EDITORIAL: Cherry Ridge requires input

There must be a public meeting in Cherryville to discuss potential plans for logging

A provincial agency may be focused on maximizing revenue from B.C.’s natural resources, but it’s losing sight of the people it serves.

Specifically, B.C. Timber Sales is proceeding with the tender for construction of a road into part of Cherry Ridge so the area can ultimately be logged by private interests.

However, there have been concerns from Cherryville residents that the road and logging could create debris slides and place them at risk.

“They have ignored relevant advice about local soil conditions and previous road failures in this area,” states the Cherry Ridge Management Committee.

BCTS officials insist that construction of the road doesn’t preclude further public input on development of Cherry Ridge. However, there is the possibility that just the road work alone could trigger a slide, and once the government has gone to the expense of building a road, it’s only natural that logging will proceed.

Cherryville residents aren’t opposed to logging as the forest sector has been a driving force in the local economy for decades. However, they want logging to occur in a sustainable manner such as occurs in the community forest on Cherry Ridge.

Instead of traditional clearcuts, selective harvesting can create employment opportunities while maintaining water quality and ensuring potential public risks are minimized.

If BCTS is truly interested in serving the public, the process for a road and any logging would be placed on hold until there can be a public meeting in Cherryville and meaningful input is provided.

There is no need to rush.