Community forest seeks increase for annual cut

Longterm harvest of 33,000 cubic meters sought by Wells Gray Community Forest

Several large Douglas fir remain standing near a logging show in Wells Gray Community Forest. The trees were retained for visuals

The government still hasn’t approved it but people with Wells Gray Community Forest seem hopeful that they will receive an increased annual allowable cut.

The annual cut was set at 20,000 cubic meters per year when the community forest was established in 2006, said WGCF general manager George Brcko. A 13,500 cubic meters per year uplift was added to this as a temporary measure to salvage pine killed by mountain pine beetle.

Brcko was speaking during an open house held July 19 to discuss the community forests’ draft Forest Management Plan and draft Forest Stewardship Plan.

The pine salvage is now nearly all done but community forest has started two projects to help justify keeping the annual harvest at 33,000 cubic meters.

Using a vegetative resource inventory (VRI) and terrestrial ecosystem mapping (TEM) has allowed WGCF to develop a much more detailed picture of what is on the land.

“The government has divided the land into polygons,” Brcko said. “The community forest has divided those polygons into about three, which gives us a far more accurate inventory. Very few other community forests have that level of detail in their data and as recent air photographs.”

The new modeling gives the community forest a better picture of its standing inventory plus the growth capacity of the land.

This in turn shows that the community forest’s landbase could sustain an annual harvest of 33,000 cubic meters. The proposed increase in the AAC is included in the draft Forest Management Plan, said Wes Bieber, the consultant who prepared the plan.

That proposal will go to the province’s chief forester, who will possibly approve the increase or possibly will discuss a different AAC.

The Forest Management Plan basically says what the community forest plans to do, Bieber explained.

The Forest Stewardship Plan, which he also prepared, lays out how the community forest is going to do what is in the Forest Management Plan – while meeting all the government’s objectives.

Once the two plans are approved the community forest will have the flexibility to harvest without government officials needing to look over every cutblock.

WGCF actually works to a higher standard than called for in the plans, Bieber said. For example, they were frustrated with the government’s placement of old growth stands. Instead, they developed what they call “old forest polygons”, which about doubled the area they are managing for ecosystems.

“We decided we don’t need their approval, that we can do this ourselves,” Bieber said.

Brcko, Bieber and Bas Delaney, another local forester who was involved in setting up the community forest, are all enthusiastic about WGCF’s possibilities.

“The most important thing we want local residents to know is this is a place where the forest is managed locally, where decisions are made locally, and where the jobs are kept local,” Delaney said.

The Forest Management Plan and Forest Stewardship Plan are available at the community forest’s website at www.wgcfc.ca.

 

Just Posted

Editor, The Times

Democracy is fragile, needs tending

VIDEO: This is what buying legal pot in B.C. looks like

Take a look inside B.C.’s first and only legal pot shop located in Kamloops

Editor, The Times:

Staying true to core beliefs of family, friends, community, and our freedoms

B.C. NDP retreats again on empty-home tax for urban areas

Rate reduced for all Canadians, dissident mayors to get annual meeting

Two B.C. cannabis dispensaries raided on legalization day

Port Alberni dispensaries ticketed for “unlawful sale” of cannabis

Canada not sending anyone to Saudi business summit

Sources insist Ottawa never intended to dispatch a delegation this time around

Earthquake early-warning sensors installed off coast of B.C.

The first-of-its kind warning sensors are developed by Ocean Networks Canada

VPD ordered to co-operate with B.C. police watchdog probe

According to the IIO, a court is ordering Vancouver police to co-operate with an investigation into a fatal shooting

B.C. woman looks to reduce stigma surrounding weed-smoking moms

Shannon Chiarenza, a Vancouver mom of two, started weedmama.ca to act as a guide for newcomers to legal cannabis, specifically mothers

B.C. teen gives away tickets to Ellen Degeneres show, plans O Canada welcome

The Grade 9 student wanted to give away tickets in the spirit of inclusivity

Canada’s top general takes aim at new reports of military sexual assault

Gen. Jonathan Vance is unhappy some troops continue to ignore his order to cease all sexual misconduct

Most Read