BC drops Lakes Timber Supply Area AAC by 41%
By Maria Church
B.C. chief forester Diane Nicholls has announced a 41 per cent reduction in allowable annual cut (AAC) for the Lakes Timber Supply Area (TSA) in north-central B.C. in response to the end of the mountain pine beetle epidemic.
Effectively immediately, the new AAC is 970,000 cubic metres, down 41 per cent from the previous AAC of 1,648,660 cubic metres, and six per cent lower than harvest levels in the last two years, according to the government news release.
The new AAC includes three partitions:
- a maximum of 400,000 cubic metres per year is attributable to live coniferous volume;
- a maximum of 20,000 cubic metres per year is attributable to live deciduous volume; and
- a maximum of 550,000 cubic metres per year is attributable to dead volume.
“After considering all of the available information on timber and non-timber resources, including social and economic objectives, and comments from Indigenous Nations, licensees, stakeholders and numerous members of the community, I am confident that this new cut level will sustainably manage the live, mature forest while maintaining younger stands and a robust timber supply for future generations,” Nicholls said in the release.
The Lakes TSA in north-central British Columbia covers around 1.5 million hectares of mainly lodgepole pine, hybrid spruce and balsam fir, and overlaps the traditional territory of 13 First Nations.
Three lumber mills and one pellet plant operate within the Lakes TSA. A lumber mill and a bioenergy plant in Fraser Lake is also fed by wood from the TSA.