This is the executive summary of a 42-page submission:
Teal Cedar Products Ltd. (Teal-Jones) is the holder of Tree Farm Licence 46 (TFL 46), which it acquired from Timber West in 2004. TFL 46 is located on the west side of South Vancouver Island near Port Renfrew, on provincial Crown land covering unceded First Nations traditional territories. Its 10-year Allowable Annual Cut (AAC) is currently subject to a timber supply review (TSR) by the Chief Forester as mandated by the Forest Act (BC). The TSR process requires a public comment period on Teal-Jones’ management plan that includes a Timber Supply Technical Analysis Report stating the licensee’s proposal to the Chief Forester for a new AAC determination for TFL 46.
There are significant and unexplained issues with Teal-Jones’ conduct during this TSR process, which has extended well beyond the expiry date of the latest 10-year AAC determination for TFL 46, while Teal-Jones continued its timber harvesting activities within TFL 46 and will likely continue to do so until a new AAC determination is made. There are also several significant deficiencies in the information provided by Teal-Jones for public review and comment.
The information provided by Teal-Jones does however clearly show that the timber resource in TFL 46 has been over-harvested by Teal-Jones during its tenure. Teal-Jones formally acknowledges the “precarious nature of the timber supply situation” in TFL 46. Yet, Teal-Jones proposes a new AAC with a higher annual volume of timber harvesting for TFL 46 for the next 10-year period. In the circumstances, the proposal of Teal-Jones to the Chief Forester will also prove to be unsustainable.
Furthermore, Teal-Jones clearly intends to clearcut all the available old growth tree stands still remaining within TFL 46 essentially in the next ten years without regard for old growth logging deferrals and without regard for the resulting adverse consequences, particularly with respect to the required protection of the natural old growth habitat for the Marbled Murrelet, a bird species protected under the authority of the Species at Risk Act (Canada), as well as an order and notice respectively issued under the authority of the Land Act (BC) and the Forest and Range Practices Act (BC). At-risk old growth forest ecosystems with very large and healthy old trees having several centuries of age, and even more than 1,000 years of age, are directly threatened by Teal-Jones’ proposed management plan for TFL 46.
For these reasons, the new AAC determination for TFL 46 to be made by the Chief Forester (or Deputy Chief Forester) should: 1) be set for a period that is shorter than the maximum 10-year period permitted by the Forest Act (BC); 2) be set at a significantly lower annual volume level than the annual volume set in the previous AAC determination and the annual volume proposed by Teal-Jones; 3) include a partition setting separately the allowable timber harvesting volume for areas of second growth and areas of old growth within TFL 46 for the duration of the shorter AAC period; and 4) specifically exclude from the Teal-Jones timber harvesting land base (THLB) and the AAC for TFL 46 the old growth areas on provincial Crown land that are: (a) already subject to logging deferrals under the authority of the Forest Act (BC); (b) subject to further logging deferrals pending consultations with First Nations; and (c) necessary to effectively protect the natural habitat of the Marbled Murrelet pursuant to federal and provincial law.
Chief Forester Diane Nicholls’ response: Chief Forester Reply to Submission on TSR for TFL 46 - March 22, 2022.pdf