For any questions relating to the Forest Conservation By-law (By-Law 2022-98), assistance with completing an application, or to report the unauthorized injuring or destruction of trees in a woodland please contact [email protected]

Harvest Permit Application

Applications will be received in person or by mail at 50 Colborne St S, Simcoe, ON N3Y 4H3, or by email [email protected]

About Forest Conservation By-laws

Forest conservation by-laws act as a way for a municipality to encourage the implementation of good forestry practices, reduce negative impacts on woodlands caused by tree removal activities, and regulate the loss of forest cover from the landscape.

Forest by-laws also help create an equal environment in which the forest industry can operate through the establishment of standards or requirements relating to the manner in which tree harvesting may occur. Although generally prohibitive by nature, forest conservation by-laws may serve as an essential educational tool to help inform woodland owners about proper forest stewardship.

Forest By-law History in Norfolk County

Norfolk County has a long history of forest stewardship. The County’s first tree-cutting by-law was passed in 1947 under the authority of the Tree Conservation Act, 1946. Norfolk County’s current Forest Conservation By-law (By-law 2022-98) came into effect on November 1, 2022, and is passed under the authority of the Municipal Act, 2001.

Purpose and Intent of Norfolk County’s Forest Conservation By-law

Norfolk County recognizes that landowners throughout the County have long been good stewards of the land and are largely responsible for the quality and quantity of the forest resources found across the County. The Forest Conservation By-law is not intended to interfere with or restrict a landowner’s use of their woodland or affect their ability to harvest forest products for personal use.

For these reasons, there are a number of exemptions set out in the by-law that are intended to allow some activities to occur without interference from the by-law. However, the by-law is designed to regulate activities that have the potential for long-term negative impacts, such as commercial timber extraction and woodland clearing.

The purpose and intent of the Forest Conservation By-law is to:

  • promote good forestry practices
  • improve environmental conditions to maintain and enhance forest integrity and wildlife habitat
  • improve the production of wood and wood products
  • protect against floods and soil erosion
  • protect water supplies
  • provide recreational opportunities
  • improve human health and quality of life