Landscape Management around Carbon Inlet and Peace Reach on Williston Lake, Near Hudson’s Hope, BC


Protection of scenic areas near Williston Lake consistent with Forest Practices Code

Victoria – The Ministry of Forests’ decision to identify scenic areas and establish visual quality objectives for areas visible from Williston Lake was reasonable and met Forest Practices Code requirements, said the Forest Practices Board in a report released today.

In its report, the board recommends the district manager start a process for public participation. Public input is needed to identify scenic areas and visual quality objectives to be included in the landscape unit plan being developed for the Williston Lake area. In the interim, the board recommends the district manager make sure any interested individuals or groups are given an opportunity to comment before any blocks visible from Williston Lake are approved for logging.

This report concludes the investigation of a complaint to the board from a resident of Hudson’s Hope who complained that the visual quality objectives in Carbon Inlet and Peace Reach were not restrictive enough. The complainant was also concerned that public consultation was inadequate.

“The board found that the district manager followed code requirements when he decided to establish the visual quality objectives,” said panel chair Keith Moore. “He decided to establish these objectives to guide logging activities until the Dawson Creek Land and Resource Management Plan was complete. In setting the objectives, local public concerns, the land and resource management plan, Canadian Forest Product’s inventory of visually sensitive areas, and provincial government objectives were considered. The range of objectives he set were within the standards in the ministry recreation manual.”

The report notes the public had several opportunities to provide comments and make their concerns known to the district before the visual quality objectives were established in 1997. At that time, the district manager also made a commitment that the public would be involved in future decisions about objectives in a landscape planning process.

The board’s report also notes that the existing scenic areas inventory is incomplete. The district has asked Canfor to update this information. In the meantime, logging approved in any scenic areas that are not included in the inventory will be restricted to meeting the objectives of adjacent scenic areas. The Forest Practices Board is B.C.’s independent watchdog for sound forest practices. The board reports to the public and government about compliance with the Forest Practices Code and the achievement of its intent.

The board’s main roles, established under the Forest Practices Code, are auditing forest practices, investigating public complaints, undertaking special investigations of any code-related forestry issues, participating in administrative reviews and appeals and providing reports on board activities, findings and recommendations.

Bill Cafferata,

Forest Practices Board
Phone: (250) 387-7964

Cathi Piazza,
Communications Officer

Forest Practices Board
Phone: (250) 387-7964

April 12, 2000

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