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Conservation North social event Thursday focuses on logging of old growth forests

The Anzac Valley, where logging this year has upset anglers, hunters and conservationists. Conservation North photo

Conservation North, a Prince George-based environmental group, is hosting a lively social event – Enough is Enough – at Trench Brewery this Thursday night to discuss local jobs, old growth logging, and the fact that the province has held invite-only meetings with industry to discuss community futures.

“If you talk to the same people, you’re going to get the same answers,” said director Michelle Connolly in a news release. “And those people will promote doing the exact same thing they’ve been doing for 50 years until all our primary forests are gone.”

Conservation North is a community group that launched in 2017 to advocate for the protection of old forests and a transition towards a sustainable second-growth forest industry in the central-interior.

The B.C. government announced an online portal in the spring of 2019 to take public feedback on subjects like wood innovation, forest carbon and other topics of relevance to communities in the interior.

“We are encouraging the public to submit their own feedback, partly to counteract the predictable recommendations of the industrial forestry ‘old boys club,'” said Connolly. Guest speakers at the event will include local activist Peter Ewart and woodworker James Steidle.

“We’re in a race against time,” said Keaton Freel, Conservation North’s youth representative.

Referring to the contents of the Council of Forest Industry’s recent report Smart Future: A Path Forward for B.C.’s Forest Products Industry, he adds: “Industrial forestry interests are trying to secure exclusive logging zones to guarantee access to the last old growth forests. We are not having it.”

Joining forces with hunters, anglers and others whose livelihoods depend on healthy, natural forests, Conservation North wants to raise the alarm over dwindling opportunities to protect natural old growth forests.

“Allowing our region’s old growth to be turned into lumber or biomass forecloses our options for the future,” said outreach coordinator Jenn Matthews. “The prudent thing to do is protect our options, and that means protecting what remains of our old growth forests.”

Enough is enough will take place on Thursday, October 10 at Trench Brewing, 399 Second Avenue, at 7 p.m. 

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