Forestry plan opposed
Some politicians are concerned community interests have been axed in the forest.
The Electoral Area Advisory Committee is protesting the Ministry of Forests’ plans for conversion of volume-based forest cutting to area-based tenure.
“It would give far more control over the land base to license holders (companies) and take away from the watershed and tourism such as possibly expanding Monashee Provincial Park,” said Eugene Foisy, Cherryville director.
Foisy says that while trees are being harvested, there is a lack of local access to timber and the number of jobs in the industry is decreasing.
“There are (logging) trucks going through here but everyone has gone to Alberta to find work,” he said.
Foisy would like to see more emphasis on timber being processed into value-added products in communities like Cherryville instead of shipping logs elsewhere.
“It would allow communities to have their own forests. The jobs would stay here because we would have smaller mills operating,” he said.
The Ministry of Forests states that area-based tenures will encourage license-holders to make enhanced silviculture and infrastructure investments to improve the timber supply.
It also states that the ministry can reject an application if the best interests of the public are not met.
“As with other forms of forest licenses on Crown land, public consultation on forest stewardship plans and timber supply reviews are required on any new area-based tenures,” says a ministry media release.