The recent auditor-general’s report on government mismanagement of our forests should serve as a wake-up call to the people of British Columbia to demand transformation of forest governance and management. Healthy forests provide us with clean water and clean air. They store three-quarters of the world’s above-ground carbon and are biodiversity hot spots. They are critical natural sinks for greenhouse gases, yet can become major sources for decades upon harvest.
We the people own 94 per cent of B.C. For over a century, our forests have paid for hospitals and schools. They have gifted us with one of the highest standards of living in the world. They have provided a healthy environment in which to raise our children, who are counting on inheriting healthy forests to provide for their children.
Keeping our forests healthy is critical for our survival. History has repeatedly shown that societies that steward their forests thrive, whereas societies that exploit their forests to the point of collapse soon follow suit. In B.C. we are on the latter path, and these fears have been verified in recent reports.