Board Audit Will Examine Streamside Practices in Kootenay Forest District
VICTORIA – The Forest Practices Board will conduct an audit this month looking at forest activities around streams located in Wyndell Box and Lumber Ltd.’s operating areas in the Kootenay Forest District.
In some cases, forest practices, such as harvesting and road and stream crossing construction can have serious environmental impacts on water quality and fish habitat in streams if not done properly. Consequences may include surface soil erosion that can potentially cause landslides. This may harm fish, fish habitat, and water sources and endanger public safety and property.
The Kootenay Forest District was chosen at random for audit, and the streams focus was identified as appropriate for this licensee. The audit area covers the east side of Kootenay Lake from Creston to Murphy Creek.
The audit will examine Wyndell Box and Lumber’s operations for compliance with the Forest and Range Practices Act (FRPA) and effectiveness of forest practices in conserving stream resources. The audit will look at practices in and around streams for the period between Jan. 1, 2000 and Oct. 1, 2004.
The audit team is made up of 3 registered professional foresters, two professional biologists and one chartered accountant. They will be in the area for about 5 days, beginning Sept. 27. Once the fieldwork is done, the audit report is drafted, and any party that may be adversely affected by the audit findings will have a chance to respond. The board’s final report and recommendations will then be released to the public and government.
Effectiveness auditing is a new form of auditing for the board in response to FRPA’s results-based approach, which focuses on the results of forest practices on the ground rather than the methods used to attain those results.
This audit will further work done in the first pilot riparian audit in 2003, conducted in the Chilliwack Forest District, to test indicators which will accurately measure the effectiveness of forest practices in protecting streams from the environmental impacts of logging operations. The results from the 2003 riparian audit will be released this fall.
The Forest Practices Board is an independent public watchdog that reports to the public about compliance with the Forest Practices Code and the achievement of its intent. The board’s mandate has been retained under the new Forest and Range Practices Act (FRPA). The board’s main roles under FRPA are:
- Auditing forest practices of government and licence holders on public lands.
- Auditing government enforcement of FRPA.
- Investigating public complaints.
- Undertaking special investigations of forestry issues.
- Participating in administrative appeals.
- Providing reports on board activities, findings and recommendations.
Forest Practices Board
Phone: 250 356-1586 / 1 800 994-5899
September 20, 2004