BC Liberals Place Forestry in Top 10 Policy Priorities – Forestry Policy Incorporates COFI Blueprint for Competitiveness

Earlier this month Gordon Campbell and the BC Liberal Party released “A New Era for British Columbia,” the 36 page election platform of the BC Liberal Party. Detailed on Page Three is the BC Liberal vision for British Columbia, including a list of ten priorities for the new government. Among the 10 priorities is BC Forestry:

“A leading edge forest industry that is globally recognized for its productivity and environmental stewardship.”

On Page 12 the platform details BC Liberal forestry policy, which includes the five principles outlined in the Council of Forest Industries’ Blueprint for competitiveness. The BC Liberals commit to:

* Establish a working forest land base, to provide greater stability for working families and to enhance long-term forestry management and planning;

* Streamline the Forest Practices Code to establish a workable, results-based Code, with tough penalties for non-compliance;

* Apply 1% of all direct forest revenues, not including “super stumpage,” to global marketing of BC’s forest practices and products;

* Create a market-based stumpage system that reflects global market realities and local harvesting costs;

* Either fix or scrap Forest Renewal BC, starting by removing the political appointees on the Board;

* Invest in research to promote forest stewardship;

* Cut the forestry regulatory burden by one-third with in three years, without compromising environmental standards;

* Protect private property rights in treaty negotiations;

* Work to expedite interim measures agreements with First Nations, to provide greater certainty during treaty talks;

* Increase the Annual Allowable Cut over time through scientific forest management, proper planning, and incentives to promote enhanced silviculture;

* Eliminate “waterbedding;”

* Scrap the “HCL” silviculture hiring hall policy that discriminates against silviculture workers.

For more information visit www.cofi.org or phone our toll free line: 1-866-FORESTS or 1-866-367-3787

Web Link: http://www.cofi.org/