The Lakes Resiliency Project will be in progress until 2023. (Lakes District News illustration)

The Lakes Resiliency Project will be in progress until 2023. (Lakes District News illustration)

Lakes Resiliency Project wants VBL involved

Opportunity for council to nominate someone to chair input group

Two representatives from the Lakes Resiliency Project made a pitch to Village of Burns Lake council during a Nov. 9 meeting, providing them with an opportunity to become more involved with the project.

The representatives were Beth Eagles, district manager for the Nadina Natural Resource District, and Tara Dunphy, Section Head of the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development Contracts (FLNRORD).

To provide a background on the project, it was created in the spring of 2019, following the Northern Conference for Wildfire Resiliency in Burns Lake, as a way for the FLNRORD to work with First Nations, local communities, and stakeholders in the Lakes District to create a more resilient forested land base.

In addition to creating a more resilient forested land base, the over-arching goals of the project include reducing wildfire risk and hazard, contributing to the stability of the timber supply as well as forestry jobs, and to advance reconciliation.

Some of the work that will be done by the project is reviewing and amending both the Lakes North and South sustainable resource management plans, developing a forest management regime that is more responsible to climate change, and completing a forest landscape plan (FLP) pilot, that once established will provided more spatialized forest management direction.

The FLP would specify the outcomes licencees would need to achieve if they decide to operate on a particular part of the land base.

At the conclusion of the presentation, members of council were asked if there was interest in becoming more involved in the project, by-way of nominating one councillor to chair the project’s stakeholder review and input group (SRIG).

Management of the project is quite complex, and involves a central technical planning table, which works with both a government-to-government leadership table, as well as a technical working group.

As for the role of the SRIG, the group is comprised of key stakeholders who have a known interest in, or will be impacted by the project. They will provide input to the technical planning table a various project milestones for consideration throughout the planning process.

Though there was interest from council on the matter, a decision won’t be until the next meeting on Nov. 23. In terms of the timeline for the Lakes Resilience Project as a whole, it is expected to conclude in 2023

READ MORE: B.C. pauses logging on up to 2.6M hectares of old-growth forest

READ MORE: Rainbow crosswalk in Burns Lake approved by council

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Eddie Huband
Multimedia Reporter
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