Does BC have in place adequate components for long-term forest stewardship.
Long-term forest stewardship requires adopting the principle of Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) to guide development of legislative and regulatory tools, decisions regarding the management of BC forest lands and the basis for monitoring and assessment.
Some components of the SFM infrastructure exist in the form of BC legislation and associated regulations (e.g., Forest Act, Ministry of Forests Act, Foresters Act, Forest and Range Practices Act, Wildfire Act, Forest and Range Practices Act, etc.), Government policies (e.g., tenure system, appraisal system, stumpage system, etc.) and Ministry strategies and programs. However, many BC citizens voiced during the HFHC dialogue and continue to voice concerns . They believe the existing infrastructure components are either inadequate, contain critical gaps or not fully implemented to deliver on the desired future forest. Moving toward long-term forest stewardship will require removal of the deficiencies.
One major shortcoming is the lack of a legally binding vision and associated goals. A vision statement has been produced but it is not binding on policy development or operations practices. This is discussed in SFM-what needs to be done to demonstrate status
The vision is a cornerstone of developing a management unit vision and a subsequent spatially and temporally explicit Strategic Plan that balances the management of the forest resources over the long-term. A framework concept for developing such a plan is presented in SPATIALLY AND TEMPORALLY EXPLICIT STRATEGIC PLANNING FRAMEWORK.
Building public confidence in Government and industry management of BC forests is discussed in Building Public Confidence-A nested approach
In instances where appropriate programs, statements, etc. exist or if modified could achieve the desired outcome, we encourage their use. “Starting from square one” should be avoided, whenever possible.
Sustainable Forest Management (SFM): Is the stewardship and use of forests and forest lands in a way, and at a rate, that maintains their biological diversity, productivity, regeneration capacity, vitality and their potential to fulfill, now and in the future, relevant ecological economic and social functions, at local, national and global levels, and that does not cause damage on other ecosystems. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (Canadian Institute of Forestry’s The Forestry Chronicle Vol 70 (6): 666-674).