To learn more about the benefits of community forests in BC click here to link to the BCCFA’s Community Forests Indicators reports. A set of 18 indicators are reported on annually to measure the benefits of community forests.
The benefits of community forestry vary from community to community as they each identify their unique values and priorities. For example, one rural mountain community has identified water protection as their highest priority, while a First Nation community forest sees education and long term employment of band members as their key priorities. The numerous benefits of community forestry include :
- Long-term community economic development resulting in the increased self-reliance of rural communities.
- Local employment in rural communities.
- Local-level decision making that leads to locally appropriate decisions and improves the incentives to consider the long-term benefits of sustainable management.
- Increased potential to resolve conflicts over timber harvesting in watersheds and other sensitive areas.
- Protection of drinking watersheds, viewscapes, and other values that are important to communities and to local and regional economic activity.
- Enhanced opportunities for education and research. Community forests can be laboratories for testing innovative forest practices.
- Community participation in resource management leads to an improved awareness of forest management among members of the public.