The Shuswap Environmental Action Society will host a rally at Salmon Arm’s Ross Street Plaza on Friday, Sept. 18. Participants will be calling on the province to improve forest policy with a focus on a healthy ecosystem and community involvement in forest management. (Jim Cooperman photo)

The Shuswap Environmental Action Society will host a rally at Salmon Arm’s Ross Street Plaza on Friday, Sept. 18. Participants will be calling on the province to improve forest policy with a focus on a healthy ecosystem and community involvement in forest management. (Jim Cooperman photo)

Forestry policy, old growth focus of upcoming Salmon Arm rally

Shuswap residents to join other communities in day of protest

Shuswap residents will be part of a provincewide rally calling for better management of B.C.’s forests.

Rallies will be held in 16 communities throughout the province on Friday, Sept. 18, with participants calling for improvements to current forest policies to ensure ecosystem health is the priority, to revive community participation in forest management and to restore government oversight of forestry.

The Shuswap Environmental Action Society (SEAS) will host a noon rally at the Ross Street Plaza in Salmon Arm. COVID-19 safety measures in place.

Explaining the need for the protest, SEAS president Jim Cooperman explained problems with forest management in British Columbia have gone from bad to worse, as what little old-growth forest that remains continues to be logged at unsustainable rates.

“Former forestry-dependent communities are reeling as mills are shuttered, jobs lost, whole logs are exported, water supplies are trashed and floods and landslides destroy homes and livelihoods,” said Cooperman. “People are fed up and see this protest as one way to get the message out to the wider public.”

Read more: B.C. suspends some old-growth logging, consults communities

Read more: What exactly is ‘old growth’ B.C. forest, and how much is protected?

To participate in the event, everyone is encouraged to bring a sign and wear green.

In addition to speeches and live music by local songwriter and playwright Linz Kenyon, there will be a short play by the Salmon Arm Actors’ Studio entitled, The Lumberjack’s Dilemma.

Using humour, Salmon Arm Actors’ studio director and playwright James Bowlby wrote the script that explores many of the concerns with ongoing forest mismanagement, and ends with a twist. Three actors, Teresa McKerral, Ryley Crouse and Dylan Taylor are in the production.

On Sept. 11, the B.C. government announced a new plan to protect old growth forests that includes logging deferrals on 353,000 hectares. However, Cooperman said there were flaws to the proposed approach, calling the province’s plan to reverse the ongoing biodiversity crisis “smoke and mirrors.” He said the government was more concerned about the interests of corporations than improving environmental protection and following the advice of scientists.

An analysis of the areas shows that most of the land now under deferral does not consist of high quality old growth and instead includes some second growth and low productivity forests. As well, there is no timetable or commitment for implementing the 14 recommendations in the old growth forest report released on the same day.

On Sept. 11, Forests Minister Doug Donaldson released a report by independent experts, and said he plans to put an end to a “patchwork approach” of old forest preservation that caused a loss of biodiversity. The report identified nine areas containing old-growth forests ( where further logging would be delayed for consultation with Indigenous communities in each region.

According to Donaldson, the province defines old growth as 250 years old in the Coast region, and 140 years old in the Interior. Overall, about 13.7 million hectares, or 23 per cent of the total B.C. forest base is considered old growth and 3.75 million hectares, 27 per cent of the old growth, may be harvested, Donaldson said.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

forestryShuswap Lake

Just Posted

This Doughnut of society and planetary boundaries from Doughnut Economics is described as a compass for human prosperity in the 21st century, whose goal is to meet the needs of all people within the means of the planet. (Kate Raworth and Christian Guthier image. CC-BY-SA 4.0)
P0st-pandemic: Shuswap resident puts focus on how community can thrive

Groups hire expert to find path for city to recovery and sustainability

Michelle Jacobs receives her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the Coast Capri Hotel on April 28, 2021. The pop-up clinic was hosted by the First Nations Health Authority. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
126 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health over the weekend

There are 22 individuals hospitalized due to the virus, and 13 in intensive care

Vernon local Ryan Lazar – who specializes in 2D background design and 3D animation – is ready to start his career after a tough yet rewarding two years of studies. (Contributed)
Okanagan College students get animated at graduation

‘The pandemic has resulted in more video consumption and the animation industry is so hot right now because of it’

Salmon Arm RCMP seize a handgun, drugs and cash at a Silver Creek property on Friday, May 14, 2021. (File photo)
Police seize handgun, drugs and cash at a Shuswap property

Salmon Arm RCMP said warrant for Silver Creek revealed cannabis, possible cocaine, magic mushrooms

Salmon Arm RCMP are seeking witnesses to a single-vehicle collision that occurred on Highway 1 on May 16, 2021. (File photo)
Salmon Arm RCMP seek persons who transported injured driver, motorcycle to hospital

Motorcyclist involved in a single-vehicle collision on Highway 1

An avalanche near Highway 1 in Glacier National Park. Avalanche Canada will benefit from a $10 million grant from the B.C. government. (Photo by Parks Canada)
Avalanche Canada receives $10-million grant from B.C. government

Long sought-after funds to bolster organization’s important work

Barriere RCMP nabbed two suspects who were allegedly breaking into cabins in McLure. (File photo)
Thieves nabbed by Barriere Mounties during McLure break-ins

Police Service Dog Kody instrumental in making the arrest

(File photo)
Repeated cougar sighting on Okanagan Rail Trail

Plenty of bear sightings around the valley too

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry update the province’s COVID-19 vaccine program, May 10, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate stays below 500 a day over weekend

14 more deaths, down to 350 in hospital as of Monday

Royal Bay Secondary School’s rainbow crosswalk was vandalized shortly after being painted but by Monday, coincidentally the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, the crosswalk had been cleaned up and students had surrounded it with chalk messages of support and celebration. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
B.C. high’s school’s pride crosswalk restored following ‘hateful’ graffiti attack

Hate terms, racial slur, phallic images spray-painted at Greater Victoria high school

RCMP vest
Penticton beach brawl results in one arrest but no charges

People took to social media after a fight broke out at the fire pits at Okanagan Lake Saturday

Terrance Mack would have celebrated his 34th birthday on May 13, 2021. Mack’s family has identified him as the victim of a homicide in an apartment on Third Avenue in Port Alberni sometime in April. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
Family identifies Ucluelet man as victim of Vancouver Island homicide

Terrance Mack being remembered as ‘kind, gentle’ man

A single motorcycle parked outside of the Kelowna Hells Angels clubhouse at 837 Ellis Street on July 9, 2020. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
Kelowna Hells Angels prospect sentenced to 9 months in jail for aggravated assault

Colin Michael Bayley pleaded guilty to the downtown Kelowna assault earlier this month

Vernon Search and Rescue, along with Shuswap members, rescued three kayakers near Lumby Sunday, May 16, 2021. (VSAR Instagram)
3 kayakers rescued in North Okanagan

Shuswap, Vernon search and rescue teams make swift-water rescue Sunday

Most Read