Depletion & Impacts
Invasive exotic insects and diseases that attack Canada’s ecosystems and forests are known to have ecological, economic and social impacts.
In ecological terms, these pests can cause significant damage to indigenous trees and plants that lack natural defenses against these invaders. They can slow their growth or kill them over vast areas. Consequently, they modify the internal dynamics of ecosystems.
In economic terms, alien pests have a considerable impact. They slow down growth and kill trees. They also cause income losses in the forest, recreation and tourism industries. Restrictions on and reductions in international commercial activities are other impacts related to alien pests.
Social impacts are even more difficult to assess, but the following, which are or may be affected, can be pointed out:
- Stability and well-being of rural communities, particularly those associated with the forest;
- Traditional Aboriginal activities;
- Aesthetic and spiritual values that people associate with forests and natural ecosystems.