What was this engagement about?
The public was invited to review and provide comments on a public discussion paper released as part of a comprehensive timber supply review for the Morice Timber Supply Area.
Public feedback on the discussion paper will be considered by the chief forester before setting the new allowable annual cut. The discussion paper described the geography, natural resources, forest management and land use plans of the Morice Timber Supply Area. It also provided the results of the base-case timber supply analysis, which showed that an initial harvest of 2.165 million cubic metres per year – the level of the current allowable annual cut – can be maintained for five years before decreasing to 1.6 million cubic metres per year.
The base-case analysis assumed a “shelf-life” of 15 years for dead pine. Shelf life is the length of time after death that trees retain commercial value. Most of the dead pine in the Morice Timber Supply Area has been dead for 10 years. In a sensitivity analysis based on a 10-year sawlog shelf life, the initial harvest level decreased after five years to 1.48 million cubic metres per year. Using a 20-year shelf life, if the harvest was concentrated on dead pine, the initial harvest level could increase to 1.644 million cubic metres per year after five years.
The Morice Timber Supply Area extends from the most northerly tip of Babine Lake in the north to Ootsa and Whitesail lakes in the south and covers approximately 1.5 million hectares, of which 648,956 hectares is available for timber harvesting. The dominant tree species in the forests are lodgepole pine, hybrid spruce and subalpine fir (balsam). Minor amounts of trembling aspen, amabilis fir, western hemlock and mountain hemlock also occur in the Timber Supply Area.
The chief forester must consider the impact of the rate of harvest on aboriginal interests. In order to inform his decision, a wildlife habitat supply analysis is currently underway. The results of which will be available for discussion with First Nations communities, and other interested parties, prior to the chief forester’s allowable annual cut determination.
How can my contribution make a difference?
The chief forester’s allowable annual cut determination is an independent professional judgement based on information such as technical forestry reports and input from First Nations and the public. Under the Forest Act, the chief forester must determine the maximum amount of wood that can be harvested in each of the province’s 38 Timber Supply Areas and 34 tree farm licences at least once every 10 years. However, a new allowable annual cut may be determined earlier in response to abnormal situations, or postponed for up to five years if an allowable annual cut level is not expected to change significantly.
Citizens were invited to give feedback on the discussion paper which was considered by the chief forester before setting a new allowable annual cut.
Details of the Engagement:
Date: Closed on June 20, 2014
Category: Natural Resources
Types: Email, Mail