Meadow Creek Cedar's forest licence suspended
The Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations has suspended Meadow Creek Cedar’s forest licence and fined the Kootenay-based company $42,000 for failing to meet its legal obligations to reforest logged areas.
A recent investigation by ministry compliance and enforcement staff found that Meadow Creek Cedar did not achieve minimum restocking requirements on six separate cut blocks associated with forest licence A 30171.
Harvesting occurred in 2006 and 2007. By law, the company had four years to comply with the replanting requirements in its forest licence. All of the blocks in question were surveyed by the company in 2010 and found to be not sufficiently restocked.
A professional forester confirmed those results after conducting a followup survey in 2011.
Meadow Creek Cedar’s professional forester acknowledged the company’s violations in an agreed statement of facts submitted at a hearing on Dec. 13.
The Kootenay Lake Forest District manager advised the company of the suspension on Friday, Feb. 3.
In addition to the fine and licence suspension, the ministry issued a remediation order requiring Meadow Creek Cedar to reforest each of the blocks to the levels prescribed in its site plans. The company’s licence suspension will not be lifted until such time as these requirements have been met.
If Meadow Creek Cedar fails to meet its reforestation obligations, the ministry has the option to carry out the work on the company’s behalf and levy additional fines to cover its costs. Under the Forest and Range Practices Act, the company has three weeks to appeal the ministry’s decision.