Letter: Buy out forest companies to save old growth

Amount of money enforcing the injunction cost would easily have covered compensation

Buy out forest companies to save old growth

After years of monitoring and studying declining wild salmon stocks, the DFO recently decided that they had allowed too many commercial fishing boats to operate on the West Coast to maintain a sustainable salmon fishery. They started a program, (as they had in the past), of buying back commercial licences in an effort to compensate the hardship and lack of income that drastic quota reductions would impose on commercial fishermen. Thus helping the people and companies that have depended on the fishery for their livelihood, in some cases for generations, transition to other industries or modify their fishing practices.

Similarly, the continued logging of mature, old growth trees will result in the extinction of habitat and ecosystems that exist only in these virtually untouched forests. With such an obvious and strong public desire to preserve the few remaining areas of actual old growth, would it not behoove the provincial government to change the logging permits and leases and compensate the affected logging companies to aid transition to completely sustainable logging practices? The amount of money that enforcing the injunction on the protesters cost would easily have covered compensation to Teal Jones and certainly would have been a lot more palatable to the majority of British Columbians while the new permits and leases were being designed. Premier Horgan promised to impose a moratorium on old growth logging in 2017, so why was it such a shock that the Fairy Creek protest even started, and why isn’t the rest of B.C. holding Horgan accountable to his promises?

It is unfortunate that as the old growth trees become more scarce on the planet, they also become more valuable, so keeping them safe becomes more of a struggle.

Bluefin Tuna are becoming very rare and last year one was sold in the Japanese auction for $1.8 million. The very last one will be worth much more. Are dollars really more important than anything else?

Paul Slade