Full Report 139Kb  

Clearing of Trees and Brush at a Recreation Site

Complaint Investigation 040583

Summary Report
FPB/104S
April 2005


In September, 2004, the Forest Practices Board received a complaint from a member of the public (the complainant) about maintenance and development activities in a Ministry of Forests (MOF) recreation site. The complainant had been camping at the South Chehalis Lake recreation site and was upset about the felling of trees within the site and with brush clearing activity being done by volunteers. The complainant was concerned whether the work was authorized as there was no sign posted to provide explanation about the work being conducted. The complainant also raised the issue of potential harm caused to the environment from these activities.

The Board investigated whether the work was authorized and if the work created a contravention of environmental requirements under the Forest and Range Practices Act.

South Chehalis recreation site is a user-maintained site but the forest district has an ongoing maintenance program to ensure access to facilities and maintain safe conditions around recreation sites. Legislation permits MOF employees and agents to harvest timber on Crown land when establishing or maintaining a recreation site. MOF staff determined that maintenance work at the Chehalis site was needed and had entered into an agreement with a local club to cut up felled trees and clear brush to reduce fire hazard from encroaching vegetation.

In relation to the environmental impact, the Board’s on-site inspection found no signs of environmental damage and no observed contraventions of the Forest and Range Practices Act. The Board found that the work was appropriate and had been done in a manner that minimized the impact on surrounding trees and vegetation.

In conclusion, the Board found that the maintenance work at the recreation site was authorized by MOF and that the work complied with the environmental protection requirements of the Forest and Range Practices Act. MOF has since posted a sign at the site explaining the purpose of the maintenance work and has made identification tags for volunteers who are doing maintenance activities at recreation sites.

The full complaint investigation report is available at http://www.fpb.gov.bc.ca/

 

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