The Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation is owned by the City of Revelstoke. Their tree farm license area is located north of Revelstoke off of Highway 23. (Contributed)

The Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation is owned by the City of Revelstoke. Their tree farm license area is located north of Revelstoke off of Highway 23. (Contributed)

City-owned forestry business has allowable cut renewed

The Revelstoke Community Forestry Corporation harvests old growth forests north on Highway 23

While protesters gather across the province shouting for protection of ancient trees on Vancouver Island, the Ministry of Forests has approved the continued harvesting of old-growth forest north of Revelstoke.

Tree Farm Licence 56 was granted a 90,000 cubic metres annual allowable cut on May 4, the same level that was set in Sept. 2010. The licence is shared by the Revelstoke Community Forestry Corporation and BC Timber Sales.

RCFC, which is partially owned by the City of Revelstoke, harvests roughly 200 hectares a year. Mike Copperthwaite, general manager said the trees they harvest are probably 300 to 400 years old.

“I like to be open,” he said. “We are not hiding the fact that we are logging old-growth.”

Meanwhile, BC Timber Sales will be auctioning off between 10,000 and 40,000 cubic metres per year, in the area, over the next four years, according to the Ministry of Forests.

The licence encompasses an area of around 60,000 hectares, however, this includes wildlife reserves (including caribou), riparian areas as well as inaccessible areas and areas with no trees. The harvestable area is around 20,000 hectares, Copperthwaite said.

Under the Forest Act, the ministry has to determine an annual allowable cut for each Tree Farm Licence at least every 10 years. A public review process, including engagement with the First Nations whose traditional territories overlap the area, for this update started in May 2019.

According to the rationale document from the deputy chief forester Shane Berg, the Ktunaxa Nations Council recommended the annual allowable cut be reduced due to risk to biodiversity given the lack of monitoring of wildlife populations and habitats as well as old-growth management.

However, Berg said he would not reduce the licence “solely on the basis of uncertain information” and that the ministry will be enhancing monitoring in the area.

Legally, when determining the annual allowable cut, the chief forester must consider:

• forest composition and expected growth rate

• time expected for logged areas to become re-established

• forest management treatments applied to the area

• timber utilization, decay, waste and breakage expectations

• forest use for purposes other than timber production

Other factors that are considered include implications to the province if rates of harvesting are changed, the economic and social objectives of the government at the time and any abnormalities that apply to the area, such as infestations.

Companies forecast 300 years into the future, and Copperthwaite said they are projecting their licence to be able to support a higher allowable cut 80 to 100 years down the road because the trees they replanted are growing back better quality. RCFC is also planting six to seven species instead of only the two that would occur naturally, he said. This takes into consideration the impacts of climate change as well as protects against total devastation due to bugs or disease.

RCFC was established in 1993. The corporation pays dividends to the city, some of which are sitting in a legacy fund that has a balance of more than $1 million. Other money is tied up in the Revelstoke Community Energy Corporation and they have invested in projects such as the hospital helipad and the splash pad at Farwell Park.

This is their fifth management plan.


 

@JDoll_Revy
jocelyn.doll@revelstokereview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

forestry

Just Posted

Jack Sutter’s show Shapes in Metal is currently on display in one of the side 
galleries at the Revelstoke Visual Arts Centre. (Contributed)
Art for everyone: Variety of artists currently at Revelstoke gallery show

See water colours, photographs and metal sculptures until June 25

The CP station at Glacier was built in 1916. It is located at the western end of the Connaught Tunnel in Glacier National Park. This photo was taken in mid-June, 2021. (Contributed)
LETTER: Historic but not preserved

Submit letters to the editor to jocelyn.doll@revelstokereview.com

Tania McCabe is the city’s director of finance. (File photo)
What’s going on with my property taxes? Q&A with Tania McCabe

Deadline to pay property taxes in Revelstoke is July 2 this year

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Fruit farmers in the Okanagan and Creston valleys are in desperate need of cherry harvesters amid COVID-19 work shortages. (Photo: Unsplash/Abigail Miller)
‘Desperate’ need for workers at Okanagan cherry farms

Fruit farmers are worried they’ll have to abandon crops due to COVID-19 work shortages

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

FILE – Most lanes remain closed at the Peace Arch border crossing into the U.S. from Canada, where the shared border has been closed for nonessential travel in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Thursday, May 7, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. The restrictions at the border took effect March 21, while allowing trade and other travel deemed essential to continue. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Feds to issue update on border measures for fully vaccinated Canadians, permanent residents

Border with U.S. to remain closed to most until at least July 21

A portion of the George Road wildfire burns near Lytton, B.C. in this Friday, June 18, 2021 handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, BC Wildfire Service *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Blaze near Lytton spread across steep terrain, says BC Wildfire Service

Fire began Wednesday and is suspected to be human-caused, but remains under investigation

Jaimee Peters photo of a Willow Midwives helping with a birth. Willow closed its doors March 31 because of a shortage of midwives. (Contributed)
South Okanagan’s only midwifery to re-open this summer

Willow Community Midwives was forced to close because of a shortage of midwives

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Blair Lebsack, owner of RGE RD restaurant, poses for a portrait in the dining room, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. Canadian restaurants are having to find ways to deal with the rising cost of food. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canadian restaurateurs grapple with rising food costs, menu prices expected to rise

Restaurants are a low margin industry, so there’s not a lot of room to work in additional costs

Gord with a mom and her young son outside Pathways which was defunded on May 31. (Facebook)
Gord Portman with a mom and her child outside of Pathways. The sign says it all about the difference Pathways has made in people’s lives. They were defunded by Interior Health on May 31.
Penticton man takes the plunge for the recovery house that helped save his life

Gord Portman said Discovery House and Pathways have been everything in his 1 year sobriety

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Fort St. John man arrested after allegedly inviting sexual touching from children

Two children reported the incident to a trusted adult right away

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

Most Read