Fort St. James woodlots get mixed audit results

VICTORIA – Planning and forestry activities on three of six audited woodlots fully complied with legal requirements, according to the audit reports released today. However, three licensees did not meet required reporting commitments and one also did not comply with some reforestation obligations.

“While we found most practices on these six woodlots met the requirements of the Forest and Range Practices Act and the Wildfire Act, two of the woodlots did not submit required information to government following harvesting activities,” said board chair Al Gorley.

“This information is to include the amount of area harvested, silviculture activities carried out and the achievement of a new free-growing stand of trees within the allowed timeframes. Without this information, it is not possible for the forest ministry to track whether harvested sites are properly reforested.”

“In addition, one licensee had done no replanting or silviculture survey work during the audit period, and neither the auditee nor the forest ministry were aware of the status of reforestation obligations on the woodlot. This licensee had also not submitted required information following harvesting activities,” Gorley added.

The audit examined the woodlot licensees’ planning, timber harvesting, road construction and maintenance, and silviculture activities and obligations, such as planting harvested sites and achieving free-growing stands of new trees.

All of these woodlots have been impacted by the mountain pine beetle infestation, and all had their annual allowable cuts increased to allow the salvage of damaged timber.

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.

More information can be obtained by contacting:

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