Residents of Vanderhoof are positioned to benefit from added economic stability, employment opportunities and increased local forest stewardship through the creation of the Vanderhoof Community Forest.
Located approximately 15 kilometres north of Vanderhoof, the Vanderhoof community forest agreement covers 23,181 hectares.
The agreement has an initial term of 25 years and is replaceable for another 25-year term after 10 years.
In addition to timber harvesting, other uses of the community forest will include outdoor recreation with the Waterlily Lake cross-country ski and hiking trails, and the Omineca Trail, which is part of an ancient Carrier First Nation trail route.
To support the agreement and build a strong and diverse local forest sector, Vanderhoof Community Forest has partnered with local forest company L&M Lumber Ltd. (Nechako Lumber Co. Ltd.). Additionally, plans are in the works to invigorate a demonstration forest with local education partners such as Nechako Valley Secondary school and the Council of Forest Industries.
Community forest agreements are long-term, area-based tenures designed to encourage community involvement in the management of local forests. A community forest is managed by a local government, community group or First Nation for the benefit of the entire community.
- Our Natural Advantage: A Forest Sector Strategy for British Columbia identifies community forests as a key element in supporting prosperous rural forest economies.
- In British Columbia, there are 57 community forests issued or communities that are close to getting one, accounting for approximately two million cubic metres of timber volume.