Skeena Sawmills (file photo)

Skeena Sawmills audit good overall, but fault found in tree planting

Violation only issue discovered in Forest Practices Board report

A recent audit of Skeena Sawmills found five cutblocks in the Kitimat area were in non-compliance with provincial regulations governing silviculture. At issue was the planting of seedlings outside the allowable elevation zone. The finding by the Forest Practices Board was the only fault discovered in a random audit last summer to ensure the company’s practices are in line with the Forest and Range Practices Act and the Wildfire Act.

Planting seedlings in the wrong elevation can potentially lower their overall survival and productivity rates. Skeena Sawmills’ woodlands manager, Greg Demille, says the seedlings were placed about 80 metres outside the proper elevation zone. The contractor responsible is no longer employed by the mill, due in part to the error.

“It wasn’t very far outside the zone, so we’re quite confident the trees there will survive and grow as they should,” Demille says.

“Aside from that, it [the audit] was a great experience. I don’t say that tongue in cheek. It’s a great exercise to see how you’re doing and if you’re meeting required standards.”

The FPB report stated Skeena Sawmills overall is meeting provincial requirements. Activities audited include harvesting timber, constructing and maintaining forestry roads, reforesting logged sites, wildfire protection and associated planning carried out between August 2016 and August 2018. During the two-year period, Skeena harvested 41 cutblocks, constructed 51 kilometres of road and maintained 448 kilometres of road, planted 18 cutblocks and abated fire hazards on 15 cutblocks, according to the FPB report.

“This was my first exposure to the FPB audit process and I was impressed at the thoroughness and rigor,” says Skeena Sawmills president Roger Keery. “Despite the one issue identified, it gives me a much higher level of confidence in Skeena’s management of the forest resource.”

The audit took place on two forest licenses within 40 kilometres of Kitimat, one lying between the Kitimat River and Miskatla Inlet, and the other just south of Meziadin Lake, along the Kinskuch River and Little Paw Creek.

“One of the main purposes of our audits is to encourage continuous improvement of forest practices,” says Kevin Kriese, chair of the Forest Practices Board. “Skeena has told us they learned a lot from the audit process, as the audit highlighted the areas where they are managing their practices well and the areas where they have to improve in the future.”

The Forest Practices Board is B.C.’s independent watchdog for forest and range practices, reporting its findings and recommendations directly to the public and government. It can also make recommendations for improvement to practices and legislation.


 


quinn@terracestandard.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Artist Mike Dangeli gives his son, Hayetsk, a shoulder ride on Oct. 4. (Mike Dangeli/Instagram)
Skeena Voices | ‘The culture and the art saved my life’

Terrace-based artist shares stories of the journey that brought him here

The City of Terrace now requires masks at all indoor City facilities. (File Photo)
Masks to be required in all indoor City of Terrace facilities

Requirement comes as B.C. sees increase in COVID-19 cases

Northern Health saw 14 cases in one day earlier this week, the highest in one day since the beginning of the pandemic. (Image courtesy CDC)
Northern Health sees highest number of new COVID-19 cases in one day

Oct. 27 saw the highest number of new cases in the Health Authority since the start of the pandemic

Over the years, Janice Blackie-Goodine’s home in Summerland has featured elaborate Halloween displays and decorations each October. (File photo)
QUIZ: How much do you really know about Halloween?

Oct. 31 is a night of frights. How much do you know about Halloween customs and traditions?

FILE - In this Jan. 23, 1987 file photo, actor Sean Connery holds a rose in his hand as he talks about his new movie “The Name of the Rose” at a news conference in London. Scottish actor Sean Connery, considered by many to have been the best James Bond, has died aged 90, according to an announcement from his family. (AP Photo/Gerald Penny, File)
Actor Sean Connery, the ‘original’ James Bond, dies at 90

Oscar-winner was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2000

This house at 414 Royal Ave. became notorious for its residents’ and visitors’ penchant for attracting police. It was also the site of a gruesome torture in August 2018. It was demolished in 2019. KTW
6-year sentence for Kamloops man who helped carve ‘rat’ into flesh of fellow gang member

Ricky Dennis was one of three men involved in the August 2018 attack

Cpl. Nathan Berze, media officer for the Mission RCMP, giving an update on the investigation at 11:30 a.m., Oct. 30. Patrick Penner photo.
VIDEO: Prisoner convicted of first-degree murder still at large from Mission Institution

When 10 p.m. count was conducted, staff discovered Roderick Muchikekwanape had disappeared

Among the pumpkin carvings created this year by Rick Chong of Abbotsford is this tribute to fallen officer Cont. Allan Young.
Abbotsford pumpkin carver’s creations include fallen police officer

Rick Chong carves and displays 30 pumpkins every year

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

An online fundraising campaign in support of the six-year-old boy, Edgar Colby, who was hit by a car on Range Road Oct. 25 has raised more than $62,000 in a day. (Submitted)
$62K raised in 1 day for boy in coma at BC Children’s after being hit by vehicle in Yukon

The boy’s aunt says the family is “very grateful” for the support they’ve received from the community

Health care employees take extensive precautions when working with people infected or suspected of having COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
WorkSafeBC disallows majority of COVID-19 job injury claims

Health care, social services employees filing the most claims

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole rises during Question Period in the House of Commons in Ottawa on Wednesday October 28, 2020. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)
Conversion therapy ban gets approval in principle, exposes Conservative divisions

Erin O’Toole himself voted in favour of the bill, as did most Conservative MPs

Most Read