The Community Forest comprises 1% of logging on the Sunshine Coast. Of its 10,800-hectare area, 41% is protected by a combination of law and voluntary Community Forest policies and practises.
Community Forest Policies & Practises
On Old Growth
No old growth logging, and a comprehensive old growth recruitment strategy for future old growth.
On Watershed Protection
No logging in the Chapman Community Watershed, a region of paramount significance. However, it's important to note that beyond the boundaries of the Community Forest, logging activities are still taking place in this area.
Our Ecosystem-Based Management planning process relies on peer reviewed, prominent third-party biologists to plan our voluntarily protected areas around sensitive ecosystems that will be most vulnerable to climate change, and around riparian areas to protect water quality and quantity.
Ongoing engagement with recreation groups, and protecting well-used trails where possible.
2023-2028 Operating Plan Feedback
Our current Operating Plan was released on November 20, 2023 for public review and comment, after launching with a presentation and Open House at the Seaside Center. The feedback period is 30 days, ending December 20th, 2023. For the first time, our proposed blocks are included in the new provincial Forest Operations Mapping (FOM) portal and this requires consideration for those wishing to register feedback on our operating plan. We are participating voluntarily as an early adopter, and encourage people wishing to be engaged in forestry planning to try this new system; however, we will consider feedback through any means, as always.
Our Operating Plan includes three components, each providing important information:
Operating Plan Guidelines: document outlining general management objectives and strategies, including Ecosystem Based Management and Wildfire Risk Reduction
Block Table: a listing of each block number and details such as area, composition, and planned harvest year. Note that the total volume on the table is more than our harvest over a 5 year period (75,000 cubic meters - this allows for volumes to be reduced through community feedback, engineering, and professional assessments
Map: all of the current proposed block boundaries and our draft landscape reserve design, with important information such as watershed boundaries shown for context
Written feedback during the specified feedback period is uniquely valuable in being able to periodically and objectively report on what people in the community are asking and telling us about our plans, however, we also welcome anyone interested in discussing our plans or their interests in the Community Forest to reach out to us by phone or e-mail, at any time of the year.
How to provide feedback?
Block specific - please submit your comments in the FOM Portal by using this link and navigating to the area in question. Links are also provided on each line in the Block Table. Using this website registers your comments with the province and will be available to ministry staff considering cutting permit applications, and they are also available to us. (Please note that there is a small glitch in the FOM Portal website, and after you click the link you need to click "Details" in the upper left twice - the province's team is aware of this issue.)
General - please use our feedback form. FOM has no means of collecting feedback on broader planning considerations, like old growth management and water quality protection, which are still important and make up a significant portion of the comments we typically receive.
The area planned for logging in 2023 winter makes up 0.1% of the Community Forest (about half of its annual footprint).
It will be harvested and sold locally and to value-added BC manufacturing, carefully replanted with genetically diverse seedlings from locally sourced seed, and monitored until the forest is reestablished. From the start, planning has considered both “Jessica’s Trail” and “Half Day” trails which are well used and maintained. There is also a small unused trail built for film use that we've been advised is now abandoned.
The area was harvested in the 1950’s by the Jackson Logging Company. (Members of the family still reside on the Sunshine Coast.) The average age of the trees within the block is approximately 70 years old.
There is no old growth within the block; the older trees above the east boundary of the block are excluded from logging plans and are being considered by our Ecosystem Based Management planning team for inclusion in our network of ecosystem reserves.
There is a potential bear den and two woodpecker nests nearby, outside of the block boundary. Despite being determined as currently not occupied, they are sites which could potentially be used by these animals. Logging nearby will not occur if the nests or den become occupied prior to logging.
Reduced Harvest Area
The block includes 2 reserve areas protecting a group of older trees which are being retained for ecological values. Combined, the areas removed from initial logging plans for these, and other planning considerations reduce the harvest area by 28%.
Fall and Winter 2023
Planning for AN15, AN03 and AN3A has included the following professional assessments :
Why do professional reports matter?
The third party professionals who produce our reports value their reputations and have governing bodies who uphold the reputation of their respective fields of expertise, including through audits, receiving complaints, disciplinary processes, and requiring ongoing training.
It's important to consider sources of information. Always be aware of information where there is no mechanism to hold the authors or publishers accountable. .Sustainable forest management and being able to engage in meaningful conversations around the challenges we are facing as a community and society, rely first and foremost on trust and accurate information.
We're taking the following actions thanks to
your community feedback:
On Old Growth
Analyze biogeoclimatic zones within the Chapman/Sechelt Landscape Unit where there is an old growth deficit (less than 10%) and identify candidate stands that could serve as recruitment for Old Growth, using Madrone Environmental to help choose and verify the best areas to achieve this provincial and community objective.
On Wildfire Risk
Engage with the SCRD's Manager of Protective Services to collaborate on addressing their Community Wildfire Protection Plan's recommendations that fall within the Community Forest.
Enhance communication with the shíshálh Nation around blocks EW18A, EW18B & EW19 to align our future plans with theirs.
Initiate public engagement opportunities, including the formation of an ad-hoc committee of SCCF Directors, staff & local citizens to plan and develop EW18A, EW18B and EW19.
Request a research trial from the MOFLNRO Research Branch that meets our goals of an Ecosystem Based Management model, and is in line with the Operating Plan
On Disc Golf
Support the Sunshine Coast Disc Golf Association's course proposal with permitting to Rec, Sites and Trails BC, and support funding for road maintenance for continued access to this site.
Our public engagement process makes space for people who care about the forest and how it is managed, resulting in an Operations Plan that reflects the needs and preferences of the community.
Let your voice be heard!
Sign up to find out about upcoming community engagement and feedback opportunities