This report finds that instead of environmental stewardship, BC has advanced policies of liquidating forests by clear-cutting countless valleys and allowing giant corporations to demolish this great natural asset and move on.
After five decades involvement—including as the province’s forests minister in the early 1970s—Bob Williams says regionally based forestry with co-management by local communities and First Nations would best serve BC’s public forests and the communities that depend upon them for economic benefits and jobs. He looks to Sweden as a model where forests are managed in the public interest for the long term rather than for the short-term interests of the commodity lumber industry.
The first half of the paper documents the decline of forestry in BC while the second half outlines a more hopeful alternative model.
The report outlines how, if implemented well, a system of regional forest co-management with First Nations could:
- maintain or enhance environmental health and sustainability.
- provide for public involvement at the local level in planning, claims, management and stewardship.
- provide fulfilling jobs with a living wage.
- create economic growth and improve equity and fairness throughout the province.