Osoyoos wildfire recovery project receives provincial attention
April 5, 2023 By Osoyoos Indian Band
A local wildfire recovery project is getting provincial attention for its innovative and collaborative approach. The Nk’Mip Creek wildfire, which burned 20,000 hectares of forest in the summer of 2021, is being featured in the Spring edition of the Association of British Columbia Forest Professionals (ABCFP) magazine.
The article highlights the work of the Osoyoos Indian Band (OIB) with partner Vaagen Fibre Canada and the collaborative efforts taken to restore the burned areas plus important lessons learned from the ongoing wildfire recovery project.
“When the Nk’Mip Creek Wildfire burned such a large area of land within the OIB’s traditional territory in the summer of 2021, there was motivation to act quickly to give the land a better opportunity to recover. A plan was developed that prioritized cultural values, historical uses of the land, and ecological recovery,” said Peter Flett, RPF with Vaagen Fibre Canada and the Osoyoos Indian Band.
This article follows the work done for the Nk’Mip Creek wildfire recovery and restoration project. The project’s approach to restoration has been more holistic than a typical wildfire salvage operation, with extensive field reviews with community members, protection of cultural use areas, and identification of areas suitable for salvage and others left to recover naturally. Planting native shrubs in conjunction with fire-resistant deciduous and coniferous tree species will revegetate ecosystems and provide wildlife and cultural values sooner than without human intervention.
“We are proud of this collaboration to improve forest recovery post-wildfire,” noted Flett. “We are grateful for the opportunity to share this local story in a provincial magazine as we hope it inspires others in the forest industry to prioritize collaboration during planning and implementation in their recovery efforts too.”
To view the story online, click here.
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