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General News · 16th February 2012
Claire Trevena
Local politicians are joining forces to try to prevent logging of old growth and sensitive ecosystems on Cortes Island.

North Island MLA, Claire Trevena, and Cortes Island Regional Director, Noba Anderson, are calling on the provincial government to help stop the logging of stands of old growth Douglas fir.

Much of the community on Cortes Island is concerned about plans by Island Timberlands to log in old growth and areas of “provincial ecological significance.”

“Stands such as these are extremely rare, and the clusters of trees found on Cortes is truly important for the province,” said Trevena. “We hope that the government realises the value of them remaining and works with us to persuade the company to protect them. We recognize the need for forestry, but it should be done responsibly.”

Trevena and Anderson have written to the Minister of Environment and Minister of Forests and Natural Resource Management asking for their assistance.

“I have met with Island Timberlands and will again this month. We are receiving very mixed messages from them about the details of their imminent logging plans on the island, and we want clarity” said Anderson. “Many residents are dedicated to the protection and responsible use of these lands, and are willing to go to great measure to ensure this outcome.”

The stands are important as less than 1% old growth douglas fir remains in the endangered coastal 'Dry Maritime' biogeoclimatic sub-zone on the gulf islands and south-eastern Vancouver Island. The lands also contain red and blue listed species and plant communities.

The proposal to log the lands, which are owned by Island Timberlands, is gaining international attention. Trevena and Anderson are hoping an amicable solution can be found to the problem.