New Democrats Call for Tough Regulation to Protect Forest Land
VICTORIA—New Democrat Forestry Critic Bob Simpson is urging the Campbell government to toughen regulations on the management of timber licensed land after 1,800 hectares of waterfront land were put up for sale in Jordan River.
“Forestry giants are selling off timber licensed lands to developers without so much as consultation from local communities,” said Simpson. “Why is the Campbell government excluding the public from participating in land management plans that will inevitably affect the future of their community?”
In February of this year the Campbell government allowed Western Forest Products to release large areas of forested land from public scrutiny and regulations required under the Forest Act. This move by the Liberals has allowed the forestry giant to now sell more than 1,800 hectares of forested land along the Jordan River coastline. The remaining 28,000 hectares of forested land owned by the company along Vancouver Island may also be open to future sale and development.
“Communities, such as Jordan River, have completely lost control over development of some of the most sensitive sites on southern Vancouver Island,” said Simpson. “Management of private lands is being brought into question more and more by Island communities.”
“We must ensure our remaining forests on Vancouver Island are managed for their full range of values for both current and future generations on Vancouver Island.”