional measures during negotiations undertaken to amend the Agreement.
2010, c. 3, s. 366.
TITLE XII
FINAL PROVISIONS
367. The Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife is responsible for the administration of this Act.
2010, c. 3, s. 367.
The functions of the Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife provided for in this Act are assigned to the Minister of Forests, Wildlife and Parks. Order in Council 692-2020 dated 30 June 2020, (2020) 152 G.O. 2 (French), 3107.
368. The Minister may designate from among the public servants the persons to be entrusted with the enforcement of this Act.
The Minister may also, in writing and on the conditions the Minister determines, generally or specially delegate the exercise of the powers conferred on the Minister under this Act or a special Act under the Minister’s administration that deals with forest matters to a member of the personnel of the department or to the incumbent of a position. If the Minister delegates a power in the exercise of which the Minister is required by law to hold consultations with other ministers, the delegate must hold the necessary consultations with the departments concerned and, if no agreement is reached, so inform the Minister.
2010, c. 3, s. 368.
369. To facilitate the implementation of provisions relating to the preparation of operational plans for integrated forest development, the Minister establishes a provisional advisory committee composed of representatives of the following members:
(1)  the Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife;
(2)  the holders of timber supply and forest management agreements, forest management agreements, and forest management contracts; and
(3)  any other person whose presence the Minister considers necessary.
The committee may advise the Minister on ways to
(1)  foster an economic environment conducive to the operation of wood processing plants; and
(2)  optimize operational conditions for forest development activities, in particular those affecting the cost of timber.
The advisory opinions of the committee are made public.
The committee’s mandate ends no later than 31 March 2012.
2010, c. 3, s. 369.
370. This Act governs forest development activities carried out after 31 March 2013.
2010, c. 3, s. 370.
372. (Omitted).
2010, c. 3, s. 372.