Duhamel Creek residents fight logging plans in their watershed — Meeting Thursday at North Shore Hall
By Suzy Hamilton, The Nelson Daily
The Duhamel Watershed Alliance at Six Mile on Nelson’s north shore has called a public meeting Thursday night to solidify their opposition to logging plans in their watershed.
Scheduled to take place at the North Shore Hall at 7 p.m., the purpose of the meeting is to inform the public of the residents’ opposition to Kalesniskoff Lumber’s logging plans on lower Duhamel Creek.
“It is the feeling of many local residents that if logging continues as planned, the risk of damage to Duhamel Creek watershed, and danger of ﬂooding and landslides in the densely populated Six Mile area increases dramatically,” said Six Mile resident Heather Ives.
Ives said she does not believe her property would be directly affected by a slide, but “what affects my neighbour affects me.”
According to the Watershed Alliance, the Upper Duhamel watershed has been previously logged and many landslides have occurred in the area, including two landslides in 2012.
It has been observed by locals that thesoil contains a high percentage of sand, and, combined with steep elevations, is very fragile the Watershed Alliance said.
They say that in light of recent ﬂooding and seeming increasing freak weather patterns, with the example of logging related land slides in Laird Creek and Schroeder Creek, many residents have expressed the urgent need to investigate and take appropriate strategic action.
“It’s important to note that insurance companies do not cover damage caused by landslides and ﬂoods,” said Ives.
A year ago, more than 100 people in the Six Mile area signed a petition, and it presented to the Regional District, hoping to put a halt to Kalesnikoff Lumber’s plans to log in the Lower Duhamel watershed.
Resident Glen Jones also filed a complaint with the Forest Practices Board, but to date, only a draft of the Forest Practices Board’s findings has been released.
Residents are upset that the Ministry of Forests has allowed Kalesnikoff to begin road building to the cutblocks before the final report is received.
“Residents requested and have been waiting for a ﬁnal report to be completed from the Forest Practices Board regarding logging in this area, in order to review and to provide watershed users input,” said Ives.
Alliance members said that based on the draft report from the Forest Practices Board, Kalesnikoff requested a permit to begin road building and logging, and received permission from the Ministry of Forest’s District Manager.
“There was no public input,” said Ives.
The Duhamel Watershed Alliance received a copy of the draft August 14 after road building and logging had already begun, said Ives.
“I can’t sit and watch this and do nothing. I encourage all to take example and protect what we enjoy here, the land water air freedom to walk down the street and not be harassed. I appreciate it all.”