A steady flow of people showed at the District of Port Hardy offices to see what’s going on with the North Island’s community forest.
“People were generally interested in things like where is the community forest (CF) located and who owns it?” said Ione Brown, one of nine community forest directors.
In answer, the CF is located in three patches near Alice Lake, near Marble River and close to Quatse Lake.
The CF is “owned” by the towns of Port Alice, Port Hardy and Port McNeill equally and the corporation of the North Island Community Forest Limited Partnership is set up to run the business of the CF on behalf of the towns.
The directors are volunteer and represent the three communities and various professions and interests. “We are still in our first year of operation, but are hoping to see some activity on the CF lands sometime soon,” said Brown.
There are 39 CFs in the province with more being applied for and primarily the species found in the CF are hemlock, Douglas-fir and western red cedar
Some of the North Island CFs will be logged, but directors are giving consideration to other values such as education and recreation for the community, said Brown.
“There is a set annual cut, but there is no restriction on the size that a community forest tenure can be.”
The Community Forest Agreement is almost the same as a Tree Farm Licence tenure in that all the responsibilities of management rest with the licence holder.
For more information, visit the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Community Forest Program at http://www.for.gov.bc.ca/hth/timber-tenures/community/index.htm.