2021 Conference Presentations

2021 BCCFA Virtual Conference and AGM
October 21-22, 2021

Session 1 – Modernizing BC Forest Policy – The Intentions Paper – A vision driving change

Moderator – Jennifer Gunter, Executive Director, BCCFA

The Intentions Paper (IP) covers a broad range of proposed policy reforms focused on sustainability, reconciliation, people and  communities, competitiveness, and fairness. The Province is currently engaged in discussions with Indigenous Nations and stakeholders on the priority items in the IP. This is a very fast moving file for the Province and new information may emerge any day. In this session government representatives introduced the reforms identified in the IP and provided current information on topics of importance to community forests including the Old Growth Strategic Review, FRPA reforms and the intention to harmonize pricing for small tenures.

Sarah Fraser, Assistant Deputy Minister, Rural Opportunities, Tenure and Engineering Division, Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development and Doug Kelly, Director, Forest Tenures Branch, Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development Link to the presentation

Forest and Range Practices Act (FRPA) Improvement Initiative Update

Rachael Pollard, Acting Director, Resource Practices Branch, Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development

Rachael spoke to the ongoing work to improve forest practices in BC, and to better align forest management with the provisions of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act. Link to the presentation

Old Growth Strategic Review Provincial Update

Margaret Gibbs, Director, Provincial Stewardship Strategies, Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development

Government policy on old growth has been a hot topic in BC. Last June the Old Growth Technical Advisory Panel was appointed to support government’s next steps in a science-based approach to transforming old growth management. We  heard from Margaret about the latest developments on this file. Link to the presentation

Community Forests, Land Use Planning and Old Growth

Presenters talked about their approach to these important questions What is old growth? Where should old growth be?  How do you see planning and managing old growth in a community forest?

  • Mic Werstuik Community and Business Development Officer, and Dave Gill, General Manager of Forestry, Westbank First Nation, Ntityix Resources LP talked about their landscape level plan that is guided by Indigenous values. Link to the presentation
  • Colin Macleod and David DeWit (Office of the Wet’suwet’en), both board members from the Wetzin’kwa Community Forest, spoke to their Old Growth Policy that guides management decisions on their community forest.

Session 2 – Wildfire and Fuel Reduction

Moderator– John Cathro, RPF, Cathro Consulting, Kaslo

In this session we debriefed the 2021 fire season and learned about the new BC Wildfire Service (BCWS) initiatives and direction, which puts a focus on the importance of interagency engagement and relationship development in effective wildfire risk reduction and management. New research was shared on the efficacy of fuel treatments in assisting fire suppression efforts and in reducing wildfire severity. Community Forests told their stories of the 2021 fires on their tenures and showcased the proactive work & critical role they have played in the development of beneficial partnerships and how those relationships on the fire prevention side, lead to better relationships on the suppression side.

Overview of the 2021 fire season and BCWS organizational changes and new direction.

Tony Pesklevits, BCWS Strategic Advisor Link to the presentation

Debrief of 2021 Wildfire Season and the Intersection of Wildfire with Treated Areas – Presentations by Community Forest Managers impacted by 2021 Wildfires

Crown Land Wildfire Risk Reduction – Past, present, future

Overview of the Community Resiliency Investment program, including Crown Land Wildfire Risk Reduction, the BCCFA Economic Recovery Program and the importance of Partnerships and Agreements.

  • Chris Hodder, BC Wildfire Service HQ Manager and Kelly Osbourne, Fire and Fuel Management Officer, BC Wildfire Service Link to the presentation
  • Jennifer Gunter, BCCFA Executive Director, BC Community Forest Association Link to the presentation

Update on the recent field season’s research on community forests and efficacy of fuel treatments.

Lori Daniels, Professor, UBC Faculty of Forestry, Dept. of Forest and Conservation Sciences Link to the presentation coming soon

 Session 3 – Reconciliation, Provincial Forest Policy and Relationship Building

Moderator, Craig Candler

The Province is working to increase economic and land management opportunities for Indigenous Peoples and align new forest legislation, regulation and policy with the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. With 203 First Nations in the province, the process will not happen overnight.  Meanwhile, community forest agreement holders (CFAs) must navigate the increasing expectations and keep their businesses going. For example: Approvals – how do CFAs navigate this new, challenging environment, and build the important relationships with First Nations that will be different at each TSA level? In this session we learned more about the new direction of the provincial government. And we heard from our colleagues working at the community level about the learning and unlearning required to make progress on the important relationships that will benefit everyone in BC, Indigenous and non-Indigenous.

Reconciliation and the new direction of the Provincial government

Tom McCarthy, Assistant Deputy Minister, Negotiations & Regional Operations Division, Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation and Melissa Sanderson, Assistant Deputy Minister, Forest Policy and Indigenous Relations Division, Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development  Link to the presentation coming soon

Building a Community Forest – The Quesnel Community Forest Team
The team talked about the history of their process to receive an invitation to apply for a community forest, what they have learned so far, and what they hope to achieve.

Bob Simpson, Mayor of Quesnel, Erin Robinson, Forestry Initiatives Manager, Quesnel and Jean Christie, Natural Resources Manager, Lhtako Dene Nation Link to the presentation

Turning the Dial on Reconciliation

John Jack, Councillor for the Huu-ay-aht First Nations

The Huu-ay-aht First Nations are a modern treaty nation located on the west coast of Vancouver Island. The Huu-ay-aht are the community forest tenure holder of K3N (16,922 m3) and a partner with the community of Bamfield of K2E (860m3). John is the Nation’s representative to the Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District since 2012, and he has been its Chair since 2016. John spoke to his experience of what is required to truly build capacity and to make real, sustainable progress towards reconciliation. No electronic presentation, but a great presentation. Best quote -“Reconciliation is happening in BC…we are becoming what we should have been.”

Session 4 – A Session with the Minister and Presentation of the Robin Hood Memorial Awards

The Minister addressed the delegates and presented the Robin Hood Memorial Award for Excellence in Community Forestry for 2020 and 2021, including the 3 Honourable Mentions.

Session 5 – Community Forest Innovation in Forest Education

Moderator, Harley Wright

Community Forests are contributing to forestry education in our schools and communities, contributing to a better informed public and encouraging post-secondary forestry education.

Dan Macmaster, Manager of the West Boundary Community Forest gave a presentation on how they are utilizing the opportunities inherent in a community forest to promote forest education. link to presentation

Session 6 Update on Forest Safety Resources

Moderator – Susan Mulkey
Presentation by Dave Gill, Manager Westbank First Nation Community Forest and BCCFA director

Dave is a member of the Woodlot and Community Forest Safety Committee of the BC Forest Safety Council and provided an update on new resources. Link to presentation

Session 7  Climate change adaptation in the Harrop-Procter Community Forest: An adaptation model using practical tools

 Moderator  – Roly Russell, Parliamentary Secretary, Forests, Lands Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development, MLA for Boundary-Similkameen

Erik Leslie, Manager, Harrop Procter Community Forest

Climate change projections and risks have been widely discussed for many years, but climate adaptation concepts have generally been poorly integrated into applied forest management decision-making.  In 2011, the Harrop-Procter Community Co-operative recognized the need for real world adaptation examples, and is now ready to share their experience integrating climate science and risk assessment into tangible forest management decision-making.  In this session, practical adaptation management tools were discussed, including novel approaches to watershed planning, harvest prioritization and layout, wildfire risk reduction, and silviculture. link to presentation



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