With a Gift from Google, Canadian Activists Get on the Map

Publication: Globe and Mail

Author: Gloria Galloway


09/28/2011 - A forestry company that decided in 2005 to cut down 400 hectares of redwood forest had no idea that its toughest opposition would come from inside one of the world’s Internet giants.

Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., was a 30-minute drive from the proposed logging site, and the company had just hired a young computer scientist named Rebecca Moore, who was upset at the prospect of losing some of the tallest and oldest trees on the planet.

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On Wednesday, two completed Canadian projects that use the Google mapping technology will be released on the Internet. One from the Suzuki Foundation will be about putting a value on land, and a Pew Environmental Group video focuses on Canada’s boreal forest.

It’s one thing to say that the Canadian boreal forest is the largest intact forest ecosystem on earth, Ms. Moore said. Google Earth allows Internet users to “fly in and say, ‘Oh, here’s where the caribou migrate, here’s where billions of birds migrate and nest, here’s where the aboriginal communities live.’”

The Pew project was created in conjunction with the Canadian Boreal Initiative, whose executive director, Larry Innes, calls it a validation of the importance of the forests issue.

Read the full article, With a Gift from Google, Canadian Activists Get on the Map, on The Globe And Mail's Web site.

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