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.