Multi-value audit finds good performance in Fort St. James Forest District

VICTORIA – A multi-value pilot audit by the Forest Practices Board found good performance by forest companies in the Kazchek operating area of the Fort St. James Forest District.

The audit focused mainly on the practices of Apollo Forest Products within the operating area. The board assessed the licensee on biodiversity, stream riparian management and soil conservation values and used a broad framework based on biodiversity indicators to assess Apollo’s environmental management system and stewardship practices.

“This licensee not only meets the requirements of provincial legislation, but has also obtained third-party certification,” said board chair Bruce Fraser. “Legislated standards are only part of the overall framework for protecting forest values, and Apollo has taken significant additional measures to track performance and ensure accountability to the public.”

The pilot audit examined practices by Apollo and Brave Holdings Ltd between Sept. 1, 2004 and Sept. 24, 2006. The audit found full compliance by licensees with the requirements of the Forest and Range Practices Act.

The multi-value audit is the latest in a series of board pilot audits that focus on the results for specific forest values, such as soils, streams, visual quality and biodiversity, which go beyond a strict focus on legislative compliance. Today’s board report is the first to review multiple values in a single audit.

“While the licensee has effective systems in place, the next step is to develop the framework needed to ensure monitoring of the status of key forest values,” said Fraser. “We encourage Apollo to work with other licensees in the area on a co-ordinated monitoring framework to track indicators such as wildlife reaction to harvesting approaches and effectiveness of tree retention, for example.”

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;
  • audits appropriateness of government enforcement;
  • investigates public complaints;
  • undertakes special investigations of current forestry issues;
  • participates in administrative appeals; and
  • makes recommendations for improvement to practices and legislation.

Helen Davies

Forest Practices Board
Phone: 250-356-1586 or 1-800-994-5899