Changes needed to B.C.’s forest practices legislation

FPB believes changes necessary to improve stewardship of B.C.’s forest and range resources

Forest Practices Board

VICTORIA – In a report released Dec. 5, the Forest Practices Board is recommending that government make a number of improvements to the Forest and Range Practices Act (FRPA). These improvements all have been recommended in previous board reports, but government has never implemented the recommendations.

“The board believes these changes are necessary to improve stewardship of B.C.’s forest and range resources and to maintain public confidence in their management,” said board chair Tim Ryan.

1. Strengthen district managers’ authority to intervene where proposed activities put local environmental and community values at risk.

2. Enable public consultation on forest roads and cutblocks. The only legislated opportunity for public review and comment is for forest stewardship plans, but these documents do not indicate where or when forest development will occur.

3. Strengthen legal requirements for protection of drinking water from forest and range activities.

4. Publish all penalty determinations made under FRPA and the Wildfire Act. Currently, the Ministry does not make public the penalties it issues.

5. Establish government objectives for access road management and improve the systems and processes in place for managing resource roads.

The Forest Practices Board is B.C.’s independent watchdog for sound forest and range practices, reporting its findings and recommendations directly to the public and government.

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