In June, members of the Port Alberni Watershed-Forest Alliance led the Ancient Forest Alliance into an unprotected grove of old-growth forest near Port Alberni in Hupacasath and Tseshaht territory. Located on the steep slopes of the Taylor River Valley, the stand boasts rare ancient Douglas-fir trees and old-growth redcedars; a beautiful, fern-laden understory; and important habitat for black bears and other wildlife. It’s also flagged for logging. BC Timber Sales, the government’s own logging agency, has roughly 9 old-growth cutblocks planned in the upper valley totalling approximately 191.15 hectares or about 200 football fields.
Clearcutting on the steep slopes will have immediate and downstream ecological impacts, especially for the Taylor River, where the Federal government and others have made significant investments into restoration of fish habitat to support recreational fisheries.
In light of the recent report on the dire state of old-growth forests in the province, the BC government must use its control over BCTS to discontinue the issuance of old-growth cutblocks and start taking immediate action to protect what remains. Speak up here: www.ancientforestalliance.org/send-a-message/