The annual allowable cut (AAC) for part of Moresby Island may be increased up to 12-percent in the spring, depending on how meetings go between the Council of the Haida Nation and the Ministry of Forests.
Deputy Chief Forester Ken Baker hopes to meet with the CHN next month or in early February to discuss a possible increase to the annual allowable cut to Tree Farm Licence 47, which includes an area of Moresby Island.
“I need to better understand the First Nations’ issues on the Moresby management unit before determining the AAC for TFL 47,” says Mr. Baker.
TFL 47 is held by TFL Forest Ltd., a subsidiary of Timberwest. It is spread over three locations, North Moresby Island, an area of North Vancouver Island, and one in the Johnston Strait area. Although Timberwest holds TFL 47, the part on Moresby Island is logged by Teal/Jones.
TFL 47’s new cut level is late. It should have been determined around this time last year, but two factors have delayed Mr. Baker’s decision. He says the TFL is more complex than most, so data analysis took a long time. In addition, the BC Court of Appeal ruling in favour of the Haida Nation last August caused the forests ministry to consult with First Nations on Vancouver Island as well as the islands before making its decision.
The forest act requires all AAC’s to be determined every five years. First, the company holding the licence must collect data and submit it to the ministry. Then the chief forester uses the data collected to decide the new cut level.
The data Mr. Baker received from the forest companies suggests that the AAC could be increased in TFL 47, while respecting environmental concerns.
In the last five year cut period, the Moresby Management Unit AAC was 100,000 cubic meters per year, according to Calvin Ross of the Ministry of Forests in Queen Charlotte. He says data submitted by Timberwest suggests the it could be increased to 112,000 cubic meters.
However, it’s Mr. Baker who will make the decision about any increase, and he will not speculate how much – if at all-the cut might go up.
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