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Forestry watchdog finds no issues with Vancouver Island timber operations

DCN-JOC News Services
Forestry watchdog finds no issues with Vancouver Island timber operations

PORT HARDY, B.C. — A recent audit of BC Timber Sales (BCTS) and timber sale licensees (TSL) in the Seaward-tlasta business area in the North Island-Central Coast and Campbell River natural resource districts dug up no compliance issues.

“Our audit found BCTS and TSL holders fully complied with requirements of the Forest and Range Practices Act and the Wildfire Act,” said Kevin Kriese, Forestry Practices Board chair, in a statement. “This operating area is remote and rugged, and many sites are accessible only by boat or air. The terrain can be challenging, and there are many important forest values that need to be managed for. We are pleased to see that BCTS and TSL holders are doing a good job in this business area.”

BCTS’s activity area on northern Vancouver Island reaches from the Nimpkish River in the south to the northern most part of the island.

Operations on the mainland extend from Knight Inlet north to Kimsquit and Klemtu north of Bella Bella. Cities within the timber area include Port Hardy, Port McNeil, Port Alice, Woss, Sointula, Alert Bay, Bella Bella and Bella Coola. The timber activity also overlaps with the Great Bear Rainforest.

The operating area is within the traditional territories of the Quatsino, Tlatlasikwala, Kwakiutl, ‘Namgis, Nuxalk, Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw, Wuixinuxw, Heiltsuk, Kwikwasut’inuxw Haxwa’mis, Dzawada’enuxw, Gwawaenuk, Tlowitsis, Mamalilikulla, Da’naxda’xw/Awaetlala, Wei Wai Kum and We Wai Kai First Nations.

The audit included poring over operational planning, silviculture activities, road and bridge maintenance, construction and deactivation, timber harvesting and fire protection. All activities carried out between September 2019 and September 2020 were subject to review. In addition to requirements of the legislation, auditors also looked for adherence to legal obligations stemming from the Great Bear Rainforest and Vancouver Island Land Use Plan orders.

The Forest Practices Board is B.C.’s independent watchdog that focuses on proper forest and range practices. The board releases its reporting, findings and recommendations directly to the public and government. The board audits forest and range practices on public lands and appropriateness of government enforcement. It can also make recommendations for improvement to practices and legislation.

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