BCTS operations near Squamish pass audit

VICTORIA – An audit of BC Timber Sales and 15 timber sale licensees in the Squamish area found that forest planning, silviculture, fire protection, harvesting and road activities were mostly in compliance with legislation, according to a report released today.

“The audit found that a timber sale licence holder designed and built a bridge on a main forest service road that was inadequate to withstand significant rainfall or a flood, which is not in compliance with the legislation,” said board chair Al Gorley. “The board was concerned because of the potential risk to public safety if the bridge was to wash out.”

“Despite this non-compliance, the board recognizes that BCTS’s operating area includes substantial First Nations interest, high recreational use and natural values that create significant challenges for industrial forestry activities in this area. Overall, the audit found that BCTS and the timber sale licensees did a good job at meeting these challenges and the board acknowledges their efforts.

The 1.1-million hectare Squamish district includes the communities of Lions Bay, Squamish, Whistler and Pemberton.

The board looked at harvesting, road construction and maintenance, silviculture, fire preparedness, environmental protection activities and associated planning done between August 2009 and August 2011.

The Forest Practices Board is B.C.’s independent watchdog for sound forest and range practices, reporting its findings and recommendations directly to the public and government. The board audits forest and range practices on public lands and appropriateness of government enforcement. It can also make recommendations for improvement to practices and legislation.

More information can be obtained by contacting:

Helen Davies, Communications
Forest Practices Board
Phone: 250 213-4708 / 1 800 994-5899