Currently, BC forest managers are penalized if residual biomass after forest harvesting exceeds a given threshold. As noted in the proposed CFS study https://tinyurl.com/s6wy3y7 emergence of a bio-products industry has the potential to totally reverse this situation and force managers to leave enough to maintain ecosystem services. This would be a major change in BC forest management and public responses. The retention of biomass is not new. Foresters have learned from the European experiences that, if all the biomass is removed, soil productivity can decrease significantly. Also, BC studies in the 1990s identified the need for a given level of biomass. However, the results were not applied in policy. Even though this issue is not new, the CFS should be congratulated for initiating the study within the 2020 environment. Maintaining ecosystem productivity is critical to long-term forest stewardship and subsequently a significant contribution community resiliency.
Lawyer Jeff Waatainen outlines on page 25 of Bill 22 – Waatainen comments the continued uncertainty created by Bill 22 and the associated Regulation. Not only is the “public interest” test still unclear as outlined previously in Bill 22 – comments but so is the application of the old and new definitions of the other tests “unduly restrict competition” and “detrimental to competition.” Surely Government can clarify these tests and reduce the uncertainty they have generated within the industry, communities and investors. This is not a trivial issue and needs immediate attention.
HFHC recommendations and comments regarding moving toward SFM and community resiliency from 2011-2019 are included in articles presented in Revitalization of Forest Sector-recommendations-comments (1)
Moving to a new BC wood manufacturing sector will not be quick or easy! As outlined in Building a diversified mfg sector-challenges_1, there are challenges to overcome in this transition. It will be a journey, not an event requiring:
- Politicians thinking strategically beyond a one-term election period or political ideology,
- Politicians adopting a business environment that addresses the needs of investors, profitability of companies and acknowledging current and future markets,
- Companies committing support for a secondary wood manufacturing sector, and
- Communities being realistic and supporting local investments in secondary wood manufacturing.
Drones are a relatively new tool for foresters to use in monitoring the condition of the forest. UBC students have produced a video that may be of interest to teachers and others https://t.co/JFBujOE85z?amp=1 The associated research paper can be reviewed at https://bit.ly/2HUgC9M
The UBC Faculty of Forestry has produced a toolkit to guide people in discussing issues and solutions regarding urban forestry and climate change in their neighbourhood http://calp.forestry.ubc.ca/home/urban-forestry-toolkit/
The UBC Faculty of Forestry has produced a Teachers Guide for use in educating high school students on climate change http://calp.forestry.ubc.ca/home/teacher-resources/ Worth taking a look.
Minister Donaldson identified Government’s vision for the forest sector in the Spring 2019 issue of the Truck Logger magazine. It is “a forest sector made up of successful and innovative large and small companies that can create and maintain good jobs and generate wealth from our forests to support healthy communities.” There has not been much elaboration on the type of companies. Let’s hope this includes diversification so not all companies are producing traditional commodity or solid wood products. The indication is this could be part of the Minister’s vision. However, it is critical for him to send this message to the forest sector and Ministry staff as not much has been done in this regard over the last couple of years. Maybe the recent re-organization transferring the staff with this file to the Chief Forester’s office will produce positive results.
To provide resiliency to communities we need companies that can bridge the traditional economic cycle of solid wood products mainly destined for housing. Government needs to create an environment to encourage investment in other wood products such as bio-fuels and bio-chemicals. This will require long-term access to fibre. Hopefully the Coast and Interior Forest Sector Revitalization initiatives will include achieving this critical diversification.
Chief Forester Diane Nicholls talked about adaptation in forestry to CIF-Vancouver Section members and students on March 19th. A key point was “there is no one size fits all in managing BC forests under the expected climate, social and economic projections.” Foresters need to assess the conditions and projections on each site and landscape when making forest management decisions. This is a marked change from the traditional Government desire to have policies and regulations that trend toward standardization. A breath of fresh air. She will need support and good luck in moving this forward. Foresters and concerned citizens need to show her their support.