Amendments to the Forest Act will give government the tools to better care for our forests, further support reconciliation with Indigenous Nations and encourage a more diverse forestry industry.
As the pressures on timber supply continue due to the impacts of beetle epidemics, wildfires and climate change, amending the Forest Act will enable government to better manage our forests for all British Columbians. Amendments to the Forest Act will ensure First Nations and local communities have greater involvement in the forest sector, establish a fair framework for compensation regarding changes to harvesting rights, and enhance government’s ability to manage timber harvesting on Crown land. In addition, the amendments clarify the compensation that government will provide to tenure holders after a change in harvesting rights. Through new tools like a “special purpose area”, government will be able to reduce the timber harvesting rights of existing forest tenure holders, compensate them, and then redistribute the timber harvesting rights to First Nations, communities, and BC Timber Sales. Other changes require tenure holders to provide current information on forest inventory to the Chief Forester to support decision making. There will also be increased accountability for log exporters through a new auditing system to make sure they have paid their full fee-in-lieu of domestic manufacturing, ensuring British Columbians are receiving their fair share of resource revenue.