Forest Practices Board Audits MacMillan Bloedel Forestry Operations in TFL 44
Victoria – Today, the Forest Practices Board begins the fieldwork portion of an audit of Tree Farm Licence (TFL) 44, held by MacMillan Bloedel Limited. The TFL is located on the west side of Vancouver Island with operating areas south to the Carmanah Valley and Nitinat Lake and north through the Clayoquot Sound area.
This is a full scope audit that will examine construction, maintenance and deactivation of roads, as well as forest harvesting, silviculture, protection and operational planning activities for compliance with the Forest Practices Code.
The Board’s nine-person audit team will be in the licence area over the next three weeks performing office and field examinations of numerous timber harvest areas and many kilometres of roads. The licence was selected randomly, not on the basis of location or level of performance. The Forest Practices Board is required to carry out periodic independent audits to determine government and forest company compliance with the planning and forest practices requirements of the Forest Practices Code.
Once the fieldwork has been completed, the audit team will provide a report on the findings to the members of the Forest Practices Board. Any party that may be adversely affected by the audit findings must be given an opportunity to respond before the Board prepares its final report and recommendations and releases it to the public and the government.
To date, the Board has completed 23 audits – 17 forest companies and 5 Ministry of Forests Small Business Forest Enterprise Programs. Eighteen of these audits have been completed and published. Six were clean audits, meaning the forest planning and practices met Code requirements in all significant respects. The remainder were qualified audits, meaning that there was some significant non-compliance with the Code. Most of the non-compliance related to logging practices near streams and logging road construction and maintenance. The Board plans to undertake nine new compliance audits in 1999.
The Forest Practices Board is an independent agency, established in 1995, that provides reports to the public and government about compliance with the Forest Practices Code and the achievement of its intent. The Board’s main roles are: auditing forest practices; undertaking investigations in response to public complaints; undertaking special investigations of any Code related forestry issues; participating in administrative reviews and appeals; and providing reports to the public and government on Board activities, findings and recommendations.
July 19, 1999