Transcript: Climate Watch Shorts: The seed collectors | Jan 22, 2017

(music plays)

Against a gray sky, an animated black globe spins. The title of the programs reads "TVO Climate Watch Shorts."

A caption appears on screen. It reads "Nam Kiwanuka. Climate Watch Shorts host."

Nam stands in the woods. She’s in her early forties with curly brown hair. She’s wearing glasses, blue blouse and green jacket.

Nam says WELCOME TO CLIMATE
WATCH SHORTS
WHERE WE EXAMINE
THE LOCAL IMPACT
OF CLIMATE CHANGE.
THE WARMER CLIMATE
MEANS CHANGES TO
THE TYPES OF TREES THAT
CAN GROW IN ONTARIO.
RESEARCHERS ARE NOW
TRYING TO GROW HARDWOOD
TREES FROM CLIMATES LIKE
KENTUCKY AND TENNESSEE
IN CANADIAN SOIL JUST
NORTH OF PICKERING
IN A TOWN CALLED
CLAREMONT.
HERE'S A LOOK
AT THE PROJECT.

(guitar music plays)
Trees show numbers marked on their trunks.

Brian Swaile says WE HAVE THE
POSSIBILITY THAT 130 OF THE
MAIN TREE SPECIES IN NORTH
AMERICA THAT THEIR CLIMATE
HABITAT COULD MOVE MORE
THAN 700 KILOMETRES NORTH.
THE TREES CAN'T.
THEY CAN'T MOVE
THAT QUICKLY.
THERE'S NO WAY.
WE'RE GOING TO
HAVE TO DO SOMETHING
TO TRY TO HELP
THEM ALONG.

Dan McKenney says THERE'S SOME TREE SPECIES
THAT SEEM TO BE STRUGGLING.
PEOPLE TAKE IT FOR
GRANTED THAT YOU JUST
HAVE THE SEEDS.
BUT AS CLIMATE IS CHANGING,
SOMETIMES IT'S QUITE
DIFFICULT TO GET SEED.
WE DON'T HAVE YOUNG
PEOPLE INVOLVED.

A slate appears on screen. It reads "The Seed Collectors. Planting forests for the future."

A sign reads "Welcome to Angus. Come grow with us."

Brian Swaile sits in an office. He is in his fifties, with a white beard and white hair. He wears glasses and a blue T-shirt.

A caption reads "Brian Swaile. Forever Green Consulting."

Brian says MY GRANDFATHER SAID
KNOWLEDGE ISN'T HEAVY
TO CARRY AROUND SO PICK
UP AS MUCH AS YOU CAN.
THE TREE HAS TO PRODUCE
SEED IN ORDER FOR IT
TO HAVE OFFSPRING.
I'VE WORKED
WITH PEOPLE,
THEY THINK THAT I CAN
JUST REACH IN THE AIR
AND GRAB SEED OUT OF
THE AIR TYPE OF THING.
WELL, YOU CAN'T.
SUMMER OF 2016 BASICALLY
THERE WAS PRACTICALLY NOTHING.

Jars containing different types of seeds sit on a shelf.

He continues A SEED COLLECTOR HAS
TO HAVE KNOWLEDGE
OF WHEN A
SEED IS MATURE.
IF YOU LOOK AT THE BOOK,
THERE'S A TIMELINE IN THERE
THAT THIS IS WHEN
IT'S COLLECTABLE.
WELL, IF WE GET INTO
VARYING TEMPERATURES,
WHAT THE BOOK SAID AND
WHAT'S ACTUALLY HAPPENING
IF YOU'RE NOT ON THE
GROUND CHECKING IT,
ARE TWO DIFFERENT THINGS.
GENETICALLY THE TREE'S
SET UP TO GROW IN
ITS LOCAL AREA.
IF IN THIS AREA WE'RE
COLLECTING HERE AND YET
THE STUFF'S NOT REALLY
GOING TO DO THAT WELL
BUT WILL DO WELL TO
THE NORTH, THEN PEOPLE
HAVE TO LOOK AT THAT.
IF YOU MAKE SOME MISTAKES,
THAT'S CALLED EXPERIENCE.

The caption changes to "Claremont, Ontario."

Kerry McLaven and Dan McKenney walk in the woods. He is in his forties, clean-shaven with short hair. He wears glasses, a cap, yellow winter proof jacket and gray trousers.

Dan says PLANTS RESPOND
BEST TO THEIR MOTHER CLIMATE.
THE CLIMATE OVER
THE LONG HAUL
HAS BEEN FAIRLY STABLE.
THE ISSUE NOW IS THAT
IT'S RAPIDLY CHANGING.
AND TREES CAN'T KEEP UP
WITH THAT PACE OF CHANGE.

The caption changes to "Dan McKenney. Canadian Forest Service, Natural Resources Canada."

Dan continues SO THE IDEA OF ASSISTED
MIGRATION IS TO HELP THEM
MOVE ALONG, TO HELP
GATHER THE SEEDS.
IN THIS TRIAL WE'VE GOT
SEED THAT COMES FROM
KENTUCKY, TENNESSEE,
PENNSYLVANIA.
WE WANT TO SEE HOW WELL THE
DIFFERENT TREE SPECIES GROW
FROM THESE
DIFFERENT PLACES.
THERE'S SOME ECOLOGISTS
THAT WRITE PAPERS
THAT THINK IT'S MANIPULATING
NATURE, BUT THEN THERE ARE
OTHERS WHO THINK THAT
IT'S OUR LAST CHANCE,
THAT WE'RE IN AN
EMERGENCY SITUATION.

The caption changes to "Kerry McLaven. Forest program manager, Forests Ontario." Kerry is in her thirties with short blond hair. She wears a black zip jacket.

Kerry says I DIDN'T
KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT SEED
WHEN I STARTED WITH
THE ORGANIZATION.
IT WAS JUST SOMETHING I'D
NEVER LEARNED IN SCHOOL.
AT FOREST ONTARIO WE
HAVE TO PLANT 3 MILLION
TREES EACH YEAR
UNDER THE PROGRAM.
YOU HAVE TO MAKE SURE
THESE SEEDS ARE GENETICALLY
DIVERSE WHEN YOU WANT TO
MAKE A SUCCESSFUL FOREST.
BRIAN ACTUALLY BECAME A
MENTOR OF MINE AND, YOU KNOW,
I WAS THE SUCCESSION PLAN
ESSENTIALLY FOR BRIAN RETIRING.

Kerry drives a car and walks into Brian’s office. They hug.

Kerry sits at Brian’s desk and says WELL, IT WASN'T A VERY GOOD
YEAR THIS YEAR AT ALL,
AS YOU KNOW.

Brian says I DON'T THINK IT'S GOING
TO BE A VERY GOOD YEAR
NEXT YEAR EITHER
FOR RED OAK.

Kerry says YOU KNOW, IS THERE A
CLIMATE CHANGE LINK HERE
WITH KIND OF THE
DROUGHT THAT WE'VE HAD
THIS PAST SUMMER?

Brian says WE'VE HAD
DROUGHTS BEFORE.
AND, PERSONALLY, I
THINK THEY'RE HAPPENING...

Kerry says MORE FREQUENTLY.

Now, they get into a car.

Driving, Brian says THERE'S ALWAYS
BEEN A TURNOVER,
AND THERE ARE OTHERS THAT,
HEY, IT'S RIGHT IN THEIR BLOOD.
THEY'VE DONE IT SINCE
THEY WERE RUNNING AROUND
WITH THEIR PARENTS AND THEIR
GRANDPARENTS COLLECTING
AND IT'S JUST SOMETHING
THAT HAPPENS EVERY FALL.
THAT'S BECOMING
LESS AND LESS, SO...
YEAH, THAT HAS
TO BE ADDRESSED.
AND I THINK WE'RE
TRYING TO ADDRESS IT.

Kerry says AS OUR CLIMATE IS CHANGING,
IT'S MUCH MORE VARIABLE,
AND SO YOU DO REQUIRE
EXPERTISE IN UNDERSTANDING
THE SPECIES.
AND FOREST ONTARIO WORKS
WITH SOME OF THE EXPERTS
IN THE FIELD TO START
TO TRAIN PEOPLE
AND EVEN MENTOR THEM.

They get out of the car in the woods. They check tree leaves.

Brian says I'VE HAD MENTORS THAT
HAVE ALL THIS KNOWLEDGE,
BUT A LOT OF GOOD
INFORMATION HAS GONE
TO THE GRAVE.
I FIRMLY BELIEVE
PASS ON AS MUCH
AS YOU POSSIBLY CAN.

The caption changes to "Music by Stefan Banjevic."

A final slate reads "TVO.org/climatewatch."

Watch: Climate Watch Shorts: The seed collectors