In an effort to enhance economic opportunities and forest stewardship, the Village of Fraser Lake is being invited to apply for a community forest licence, Parliamentary Secretary for Forestry John Rustad announced today.
If the application process is successful, Fraser Lake could harvest up to 45,000 cubic metres of timber a year - the equivalent of 1,300-1,500 logging-truck loads of cut timber.
A community forest is a forestry operation managed by a local government, community group or First Nation for the benefit of the entire community. Community forests are long-term licences designed with area-based management to encourage community involvement in and management of local forests.
The formal invitation is the first step in a process that normally takes four to six months to complete.
Prince George, Fort St. James, Burns Lake, Houston, Smithers and Granisle are among the municipalities in the region that have community forest licences. Increasing the diversity of area-based tenures was also a recommendation of the Special Committee on Timber Supply.
Parliamentary Secretary for Forestry John Rustad -
"In the wake of the pine beetle infestation, government is supporting a managed and strategic expansion of the community forest program by increasing the amount of timber available to communities and simplifying the permitting process. Lasting partnerships with communities, First Nations and industry are key as we work to manage the mid-term timber supply."
Mayor Dwayne Lindstrom, Village of Fraser Lake
"Community forests provide local jobs and give communities a stronger, more diverse economic base. We asked the Province to come to the table on this issue, and they responded positively and are working with us to make a community forest a reality in Fraser Lake."
- Our Natural Advantage: A Forest Sector Strategy for British Columbia identifies community forests as a key element in supporting prosperous rural forest economies.
- Since 2004, government has signed 47 community forest agreements with a total annual allowable cut of 1.3 million cubic metres of timber a year.
- Community forest licences support government's Mid-Term Timber Supply Action Plan, prepared in response to the mountain pine beetle infestation. The plan will help improve stewardship of our mid-term timber supply, while supporting B.C.'s forest-dependent communities.
Our Natural Advantage: Forest Sector Strategy for British Columbia: http://www.for.gov.bc.ca/mof/forestsectorstrategy/Forest_Strategy_WEB.PDF
Mid-Term Timber Supply Action Plan: http://www.for.gov.bc.ca/hfp/mountain_pine_beetle/mid-term-timber-supply-project/MTTS-Action-Plan-201210.pdf
BC Jobs Plan: http://www.bcjobsplan.ca/
Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations