Environment and Resource Management Report

Posted by: Johnny Smoke  /  Category: Archived Posts


DATE: June 2006

PROJECT: Okanagan Vista Trails Protection

Toni Clark and Denis O’Gorman met with Cam Leadbeater and Pat Farkas from Weyerhaeuser Forestlands Dept. on May 23 to discuss the proposed Apex Round Table.
The Round Table was proposed in the LRMP to do more refined planning and enhanced trail management in the Apex “polygon” to address recreational conflicts.
In our conversation the following points were made:
1. Weyerhaeuser sees (correctly) the Round Table as a “Government job” i.e. the province must lead it.
2. The Round Table is to provide details and not to “re-jig” the LRMP.
3. There are revenue impacts if harvesting does not proceed.
4. The biggest issue in the area s the changing landscape due to insect attack. The lodgepole pine tracts are susceptible to Mountain Pine Beetle (MPB) and Fir Bark Beetle (in the upper Shatford Drainage).
5. The concerns are with salvage logging and with forest fire risk due to larger fuel loads (from dead trees).
6. The major effort is towards developing/harvesting susceptible stands. All pine stands in the area (including those in and around Okanagan Vista are susceptible). Full MPB attack is expected by 2014.
7. Harvesting is using a “large block” strategy. Operating areas are based on susceptibility. Forest retention targets are being sought in stand types less susceptible to attack.
8. Notwithstanding the above, no harvest strategies/methods the company indicates harvesting can be adapted in areas (such as Okanagan Vista) where other “values,” such as recreation, exist.

Cam and Pat suggested APOA speak to the Forest Service regarding “community awareness”. Apparently they are talking to “upland communities” regarding the fuel loading issue. Logging susceptible forests is one strategy to reduce risks. this needs coordinated F.S., company and First Nations approach. (Note Weyerhaeuser is not logging in PIB area.) Contact is Richard Topczer, Timber Tenure Forester in Vernon (558.1733).
After additional discussion with BCFS, this additional dimension should be discussed directly with MLA Bill Barisoff. APOA Board will review this proposed approach.

Prepared by Denis O’Gorman

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