Current conventional forest practice can’t continue in forest reserve

To control costs, council should reject the call to hire any new consultants

Current conventional forest practice can’t continue in forest reserve

On Feb 15, I believe council can solve both issues of long term forest reserve strategy and short term budget considerations, in the following manner.

First, it must be accepted that the current practice of conventionally tree farming the forest reserve with short rotation patch cuts is not ecologically sustainable, and that practice will not be tolerated by the community at large much longer, especially in places such as Stoney Hill.

To balance this fact with the desire to limit tax increases to the rate of inflation, council should approve Councillor Justice’s original motion to halt all logging on Stoney Hill. For 2019, council should prioritize salvage logging, and any new logging shall be done only to the extent required to cover forestry department operating costs.

To control costs, council should reject the call to hire any new consultants or outside experts to solve our forestry issue for us. We need to solve this issue as a community.

Instead, council should engage in a strategy to build our region’s capacity for delivering change. Start by reinvigorating the existing mechanisms for public oversight of the forest reserve: expand the Forest Advisory Committee to include community members from outside the forestry profession; encourage public participation at FAC meetings; redouble efforts to communicate in general about the forest reserve, including expanding the availability of tours of the municipal forest.

And most importantly, embark on an annual forestry town hall process similar to what is done with the annual budget town hall events. The forestry town hall events can become a venue to share and test ideas, provide meaningful input to policy, and build networks. The community needs a forum to do the hard work of creating strategies and relationships that will enable us to manage the forests for a diverse set of values.

From that activity, the capacity for change will begin to form. We will then begin to see the entrepreneurial processes unfold that will help us solve the economic riddle of how to shift away from conventional tree farming and toward reestablishing a productive, resilient ecosystem in our municipal forest.

I urge council to demonstrate faith in our community’s innate ability to change and adapt. Set the stage for a sustainable future by balancing the short term and long term, and providing us with opportunities to move ahead with new ideas and relationships to each other and the land.

Chris Crowther

North Cowichan

Just Posted

No suspects yet in Mid Island Bus arson case in Cowichan

A spokesperson for Mid Island Bus says the fire that torched five… Continue reading

Warren Goulding column: Letter to the editor was unfair

I’m always impressed with the volume of letters to the editor that… Continue reading

Sarah Simpson Column: It took two months but the cat came back

The column before last, I mentioned that a cat who’d gone missing… Continue reading

Bulldog from Chemainus will be a Wildcat next season

Hawthorne grateful for the chance to play Div. 1 in the U.S. after his BCHL development

T.W. Paterson column: Forbidden Plateau’s lost gold nuggets

“Time and time again the young men scoured the hills…”

VIDEO: Iconic ‘snow cone’ takes shape at B.C. park near Clearwater

Snow cone forming at Wells Gray Provincial Park one that would make Disney’s Queen Elsa proud

Coming up in Cowichan: Bowl for Kids; Leaders of Tomorrow

Bowl for Kids Sake coming up in Cowichan Valley on March 3… Continue reading

Pink Shirt Day a reminder to ‘T.H.I.N.K.’ before posting on social media

‘Be Kind’ message on shirts sold for anti-bullying activities of Wednesday, Feb. 27

A ‘warm embrace’ for grieving parents at funeral of seven young fire victims

Mourners offered love and support to Kawthar Barho, mother of seven children

Indigenous leaders, politicians say Trans Mountain report flawed

The National Energy Board has endorsed an expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline a second time

B.C. man creates Indigenous colouring book for children

Leon McFadden is working on 11 more books to finish the horoscope series

UPDATE: Reports of rashes prompt closure of all Harrison Hot Springs pools

Public pool available after Fraser Health shut down all five mineral pools until further notice

Legislation to protect B.C. farmland comes into effect

Regulations enhance food security, encourage long-term farming

Have you heard the legend of Shuswaggi, the Shuswap Lake monster?

Witness accounts as old as 1904, and as recent as 2018, place a creature in the lake’s depths

Most Read