PENTICTON—Effective immediately, Diane Nicholls, British Columbia's chief forester, has set a new allowable annual cut (AAC) level for Tree Farm Licence (TFL) 8 in the Southern Interior.
The new AAC for the TFL is 158,400 cubic metres with a maximum of 131,500 cubic metres harvested from terrain of less than 45% slope. This is to ensure sustainability in low slope areas.
The new AAC is a reduction of approximately 14.8% from the previous AAC of 186,000 cubic metres, which was set in 2009. The new AAC accounts for management measures that address Indigenous interests and the accumulation of unharvested volume in the TFL.
TFL 8 overlaps with the territorial boundaries of the Lower Similkameen Indian Band, Okanagan Indian Band, Okanagan Nation Alliance, Osoyoos Indian Band, Penticton Indian Band, Splatsin First Nation, Upper Nicola Band, Westbank First Nation and the Okanagan Nation Alliance (First Nations Tribal Council).
Following initial consultation with First Nations in 2019, the chief forester postponed the AAC determination to provide the licence holder with additional time to collaborate with First Nations and revise their management plan to better reflect Indigenous interests.
TFL 8 is held by the Interfor Corporation. It encompasses 77,189 hectares across two distinct blocks in the southern interior of British Columbia. The south block is north of Greenwood in the Boundary Creek area, and the north block is within the drainages of Trapping Creek and Carmi Creek north of Beaverdell.
The forests within TFL 8 are primarily mixtures of Douglas fir, larch, lodgepole pine and ponderosa pine at lower and middle elevations, and lodgepole pine, spruce and balsam at higher elevations.
The chief forester's AAC determination is an independent, professional judgment based on information ranging from technical forestry reports, First Nations and public input to the government's social and economic goals.
Under the Forest Act, the chief forester must determine the AAC in each of the province's 37 timber supply areas and 34 tree farm licences at least once every 10 years.
Canfor Calls on BC Government to Rethink Old Growth Deferral Process
Vancouver, BC — Canfor Corporation (TSX:CFP) is issuing an open letter from Don Kayne, President and CEO, calling for an approach to the management of British Columbia’s old growth forests that is based on the facts of sound science and Indigenous traditional knowledge and a collaborative process that includes broad representation.
“We can choose a path that brings First Nations, labour leaders, forestry professionals and communities together to develop a sustainable old growth management plan that protects our forests and ensures sustainable employment for our communities. We are asking the Government of British Columbia to rethink the old growth deferral process,” said Don Kayne, President and CEO, Canfor. “Together, we can build on the 75% of old growth forests that are already protected or outside harvesting areas.”
British Columbia is a world leader in sustainable harvesting and forest management practices that include rigorous environmental standards and a comprehensive permitting system.
The letter follows on the next page.
Forward Looking Statements
Certain statements in this press release constitute “forward-looking statements” which involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such statements. Words such as “expects”, “anticipates”, “projects”, “intends”, “plans”, “will”, “believes”, “seeks”, “estimates”, “should”, “may”, “could”, and variations of such words and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. These statements are based on management’s current expectations and beliefs and actual events or results may differ materially. There are many factors that could cause such actual events or results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements to differ materially from any future results expressed or implied by such statements. Forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and Canfor assumes no obligation to update such information to reflect later events or developments, except as required by law.
Canfor is a leading integrated forest products company based in Vancouver, British Columbia (“BC”) with interests in BC, Alberta, North and South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana, as well as in Sweden with 70% interest in Vida Group. Canfor produces primarily softwood lumber and also owns a 54.8% interest in Canfor Pulp Products Inc., which is one of the largest global producers of market Northern Bleached Softwood Kraft Pulp and a leading producer of high performance kraft paper. Canfor shares are traded on The Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol CFP. For more information visit canfor.com.
Dear British Columbians,
At Canfor, we’re proud to have been operating in the province for over 80 years.
We take our role very seriously to help responsibly manage BC’s forests. Like all British Columbians, we want our forests to be diverse, thriving ecosystems. We employ hundreds of professionals, like foresters and biologists, who work hard every day to ensure our activities are environmentally responsible and will contribute to healthy forests for generations to come.
Around the world BC is respected for our leading sustainable harvesting and forest management practices. We follow rigorous environmental standards and get permits from the government for all of our activities
we undertake in the forest. BC’s Chief Forester sets the volume of trees that can be harvested. Each year this amounts to less than 1% of the harvestable area. We also plant three trees for each one that is harvested.
In addition, we greatly respect the rights and title of First Nations on whose traditional territories we operate and their valued roles in stewarding the forests.
That’s why we’re deeply concerned that the BC government has decided to defer 2.6 million hectares
of old forests based on the advice of only five people. Government has not engaged with a broad group of Indigenous leaders, labour leaders, forest professionals and communities. Many important voices have been left out of this critical discussion.
“Many important voices have been left out of this critical discussion.”
Industry estimates that nearly 18,000 workers could be impacted. These are good people from communities across the province who care about the future and the environment in the place they call home. We directly employ over 4,000 people in BC. The more than 2,000 contractors, suppliers and Indigenous companies we partner with also employ thousands of people who work in the forest sector and, along with their families, contribute to our local communities.
This should be a time for unity. We can choose a path that brings First Nations, labour leaders, forestry professionals and communities together to develop a sustainable old growth management plan that protects our forests and ensures sustainable employment for our communities. We can build on the 75% of old growth forests that are already protected or outside harvesting areas.
To develop that plan, we are asking government, on behalf of our employees, Indigenous partners, contractors and communities, to immediately take the following steps:
Use the facts, based on objective and transparent science and Indigenous traditional knowledge, to identify potential old growth areas and deferrals.
Undertake a collaborative process that includes Indigenous leaders, labour leaders, forest professionals and communities to develop the old growth plan.
As the world comes together to fight climate change, carbon-storing, renewable forestry products from BC’s sustainably managed forests are in growing demand. This is BC’s opportunity to help support the transition to a low carbon world. Now more than ever, the world needs BC’s forestry products. And that’s something we can each be proud of.
“Let’s work together.”
President & CEO Canfor
2021-12-16 Canfor statement on old-growth deferrals.pdf
For Immediate Release
Dec. 16, 2021
Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
Progress update on old growth, worker supports
VICTORIA - The Province is making progress on the recommendations of the Old Growth Strategic Review Panel in partnership with First Nations, with the vast majority of First Nation rights and title holders having expressed that they want to engage on old-growth management in their territories.
The Province is finalizing deferrals with those First Nations that indicated support for immediately deferring harvest of at-risk old growth forests, continuing discussions with those that requested more time before making a decision, and ensuring that comprehensive supports are in place for workers and communities that may be impacted.
"Our forests are part of who we are as British Columbians. We're working in partnership with First Nations rights and title holders to implement additional deferrals of B.C.'s most at-risk old-growth forests and to develop a new approach to sustainable forest management," said Katrine Conroy, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. "We recognize there is a diversity of perspectives on this issue and some First Nations are more involved in forestry. In line with our new vision for forest care, the steps we are taking together today will ensure we can all share the benefits of our forests for generations to come."
In November 2021, government announced its intention to work in partnership with First Nations rights and title holders to defer harvest of ancient, rare and priority large stands of old growth within 2.6 million hectares of B.C.'s most at-risk old-growth forests - equal to 6,400 Stanley Parks. During the past month, the Province contacted all 204 First Nations in British Columbia and asked them to indicate what steps they are interested in taking on the proposed deferrals, whether that is:
* implementing immediate deferrals within their respective territories;
* discussing deferrals through existing treaties, agreements, or other government-to-government arrangements; and/or
* if they require further time and engagement, including to incorporate local and Indigenous knowledge into the maps.
Despite many communities being impacted by recent extreme weather events, responses were received by 161 First Nations. Almost all First Nations that responded expressed interest in engaging with the Province on old-growth management. In addition, many expressed interest in managing forests in support of broader, related values, including wildlife habitat, cultural practices, clean water, healthy salmon populations and species at risk.
The Province is working to finalize deferrals with First Nations that indicated support for immediate deferrals. Deferrals can be implemented in two ways: by licensees agreeing to voluntarily pause harvest; or by a minister's order under Part 13 of the Forest Act, rescinding approved permits and preventing new permits from being issued. Deferrals will be announced as soon as they are implemented.
"The Huu-ay-aht First Nation will partner with the Province to defer 96% of the old growth recommended by the technical advisory panel within our Ḥahuułi (Traditional Territory) and Tree Farm Licence 44 while we work towards an Integrated Resource Management Plan for 2023," said Chief Robert J. Dennis Jr. of the Huu-ay-aht First Nation. "This will ensure sufficient old forest is protected, while we complete our resource-management planning process and make our long-term forest and resource stewardship decisions."
To support the deferral process, BC Timber Sales has paused advertising and selling licences in areas that overlap with the 2.6 million hectares of B.C.'s most at-risk old-growth forests. This pause covers almost 570,000 hectares or roughly one-quarter of the deferral areas recommended by the Old Growth Technical Advisory Panel.
Roughly half of the 2.6 million hecatres of at-risk old growth is outside the Timber Harvesting Land Base and not threatened by logging for the foreseeable future. There are only approximately 50,000 hectares that overlap with the priority deferral areas with previously approved cutting permits, or 1.9% of the total. A harvesting permit can take on average 12 to 18 months to conclude. Many forestry companies have indicated to the Province that they will not proceed with harvesting these areas while discussions with First Nations are ongoing.
"These deferrals allow us to maintain options that could otherwise be irreversibly lost as we develop the new approach to sustainable forest management that prioritizes ecosystem health and community prosperity throughout B.C." said Garry Merkel, co-author Old Growth Strategic Review. "They are also being implemented in a way that respects input that Al Gorley and I heard from the overwhelming majority of those we spoke to - in partnership with Indigenous Nations."
The vast majority of First Nations - nearly three-quarters of respondents - have expressed an interest in engaging further and indicated they require more time to review the shared technical information and/or to incorporate local and Indigenous knowledge on the proposed deferral areas prior to making a decision. Many First Nations with existing treaties, agreements or other government-to-government agreements have indicated these are the preferred avenues to continue this engagement.
New capacity funding of up to $12.69 million over three years is available to support First Nations in these engagements and in developing a new approach to managing old-growth forests as described in the Old Growth Strategic Review.
The Province is bringing together co-ordinated and comprehensive supports for workers, communities and First Nations to offset any economic impacts that may follow from new restrictions on harvesting old growth forests.
"As a former pulp mill worker and someone who witnessed the forestry downturn in the early 2000s, I know how hard it can be for families and communities impacted by job losses," Conroy said. "Unlike the previous government, we will ensure comprehensive supports are in place for workers and communities as we work together to build a more sustainable forestry industry and shift to more value-added, made-in-B.C. manufacturing."
The Province is making nearly $19 million in new funding available for the remainder of 2021-22 to provide enhanced supports to eligible workers, contractors and communities as deferrals are implemented. These include:
* the Forestry Employment Program to provide short-term employment opportunities for impacted contractors and their employees;
* Community Transition Rapid Response Teams to provide on-the-ground economic development and community support services; and.
* Bridging to Retirement funds to support eligible workers and contractors 55 and older with up to $75,000 to transition to retirement, helping to open up jobs for younger workers.
The Province is also developing new programs that will support forestry workers and communities over the next three years, to be announced in the new year. These programs will support workers in finding new jobs and careers, including through education and skills training. They will also help industry innovate and create jobs through value-added forestry and made-in-B.C. manufacturing, provide strategic advisory services to rural businesses, and support infrastructure and economic development projects in rural communities to create new jobs. Government will also establish an internal office to co-ordinate across ministries and drive forward rural economic opportunities and diversification.
To provide advice on program development and implementation, the Province will be striking a forestry worker and community supports advisory council. The council will include industry, labour, Indigenous and municipal leaders, and will help ensure programs are targeted and providing supports where they are need most. The council will complement the engagement already underway.
* B.C. is home to 11.1 million hectares of old growth; 3.5 million hectares of old growth is protected.
* As recommended by the Old Growth Strategic Review, deferrals are a temporary measure to prevent irreversible biodiversity loss while First Nations, the Province and other partners develop a new approach to sustainable forest management that prioritizes ecosystem health and community resiliency throughout B.C.
* Since September 2020, in partnerships with First Nations, government has also made 11 temporary deferrals encompassing nearly 200,000 hectares of old-growth forest.
* The Old Growth Technical Advisory Panel identified 2.6 million hectares (equivalent to 6,400 Stanley Parks) of B.C.'s most at-risk old-growth forests for deferral. This includes:
* big-tree old growth: 1.7 million hectares;
* ancient old growth: 400,000 hectares; and
* rare old growth: 500,000 hectares.
B.C.'s new approach to old growth management: www.gov.bc.ca/oldgrowth
B.C.'s vision to modernize forest policy: www.gov.bc.ca/modernforestpolicy
Support for forestry workers and communities: https://forestryworkersupport.gov.bc.ca/
A backgrounder follows.
Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
B.C. takes next step on new vision for forest care
In June 2021, the B.C. government set out its vision for a forestry sector that is more diverse, competitive, focused on sustainability, and puts people and communities first, with the release of the Modernizing Forest Policy in B.C. intentions paper.
Based on years of consultation with industry, communities, stakeholders and others, the paper outlines government's vision where workers and communities benefit from secure, innovative forestry jobs, Indigenous Peoples are full partners in sustainable forest management, and the oldest and most ancient trees are protected.
This year B.C. moved forward on this vision by:
* Making changes to the Forest and Range Practices Act that build on government's vision for forest care.
This legislation complements ongoing work to preserve old growth and supports smarter management of forests, repositioning government as the land manager and reasserting the public interest in forests management. Key changes include replacing industry-developed forest stewardship plans with forest landscape plans that will better address ecological and cultural values in addition to timber values. First Nations, communities and the public will have more opportunities to view and comment on forest-sector harvesting plans, increasing trust and participation in forest-management decisions.
* Making changes to the Forest Act that will help build a more diverse and inclusive forest sector. There is significant concentration of forest tenures in the province and almost all of the available forests are already under tenure. This makes it difficult to promote innovation and attract new entrants into the sector, including value-added operations and made-in-B.C. manufacturing. The legislation creates new tools that will allow government to reduce the timber harvesting rights of existing forest tenure holders, compensate them and then redistribute the timber harvesting rights to First Nations, communities and BC Timber Sales. Other changes will establish a clear and consistent compensation framework and increase transparency by requiring tenure holders to provide current information on forest inventory to the chief forester.
* Making progress on a commitment to protect good jobs and workers when tenure and cutting rights are transferred. In November, government announced it had appointed an industrial inquiry commission (IIC) to recommend ways to protect workers when contract tendering and the transfer of cutting and timber-harvesting rights fall outside of section 35 of the Labour Relations Code. Section 35 ensures that the collective bargaining rights of employees are protected when a business or part of it is sold, leased, transferred or otherwise disposed of.
* In 2021, the Province also continued its work to reduce the effects of climate change and make sure healthy forests are here for generations by planting 301 million trees. That makes more than 1.1 billion trees planted since 2018. About 5,000 silviculture workers throughout B.C. will be employed planting trees in 2022.
Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
My name is carl Sweet a bunch of us are organizing a couple of BC Rallies. One on the Island and one through the interior. I know some of this take back is going to affect some woodlots owners. Please call me 250-830-7829. Hoping you can send this to your membership and help us support BC forestry. THANKS CARL
With the recent announcement from the NDP regarding the deferral of 2.6 million has of old growth, we are planning a huge rally in both Victoria & Vancouver! We are hoping this rally will be bigger then the Yellow Ribbon convoy to Victoria in 1994 but we need your help! We are planning on shutting down Vancouver & Victoria on November 18th with convoys of logging trucks, vehicles & people from the far north of BC & from all over Vancouver Island. We would very much welcome & appreciate your participation in this rally! We need the government to hear our voices & to see the people who will be most affected by this latest decision to destroy the very fabric of what BC was built on & that is the forest industry!
Once again this government has failed those of us who own a logging business, the communities who rely on forestry & the people who work directly or indirectly in the forest industry! We need to show this government we will not stand down but will Stand Up for BC forestry! We can shut our businesses down for a day or we can be shut down for good! The time for action is now & to hold this government accountable for this decision which was based on emotion & not on scientific fact! In their own words, this decision was made with no socio-economic impact analysis on what it could mean to the industry, the communities & to the people! This decision was based on a 5 member Old Growth Technical Advisory Panel of which 4 members belong to the Sierra Club! How is this fair to the forest industry & those who rely on or work within the industry? Where was the voice for the forestry companies who will be detrimentally affected by this decision? The communities & the people who live there & work directly or indirectly in the industry? Last but not least & most importantly, why was First Nations not consulted? Where is their voice? We saw what happened on Vancouver Island & how the communities & the people were affected during a nearly 9 month USW strike in 2019 & 2020. Communities were crippled & people were devastated with the loss of their homes, vehicles & their savings! Do we really want to see this again with the loss of jobs this deferral will bring to many across BC? The emotional & economic toll on this Province will be astronomical!
Please join us for the biggest Stand Up BC rally this Province has ever seen! We hope to see you in either Victoria or Vancouver on Thursday, November 18th. For further details please contact Tamara at firstname.lastname@example.org or 250-897-2823
STAND UP BC
PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Inland Truck & Equipment
2900 North Island Hwy
Campbell River, BC V9W 2H5
New approach on old-growth heavy on good intentions, weak on immediate protections
Maps and old-growth classification better reflects crisis but government has failed to ensure protection of currently threatened ecosystems
VICTORIA / UNCEDED LEKWUNGEN TERRITORIES — The Wilderness Committee is encouraged today by the provincial government’s recognition of the ecological crisis in old-growth forests in B.C. However, the organization condemns the lack of concrete action as critically endangered old-growth forests remain unprotected in the immediate term.
“We’ve been calling on the government to be honest in its accounting of remaining old-growth forests for years, so it’s good to see them finally get behind the science,” said National Campaign Director Torrance Coste. “But irreplaceable forests are still being clear-cut every day. The more than one thousand people arrested trying to protect old-growth since May proves the public wants to see these ecosystems set aside, not just mapped accurately.”
The government’s new inventory, defined by its Technical Advisory Panel, calculates the total remaining old-growth at 11.1 million hectares, less than 20 per cent of all forest in B.C. About 7.6 million hectares of that is classified as at-risk, of which 2.6 million hectares are protected. The remaining 5 million hectares of at-risk old-growth remains open to logging. The government has stated it intends to defer logging in 2.6 million hectares of that.
“There have been far too many misleading claims made about there being lots of old-growth left and we’re grateful to see that put to bed once and for all,” Coste said. “However, it’s been well over a year since the Old-Growth Strategic Review. It’s way too late to just clarify intentions without acting on them.”
An encouraging change in today’s announcement is the pause on new old-growth logging in the most at-risk forests by BC Timber Sales (BCTS), the government’s own logging agency, which controls about 20 per cent of all logging in B.C. Also positive are commitments to transition programs for impacted workers and communities and $12 million in capacity funding for First Nations to help with long-term planning. However, funding for First Nations must be greatly increased to offset any potential lost revenues from deferrals.
The Wilderness Committee sees the immediate halt in BCTS operating areas as an indication that the province understands the imminent threat old-growth forests are under. The organization calls for this immediate action to all at-risk old-growth, with full compensation for any lost revenues made to First Nations.
“Without providing the means for First Nations to defer old-growth forests without potentially losing revenue, the government is forcing communities to make an impossible choice,” Coste said. “By embracing science and making these commitments, the BC NDP has given itself the opportunity to end decades of conflict finally. Premier John Horgan needs to do more to ensure that opportunity isn’t lost with so much old-growth still open to logging today.”
For more information, please contact:
Torrance Coste | National Campaign Director
Office of the Premier
Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
VICTORIA– The Province has announced its intention to work in partnership with First Nations to defer harvest of ancient, rare and priority large stands of old growth within 2.6 million hectares of B.C.s most at-risk old-growth forests.
Forests are a part of who we are as British Columbians. We have a responsibility to ensure the benefits are shared, today and with future generations, said Premier John Horgan. Following the recommendations of the Old Growth Strategic Review, we are taking steps to fundamentally transform the way we manage our old-growth forests, lands and resources.
Logging deferrals are a temporary measure recommended by s Old Growth Strategic Review to prevent irreversible biodiversity loss while First Nations, the Province and other partners develop a new approach to sustainable forest management that prioritizes ecosystem health and community prosperity throughout B.C. This new approach will be based on the recommendations provided in the Old Growth Strategic Review and will recognize that a shift to prioritize ecosystem health is necessary if the forests are to continue to provide essential benefits, such as clean air, clean water, carbon storage, conservation of biodiversity and timber.
Details of these forest stands mapped and defined by a panel of independent scientific and ecological experts have been shared with First Nations rights and title holders so they can advise how to proceed on the deferral areas within their respective territories. The Province is requesting that First Nations indicate within the next 30 days whether or not they support the deferrals, require further engagement to incorporate local and Indigenous knowledge, or would prefer to discuss deferrals through existing treaties, agreements and other constructive arrangements. Capacity funding of up to $12.69 million over three years is available to support this process.
To support the deferral process, government will immediately cease advertising and selling BC Timber Sales in the affected areas.
Were building a new vision for forest care to better share all the benefits of our forests together, for generations and generations to come, said Katrine Conroy, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. We are committed to working in partnership with First Nations to make sure we get this right and to supporting workers and communities as we develop a sustainable approach to managing BCs old-growth forests.
The Province is also bringing together strategically co-ordinated and comprehensive supports to help forest workers, communities and First Nations with the necessary supports to offset job
and economic impacts that may follow new harvest restrictions. Programs will include connecting workers with short-term employment opportunities, education and skills training or funds to bridge to retirement. The Province will also work in partnership with business and communities to develop new supports that will assist rural communities to create jobs through diversified economies, infrastructure projects and innovation in industry.
When the deferral period ends, the newly identified at-risk forests will either be added to B.C.s 3.5 million hectares of old-growth forests already off-limits to harvesting, or included within new forest management plans.
As per the recommendations of the Old Growth Strategic Review, government will work in partnership with First Nations to provide clarity on the areas of forest that should be protected forever, the areas that may support some harvest under strict management conditions that prioritize ecosystem health, and the areas that can be accessed for sustainable timber management to support workers and communities. The result will be permanent protection for more of B.C.s most important old growth and more clarity to support investment and jobs.
A commitment to partnership with First Nations and integrating their perspectives on land is fundamental to facilitating the required paradigm shift in forest management that includes old growth as a key component of ecosystem health, said Garry Merkel, one of five members of the independent technical panel, and co-author of the Old Growth Strategic Review. Once temporary deferrals are in place for the most at-risk ecosystems, government can turn toward implementation of the remaining recommendations of the strategic review and developing a new path forward.
There are already some parts of the province, such as the Great Bear Rainforest, where Indigenous Nations are working in partnership with government and industry to diversify management goals. These innovative partnerships demonstrate what can be achieved together and it is the provincial governments intent to build upon this type of forest management model throughout the province.
By doing this work, were following through with the recommendations from the Old Growth Strategic Review, and our commitment to reconciliation in line with the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act, Premier Horgan said.
The Province will provide resources to support First Nations in assessing new data and decisions on deferrals and participating in the development of the Provinces new approach to sustainable forest management. This will allow First Nations and the Province to determine if forest carbon offsets could be used to support the protection of old growth. The Province will also establish a new process to enable individuals and organizations to donate funds to purchase existing timber licences and preserve old-growth stands.
To learn more about the new vision for B.C.s forests visit: www.gov.bc.ca/forestfuture B.C.s old-growth strategy: www.gov.bc.ca/oldgrowth
Modernization of B.C. forest policy: www.gov.bc.ca/modernforestpolicy
Learn more about B.C.s Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act: