District Manager Leslie Fettes,
Campbell River Forest District
Campbell River BC
February 5, 2023
Re: Younger Brothers Quadra Island Woodlot 2031 Woodlot Plan Renewal
Dear Ms. Fettes,
It has been brought to our attention that Younger Brothers’ Woodlot 2031 on Quadra Island is renewing its license and that it plans to “trade” a section of old forest previously committed to protection for a section of forest that appears to be much younger, and which may have been in part, previously logged. Further, the new proposed forest reserve appears to be located on a drier rockier mountain side with lower ecological values.
This proposed new site is dominated by a drier impoverished forest, not a suitable replacement for the original reserve. Further, if the objective is to protect Manzanita, according to the BC Conservation Data Centre: “This species is reasonably common within its range and not very threatened.” One reason Manzanita isn’t very threatened is because it is typically found on very dry sites with poor timber quality and seldom logged.
As a citizen of BC, I am offended by this and other forest companies who claim to protect biological diversity by placing reserves on dry, steep mountain slopes instead of preserving wetter low elevation sites with high ecological values. If satellite imagery is correct, much of the proposed site contains trees of low timber value. This trade appears to be more about profit than protecting biological diversity.
According to Cop 15, there is a global biological diversity crisis here and around the world. If the government is serious about protecting biologically rich forests in BC, it needs to stop protecting steep mountain sides and focus on wetter, rich sites that are able to host a greater diversity of species. I’m sure you know there is a serious shortage of protected low elevation old forest sites along coastal BC.
Finally, as owners of a Quadra Island wilderness lodge who have added millions of dollars in revenue to the local economy and employ 10 people full time seasonally, we are tired of being treated as voiceless bystanders while the forest industry runs roughshod over the landscape we depend on to survive. The original mandate for the BC Woodlot program was for small local licensees to work with surrounding communities to ensure local recreational, economic and ecological values were considered in forest management. I think many woodlot licensees have forgotten this. I believe it is your job to remind them of these obligations.
Please disallow this misrepresented forest swap by the owners of Woodlot 2031.
Ralph, Lannie & Albert Keller
Discovery Islands Lodge & Coast Mountain Expeditions