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The community forest model and planning for ecological sustainability : exploring assumed synergies in… Aycock, Scott Lewis 2000

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THE COMMUNITY FOREST MODEL A N D PLANNING FOR ECOLOGICAL SUSTAINABILITY Exploring Assumed Synergies in Revelstoke, B.C. by SCOTT LEWIS A Y C O C K B. A., the University of North Carolina, 1994 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FUFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE D E G R E E OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES School of Community and Regional Planning We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA December, 1999 © Scott Lewis Aycock, 1999 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study, i further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. 7 The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada DE-6 (2/88) ii ABSTRACT In response to the current "crisis in the British Columbia forest industry, communities, academics, non-profit organizations, and government agencies and departments are exploring alternative strategies for the management of the forested ecosystems of the province, and for maintaining livelihoods in forest-dependent communities. The focus of the thesis is one such strategy, community forestry, specifically the planning strategies and principles that the Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation utilizes in its management of local forests. Community forestry has been used world-wide to manage the interface between human communities and local forested ecosystems. In addition to various social and economic considerations, the community forest model has been posed by many in British Columbia as the most promising means to enhance the planning for ecological sustainability of forest-based communities, and of forestry in general. This assertion is based on a number of assumed benefits considered inherent to the community forest model. The thesis explores whether and how the following proposed ecological benefits of the community forest model have been actualized in the case study: 1) Community involvement with the forest will create a sense of care for and connection with local forests; 2) a closed circle of environmental, economic, and social costs and benefits will yield enhanced stewardship because the community must live with its decisions over the long term; 3) community members will recognize that the forest is more than a timber provider; they will have a "wholistic" appreciation of it; 4) forest planning will be improved by local ecological knowledge, local feedback loops, and administrative flexibility; together, these create the conditions for effective adaptive management; and 5) the above factors will lead to improved forest practices, ecologically speaking. The thesis shows how, in the Revelstoke case, these theorized benefits have not been fully realized. In concluding, the author suggests that local factors - such as community values, goals, an assumptions - could overwhelm any "inherent" benefits of the model in regards to ecological sustainability. TABLE OF CONTENTS Abstract ii List of Tables vii List of Figures viii Acknowledgements ix Chapter One: Introduction 1 1.1 Thesis Purpose, Question, and Objective 1 1.1.1 Thesis Purpose and Question _ 1 7.7.2 Objective of the Thesis _._ 1 1.2 Defini t ions and Scope 2 7.2.7 Definitions __ 2 7.2.2 Scope 3 1.3 The Revelstoke Case 3 1.4 Rationale and Research Questions 5 1.4.1 Problem Context 5 7.4.2 Theorized Benefits of Community Forestry, Research Questions 6 1.4.3 Other Rationales for the Thesis 8 1.5 Research Methods and Discuss ion 10 7.5.7 The Research Method 10 7.5.2 Discussion of the Research Method - Advantages 10 1.5.3 Discussion of the Research Method - Disadvantages _ 11 1.6 Organizat ion of the Thesis 14 PART 1: SETTING THE CONTEXT 16 Chapter Two: Forestry and Forest Communities in British Columbia 17 2.1 A B r i e f His tory of Po l i cy , Management, and other Important Developments i n B . C . Forestry 17 2.7.7 Pre-Regulation 17 2.7.2 Early Regulations _ 18 2.1.3 The First Sloan Royal Commission and Sustained Yield Forestry 19 2.1.4 The Second Sloan Commission; Increasing Concentration ____ __ 20 2.7.5 The Pearse Commission and Multiple-use Forestry __ _ 21 2.7.6 The Forest Resources Commission 21 iv 2.7.7 CORE and the Land-use Impasse 22 2.1.8 The PAS and Forest Land Reserve 23 2.7.9 The Timber Supply Review Process .23 2.1.10 The Scientific Panel for Sustainable Forest Practices in Clayoquot Sound 23 2.7.77 The Forest Practices Code, Forest Renewal Plan, and the Jobs and Timber Accord 24 2.7.72 Forest Certification 25 2.1.13 Section Summary _ 26 2.2 The Forest Industry and the Forests Today : 27 2.2.7 Types of Tenures ...27 2.2.2 Forest Planning and Management .- 27 2.2.3 The Cut 29 2.2.4 The Forest Resource — 2 9 2.2.5 The Major Companies 30 2.2.6 Mill Capacity 31 2.2.7 Employment and Labour Intensity 31 2.2.8 Unionization and Wages .....32 2.3 Forest C o m m u n i t y Condit ions and Transitions 33 2.3.7 Forest Community Conditions 33 2.3.2 Transitions 37 2.3.3 Chapter Summary .39 Chapter Three: Community Forestry - Introduction, Benefits, and Obstacles 40 3.1 Def in i t ion o f Communi ty Forestry 40 3.2 C o m m u n i t y Forests - Some Examples 41 3.2.7 Community Forests Internationally 41 3.2.2 Community Forests in Canada 42 3.2.3 Community Forests in B.C. 44 3.3 W h y the C a l l for Communi ty Forestry? 48 3.3.7 Absentee Control of Timber is Unfair and Ineffective 48 3.3.2 Drain of Natural Resources and Associated Benefits 49 3.3.3 The Crisis _ 50 3.3.4 Lack of Stewardship by Corporations and Provincial Governments 51 3.4 Theor ized E c o l o g i c a l Benefits o f the Communi ty Forest M o d e l 53 3.5 Potential Obstacles to the Real izat ion of the Theor ized E c o l o g i c a l Benefits 59 3.5.7 General Community Issues 59 3.5.2 Community Participation Issues 61 3.5.3 Financial Pressures _ _. 63 3.5.4 Government and Private Interests •_ 64 3.5.5 External Regulations 66 3.5.6 Size and Biophysical Potential _ 68 Chapter Four: The Ecological Worldview - Introduction and Implications for Community Forestry 70 4.1 Introduction 70 4.2 The Western and E c o l o g i c a l Wor ldv i ews , and Thei r Implicat ions for Communi ty Cont ro l 72 4.2.1 The Western Worldview .... 72 4.2.2 The Ecological Worldview: Introduction __ 76 4.2.3 The Ecological Worldview: Philosophical Roots .__ 77 4.2.4 The Ecological Worldview: Empirical Basis 78 4.2.5 Ecosystem Properties and Behaviour __ 81 4.2.6 The Economic System and the Ecological Economics Critique 82 4.2.7 The Place of Humans: lnterdependency, Community, and the Natural World 83 4.3 Specif ic Consequences of the Eco log i ca l W o r l d v i e w i n Regards to C o m m u n i t y 87 4.3.1 Uncertainty and Local Control 87 4.3.2 Gemeinschaft, Biophilia, and Stewardship 89 4.3.3 Section Summary 91 4.4 Research Questions 93 PART 2: THE CASE STUDY 95 Chapter Five: Revelstoke, and the Revelstoke Community Forest 96 5.1 Revelstoke and A r e a 96 5.7.7 Local Geography 96 5.7.2 General and Economic History 98 5.1.3 Current Socio-Economic Statistics _ 99 5.1.4 Forest Economy 100 5.7.5 Local Land Use Planning Processes 104 5.7.6 Revelstoke's Vision Statement 105 5.2 The Communi ty Forest 107 5.2.7 Events Leading to the Inception of the Community Forest ..107 5.2.2 The Community Forest Land Base 109 5.2.3 Harvesting and Related Data I l l 5.2.4 Structural and Other Details ..112 5.2.5 Plans 112 Chapter Six: Primary Findings 114 6.1 Research M e t h o d 114 6.7.7 Interviews 114 6.7.2 Other Information Sources 116 vi 6.2 Findings Related to the Theor ized E c o l o g i c a l Benefits 117 6.2.7 Theorized Benefit: Community Connection With and Care For the Community Forest 117 6.2.2 Theorized Benefit: Wholistic Appreciation of the Forest ____ _ 121 6.2.3 Theorized Benefit: Closed Circle of Costs and Benefits _ 125 6.2.4 Theorized Benefit: Better Use and Generation of Local Knowledge 129 6.2.5 Theorized Benefit: Adaptive Management _ 132 6.2.6 Theorized Benefit: Better Forestry Practices 137 6.2.7 The Role of External Regulations ___ _ _ 139 6.2.8 Section Summary 144 Chapter Seven: Discussion of Some Localized Issues 146 7.1 Findings and Discuss ion of Indigenous Experiences, Condi t ions Assumptions , and Goals 146 7.7.7 Original Goals at the Inception of the Community Forest___ _ 146 7.7.2 Values, Experiences, and Participation 150 7.7.5 Corporate and Community Economics 161 7.7.4 Paradigm _ 171 Chapter Eight: Conclusions, Implications, and Further Research 175 8.1 Conclus ions and Implications 175 8.7.7 Conclusions 175 S.7.2 Implications of the Findings _. 177 8.2 Suggestions for Further Research 184 Bibliography 186 Appendix A: Two Applications of the Ecological Worldview in B.C. 200 Appendix B: Theorized Economic, Social, and Administrative 204 Benefits of Community Forestry. Appendix C: Interview Questions. 206 vii List of Tables Tables: Table 3.1 Community Forest Pilots Announced as of July, 1999 Table 5.1 Timber Allotments in the former Revelstoke Forest District (RFD) .46 101 viii List of Figures Boxes Box 5.1 The Revelstoke Vision Statement 106 Box 5.2 The Revelstoke Community Forest Vision Statement 113 Box 7.1 City of Revelstoke Objectives for Establishing a Community Forest 148 Figures Figure 3.1 The Inter-related Theorized Ecological Benefits of Community Forestry 58 Figure 5.1 Revelstoke, B.C.; the Columbia River; and Mount Begbie 97 Figure 5.2 The Downie Street Sawmill 102 Figure 5.3 Guitar Soundboards at D&S Acoustics, Revelstoke 102 Figure 6.1 Special Management Zones 145 M a p s Map 5.1 The Nelson Forest Region, with Forest District Boundaries 97 Map 5.2 The Columbia Forest District 103 Map 5.3 Licence Jurisdictions in the Western Half of the Columbia Forest District 108 Map 5.4 The Revelstoke Community Forest 110 ix ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS First and foremost, I would like to thank Rima Lee Wilson for her unwavering love and support during the nearly two years that this project has spanned. It would not be what it is without her. I would also like to thank my thesis supervisor, Professor Peter Boothroyd, and my second reader, Ray Travers, for agreeing to supervise this thesis, and for their salient questions and observations. Thanks also go to Professor Anthony Dorcey for his willingness and availability on such short notice to perform as third reader, as well as for his insightful comments during the Oral Defense. Furthermore, Dr. M . Patricia Marchak provided a great deal of mentorship and guidance in another project, which greatly contributed to the quality of this work. Finally, my parents. Thanks to my father, Ellis Aycock, for introducing to me the joy of the natural world, and to my mother, Anna Niemitz, for showing me the wonder in all things. 1 Chapter One: Introduction 1.1 Thesis Purpose, Question, and Objective 1.1.1 Thesis Purpose and Question The general purpose of this study is to contribute to the work of those forest-based communities which desire to develop sustainable economies, as well as to the government, academic, non-profit, and other institutions and persons whose work and funds support these communities. The primary research question is: "Will community control of natural resources result in better planning for ecological sustainability?" This question is addressed through a case study of a community forest operated by the City of Revelstoke, in the province of British Columbia (B.C.), Canada. The focus of the research is upon the planning and management practices of the Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation (RCFC), the agency which manages the community forest land base. 1.1.2 Objective of the thesis The objective of this thesis is to explore whether the planning and management of the community forest in Revelstoke has exhibited a number of theorized ecological benefits of community forestry, as predicted by the literature, and to analyze those factors which either inhibit or enable the realization of the benefits. In general, the literature predicts that a transition from private forestry firms to community forest organizations will result in enhanced ecological stewardship of the forest land base. Indeed, some authors contend that community forestry is the only way to sustainably manage British Columbia's forest resource and, therefore, to create a sustainable forest economy in the forest-based communities and the province as a whole (Slocan Valley Community Forest Management Project, 1974; Simpson, 1997; Village of Hazelton, 1991). The following sections provide relevant definitions and a short statement of the scope of the study; an introduction to the case study; the rationale for the thesis; and the research method. The chapter concludes with an outline of the organization of the thesis. 2 1.2 Definitions and Scope 1.2.1 Definitions 'Community forests' are here defined as forested areas which are managed by a community for community benefits. This definition implicitly excludes recently-formed "community forests" in B.C. which do not grant management rights to a particular area, but which rather licence a community, through something known as a Forest Licence, to harvest a specific volume of timber from a much larger area (a timber supply area [TSA]).1 Area-based licences provide a wider range of community responsibilities, benefits, and interactions with a specific tract of forest land than do volume-based licences and are thus more correctly identified as community forests. Furthermore, for the purposes of this thesis, community forests are conceived of as 'working forests' which may be managed for the production of a variety of goods and services including (but not limited to): timber, non-timber forest products, ecological services, recreation, and spiritual benefits.2 The objectives for which community forests are managed are defined by the community itself and may include protected areas within the larger working forest. The overall aim of the thesis is to consider how communities may sustainably manage and utilize resources in a way which, to the best of our current knowledge, will maintain healthy forest ecosystems for the foreseeable future. Community forestry will be thoroughly discussed in Chapter Three. 'Sustainability', whether ecological, economic, or social, is here defined as long-term viability. It refers to that state in which a system is healthy and productive, and is likely to remain so for the foreseeable future. Sustainability is assumed to be a dynamic, rather than a static state. Conditions will inevitably change, the timing and quality of this change can be unpredictable, and ecological, economic, and social systems must have processes and capacities in place which provide them the resiliency to survive and adjust (Berkes and Folke, 1998). A fundamental assumption of this thesis is that, while economic and social sustainability are important in and of themselves, the economy and society are sub-systems of the ecosphere, dependent upon ecosystem products and services for their existence (Rees, 1988). The keystone of sustainability, then, is ecological health. Sustainability principles will be more fully developed in Chapter Four. 'Planning' is defined by this author as the process through which an individual or group designs actions with the intent of effecting or adapting to change. This may include, but is not limited to: 'visioning' exercises, strategizing, goal- and/or objective-setting, development of standards and 1 See Community Forest Advisory Committee, 1997a; for a list of such licences. 3 criteria, design of implementation programs, community consultation or collaboration processes, and monitoring and evaluation of programs and policies. 1.2.2 Scope The focus of the thesis is the planning strategies and principles that the Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation utilizes in its management of the community forest's ecosystems. Therefore, ecological issues are at the forefront. However, since maintenance of the forest ecosystem is posited by the researcher as an integral component (though not the only component) of community economic and social sustainability, the thesis will also have relevance and insights into the question of the impact of the RCFC upon community economic and social sustainability. 1.3 The Revelstoke Case Of the community forests currently operating in B.C., the Revelstoke Community Forest is the most useful for this study. Formed in the early 1990s, it is the only community forest in British Columbia which has been operating long enough to have a narratable 'history' of forest planning and management, yet not for so long that comparisons with conditions prior to the community forest are unobtainable. The only other long-running, area-based British Columbia community forests, in Mission and North Cowichan, have origins dating back to the 1930s. Moreover, the relative youthfulness of the Revelstoke community forest means that it was conceived in a social context informed by up-to-date concepts of ecological sustainability and valuation of the forest beyond timber. Its recent inception also means that the community forest is a product of one community's attempt to adapt to the current crisis in the forest industry - the impetus for the community forest was instabilities in local timber milling operations coupled with the fact that local timber was being exported to external processors (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1995b). This enhances the generalizability of this case to other forest communities which are undergoing economic transitions. Another attractive quality of the case is the fact that the Revelstoke Community Forest is on Crown land rather than on land held in fee simple ownership (such as the North Cowichan community forest). This also increases the potential generalizability of the study findings to future This does not mean that communities which decide to cease all logging in a community forest for a number of years in order to renew the forest resource are precluded from the definition, as long as the desired end result is a working forest. 4 community forests in B.C., because they are most likely to be situated on Crown land due to the lack of private forest land in the province. Furthermore, the management of the Revelstoke community forest is effected through an area-based Tree Farm Licence (TFL). Area-based forest management is invariably considered, in the literature, to be a critical element of community forestry (see Chapter Three).3 Another benefit of this case is the fact that the community forest is large enough, both in terms of area and volume harvested (119,505 hectares and approximately 90,000 cubic metres [m3] respectively), to have an impact on the community's economic and social life, particularly with respect to the three local sawmills which partnered with the municipality to purchase the TFL in 1993 (Community Forest Advisory Committee 1997: 25). This community forest is not a small side project, but is an important part of the community's economic development strategy. The final beneficial aspect of this case is the community itself. When studying community development and the survival of imperiled communities, the definition and meaning of a community is often called into question. For example, is an overgrown logging camp a 'real' community? Should we be concerned with whether such entities survive the crisis in the forest industry? With a long and varied history (formed first as a mining service center in the late 1880s), Revelstoke is a community by any definition. Its sense of history is complemented today by a diversity of interests and values, a relatively diverse economy, and as is evidenced by the conditions surrounding the inception of the community forest, a strong sense of community self-awareness and will to survive (Chapter Five discusses the Revelstoke community further). There are some problems with using Revelstoke as the case study, however. These mainly center on the regulatory conditions of the community forest's management. As the community forest is managed on Crown land through a TFL, certain management decisions are outside the control of the community. This is extremely important. One critical issue is that the community is assigned a cutting rate, or Allowable Annual Cut (AAC), by the Ministry of Forests. This means that it may not decide for itself the appropriate rate of harvest on the land base. Another factor is the Forest Practices Code, which spells out, in rather fine detail, the harvesting and silvicultural practices, and environmental guidelines which all licensees must follow. These external regulations somewhat level the playing field among all licensees, and make it difficult to determine how a community forest organization might operate differently than a private forest company. The Mission and North Cowichan community forests are the only other operating area-based community forests in B.C., but these cases have other characteristics which lessened their usefulness for this study (see other text, this section). 5 One existing community forest, operated by the District of North Cowichan, does control its own harvesting rates because the community forest is operated on land owned by the municipality. Unfortunately, a number of factors negate the usefulness of this community forest as a case study. Major problems include: 1) the long history of the community forest (from the 1930s) makes pre-community forest analysis much more difficult; 2) the community's fee-simple ownership of forest land is not and will not for the foreseeable future be an aspect of other British Columbia community forests (which diminishes generalizability); and 3) the structure of the "community" is hard to define as North Cowichan is not a single town but a District composed of several geographically-dispersed communities. Another possible case study could have been to analyze a recipient of the new community forest tenure enacted for the provincial Community Forest Pilot Project (discussed in Chapters Two and Three), which allows communities to establish their own cutting rate. Unfortunately, the project is in its infancy and no pilot community forests have been fully implemented, much less operated for a significant period of time. The fact that the Revelstoke Community Forest is controlled by external regulations has been taken into consideration in the design and implementation of this study; it has been built into the research questions, and it is addressed in the findings. As things now stand, the Revelstoke community forest provides the best opportunity to explore whether community forestry in B.C. will necessarily result in improved planning for ecological sustainability. 1.4 Rationale and Research Questions 1.4.1 Problem Context Many forest-dependent communities in British Columbia have exhibited the boom-and-bust cycles characteristic of resource communities world-wide. Many communities which enjoyed unparalleled prosperity in the good years have fallen into deep depressions in the bad (e.g. Port Alberni in the 1970s and 1980s, respectively); others, like Ocean Falls, have actually boomed and died during the history of resource exploitation in British Columbia.4 Presently, a number of stresses - systematic changes to the forest industry as a whole - are becoming extremely hazardous to the 4 The Port Alberni case will be discussed in Chapter Two. For a discussion of Ocean Falls see Robson, 1995, "Forest Dependent Communities in Canada": pp. 44-47. 6 health of many forest communities in B.C. Among the proposed causes of these stresses are a timber "falldown" (decreasing availability of high value old growth or mature timber); past and present overcutting of the forest resource; structural changes to the industry, including the onset of labour-displacing, capital-intensive technologies and the transition from Fordist to "flexible" labour principles; the adoption of increasingly stringent environmental regulations by the provincial government (i.e., the Forest Practices Code); and the onset of increasing trade liberalization accompanied by shifting world markets for timber. Forest-based communities have been especially sensitive to these stresses due to a lack of local value-added processing of the raw resource; inflexible government, union, and industry structures; and a lack of local community control over the management of the resource. One symptom of the crisis is employment instabilities in the conventional elements (logging, sawmilling, and pulping) of the forest industry. These "instabilities" have meant massive layoffs and declining levels of community income in many B.C. forest communities (Barnes and Hayter, 1994; Marchak et. al, 1999; Robson, 1995; Sierra Legal Defence Fund, 1998). 1.4.2 Theorized Benefits of Community Forestry; Research Questions The provincial and federal governments, NGOs, ENGOs, and the communities in question are attempting to formulate and fund strategies to aid communities in making the transition to a "new" form of forest economy based on sustainable cutting levels and new forest practices. An increasingly popular strategy on the part of all the above interests (but especially the communities themselves) is to build forest community economic self-reliance and stability through the development of a community forest. Many authors suggest, while itemizing the benefits of community forests, that inherent to the community forest model are planning and management practices which promote ecological sustainability (Banighen, 1997; Cortex Consultants, 1996a; Drengson and Taylor, 1997; Mitchell-Banks, 1998; Simpson, 1997; and others). This assertion is based on the following assumptions, which will be more fully developed later in the thesis: Community connection with and care for the forest. Long-term, intimate involvement with the forest fosters a connection between the community and the land - this is sometimes described as an awareness of the interdependency between the forest and the community. Counter to the basically revenue-oriented goals of absentee-controlled corporations and governments, the community, knowing that it is tied to the forest, will act out of compassion and care for the health of the forest rather than out of a desire to exploit it. 7 Wholistic understanding of and appreciation for the forest. As community members care for the forest, they see more than timber in it. With this awareness, the community will not engage in the wholesale exploitation of the forest for timber. Rather, the community will manage the forest in a way which supports the health of the entire system, thereby sustaining all values. A closed circle of costs and benefits. Local control and responsibility over resources fosters an ethic of resource stewardship, rather than resource exploitation, because the long-term ecological costs and benefits of management regimes are felt by those who design and implement them. These parties are therefore less likely to make decisions which would undermine ecological sustainability. Knowledge. The community forest organizations' approach to resource use and their management of community forests will be better tailored to the unique local ecosystem because generalized standards are checked and modified by local knowledge - both scientific and traditional ecological knowledge. Adaptive Management. The above factors, coupled with the small-scale and flexible nature of community forestry organizations, allow for adaptive management of the forest resource. That is, community forest organizations can perceive feedbacks from the forest and adapt future interventions. Enhanced Forest Practices. Together, the above factors will compel and enable a community to engage in more environmentally-sensitive forest practices. No evidence of a thorough testing of these assumptions was found in the literature analyzing and/or describing community forests in B.C. This deficiency was noted by the researcher, and the above assumptions are the basis for the central research agenda of this thesis: 1. Does the local community "connect with" and care for the forest? 2. Do community members have a more wholistic appreciation of the forest than private firms? Does this lead to management of the community forest as a whole system as opposed to only timber? 3. Does a closed circle of costs and benefits actually occur in the Revelstoke case? If so, does it lead to accountability and better stewardship? 8 4. Does the RCFC collect more information than the norm for the industry? Is it in a better situation to use local ecological knowledge? 5. Are local administrative structures more flexible and open to ecological feedbacks than corporate or government organizations, thereby allowing for effective adaptive management? 6. Does the RCFC engage in better forest practices, on ecological criteria, than private operators in the area? For each question above, why or why not? Another research question flows from the context within which the Revelstoke Community Forest operates. This is the fact that the community forest utilizes a conventional Tree Farm Licence and has certain requirements set to it by the Ministry of Forests. Of primary importance is the fact that the Ministry designates the cutting rate for the community forest, and enforces relatively strict harvesting and silviculture regulations. This could have a negative impact on the development of a truly community-centered forest management system and is perhaps the most critical limitation of the case study. This issue was identified upfront and gave arise to another research question: 7. How does the RCFC respond to the Ministry of Forests' and other external regulations? Would the planning and management of the Revelstoke Community Forest, specifically regarding ecosystem issues, be different if it was not on a TFL? How? On the basis of research which will be presented later in the thesis, several more research questions were added to this list. The complete list of research questions occurs at the end of Chapter Four. 1.4.3 Other Rationales for the Thesis Another reason to study this topic is the need for analysis and investigation of a long-term forest community transition strategy. Much of the analysis and work on forest community transitions is mitigative in nature: few organizations or communities have the time or the institutional mandate to do more than "patch the leaks" of employment from forest communities, and few authors chart a course for the long-term future of communities. Instead, stakeholders and other authors often illuminate the short-term employment losses which might result from a reduction of harvesting, or make a case for provincial aid in vitalizing the forest industry in its current form (see Binkley et. al, 1994; Forest Alliance of B.C. 1997; Industrial, Wood and Allied Workers of Canada 1997a; van 9 Kooten 1995). Fundamental adjustments, which might involve short-term costs but which are aimed at long-term forest community health, are less likely to be advised or discussed. The ability of a community transition strategy to maintain or promptly secure livelihoods for the local community is clearly important, and the thesis does not deny the short-term merit of a program or strategy which might accomplish such. However, because forestry communities are especially dependent upon healthy forest ecosystems for their survival, transition strategies - if they are to have a long-lasting positive effect on a community - must maintain or enhance ecological sustainability. Furthermore, they must be designed to succeed in a real-world context in which sustainability principles and convictions are challenged by powerful forces. The thesis addresses these issues by evaluating the potential effectiveness of the Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, and the community forest model in general, in achieving effective planning for local community ecological sustainability, and discusses the implications of such for economic and social well-being. The analysis will aid policy and program designers to anticipate critical factors which can undermine or enable future programs' success. Another rationale for conducting this study is related to the nature of sustainability itself. Since sustainability is not a static end-point, but a process (see definitions above), we must creatively experiment with alternatives, collect and evaluate results, re-think our assumptions, and experiment again in order to discover or evolve community economic systems which do not impose system-threatening stresses on the ecosphere. This research represents one phase of the process: the collection and evaluation of results. In a context of limited government, community, and organizational resources, such research is extremely important. For example, if forestry-dependent communities are being financed by such organizations as Forest Renewal B.C. to manage the transition to a new forest economy, the effectiveness of funded strategies, or those proposed for funding, should be measured to ensure that projects are most likely to yield desired results. Finally, this topic is worthy of study because of timeliness and demand. The provincial government recently initiated a Community Forest Pilot Project, which has awarded several B.C. communities with a wholly-new form of tenure: a community forest licence.5 Almost eighty communities applied for inclusion in the pilot project, indicating a clear demand for community forest initiatives in the province. This thesis can provide a base-case against which to compare an existing community forest against those operating under the new community forest licence in order to gauge the benefits and/or drawbacks of the new licence. Existing B.C. community forests operate either with licences designed for corporations (including Revelstoke), with licences designed for small businesses with no long-term commitment to an area of land, or in one case on private municipal land not subject to the forestry tenure system. 10 1.5 Research Method and Discussion 1.5.1 The Research Method The thesis research has been carried out using a two-part method: 1. Development of research questions from a review of the literature on community forestry. Included in this process was a review of literature dealing with the Ecological Worldview, a paradigm which provides a deep, theoretical justification for the devolution of resource control to communities on the basis of ecological considerations. 2. Analysis of the Revelstoke Community Forest via the research questions. Analysis of factors enabling or inhibiting 'success.' This has been carried out through: • key informant interviews (primary source); • analysis of documentation and archival material (primary source); • review of research carried out in the area by other researchers (secondary source); and • triangulation of the above sources of information. 1.5.2 Discussion of the Research Method - Advantages The components and characteristics of this method have been chosen for their ability to achieve certain desired results, discussed below. Qualitative research The thesis research is primarily qualitative in nature, which reflects a particular approach to the research question: the concern is not only with how much the RCFC plans for ecological sustainability, but with the character of this group's planning in relation to ecological sustainability, and the reasons for it. Berg (1995) tells us that, while quantity is generally about an amount of something, quality is "essential to the nature of things," and "refers to the what, how, when, and where of a thing - its essence and ambience" (p. 3). Secondary sources Secondary sources are used for a variety of ends in this thesis. In setting a context to the problem, secondary sources provide baseline information about the history and current context of forest-related legislation, the socioeconomic conditions of forestry-dependent communities, the condition of the forest resource, and other issues facing forest communities. In the community forestry literature review, secondary sources are used to establish the baseline of academic and 11 practitioner thought on the subject of community forestry in British Columbia. In establishing a deeper theoretical framework with which to gauge the findings, secondary sources provide a second literature review of expert opinion into the concept of planning for ecological sustainability in rural (especially forest-dependent) communities. Finally, in the case study, secondary sources provide a means to verify and illuminate the interview data. Primary sources The interviews and content analysis of documentation and archival material comprise the primary sources for this thesis. Because the interviews were conducted on a semi-standardized basis, they allowed for probing and flexibility in data collection when unanticipated domains of data are encountered. Furthermore, semi-standardized interviews allow for the fact that each interviewee (or type of interviewee) has a unique understanding of the meaning and wording of standardized questions (Berg 1995: 33). The use of a quota of key informants provides expert opinion on a variety of subjects, and from a variety of perspectives. The documentation and archival material are essential checks against the interview findings. Also, these sources, unlike interviews, provide a "large quantity of inexpensive data" and at the same time are "virtually nonreactive to the presence of investigators" (Berg 1995, 143). The case study format Field research is flexible, inexpensive, and offers superior validity to other forms of research (Babbie 1992). The Revelstoke case study allows "a richness and depth" of analysis (Orum et al. 1991, 6). According to Orum et al. (1991), case studies provide a holistic study of "complex social networks" in their own natural setting (p. 6). They are also better adapted than other forms of research to the illumination of multiple "depths of meaning" (Orum et al. 1991: 6). Case studies allow the researcher to "assemble complementary and overlapping" sources of information (Orum et al. 1991: 19). In addition to providing a depth and breadth of information on the case, these multiple sources may be used to cross-check and validate each other. 1.5.3 Discussion of the Research Method - Disadvantages Qualitative research While qualitative research does illuminate the nature of things, this illumination can be very fuzzy and can yield "suggestive rather than definitive" findings (Babbie 1992, 306) when compared to quantitative studies. Qualitative studies are also - due to the personal, subjective nature of the research - difficult to replicate, or to generalize to other cases. In this thesis, every attempt has been 12 made to describe the unique components of the case study in order to qualify generalizations. Furthermore, triangulation of multiple sources has been used to cross-reference data in order to lend it more definition and legitimacy. Secondary sources Data from secondary sources can be difficult or impossible to verify, and the inherent biases of the authors may be unacknowledged. Archival information published for public consumption by the RCFC may or may not 'tell the whole truth': key omissions may be made, and potentially contentious issues may be glossed over. To combat these problems, a wide variety of sources are analyzed in order to ascertain the spectrum of views on each subject. Furthermore, the organizational reports are complemented by interviews and a review of meeting minutes in order to disclose any omitted facts or politically-motivated assertions. Regarding quantifiable context data (e.g., cutting rates, socio-economic data, and so on) the use of government sources is prioritized over other secondary sources due to the assumption that a) the government has more resources available for the accurate collection of such data, and b) government bias is more moderate than that of other groups. Primary sources Reliability is undermined by the fact that the interview questions and the interpretation of interview responses are inherently subjective in nature, and are susceptible to interviewer bias. Interviewees may also attempt to provide the researcher with the 'desired' responses. The semi-standardized interview format means that each interviewee will not receive the exact same set of questions, which jeopardizes replicability. Finally, 'key informant' interviewing is a subjective undertaking - only those individuals considered 'important' or 'relevant' by the researcher are interviewed. In this thesis, every attempt was made to understand and acknowledge the inherent bias of the researcher. Furthermore, interviewees were informed that the only intent of the researcher was to learn the truth, as each interviewee saw it. Moreover, while not every interviewee received the exact same questions, certain baseline questions were given to all interviewees. Finally, the menu of 'key informants' was intentionally left unfixed, and was open for deletions or additions as understanding of the case study context was built. The case study format The fact that this thesis utilizes a single case study is significant. While a single case study allows great depth of analysis and improves validity (Babbie 1992), the uniqueness of the case makes generalizability difficult: statistical generalizations made from an analysis of only one instance of a phenomenon are meaningless. In a broader vein, Black (1993) warns that ".. .interpretive studies can 13 be so isolated, subjective and idiosyncratic that there is no hope of any generalization or contribution to a greater body of knowledge" (3). In response to these limitations, this thesis does not make definitive, universal generalizations about findings from the case study. Rather, the uniqueness of the case is presented, and specific, individual dynamics are uncovered which may (or may not) exist in other cases. Findings based upon these dynamics are aimed at assisting researchers and practitioners in predicting outcomes when similar dynamics are present in otherwise dissimilar cases. Furthermore, as has been discussed above, efforts have been made to select a case which, in concert with other desired factors, has the highest degree of appropriateness for generalization to other British Columbia communities. Overall research framework In addition to these inherent limitations of the research methods, problems exist with the structure of the overall research framework. First of these is the fact that sustainability is a state involving social and economic, in addition to ecological, factors. Focusing primarily upon ecological sustainability limits the comprehensiveness of this thesis. In fact, the economic and, especially, social aspects of community sustainability have been woefully under-analyzed; their lack of treatment here should not to be taken as implicit support for this deficiency. However, in addition to limitations in time and money, a comprehensive treatment of the impact of the community forest upon all three sustainability components is beyond the scope of a Master's thesis. In order to address this issue, the existence of the social and economic components of sustainability are acknowledged, and the implications of the ecological sustainability findings on these other aspects are explored. The other major issue is that the thesis focuses upon the planning for ecological sustainability; a comprehensive analysis is not conducted as to whether ecologically sustainable forest use is actually being performed by the RCFC. This focus is necessary, however, due to the fact that this is a planning, not resource management, thesis. 14 1.6 Organization of the Thesis The thesis is organized as follows: P A R T 1. Setting the Context Chapter One: Introduction. Chapter Two: Forestry and Forest Communities in British Columbia. This chapter briefly reviews the 'crisis' facing forest-dependent communities in British Columbia. Included is a review of the forest industry in B.C., forest resource data, forest community socio-economic data, and some current community transition strategies. Chapter Three: Community Forestry - Introduction, Benefits, and Obstacles This chapter discusses the community forestry model, and presents the literature on community forests in the British Columbia context. The theorized ecological benefits of community forestry are identified, as are some potential limitations to the realization of these benefits. Chapter Four: The Ecological World view. Introduction and Implications for Community Forestry. This chapter reviews the literature on the Ecological Worldview, especially those sources which discuss the interface between community economies and ecological sustainability. This discussion is used to provide a deeper theoretical justification for community forestry. P A R T 2. The Case Study Chapter Five: Revelstoke, and the Revelstoke Community Forest. This chapter introduces the town of Revelstoke, B.C, and provides some statistics and descriptions of community demographics, the local economy, the natural resource base, and the structure of the forest industry. It includes a discussion of the conditions and events which led to the formation of the community forest, and provides a current description of the community forest's structure, land base, and other issues. 15 Chapter Six: Primary Findings. This chapter presents the data gathered about the theorized ecological benefits of community forestry in Revelstoke. An assessment is made as to whether the community forest meets the expectations of planning for ecological sustainability, and enabling or inhibiting factors are introduced. Chapter Seven: Discussion of Localized Issues. Several general themes, which emerged in the course of the research presented in Chapter Six, are discussed. These revolve around several "localized issues" which are considered critical to an understanding of why the RCFC plans and manages as it does. Chapter Eight: Conclusions, Implications, and Further Research. The general conclusions of the research are provided. Implications are discussed for the City of Revelstoke, the province of British Columbia, and other interested persons and organizations. Finally, areas for further research are identified. This chapter has provided a basic introduction to the thesis by reviewing its purpose, definitions and scope, case study, rationale and research questions, research methods (including strengths and weaknesses), and the organization of the following chapters. Chapter Two discusses the problem context. 16 The Community Forestry Model and Planning for Ecological Sustainability: Exploring Assumed Synergies in Revelstoke, B.C. Part 1: Setting the Context 17 Chapter 2. Forestry and Forest Communities in British Columbia In order to understand the current and historical context within which the Revelstoke Community Forest operates, it is important to be familiar with some of the major developments in forestry, forest management, and forest-related planning in British Columbia. This chapter introduces these subjects with a brief summary of the history of forest policy - and the critiques of such - in the province; a "state of the industry" section to provide current context; and a discussion of the current conditions, and some of the strategies employed to ameliorate such, of B.C. forest-dependent communities. These summaries illustrate the conditions and pressures influencing forest community sustainability strategies, including the focus of this thesis: community forestry. 2.1 A Brief History of Policy, Management, and other Important Developments in B.C. Forestry This section outlines the major events and ideas which have contributed to the development of the forest industry in B.C., with particular emphasis on provincial forest policies and the ideologies behind them. Also stressed are those developments which are relevant to ecological and community sustainability. 2.1.1 Pre-regulation Long before Europeans arrived in the Canadian West, aboriginals depended on the forest for "subsistence, items of trade, methods of transportation, shelter, fuel, clothing, tools, and protection" as well as for a source of "nature spiritualism" (Robson, 1995: 1-2). In other words, these peoples were very directly dependent on the forest for just about everything. Early European settlers, while not culturally immersed in the forest to the same degree as the aboriginals, likewise depended upon the forest, especially the timber necessary to create settlements. In the early stages, logging in B.C. was based largely on land granted "fee simple" by the provincial government - although land leases and sales of cutting rights also occurred (the government, or 'Crown', had assumed ownership of almost the entirety of B.C.). The 1882-84 grant of approximately 750,000 hectares of prime forest land to the Esquimalt and Nanaimo Railway is a significant example. The hope was that the railway, and those who bought the land from the railway, would log the land and attract settlers (Marchak et al., 1999: 58). 18 2.1.2 Early Regulations By the turn of the century, U.S. businesses began searching for timber due to the removal of large amounts of U.S. forest lands into National Forest reserves. In 1905, The Conservative McBride government capitalized on this pressure, and initiated a timber rush in B.C. by opening forest lands to U.S. firms (Rajala, 1998: 99). Timber became viewed as the resource base upon which to develop the province's economy. Since timber extraction was such an alluring "source of revenue and ... engine of immediate, unbridled economic growth" (Roach and Gillis, cited in Travers, 1993: 178) provincial governments were averse to regulate the industry. Therefore, unplanned private development was the norm - a situation which concerned some early foresters. Bernhard Fernow, a professional forester from Germany, and his protege, Judson Clark, cautioned the McBride government about the possibility of future timber "famines" resulting from such short-term, unregulated development. They recommended a 'scientific' approach to forestry which would regulate timber harvests and set long-term forest productivity goals - the same "wise use" conservation philosophy used by U.S. Forest Service Chief Forester Gifford Pinchot that drove the timber interests northwards in the first place. The Fulton Commission (1910) acted on only a few of their suggestions, and guided the province into introducing a few "conservation measures" (basically fire prevention), utilization standards, and the establishment of a provincial Department of Forestry in the Forest Act of 1912 (Drushka, 1985: 29-32). The Act also firmly established the practice of leasing Crown land to private forestry companies through timber licenses, rather than granting land outright, with the introduction of Timber Sale licenses (Marchak et al., 1999: 59). As it turned out, the government was reluctant to enforce regulatory constraints on the fledgling industry and forestry remained largely unfettered through the first four decades of this century (Rajala, 1998: 100). Yet this early stage is significant for later policy because the norm for forestry in B.C. - wherein the province retains ownership of the land, and leases rights, or tenure, to use resources on public land to private companies in return for fees and annual rent (the price of occupying the land for the harvest of trees) - was established. Later, the province added the system of charging "stumpage," or the estimated price of trees on the stump, to licensees. Today, the majority of forestry is practiced on Crown land, with the effect that the relative importance of private forest land in the industry is much smaller than it was in the early decades of this century. Still, the more intensive utilization of private forest land means that its importance is disproportionate to its l size. 1 In 1995-96, the total harvest from the approximately 1.9 million hectares of private forest lands was 8.3 million cubic metres, or 4.37 cubic metres per hectare. In the same year, the harvest from the 46 million hectares of Crown land designated as "productive forest" was 74.5 million cubic metres, or 1.62 cubic metres 19 2.1.3 The First Sloan Commission and Sustained Yield Forestry By 1940, Chief Forester CD. Orchard was becoming more concerned with the possibility of future forest resource shortages in the face of over-exploitation, and the Sloan Commission of 1943-45 was appointed to recommend industry regulations. In 1947, as a result of the Commission, a policy of sustained yield was formally crafted into the Forest Act with the creation of Forest Management Licences. The Commission defined sustained yield as "a perpetual yield of wood of commercially usable quality from regional areas in yearly or periodic quantities of equal or increasing volume" (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1995b: section 9.1.3). The idea was that Forest Management Licences, which entitled private companies to exclusive harvesting rights on a specific area of land on a perpetual basis, would instill an ethic of forest conservation and the adoption of sustained yield forestry (Drushka, 1993: 5-6). The first step for sustained yield forestry is to liquidate the slow-growing, over-mature, 'abnormal' (yet natural), old-growth forest and replace it with a fast-growing 'normal,' or 'scientific' forest which optimizes growth. The point is to simplify the forest, and remove all but those portions of the system which directly support the marketable commodity. The resulting 'normal' forest would resemble a monocultural agricultural crop rather than a natural forest, and was intended to be tightly controlled through silvicultural practices to produce the greatest growth for the least investment. Furthermore, as soon as a stand was harvested, it was to be replanted with a new crop of commercial species. The harvest rate, or allowable annual cut (AAC) was determined by dividing the estimated volume of mature timber by the estimated rotation age of the next crop, and then adding the amount of growth occurring in immature stands (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1995b: section 9.1.3). Establishment of the 'normal' forests and adherence to the AAC was expected to result in a sustained yield of forest products in perpetuity. As is apparent, sustained yield forestry treats the forest more like a factory than an ecosystem, and it is the principles of economics (e.g., efficiency and utility), rather than ecology (e.g., biodiversity and structural attributes), that determine the management of this "scientific" forest. Although today this approach seems simplistic and exploitative to all but very old-school foresters, it per hectare (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1997a: Table C-2b; Statistics Canada, [annual]: catalogue 25-202; B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1997b; and Mike Lane, 1998; personal communication). The terms 'abnormal,' 'normal,' and 'scientific' are listed here in parentheses due to their common usage in natural resource terminology of the time, and the fact that these terms have been debunked to some extent. For example, what was once considered 'abnormal,' old-growth forests, are now considered to be nature's blueprint of normality (Maser, 1994). A form of this formula is still in use today, but the Chief Forester must also take into account socioeconomic factors when creating a final number for the AAC. 20 must be noted that sustained yield was originally conceived as a wise alternative to completely unregulated harvesting. The idea was that sustained yield forest management would ensure a perpetual stock of commercial timber and maintain forest cover for hydrologic functions, recreational and scenic areas, and wildlife habitat (Drushka, 1985: 43). According to the knowledge and belief system of the time, sustained yield would promote what we call today 'sustainability.' 2.1.4 The Second Sloan Commission; Increasing Concentration In conserving the forest resource, it was expected that sustained yield forestry would provide a steady flow of fibre to the many pulp and sawmills which were popping up across the province. A stable supply of fibre would then underpin the development of stable regional economies, as well as provide a stable revenue source for provincial coffers. In fact, the largest harvesting rights (Forest Management Licences [later termed Tree Farm Licences]; Timber Sale Licenses; and Forest Licenses) were only granted to companies that could establish and/or maintain mills, and timber harvested from the licenses was required to be processed in the local mills. This is known as the "appurtenance" clause (Marchak et al., 1999: 61). Thus, it was established in B.C. that large companies would capture both the wood harvesting and (at least the primary) milling industries. In time this "vertical integration" of B.C. forest firms would come under attack from critics. Their contention was and is that the commodity-producing corporations sponge up timber supplies and export their products, effectively prohibiting small firms (such as furniture, musical instrument, and door -makers) to access B.C. wood. If allowed access, these "value adding" firms could generate more employment and income per unit of wood harvested (see, for example, Drushka, 1985; Greenpeace, 1999; Forest Resources Commission, 1991; M'Gonigle and Parfitt, 1994). Another factor leading to corporate concentration was the assumed economies of scale and longevity of large institutions. Femow had believed that only the state and large corporations could effectively manage forests for a sustained yield because of their ample investment resources and their ability to wait a longer time for returns on the investments (Drushka, 1985: 32). This belief was shared by the second Sloan Commission (1956) which recommended the granting of Tree Farm Licenses (TFLs, or "private working circles") - long-term licenses granting exclusive forest harvesting rights in a specified area - to large corporations.4 The new TFL system had the effect of concentrating timber rights in the hands of a few corporations. Another form of tenure, Public Sustained Yield Units (PSYUs, or "public working circles;" later changed to Timber Supply Areas [TSAs] in 1980), was created to complement the TFL system and provided smaller operators with a 21 means of access to the industry via volume-based licences. "Volume-based" means that tenure holders were granted the right to harvest a specific volume of timber from the entire TSA area, rather than the rights to harvest wood from a particular area. As it turned out, a market for PSYU quotas developed, and the large corporations made inroads to the licenses under this designation as well.5 By 1975, the fifteen largest companies controlled over eighty-five percent of B.C.'s timber harvest (Ibid.: 78). 2.1.5 The Pearse Commission and Multiple-use Forestry In response to this corporate concentration, as well as in concern over the lack of stewardship (at the time meaning insufficient reforestation) by large forest companies, the provincial government authorized the 1976 Pearse Commission. The commission recommended a number of substantial tenure reforms, most of which were not implemented. Exceptions to this were the Small Business Program, which was to earmark twenty-five percent of the allowable annual cut for competitive sale to small businesses, and a new form of tenure, the Woodlot Licence. The Woodlot licence was and is a small-scale (a maximum of 400 hectares), area-based licence available to small, independent loggers (Ibid.: 88-89). Thus, Fernow's prescription that only large industry and government should manage the forest was somewhat challenged, though the renamed Small Business Forest Enterprise Program never met the twenty-five percent goal, and currently accounts for just over thirteen percent of the provincial AAC (Marchak et al., 1999: 16). In 1979, the Ministry of Forests Act and a revised Forest Act were ratified. One significant off-shoot of this round of legislation was the establishment of multiple-use planning, at least in name, to forest management. Multiple-use dictated that the forests should be managed to provide a number of resource values in addition to timber, especially recreational and scenic values (Government of B.C., 1996: 3). 2.1.6 The Forest Resources Commission In 1989 another commission, the Forest Resources Commission (FRC), was established to make policy and regulatory recommendations. Of primary concern was, again, the high concentration of control by a few corporations within the industry, and the lack of silvicultural investments in the forest resource. Land use and other tenure issues were also debated. The Commission's 1991 report, The Future of Our Forests, recommended that the provincial government initiate comprehensive land The granting of TFL # 26 to the municipality of Mission is a notable exception. Mission Community Forest will be discussed in the next chapter. "Quota" means designated access to timber within a Timber Supply Area's AAC. 22 use planning for the entire province with an emphasis on "integrated" (i.e. multiple-use) zones, reflecting society's growing concern with non-timber values. The Commission also called for the reduction of the AAC available to major licence-holders by fifty percent. This wood would then be available for area-based tenures managed by local governments, Indian Bands, and small woodlot operators, and would form the basis for a competitive log market.6 Furthermore, it was advised that the remaining volume-based major licenses (all major licences in TSAs) should be apportioned on an area basis. It was thought that secure, area-based tenures would increase the incentive on the part of major licensees to properly steward their forest lands. The FRC also sternly advised that the provincial and local AACs should not be re-calculated until the existing forest resource inventories were improved and updated. Another major recommendation was the formulation and adoption of comprehensive forest practices legislation. This proposed Act would require that, after accurate inventory data is collected, forest harvesting practices be prescribed based upon each site's unique conditions, as well as in consideration of other forest values (Forest Resources Commission, 1991). 2.1.7 CORE and the Land-use Impasse By the late 1980s and early 1990s, the public had become increasingly concerned over the perceived harmful impacts of industrial forestry on the natural environment. A series of heated "valley-by-valley" conflicts between forest companies, the province, and environmental groups received international attention and culminated in a boycott of B.C. wood products in some European markets. In response to these conflicts, and following from the FRC's recommendations, the B.C. Government created the Commission on Resources and the Environment (CORE) in 1992. The commission's mandate was to develop a province-wide land use strategy - based on the principles of consensus, public participation, and respect for aboriginal rights - which emphasized environmental and social values in addition to economic values (Government of B.C., 1996: pp. 4-5). CORE land use processes began in 4 regions of the province where conflicts had been particularly caustic: Vancouver Island, Cariboo-Chilcotin, West Kootenay-Boundary, and East Kootenay. Sub-regional land use processes were also established, termed Land and Resource Management Plans, many of which continue to this day. Forestry is the central issue in these processes; in almost every CORE-instigated planning process reviewed for another document (see Marchak et al., 1999), the specification of land for forestry, forest preservation, or a variety of multiple-use designations addressing forest usage, have been the heart of the plans. CORE was decommissioned in 1996, The vertical integration of large forestry firms had effectively kept harvested wood out of the competitive market. With the exception of a small market in the Lumby area, a competitive log market still does not exist in B.C. 23 although a number of its suggestions were implemented, especially the nesting of local land-use management plans into regional and provincial plans. Furthermore, attempts were made to use consensus-based negotiations to achieve the plans. 2.1.8 The PAS and Forest Land Reserve Another recent provincial initiative is the Protected Areas Strategy, begun in 1992, which is an ongoing process to increase the percentage of B.C. designated as parks from six percent (in 1992) to twelve percent by 2000. As of April, 1998, 10.6% of the province was in parks; such lands are unavailable for forestry of any sort, or any other development (Land Use Coordination Office, 1998: on-line source). The Forest Land Reserve Act of 1994 was established to create a provincial forest land base. All lands which were classified managed forest lands as of July, 1994 were placed into the reserve. Other forms of development are restricted on these lands in order to maintain the forest resource for the forest industry. 2.1.9 The Timber Supply Review Process The Timber Supply Review (TSR) process, which also follows from the recommendations of the FRC, began in 1992. According to section eight of the Forest Act, the Chief Forester must re-determine the AAC for all thirty-four TFLs, and thirty-seven TSAs in the province once every five years. Previous to this program, there was no comprehensive process for determining AACs, particularly in TSAs. A major component of the TSR process is the updating of timber supply inventories across the province as well as integrating the impact of the Forest Practices Code (see below) and the Protected Areas Strategy into these inventories. The first TSR, which was completed in December 1996, indicated that there would have to be a reduction by about fifteen to twenty percent of the total provincial cut, over the next six decades, to attain a long-term harvest level. This fact is mostly due to the "falldown" in timber supply which results from the conversion of old-growth forests, which have a high quantity of volume per area, to second-growth forests, which will be harvested at a much younger age, and hence have less volume. TSR 2 is scheduled to be completed by December, 2001 (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1999c) 2.1.10 The Scientific Panel for Sustainable Forest Practices in Clayoquot Sound Established in late 1993 in response to mass demonstrations and arrests over a government-imposed land use plan for Clayoquot Sound, the Scientific Panel for Sustainable Forest Practices in Clayoquot Sound (the Panel) was charged with making forest practices in Clayoquot Sound "not only 24 the best in the province, but the best in the world" (Scientific Panel, 1995: p. 1). In its reports, the Panel, to the surprise of many, advocated a completely different approach to forestry from the prevailing emphasis on large-scale timber extraction. The Panel accused the Ministry of Forests of utilizing a "constrained maximization" approach to forestry in which timber production is the fundamental objective and the scale and intensity of cutting is constrained by other, lesser values (Scientific Panel, 1994: 56). In place of this, the Panel proposed an alternate philosophy of "ecosystem-based forest management," in which the primary determinant of good forest management is the continuance of ecosystem health. The Panel emphasized that ecosystems are the "fundamental base from which all goods and services are derived ... provisions must exist for determining and setting levels of resource extraction within the limits and capabilities of ecosystems" (Scientific Panel, 1995: 2). The Panel recommended that forest planning: • integrate the full spectrum of resource values; • focus upon which ecosystem components should be retained rather than removed; • be based on extensive baseline ecosystem information; and • be conducted for ecologically-appropriate time scales (e.g., 100 years) (Scientific Panel, 1994: 57). Following from these and other recommendations, the Ministry of Forests reduced the rate of cut in Clayoquot Sound's two TFLs by sixty-two percent (Ken Dobb, B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998; personal correspondence). The Panel's recommendations have not been applied by the Ministry to any other areas of the province. The Panel is very important because it contributed the most significant development to B.C. forestry "philosophy" since the advent of sustained yield in the 1950s. Although its recommendations were limited to the Clayoquot Sound area, Panel reports have profoundly influenced the thinking (though not necessarily the practice) about forest planning in B.C. Never before had a government-commissioned body embraced the principles of ecosystem-based planning so uncompromisingly. 2.1.11 The Forest Practices Code, Forest Renewal Plan, and the Jobs and Timber Accord The next major developments were the 1994 Forest Practices Code (FPC) and Forest Renewal Plan. The Code is promoted by the provincial government as a new forest management standard for B.C.; one which recognizes the many values of the forest resource beyond timber. The Code spells out regulations obliging forest companies and government agencies to practice "careful stewardship" of the forest resource, and defines public participation responsibilities and processes (Government of 25 B.C., 1996: 4). The Code also specifies enforcement powers for non-compliance with environmental standards, such as the protection of biodiversity. In response to a downturn in the provincial forest industry, the B.C. government has initiated several roll-backs to Code requirements regarding planning, stream and terrain protection, government monitoring of forest practices, and "emergency" and salvage logging (Sierra Legal Defence Fund, 1999: 15). The Forest Renewal Plan is designed to stabilize and enhance the industry through the re-investment of increased stumpage fees back into the forest resource and forest communities. Projects funded include enhanced forestry (silviculture), resource inventories, forest research, forestry worker retraining, community forest sector planning, and promotion of value-added industries. The investments are meant to mitigate the impacts in any AAC reductions created by downward adjustments towards sustainable harvest levels (Government of B.C., 1996: 4). Like many other B.C. forestry initiatives of the 1990s, both the Code and the Forest Renewal Plan contain elements recommended by the Forest Resources Commission. Building on the Forest Renewal Plan, the Jobs and Timber Accord, announced in June of 1997, is an agreement between the provincial government and the major forestry companies to create jobs through investments in silviculture and increases in the availability of timber for value-added production. A major function of this plan is to increase the level of cut up to the AAC, which as of 1998 was not being fully met (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998f). An important element of the Jobs and Timber Accord is the Community Forest Pilot Project, which is testing a new form of tenure, the Community Forest Agreement, in several communities in B.C. The Pilot Project is discussed in more detail in Chapter Three. J 2.1.12 Forest Certification An important recent development in forestry, not only in B.C. but worldwide, is "forest certification" - the auditing of forest companies in order to ensure that they are practicing good forest management. Efforts toward certification of forest products in B.C. have recently intensified, with two systems, the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) and the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), leading the way. This is largely due to increasing market demand - buyer groups and some 7 "Biodiversity" is defined by the Ministry of Forests as "the diversity of plants, animals, and other living organisms in all their forms and levels of organization, including genes, species, ecosystems, and the evolutionary and functional processes that link them" (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998d). This definition is accepted by the author and will taken as the meaning of the term wherever it appears in the remainder of the thesis. g "Salvage logging" means logging an area that is undergoing or in danger of undergoing some sort of threat to the commercial value of the timber, such as an outbreak of pine beetles. Harvesters are allowed to remove more 26 individual companies in Europe and North America have communicated that they are moving towards exclusively purchasing certified products - as well as to the endorsement of certification by environmental organizations (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998b). According to reports, MacMillan Bloedel, Western Forest Products, Canfor, West Fraser Timber, Crestbrook Forest Industries, Weldwood, and Interfor are all pursuing certification by FSC, CSA, or both (Globe and Mail, 1998; Jordan, 1998). One significant feature of forest certification is that it could enable harvesters to employ higher-cost, and more environmentally-sensitive, harvesting practices due to consumers' willingness to pay a premium on certified products. Certification could also help lead B.C. from low-value commodity production (like pulp and dimension lumber) to the production of higher "value-added" goods like furniture and doors. 2.1.13 Section Summary This section has shown that the notion of sustained yield formed the underpinning for forest policy and planning in British Columbia. We have also seen how corporate concentration in the industry was instigated, and how the forest industry as a whole has been dominated by large forest companies and the Ministry of Forests. Few would argue that this system failed to significantly aid the development of the province's economic and physical infrastructure. Yet, critics have increasingly pointed out a number of long-term ecological, economic, and social costs associated with the pursuit of sustained yield forest management (timber production) through large, vertically-integrated corporations. Changes in the late 1970s, with the introduction of multiple use provisions, and in the 1990s, with the partial introduction of ecosystem principles via the Scientific Panel and the Forest Practices Code, as well as the introduction of community participation in CORE and the renewal efforts of FRBC, signaled the beginnings of a new understanding of forestry. This understanding, not yet fully evolved in British Columbia, incorporates the notion that forests are thriving, yet delicate, ecosystems, not timber factories. It also recognizes the mutual interdependence between forests and forest communities. Unfortunately, many established interests (the major corporations, the Ministry of Forests, the unions, and so on) have resisted the new agenda. The following section will briefly review some of the critical political, economic, and ecological conditions existent in the British Columbia forest industry of today. wood than the designated AAC in order to utilize the wood that would otherwise "go to waste" in a commercial sense. 27 2.2 The Forest Industry and the Forests Today 2.2.1 Types of Tenures Licenses to harvest, called forest tenures, are held in Tree Farm Licences (TFLs), as well as in various tenure arrangements in the Timber Supply Areas (TSAs). The TFLs are mostly in coastal areas, are area-based, and provide almost indefinite tenure. They are for a term of twenty-five years, and are replaceable every five years. There are thirty-four TFLs, which account for about twenty-four percent of the AAC. There are thirty-seven TSAs, within which are held volume-based Forest Licenses, Timber Sale Licenses, and Pulpwood Agreements as well as the area-based, small-scale Woodlot Licenses. By far the most significant of the volume-based licenses in the TSAs are the Forest Licenses which account for fifty-seven percent of the province's total AAC. The Ministry of Forests has greater control and responsibility in the TSAs where the agency is responsible for strategic planning and all silviculture outside of restocking, while the licensee is responsible for all forestry-related activities (subject to provincial regulations) in the TFLs (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998a: Table C2-g; B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1997d: Table 1). 2.2.2 Forest Planning and Management Approximately ninety-four percent of the land in British Columbia is owned by the Crown. By the terms of the Canadian Constitution, the province holds primary responsibility for lands and resources management and is responsible for logging, mining, recreation, grazing, and other resource activities. The Forest Service of the Ministry of Forests is the lead agency which manages timber lands in concert with various agencies responsible for the environment, tourism, and other natural resource values. Forest planning in B.C. is hierarchical, with larger-scale plans forming the guidelines and boundaries for the more-detailed, lower-level plans. Regional Plans are the highest level of planning, and provide broad management guidance - such as the location of large protected areas - for four large regions in the province (see discussion on CORE, above). Both the Regional Plans and the sub-regional Land and Resource Management Plans (LRMPs), which provide more-detailed strategic direction for planning processes, are developed by planning tables composed of ministry, industry, local government, and interest-group representatives. Standard, technical forest planning begins at the next level, Landscape plans, which are developed for watersheds and determine ecological characteristics and objectives for such issues as biodiversity. Local Resource Use Plans (LRUPs) may also be prepared in locations with special significance (e.g., outstanding recreational values), and exist to "provide area-specific resource management objectives for integrating resource use in the 28 area" (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998d). Five-year Forest Development Plans (FDPs) (operational plans) provide a fine level of detail about forest resources and natural features, and are prepared for major licence holders' timber harvesting and silviculture activities. Local Forest District managers also prepare FDPs for those areas not covered under a major licence. Finally, cutting permits provide site-specific information about harvesting and silviculture, and are required before a cutblock may be harvested (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998c: online source).9 The forest planning process is dominated in the Timber Supply Areas by the Ministry of Forests and the tenure-holders, although the LRMPs and other regional-level plans dictate resource management zones which must be respected by forest plans. A similar situation exists in the TFLs, though licensees take on more of the overall planning and management responsibilities. While public consultation is required at various stages of the planning process in both the TSAs and the TFLs, communities typically have very little say in how the local forest resource will be managed. The LRMP process, which involves locally-elected officials and local interest groups, generally allows some local say over where timber harvesting may proceed, but not whether it may proceed. Furthermore, the determination of harvesting techniques or cutting rates in areas designated for forestry is generally outside the mandate of an LRMP, and hence is not subject to even modest local community control. Community control is also limited by the facts that LRMPs must conform to a pre-determined model (known as the "Diamond LRMP"), and that designation of an LRMP is subject to provincial approval. At this point in time, the substance of strategic forest planning is the zoning, through LRMPs, of the forest into areas designated for various different usages: protected, special management (or low intensity), general resource management, enhanced resource development, settlement, and agriculture areas. This is an explicit attempt to implement the multiple use principles initiated in the late 1970s. Some critics contend that this zoning process has been focused upon the determination of areas which may be intensively managed for forestry. They believe that the process is aimed at enhancing the production of one value, timber, in intensive zones in order to mitigate the removal of forest lands into protected areas, rather than a sincere attempt to holistically manage the entire forest resource for multiple values (Burda et al., 1997: 24). Of the planning processes completed as of the summer of 1998, eighty-one percent of the land base had been designated as enhanced or general resource management zones; thereby opening such areas to industrial resource extraction (B.C. Land Use Coordination Office, 1998; personal correspondence with LRMP officers). The term "online source" in a reference indicates that the online source did not include page numbers. 29 2.2.3 The Cut Clearcutting is the predominate harvesting technique in B.C., comprising between eighty-six percent and ninety-two percent of all cuts, by area, between 1985 and 1995 (Canadian Council of Forest Ministers, 1997). British Columbia is a prolific timber-cutter; the 1998 provincial AAC was 70,550,050 cubic metres (m3). According to the Ministry's own estimates, this level of cut exceeds the Long Term Harvesting Level (LTHL) by 11,013,911 cubic metres, or 18.5% (Marchak et al., 1999: 30).10 Many environmentalists criticize these estimates of the overcut for being far too conservative. For instance, the Silva Forest Foundation estimates that the AAC in their jurisdiction, the Slocan Valley, would have to be reduced by ninety-four percent over the short-term and seventy-three percent over the long term in order to ensure the sustainability of the forests (Silva Forest Foundation, 1996: pp. 5.8 and 6.45). While the specific amount of overcutting occurring in the province is debatable, no party (other than, occasionally, the industry itself) denies that it is happening. 2.2.4 The Forest Resource The full value of B.C.'s forests is immeasurable. In addition to containing forty-five percent of Canada's, and seven percent of the world's supply of softwood timber, B.C.'s forests underpin the province's fisheries, tourism, and clean water, and embody spiritual and intrinsic values. Forests cover approximately fifty-eight million hectares of the province, spanning many bio-geoclimatic zones. Of this, twenty-five million hectares are considered old-growth, and thirty-four million hectares are inhabited by younger forests." The oldest stands, those 250 years and over, cover just under eight percent of the province (MacKinnon and Void, 1998). B.C. is still in its first rotation; ninety-five percent of the province's logging takes place in the old-growth forests because that is where the highest quality and volume of timber can be found (Burda et al., 1997: 22). This fact leads to three serious issues: 1) old-growth is running out and the transition to second-growth will mean a lower quantity and quality of fibre for the industry - a phenomenon known as "falldown;" The LTHL is defined by the Ministry as "A harvest level that can be maintained indefinitely given a particular forest management regime (which defines the timber harvesting land base and includes objectives and guidelines for non-timber values) and estimates of timber growth and yield" (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998e). " "Old growth" stands are defined by MacKinnon and Void (1998) as being 250+ years in age in coastal areas, 141+ years in age for the rest of the province excluding lodgepole pine, and 121+ years for lodgepole pine. 30 2) the loss of old-growth has grave environmental consequence because old-growth performs 12 very important ecological functions; and 3) a standoff has resulted between those desiring to protect old-growth's ecological, aesthetic, and spiritual values, and the industry which is fighting to exploit it for its great economic value. As of the summer of 1998, thirteen percent of the province's remaining old-growth was in protected areas, while the other eighty-seven percent was in areas open to resource development (MacKinnon and Void, 1998). For the most part, the forest industry and the Ministry of Forests use the economic criteria of "maturity" to assess the state of the forest resource. Simply put, "immature" forest stands are stands of commercial species which are not yet merchantable, while "mature" stands are. Fifty-nine percent of productive forests administered by the Ministry of Forests are considered mature, thirty-four are considered immature, and the remaining seven percent is considered "not stocked" because it is not currently covered with commercial species (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1997b). Generally, mature stands are also old-growth, because logging has not occurred for long enough to create much in the way of second-rotation mature forests; most of those mature stands which are not old-growth have been caused by natural disturbances like windthrow and fire. According to the Ministry of Forests, the immature second growths will not be merchantable for another fifty years on average (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998h). This is due to the fact that re-planting did not begin in earnest until the last two decades or so (Marchak et al., 1999). These data underline the point made above: there are huge pressures to log old-growth because, even using sustained yield management, B.C. has not been able to reproduce a new crop of commercially viable trees. 2.2.5 The Major Companies The timber industry remains strongly concentrated in the hands of a few major corporations. In 1976, the top ten companies controlled fifty-nine percent of the AAC. Although the Pearse Commission and the FRC made recommendations specifically designed to combat this concentration, the top ten companies now control sixty-eight percent of all harvesting rights.14 (Ibid.: 81). The five 1 2 For a discussion of these functions, see Franklin, 1998, "The Natural, the Clearcut, and the Future"; Marchak et al., 1999, Falldown; Maser, 1994, Sustainable Forestry; and Wilcove and Olson, 1990, "Ancient Forests of the Pacific Northwest." 1 3 According to the Ministry of Forests, 'mature' stands are lodgepole pine, whitebark pine, and deciduous species of stand age greater than 80 years, and other coniferous species of stand age greater than 120 years (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998d). 1 4 Due to a large amount of turnover in the industry, many of the names have changed in the top-ten list. Regardless, the industry is prone to concentration no matter which companies are currently in operation. 31 financially-largest forest sector companies operating in B.C. each reported revenues in excess of one billion dollars in 1997; the largest, MacMillan Bloedel, reported $4.6 billion (Ibid.: 87). These companies, and the industry itself, are highly dependent upon exports: over the 1979-1996 period, exports accounted for between seventy and ninety percent of total lumber shipments (Ibid.: 93). With increasing trade liberalization and increasing costs of production in the province, B.C. forest products have become highly vulnerable to competition from foreign sources, especially the Southern U.S. and South America where fast-growing fibre plantations have come on line in the last twenty-five years. This and other factors have made large-scale corporate forestry in B.C. increasingly unstable and, despite the huge revenues, seven of the fifteen financially-largest companies in the province reported net losses in 1997 (Ibid.: 87). 2.2.(5 Mill Capacity As has been noted above, most of the large forest corporations originally obtained extensive logging rights with the understanding that they would construct large timber processing facilities as part of the provincial government's strategy to increase and stabilize regional employment from the forest resource. Over the years, the mills' capacities have grown, and the forest cannot sustainably produce enough timber to operate them. Marchak, et al. (1999) estimate that the province's pulp mills and sawmills together require 75.84 million cubic metres annually to operate at capacity, whereas the Ministry's LTHL stands at 59.54 million cubic metres (p. 93). The lack of fibre supply to sustain mill capacity, competition from other producers, and poor markets has caused mills throughout the province to shut down. Examples in the 1990s are a MacMillan Bloedel plywood mill in Port Alberni, the Skeena-Cellulose pulp mill in the Prince Rupert Forest Region, the Celgar pulp mill in Castlegar, and the Avenor pulp mill in Gold River. 1 5 There is a great deal of pressure on the provincial government to maintain cutting levels to keep these mills, and the employment they provide, viable. 2.2.7 Employment and Labour Intensity Total employment in the three main forestry sectors - logging, sawmills and planing mills, and pulp and paper mills - stood at 63.7 thousand employees in 1995. When one includes specialized wood products and "forestry services" (forestry consulting, etc.), this figure increases to 78.2 thousand. In addition to this are an estimated 11.7 thousand individuals employed in value-added 1 5 Often, however, the government spends a great deal of cash to keep these mills propped up for at least a short time. An example is the recent $329 million Skeena Cellulose buy-out in Prince Rupert. Environmentalists and business analysts harshly criticized this move as the mill is considered to be unviable. 32 industries (Marchak et al., 1999: 107-108). In all of these sectors employment rose steadily from the early 1960s until 1980. Over the next two to three years total forest industry employment dropped significantly and has since remained at the lower levels. Yet capital investments in new technologies (increasing mill mechanization) caused production to rise over the same period. This means that labour intensity has fallen: jobs in the forest industry per 1000 cubic metres of wood harvested fell from 1.32 in 1963 to 0.85 in 1995 (Ibid.: 103-106, and Table C.4). When one narrows the focus to the largest forestry firms in the province, the picture gets even more exaggerated. While overall forest-sector employment has stayed steady since the early 1980s, employment at the major firms has continued to drop dramatically. The reason for this is that the larger the firm, the more opportunity it has to substitute capital and technology for labour, and the more likely the firm is engaged in low-value commodity production (Sierra Legal Defence Fund, 1998: 25-27). Value-added firms like furniture and instrument manufacturers enjoy a much higher labour intensity than do commodity-producers like pulp mills or dimensional lumber mills. However, despite efforts on the part of the provincial government to increase value-added production, the B.C. forest industry is primarily a high-volume producer of low-value commodities. The Small Business Forest Enterprise Program (SBFEP), the main source of wood for the province's value-added firms, receives only just over thirteen percent of the AAC (Marchak, et al., 1999: 16). Furthermore, critics have noted that much of the timber in this program is snapped up by large corporations through surrogate bidding (Drushka, 1985; Forest Resources Commission, 1991: 49-50). Outside of the SBFEP, almost all remaining timber rights are controlled by commodity-producing major corporations, and unless the government adopts new legislation, this situation is unlikely to change: by the terms of the Forest Act, replacement of major licenses must be offered, and any reallocation of a licensee's harvesting rights to another party requires compensation (B.C. Forest Act, sections 15, 36, and 60). 2.2.8 Unionization and Wages The forest industry in B.C. is highly unionized, although membership has been declining. The largest union, the I.W.A., had 50,000 members in the late 1970s; current membership is down to 30,000. Due in part to the unions, wages in the forest industry are high, ranging from $830 to $950 dollars per week, depending on the sector (Marchak, et al., 1999: 110). The unions view reductions in the AAC as the prime threat to the continuance of the remaining well-paying jobs.16 It is fair to For evidence of this attitude, see Industrial, Wood and Allied Workers of Canada, 1997a, /. W.A. Canada Forest Policy; and Industrial, Wood and Allied Workers of Canada, 1997b, "Forest Sector Job Growth." 33 say that the unions have a strong influence on the industry, especially on the coast, as well as on the current provincial government. This section has outlined the form and character of B.C.'s forest industry, including a number of serious issues facing it: over-exploitation of the forest resource, diminishing labour intensity, mill overcapacity, corporate concentration, and unionization. The following section explores how the history and current conditions of the forest industry have impacted B.C. forest-dependent communities. 2.3 Forest Community Conditions and Transitions 2.3.1 Forest Community Conditions Beginning in Canada in the late 1800s as little more than forest camps, moving through the "holistic" and "comprehensive" pre-planned communities of the pre- and post-War eras, and culminating in the "rationalized communities of the decline era," the forest community has evolved greatly (Robson, 1995: 48). Perhaps the one constant of forestry communities is the fact that they have always clearly "reflect[ed] the reality of the forestry economy" (Ibid.: 48). It is not surprising, then, that the current crisis in the B.C. forest sector is accompanied by a crisis in many forest communities. Robson's definition of forest dependent communities as "communities in which a large percentage of the economic activity is forestry based or forestry dependent" (Ibid.: 17) clearly applies to many of British Columbia's rural economies. A 1995 report by the Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations indicated that forestry was the single most important source of basic sector income in twenty-three, or thirty-seven percent, of B.C.'s sixty-three "local areas." If public sector, pension, and investment income are excluded from the analysis (incomes which are generally not impacted by local economic development efforts), the number rises to thirty-one, or almost half of B.C.'s "local areas" (Home and Powell, 1995: 21-22). While economic base figures do not portray the full reality of community economics - attractiveness to labour, diversity, and ability to retain dollars locally are perhaps more critical to local economic health (Power, 1995) - they do indicate that forestry is an important part of many rural economies' export-related income. This is especially 34 important considering that these communities are termed "forest-based" for the unfortunate fact that their economies are usually not very diverse. Therefore, as external forest markets go, they go. Many of these economies are not doing very well. In a 1998 case study of two forest-dependent towns - Quesnel and Port Alberni - Marchak et al. (1999) note that average income and census family income were lower than the B.C. average. Welfare recipients and unemployment insurance beneficiaries were higher than the provincial average. These data are considered by the authors to be "comparable to other resource-sector towns in the province" (121-124). In these and other forestry towns, mill closures have made their mark. Two studies of Northwestern resource-dependent towns (one of which included Port Alberni) reported that, in addition to the obvious economic impacts, mill closures increase psychological and emotional stresses, which in turn lead to increases in domestic violence, substance abuse, suicide, marital breakdown, outmigration, and impoverishment (ARA Consulting, 1993; LaPrairie, 1984). Not only do forestry towns perform poorly in relation to the province on current socio-economic indicators, they have shown a significant lack of resilience to weather economic downturns. Indeed, single-industry towns of any sort are notoriously unstable. As the Canada Employment and Immigration Advisory Council put it in 1987: "Plant closures are not new in Canada. The remnants of more than 400 ghost towns across the country stand as mute reminders of communities that became the victims of exhausted ore bodies, denuded forests, declining fish stocks, changes in transportation patterns, and other adversities" (cited in Travers, 1993: 207). According to Power (1995), it is single-industry towns' strong connections to export markets which produces potentially lethal instabilities: "... it is through the export industries that fluctuations in the national and international markets are imported into the local economy" (245). As an example, Carol LaPrairie outlines how, from 1951 to 1976, the population fluctuations of the Northwest Region of B.C. "(reflected) the cyclical, export-oriented nature of the regional economy." Significant to the analysis is the fact that the population grew rapidly in the region during the 1960s, when there was a heavy demand for export resources, and declined in the early 1970s as a result of a recession in North American and overseas markets (LaPrairie, 1984: 43). Forest community instability was highlighted in the depression of the early 1980s. During this period Vancouver unemployment levels reached fourteen percent, whereas in the single industry 17 Power (1995) argues that, counter to the "folk economics of the rear-view mirror," many rural economies are not dependent on continued resource extraction for their future economic health. He offers data on various regions of Montana and Idaho, as well as for the states as a whole, which demonstrates that the economies were unaffected by variations in resource-extraction markets. He notes, however, that this is due to the fact that a) there was diversity and resiliency in the non-extractive sectors of the economy, and b) these areas, by virtue of their local environmental quality, are able to attract labour, which then attracts business, and are also able to attract retirees and their income. These conditions may not exist in B.C. forest-dependent communities. 35 towns they were two to three times higher. Over 23,000 people lost their jobs in the forest industry, and over fifty percent of the province's loggers became unemployed (Barnes and Hayter, 1992: 654). Before the early-1980s depression, forestry towns like Port Alberni had some of the highest per-capita 18 incomes in Canada (Marchak et al., 1999: 124). Now, some forestry towns have actually died. Ocean Falls, after successive death throes and mini-restorations beginning in the late 1960s, was largely demolished and sold-off in its "Normalization Program" of 1985 (Robson, 1995: 47). Many of the communities that survived the early 1980s depression are stuck in an economic decline, and it is questionable whether industrial forestry can sustain them. Labour Intensity and Structural Adjustments Part of the reason for this has already been mentioned above: diminishing labour intensity through increased mechanization. Forest industry employment and harvest levels both decreased during the early 1980s. But, while employment stayed at the new levels in succeeding years, roundwood harvests increased (Marchak et al., 1999: 106) This can be at least partially attributed to major structural adjustments in the industry. Significant capital "improvements" to mills resulted in huge layoffs. Robson (1995) reports that such industrial restructuring has taken place across Canada, and that "when the dominant forest industry is forced to re-tool, downsize, or shut-down, so too must the community" (p. 10). An example in B.C. was the demolition, in 1983, of the old mill at Chemainus, on Vancouver Island. The mill had employed 600-700 workers, was losing money, and was replaced (at a cost of $22 million) with a new, high-tech mill employing only 145 workers (Barnes and Hayter, 1994: 300). Another example is Port Alberni, where the Somas Division sawmill has reduced its payroll from 1250 people to 400, with only 320 actually working (Marchak et al., 1999: 127). This development has come on the heels of the 1991 MacMillan Bloedel plywood mill closure in the town: 1,000 jobs were lost in that year alone. The plywood mill closure is particularly interesting because the mill was actually re-located to Pine Hill, Alabama in order to take advantage of the faster-maturing fibre in that area (Parfitt, 1998). Resource Depletion At once a contributor to industry structural adjustment activities and, arguably, a result of the large-scale industrial forestry system, depletion of the forest resource has also undermined the future viability of forest communities. Reports and articles focusing on the entire Northwest and B.C. (Wilcove and Olson, 1990; B.C. Wild, 1998; Burda et al., 1997; Marchak et al., 1999b) as well as In 1974, Port Alberni ranked third in Canada in per capita income (ARA Consulting Group, 1993: p. 3). 36 reports by local residents and decision-makers from the likes of Golden, Haida Gwaii, and the Slocan Valley (Golden and area Economic Development Committee, 1995; Robin Clark, Inc., 1998; Silva Forest Foundation, 1996), have made the point that past resource over-exploitation is both unsustainable and an impediment to the future development of viable local economies. These reports have called for severe reductions in the cut, a transition to more-sustainable/wholistic forestry practices and principles, and - to varying degrees - some devolution of planning and management authority from the provincial government and forest industry to local bodies. Lack of Local Control Mill closures and forest resource depletions hint at a fundamental characteristic of B.C.'s forest-dependent towns: their historical lack of control over their own fate. The forest planning system, already outlined, centers forest planning power in the hands of the Ministry of Forests and other non-local bodies. Furthermore, the high degree of corporate concentration over the forest industry means that many economic decisions affecting these towns are made for the realization of external goals: Vancouver is the local metropole, representing the distribution, processing and control centre for the industry, while in the hinterland, logging and processing are carried out in the nearly 100 single industry communities. Typically, the forest product operations in these communities are part of larger enterprises whose head-offices are located in Vancouver and beyond. (Barnes and Hayter, 1994: 297) And absenteeism, by nature, does not provide much incentive for corporations to be concerned with local interests. According to a 1990 report in the B.C. Central Credit Union newsletter, only 29.7% of the forest companies operating in B.C. are majority-controlled by in-province owners or investors. For the rest (and even for those B.C.-controlled firms which are headquartered in Vancouver or other large centers), there is little incentive to address local needs: [Absentee companies'] ... interests do not necessarily coincide with the interests of the people of B.C. Individual and multinational shareholders from Toronto, Auckland, New York, Tokyo, and Vancouver tend to be more interested in return on investment than in BC's community welfare. They expect management to operate their companies first to produce a profit, and second to be good corporate citizens. (cited in Travers, 1993: 215) Himelfarb, writing during the depression of the early 1980s, wrote that absentee control had led to a serious state of disempowerment in the communities: 37 The residents are dependent on a sole employer and on the often unincreasible resource being exploited. The community as a whole is dependent on decisions made at corporate headquarters in the metropolis, often a foreign metropolis. Decisions crucial to the life of the community are then often made by people removed from that community. Not surprisingly, the residents can be characterized as resigned and fatalistic . . .feelings of powerlessness prevail. (Himelfarb in LaPrairie, 1984: 25) 2.3.2 Transitions In the face of all this there have been many attempts to empower B.C. forest communities and bolster their economies. For the most part, these strategies - usually some combination of economic diversification, alternative employment generation, worker retraining, industrial re-tooling, and other initiatives - are a hard slog best described by Robson (1995) as "bust management." In other words, forest community planning in B.C. is often not the result of a community-defined initiative to generate a desired better future (which may or may not include forestry), but is instead a reaction to the faltering forest economy. This is perhaps best exemplified by the work of Forest Renewal B.C. (FRBC), the provincial agency charged with renewing the forest industry and forest communities. In one regional office, proactive planning projects are interrupted and de-prioritized in the rush to provide "immediate response" to nearby communities facing nearly-continual mill closures.'9 When proactive community planning efforts are forthcoming by FRBC, they are generally aimed at propping up the status quo forest industry, not generating diversified, healthy communities. For example, the FRBC Forest Community Economic Development Program offers 4 funds which are aimed at helping communities to develop economic development staff, develop forestry plans and projects, engender community involvement in the forestry sector, develop more forest-sector jobs, and increase forest sector investment. The implication is that community sustainability can be built through better forest sector planning and implementation, and more forestry jobs. While the fund aims to help communities "diversify and stabilize their economic base," it appears that such diversification is to be limited to one sector: forestry (Forest Renewal B.C., 1996: 3). Community leaders seem to have an overwhelming propensity to engage in denial when faced with the crisis in the forest industry. In Quesnel, a heavily forest-dependent town in the B.C. Interior, several successive pine beetle infestations have provided the rationale to increase the cut well above the Long Term Harvest Level. These actions have been embraced by local officials and the Ministry This statement is based on the author's experience in August, 1997 as an intern in an FRBC regional office in northern B.C. 38 of Forests district office, although the inevitable outcome is an even-more crippling falldown in the future (Marchak etal., 1999: 122-123). Some forest-dependent towns, like Chemainus and Nelson, have pursued aggressive economic development strategies enabling the towns to diversify their economies, to capitalize on the beauty of their natural surroundings and built environment for tourism, retirement and other amenity-based sources of income, and/or to stabilize the forest sector (ARA Consulting Group, 1993; Barnes and Hayter, 1992; Grant Copeland and Associates, 1994; Silva Forest Foundation, 1997). The question remains, however, as to whether other B.C. communities will be able to pursue strategies like tourism due to their isolation, resource depletion, or other factors. In either case, many B.C. towns will continue to depend, to varying degrees, on the local forest resource. One potential model is the Ecosystem-based Landscape Plan for the Slocan Valley, released in 1996 by the Silva Forest Foundation. The Plan builds on the efforts of the Foundation and other Slocan Valley residents over the last two-and-a-half decades to re-define the forest economy in their region. Extensively researched, the document combines Geographic Information Systems (GIS) mapping with guidelines from the fields of conservation biology, landscape planning, and ecological economics. It identifies the type and amount of resource extraction that can be sustained by the ecosystem and proposes a new economy which could be supported by the resulting, less-intensive, harvesting regime. Embracing the "Ecological Worldview" (to be discussed in Chapter Four), the Plan is based on the following principles: Economies are subsets of human cultures or societies, which are subsets of ecosystems. In other words, human societies and their economies are dependent upon the natural diversity and integrity of the ecosystems they are part of. The primary objective of an ecosystem-based plan is to maintain fully functioning ecosystems at all scales through time in the landscape being planned. Protection of ecosystem functioning is put ahead of human uses of ecosystems. (Silva Forest Foundation, 1996: 4.1.) The Landscape Plan is sweeping, calling for extensive reductions in the AAC (ninety-four percent over the short term), intensive forest ecosystem rehabilitation investments for the next few decades, and the adjustment of the entire local economy from an externally-controlled industrial model to a locally-controlled, small-scale ecoforestry and value-added model (Ibid.: 5.8). Even though it is a radical plan, it has garnered significant support from valley residents; an Angus Reid survey found that, of the fifty-two percent of respondents who knew about the plan, seventy-five percent "strongly" or "moderately" supported it (Angus Reid Group, 1996: 1-15). Furthermore, the Foundation claims that initial job losses will be made up for after a transitional period. The reason for 39 this is that the logging methods and value-added production proposed for the new economy require significantly less capital investment per job, as well as much less volume of timber cut per job. In fact, the Foundation estimates that, in the entire forest sector (including value-added) 149-153 jobs per year could be sustained by the forest resource under the Plan, versus only fifty-one to sixty-five jobs over the long term under status quo conditions (Greenpeace Canada, 1999: 7). The Plan was presented to the Minister of Forests in 1997, but unfortunately was rejected because it "involve[d] sweeping changes to legislation, the timber tenure system, the roles of provincial and local governments in social, economic, and environmental decision-making and the flow of revenue to the province" (Marchak et al., 1999: 50). Regardless, the work of the Foundation demonstrates that some communities have the technical and ideological capacity to experiment with new forms of social and economic organization in the face of crisis. 2.3.3 Chapter Summary This chapter has covered some of the historical conditions which created the forest industry, forestry practices, and forest management of today, and has provided current context to illuminate the state of the resource on which forest communities depend. Forest management structures have also been reviewed to provide the reader with an understanding of who makes the big decisions in the industry, and how these decisions are made. Of particular interest to this thesis is the conspicuous over-exploitation of the forest resource in B.C., the lack of attention to the role and needs of local communities in forest planning and management, and the unwillingness on the part of the provincial government to initiate radical changes to the status quo. Historically, community sustainability was only vaguely addressed as an inevitable outcome of scientific, sustained yield forest management. It has become apparent through the boom-and-bust patterns of forestry towns, and the as-yet-unrecoverable bust which began in the early 1980s, that community sustainability has not been ensured by sustained yield management. Many B.C. communities seem to believe that their future viability depends in part on community forestry. To have a sustainable forest-based economy, communities must do a better job of stewarding the forest resource than have the corporate operators and the Ministry of Forests. The next chapter describes the community forest concept, and identifies a series of theorized benefits associated with the model. These benefits predict that the adoption of community forestry will enhance planning and management for ecological sustainability. In order to be thorough, potential limitations of community forestry are also explored. 40 Chapter Three: Community Forestry - Introduction, Benefits, and Obstacles This chapter, the first of two comprising the community forest literature review, begins by defining the community forest model, and provides examples of community forests in B.C. and other jurisdictions. It then explores the perceived problems which have motivated the call for community forestry in B.C. Finally, it lists the theorized ecological benefits of the model, and a number of "potential obstacles" to the realization of these benefits - both of which were identified in the literature. 3.1 Definition of Community Forestry Community forestry has been described many different ways, although most North American definitions are similar to the one offered in Chapter One of this thesis: "forested areas which are managed by a community for community benefits." There are some key differences, however. For instance, the U.S. Forest Service defines community forests as "lands owned and operated for forestry or allied purposes by the community ... for the benefit of that community" (in Duinker, et al., 1994: 712; emphasis added). Community ownership is not considered to be a prerequisite for community forestry in this thesis. Ownership may be a valid criteria in the U.S.A., where private forest lands comprise a large portion of the land base, but in the B.C. context, where ninety percent of the forest resource is Crown-owned, most communities would more feasibly pursue community management of forest land rather than outright ownership. Also inconsistent with the definition used in this thesis are several licences touted as "community forests" by the B.C. Ministry of Forests. Complementing the Community Forest Pilot Project mentioned in Chapter Two (which does utilize a community forest licence that is consistent with the definition above), the Ministry also supports "community-based forestry" through the tender of volume-based Forest Licences to communities (see Community Forest Advisory Committee, 1997a; Table A l for a list of such licences awarded as of December, 1997). As has been stated in Chapter One, inherent to any meaningful notion of community forestry is community management of a specific area of land. Forest Licences, in contrast, simply provide permission to harvest a particular volume of timber from a much larger land base (a "timber supply area") along with many other licensees. The Ministry of Forests has virtually all strategic planning and, outside of replanting, all silvicultural authority in a Forest Licence (in concert with the guidelines of regional land use plans). 41 Unless a community has the authority to manage a specific area of forest, there is little reason (except, perhaps, for political ends) to call a community-held cutting licence a community forest. On another note, various authors, in defining community forestry, have included aspects of the model which are complementary to the thesis definition: management of (and enjoyment by), the community of non-monetary, non-timber benefits (Burda et al., 1997); a closed circle of costs and benefits (Cathro, 1996b); the community forests' reflection of community values (Cathro, 1996a; Dunster in Mitchell-Banks, 1993), and the existence of real and meaningful community participation, if not control, in management decisions (Cortex Consultants, 1996b; Dunster in Mitchell-Banks, 1993; Robin Clark, Inc., 1996). When these features are added to the thesis definition, a richer picture of community forestry emerges than the one seemingly used by the B.C. Ministry of Forests. The underlying objective of proponents of the community forest model is to provide forestry communities with some degree of control over the local resource base which sustains them. As one author put it, community forestry allows communities to "control forest management with a view to "integrating the forest resources into the local economy" (Robson, 1995: 14). Community forests could be any scale of size or production (although they tend to be smaller than most forestry firms), and can take a variety of managerial and administrative forms. Of the three area-based community forests that exist in B.C., one is operated on land owned outright by the municipality, and two are Tree Farm Licences. In Mission and North Cowichan, community forests are administered and managed through the elected town council, while in Revelstoke a quasi-independent community forest corporation performs these duties. Harvesting practices vary, although clearcutting predominates. The cutting rate on all Crown lands is determined by an AAC imposed by the province's Chief Forester.1 3.2 Community Forests - Some Examples 3.2.1 Community Forests Internationally. Community forestry, in one form or another, has been practiced in Sweden, Finland, Germany, and Switzerland for many centuries. It has also been used in Nepal, China, Thailand, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, South Korea, Japan, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Niger, Sudan, Somalia, Kenya, Mexico, Guatemala, Bolivia, Peru, Brazil, and Honduras. Indeed, something like community forestry ' This fact is important because it prohibits communities holding harvesting licences from determining for themselves an appropriate scale of forestry (or appropriate volume of production from the forest). This does not include North Cowichan community forest, which is on private land. 42 has existed in almost all forested countries. The characteristics of community forests in these settings vary widely; geography, culture, and socio-economics help to determine their form. Some community forests are managed for very many outputs, while others are managed primarily for timber production. Community forests in developing countries are often managed for fuelwood, soil rehabilitation, cash crops, and food. The degree of community control is diverse (Cortex Consultants, 1996b; Mitchell-Banks, 1998). In the U.S., non-aboriginal community forestry does not have as long, or as deep, a history as that of Europe and other areas. Calls for "community forestry" seem to have appeared in forestry literature by about the 1910s, although it was not implemented (Duinker, et al., 1994: 713). In modern times, community forestry as envisioned in this thesis does not appear to be much of a going concern. The U.S.D.A. Forestry Service sponsors the "Urban and Community Forestry" program and the National Arbor Day Foundation sponsors the "Tree City U.S.A." program, but these are chiefly concerned with tree planting, public awareness, and the management of greenspace in urban environs rather than the creation of working forests to sustain communities (see U.S.D.A. Forest Service, 1998 and National Arbor Day Foundation, 1998). The Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin is an exception. The Menominee created something like a community forest upon the establishment of their reservation in 1854. The tribe collectively owned and managed (through a twelve-member elected board of directors) their forest using primarily selection harvesting methods that "would balance annual growth with timber production," a concept equivalent to what would later be termed 'sustained yield' (Duinker et al., 1994: 713). Inventories in 1854 and 1988 showed that the tribe had been successful in maintaining the forest resource - two billion board feet were harvested in this period, with no reduction in commercial standing timber. Furthermore, by the 1950s the interest on the profits from harvesting and milling began to fund tribal social services (Ibid.: 713). Authors contend that a critical aspect of the Menominee's success is a cultural attribute, a "traditional land ethic" which recognizes humankind's interdependent relationship with the environment and which "provides an internal control and guidance for human actions" (Ibid.: 714). Other community forests in the U.S., or some semblance of the model, are the "conservation covenants" of New England (Community Forest Advisory Committee, 1997a) and the community forest of Areata, Humboldt County, California (Andre, 1990). 3.2.2 Community Forests in Canada Duinker et al. observed in 1994 that "community property regimes are almost absent, are still 'table issues,' or are only beginning to emerge" in Canada (716). Still, though far from ubiquitous, community forestry seems to have more of a presence in Canada than in the U.S. As of 1998, 43 community forests were being actively pursued in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and the Northwest Territories, and were existent in British Columbia, Ontario, and Quebec (Mitchell-Banks, 1998: 26). Something like community forestry also exists in Nova Scotia through Forestry Group Ventures, an organization established in 1987 to develop cooperative forest management strategies on small, private woodlots (Community Forest Advisory Committee, 1997b). The Portland Hill experiment in Newfoundland was considered by Roy (1989) as a success in demonstrating the social feasibility of community forests in Newfoundland; indeed, two Royal Commissions, in 1955 and 1981, recommended the establishment of community forestry in the province (though nothing came of it) (inDuinkeretal., 1994: 716). The earliest explicit reference to "community forestry" in Canada was a 1944 Forestry Chronicle article describing a community forest which was to be established (but was not) in the Thunder Bay area. Regardless, community forestry had already appeared in Quebec in 1911, although by a different moniker. These were township, or cantonal, forest reserves managed by local people for the production of lumber and firewood (Mitchell-Banks, 1998: 25-27). One of these cantonal reserves was used much later by the community of Girardville to establish a community forest. Another Quebec initiative involved forested intramunicipal lots in the Abitibi-Temiscaming Region. In 1994, the Abitibi-Temiscaming Regional Development Council (CRDAT) and the Quebec government signed an agreement regarding the use of these lots "as levers for regional development." The initiative was also oriented towards decentralizing resource management on Crown land, and involved the creation of forest management contracts between the province and the community. These contracts allowed the latter to manage forest reserves created out of scattered lots. Specific objectives included revitalizing rural communities; creating jobs to maintain rural populations; developing the agricultural, forestry, and tourism sectors; and "adhering to the principles of integrated resource and land management, environmental protection, and sustainable development" (Community Forest Advisory Committee, 1997b: 13-14). These and other developments in cooperative resource management have led to an environment in Quebec where devolution of control to local communities is not abnormal. Duinker et al. (1994) state that ".. .the community forest concept is deeply rooted in Quebec's forest history, and it suggests a rich activity dedicated to decentralizing control of forest management" (716). The Ontario Community Forest Pilot Project, started in 1991, is considered to be a successful experiment in community forestry which provides a number of valuable lessons (Mitchell-Banks, 1998). After receiving twenty-two statements of interest, community forests were established in Geraldton, the 6/70 community, Elk Lake, and the Wikwemikong community. The initial objectives of the pilot were to support community development, to manage user conflicts locally rather on the 44 provincial stage, and to promote resource stewardship. Moreover, each community focused on a specific set of objectives, including intensive silviculture, "providing a community voice on resource management," information gathering, resource planning, community advocacy, and all of the above (Community Forestry Group, 1995: 4-7, 23-24). The pilots were assisted by the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources for funding and expertise. Unfortunately for the project, none of the communities were successful in obtaining tenure, and since community forestry is not a high priority for the new provincial government, funding has been terminated. Still, only one of the pilots, 6/70, is actually completely defunct (Mitchell-Banks, 1998: 29). 3.2.3 Community Forests in B.C. There is, and has been over the last decade or two, a great deal of talk about community forestry in British Columbia. Demands for greater devolution of natural resource management (especially forestry) are evident in a 1974 report from the residents of the Slocan Valley, the village of Ffazelton-proposed Watershed Stewardship Act of 1991, and the Tin Wis Coalition's Forest Stewardship Act of 1991 (Slocan Valley Community Forest Management Project, 1974; Village of Hazelton, 1991; and Tester, 1992; respectively). In the mid to late nineties, a number of communities and groups of communities - including Malcolm Island, Prince George, the Queen Charlotte Islands, and Kaslo -have submitted community forest proposals to the Ministry of Forests. Their interest in community forestry is further evidenced by the fact that most of these communities had no indications that community management would be open to them (Robin Clark Inc., 1996; Cortex Consultants Inc., 1996b; Robin Clark Inc., 1998; and Kaslo and District Community Forest Planning Committee, 1996; respectively). Several academic and non-profit groups have issued reports, books, and articles calling for greater community control of natural resources, and the promotion, implementation, and expansion of community forestry-enabling programs and legislation (Burda et al., 1997; Clogg, 1997; Greenpeace Canada, 1999; Marchak et al., 1999). Since 1990, there have been at least four community forest conferences held across the province. Government commissions have also had their say: the 1945 Sloan Commissions of 1945 and 1956, the 1976 Pearse Commission, and the 1989-1991 Forest Resources Commission all recommended the establishment or expansion of community forests in B.C. (Mitchell-Banks, 1997: i). In fact, as has been mentioned above, the Ministry of Forests has recently tendered small Forest Licences (seventeen as of December, 1997) to 2 These include the 1993 "Community Forests Workshop" in Maple Ridge, B.C.; the 1997 "Community Forests Conference" in Rossland, B.C.; the 1997 "Community Forests Symposium" in the Queen Charlotte Islands; and the 1998 "Community Forestry Initiatives: Planning for Success" event held in Vancouver, B.C. (sources: Mitchell-Banks, 1993; Robin Clark Inc., website []; Robin Clark personal communication, 1999; the author attended the last conference). 45 communities and First Nations bands (Community Forest Advisory Committee, 1997a: 22-27). One Indian band, the Tl'ast'en, and one municipality, Revelstoke, have been granted Tree Farm Licences in the last fifteen years. However, regardless of the many recommendations to expand community forestry, community forests in B.C. (including those which utilize volume-based licences and are thus not "true" community forests) are relatively small, are few in number, and together account for a cut of only 234,200 cubic metres (m3), or less than one-half of one percent of the total cut in British Columbia (Community Forest Advisory Committee, 1997a: pp. 22-27). Community forest tenure Motivated by the outpouring of interest in community forestry, the B.C. Ministry of Forests announced the Community Forest Pilot Project in 1997 as part of the Jobs and Timber Accord (see Chapter Two for a brief description of the Jobs and Timber Accord). Until this program, there was no tenure in British Columbia specifically designed for community forestry. The new tenure is area-based and long-term (up to ninety-nine years), promotes the management of non-timber values, and allows communities to set their own cutting rate, cut control, and other management objectives, while still maintaining for the Ministry of Forests the right to refuse community forest management plans that do not meet provincial objectives. The primary selection criteria were: broad-based community support, community capacity to operate a successful community forest, and the existence of un-allocated timber nearby (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998i: 1). Interest was very high; almost ninety communities applied for the first round in the pilot, while twenty-seven went on to submit the more-detailed community forest proposals (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998g; B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1999d). Originally, only three communities were to be chosen. However, due to the overwhelming interest in community-based tenure, and the large number of quality applications, seven have been chosen as of July, 1999, with more possible (Patricia Marchak, personal communication, 1999). On a very positive note, the pilots display a variety of management structures, goals, and working partnerships (see Table 3.1). Unfortunately, however, any other interested communities have very few avenues to initiate a community forest: most of the available timber has already been granted to forestry companies. 3 This figure does not include the recently-established pilot community forests, which, as of the publication of this thesis, did not yet have AACs announced. 46 TABLE 3.1 Community Forest Pilots Announced as of July, 1999 Community (and location) Size in ha., and (type of land) Licence features B amfield/Huu-ay-aht Community Forest Society (western Vancouver Island) North Island Woodlol Corp. i('onio\ Valley. \ancou\er Island) District of Fort St. James (north central interior B.C.) Haimp-Pioctoi Watershed Pioteuion Souei\ (southeastern Esketemc First Nation (south central interior B.C.) Village of Hums Lake (north central interior Islands Community Stability Initiative (Haida Gwaii - Queen Charlotte Islands) 418 (Crown) {Crown, with possible addition* of private). 3,582 (Crown) (Crown) 15,000 (Crown), and 2,500 (IR) 10.0S2 (Crown) up to 20,000 (Crown) The Huu-ay-aht First Nation and the community of Bamfield are full partners in the venture. Local education/research institutions are also involved. The woodlot, will support a "value-added forestiy village and forest resource ceiiler." If local landowners sign agreements to participate, the size could increase to over 4000 ha. The municipality will administer the agreement, through an 11-member community forest board (with 2 First Nations seats). Volunteer work is considered essential. The primary product will be logs for local processing. •\ Communin Co-op will administer the ccosvslem-ba'seB a^ha'geihent*plan. Business objectives include selling eeo-cci tilled wood, creating a VA plant, harvesting NTI-l's. and encouraging low-impact tourism. The primary goal is jobs for the Alkali Lake region (unemployment rate: 80%). The band is hoping the agreement will help secure investment in VA facilities. The Village will establish a Corporation to administer the pilot, which was approved by 97%; of survey respondents. The pilot will test "innovali\e harvesting practices." and involve forestry student training. The ICSI proposed co-management involving the Haida First Nation on Crown land in the Tlell watershed. "The project will test a society governance model focused on achieving a sustainable balance between social, economic and environmental objectives." Total hectareage 69,997 Sources: B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1999 a, b, and e. "VA" - value added. "NTFPs" - non-timber forest products. "IR" - Indian Reserve land 47 North Cowichan While there are many community forest initiatives and proposals underway, there are only three community forests currently operating in British Columbia which come close to fulfilling the definition provided above: North Cowichan, Mission, and Revelstoke. The North Cowichan Community Forest's roots began in the 1930s and early 1940s, during which time the District of North Cowichan obtained several parcels of land from tax defaults. In 1946, the lands (5,000 ha.) were incorporated as a forest reserve, and by 1964 a small woodlot program was established in the reserve. Concerns over harvesting methods led to the formation in 1981 of a Forest Advisory Committee. The Committee recommended intensive silvicultural investments, the incorporation of non-timber values into forest planning, and the establishment of a recreation/education program. Today, the Committee is composed of three elected councilors, three municipal staff members, and three volunteer foresters from the community (Allan and Frank, 1994: 723). The 23,000 cubic metre annual harvest employs a variety of conventional and non-conventional methods, and is earned out on sites ranging in size from 0.5 to 12.0 hectares (Community Forest Advisory Committee, 1997a: 24; and Robin Clark, 1997). Benefits of the community forest reported by the municipality include abundant green space and outdoor recreation, a general heightening of forestry awareness among community members, monetary profits, and local jobs and forestry expertise related to the silviculture program. In 1993-95, the municipality earned $1,000,000 in profits from the community forest. Previous returns had been tunneled into a $500,000 reserve fund to be used during economic downturns (Robin Clark Inc., 1997: 11). Mission Mission Community Forest is also rooted in the Depression; during the 1930s about 1,000 hectares of land reverted to the municipality from tax defaults. This land was converted in 1948 into the Mission Municipal Forest Reserve. In 1958, the municipality was able to add Crown lands in the district to the reserve through the acquisition of Tree Farm Licence #26. Eventually, after other additions, the community forest reached 10,400 ha. in size (Ibid.: 721). The current AAC of approximately 41,000 cubic metres is harvested from an average cutblock size of ten hectares (Community Forest Advisory Committee, 1997a; Allan and Frank, 1994; respectively). Partial cutting, landscape, and wildlife considerations are included in cutblock design (Allan and Frank, 1994: 721-722). Early on, the goals of Mission's community forest were to create local employment and to provide a stable wood supply for local sawmills. Now, with no more local sawmills, the following 48 goals apply: harvesting employment; to be a self-funded department; optimization of revenue over five-year periods; provision and conservation of "other forest resource values" including trails, green spaces, aesthetics, and a host of somewhat progressive "environmental considerations;" aggressive silviculture practices; and "maintaining community social and economic stability through sustainable, local employment, seeking value-added prospects and the use of surplus revenues to fund local capital projects" (Government of B.C., 1997). The forest is administered by the Forestry Department, which is in turn responsible to the elected Council via the Municipal Administrator. Revelstoke The last example is the Revelstoke Community Forest, which is operated on a TFL. The Revelstoke community and community forest are presented in detail in Chapter Five. This section has briefly reviewed some examples of community forestry, and has pointed out that the model is becoming increasingly popular among academics, NGOs, and communities in B.C. Focusing on B.C. in particular, the next section describes a number of problems which community forestry proponents believe could be resolved, or at least addressed, through community forestry. 3.3 Why the Call for Community Forestry? Although the general model of community forestry has existed worldwide for centuries, even millennia, it goes against the grain of the forest industry in B.C. Implementation of community forestry in B.C. involves the transfer of resource control from the central to the local, the private to the communal, and (in most instances) the urban to the rural. Why is this desired? Many arguments for community forestry stem from the perception that the model is a pragmatic solution to common problems - whether ecological, social, economic, or administrative in nature. This section addresses these general problems. 3.3.1 Absentee Control of Timber is Unfair and Ineffective A staple issue is the perception that absentee control over forest management is unfair and ineffective. As was described in Chapter Two, British Columbia communities have recently gained a limited voice in regional land use planning, but the scale and scope of forestry operations are outside of the jurisdiction of those plans. The argument is that, since local people are affected by the health of local forests and the actions of the forest industry, they should have more say in the management of 49 the forest. Another argument is that locals have a much better understanding of local conditions (economic, ecological, and social), and the potential consequences of decisions which impact these conditions. Therefore, local control could enhance the effectiveness of local planning (Mitchell-Banks, 1998). This is not an uncommon view; the B.C. Ministry of Forests has reported a growing discontent among the public at large with large-scale industrial forestry. A background report of the Ministry's Community Forest Advisory Committee stated that this discontent is related to the scale at which forest planning and AAC-determination takes place, and the distribution of benefits from the liquidation of the forest resource (Community Forest Advisory Committee, 1997a). In translation, this means there is too much distance between the decision-makers, and the actual forests and communities which depend on the forests and have the greatest stake in their management. Community forestry is posited by the Committee as a way of closing that gap. As early as 1974, the Slocan Valley Community Forest Management Project complained that "the people of the Slocan Valley are not included in the decision-making process that manipulates their jobs, their environment, their quality of life" (Slocan Valley Community Forest Management Project, 1974: x). In another example, a 1996 community forest feasibility study reported that, in the Malcolm Island community "...some people felt that it is simply more appropriate for citizens and communities to have control over their own destiny, with what happens to resources and the environment forming a large part of that destiny" (Robin Clark Inc., 1996: 40). The study also argued that recent strides for more community control over natural resources are not enough. Although the LRMP process and the Forest Practices Code do allow some community input into forest planning, the report stated that "these forms of public input do not constitute community control, based in legislation, which is the foundation of community forestry" (Robin Clark Inc., 1996: 23). Speaking to the situation across the province, authors like Drengson and Taylor claim that most industrial forestry-dependent communities lack a sense of control over the local ecosystem, and further suggest that this is because decisions are made by absentee individuals and groups, in the interest of absentee desires (Drengson and Taylor, 1997). Other authors have recorded a correlation between absentee control and social problems like increased alcoholism and violence, as well as more wholistic issues like a lack of resource community empowerment and/or 'sense of community' in B.C. (LaPrairie, 1984; Barnes and Hayter, 1994; see also Chapter Two of this thesis). 3.3.2 Drain of Natural Resources and Associated Benefits Related to the issue of absentee control is a concern over the net drain of natural resources, and hence income and jobs, from resource-dependent communities. According to Drengson and Taylor, 50 absentee control over forest-dependent communities sets in motion a one-commodity economy which bleeds resource revenues from local economies. Absentee control equals absentee benefits. Dependence upon one exported commodity leaves the economy vulnerable to external market fluctuations (Drengson and Taylor, 1997). Moreover, in the existing system, local logs are often undervalued, or hauled "down the road on the back of a truck" to enrich other communities in B.C. and beyond (Travers in Mitchell-Banks, 1993: 67). It is not fair, say such authors, that resource revenues flee local communities to distant Victoria (the provincial capital) and to corporate headquarters in Vancouver and abroad: Forfar too long, residents of coastal communities in rural British Columbia have seen their natural resources controlled and drawn away by distant corporations with little stake in maintaining the well-being of local communities or protecting local environments from the consequences of over-development. (Ecotrust Canada, 1997: 79) The proposed answer, again, is community-based forestry. These first two issues may be the most commonly-used arguments for community forestry, especially among the communities themselves. 3.3.3 The Crisis An interesting motivation for implementing community forestry is the crisis in the forest industry. As discussed in Chapter Two, the B.C. forest industry is undergoing a transformation -less, and lower quality forest resources; new technology; new legislative requirements; and less jobs in many localities. Some authors state that the province, and the forest-dependent communities, should experiment with new models of forest management to respond to this crisis and perform the sort of adaptive management of natural resources necessary in an ever-changing, uncertain environment (Duinker et al., 1994; Robin Clark Inc., 1996).4 One organization, in an appeal to Forest Renewal B.C. to support community forestry, asserted that community forestry could "support community development and adjustment as the forest industry and forest-based communities evolve towards economic and environmental sustainability..." (Cortex Consultants, 1996a: 36). In a similar vein, Mitchell-Banks states that community forestry is akin to community economic development efforts because both have resulted from growing community ills, community disempowerment and 4 Adaptive management will be defined and discussed in the next chapter. 51 increasing inability to control external events which affect the locality (e.g. globalization of trade), and the failure of senior levels of government to address these problems (Mitchell-Banks, 1998).5 3.3.4 Lack of Stewardship by Corporations and Provincial Governments Finally, communities and others contend that the forest industry and provincial governments have not properly stewarded B.C.'s forests, especially on a localized basis (in areas closest to forest-dependent communities). These critics contend that communities will do a better job of taking care of the resource. In 1974, the final report of the Slocan Community Forest Management Project insinuated that industrial operators and elected provincial governments, by virtue of their short lifespans, did not have the propensity to properly care for the forest resource. In comparison, the Slocan Valley community of communities had been depending upon the local forest since the turn of the century and "represents the only visible group with a binding interest in the long-term sustenance of this valley's resources" (Slocan Valley Community Forest Management Project, 1974: 4-1). A 1995 report prepared by the Golden and Area Economic Development Committee and a community forest study prepared as part of the Kaslo and District Community Forest Initiative of 1996 both argue that past over-cutting seriously diminished the local forest resource base (Golden and Area Economic Development Committee, 1995; Kaslo and District Community Forest Planning Committee, 1996). The Golden report also claims that local manufacturing facility capacities are too high for the existing resource, and note that increasing concern for "other forest values" has limited the wood supply. The organization recommended the creation of a local community forest with multiple-value management, and a reduction in scale of the local manufacturing base. In justifying its call for the devolution of resource management control to proposed "Watershed Authorities," the Village of Hazelton (1991) stated: "It is being accepted by increasing numbers of British Columbia residents that community control of natural resource stewardship is the only way in which responsible resource management regimes will ever be instituted" (3). Finally, while not confirming that communities would do a better job of stewarding the forest, the province-wide overcut reported in Chapter Two and several reports of localized overcutting support the contention that corporations and provincial governments have not stewarded the land base responsibly.6 The relationship between community forestry and community economic development efforts could seem distant, however, when one considers that the most progressive community economic development efforts aim to diversify forest-based communities away from natural resource-extraction industries. 6 Chapter two reported a province-wide overcut of 18.5%. The Silva Forest Foundation claims that the cut in their jurisdiction, the Slocan Valley, would have to be reduced by 94% over the short term and by 73% over the long term to maintain a sustainable forest ecosystem according to "Wholistic Forest Use" principles (see Appendix A for a definition of "Wholistic Forest Use") (Silva Forest Foundation, 1996: 5.8 and 6.45). The Malcolm Island Community Forest Feasibility study reports that past cutting practices have left a very young 52 One reason offered for the lack of corporate stewardship is the fact that corporations, by the terms of the British Columbia Company Act and the Canada Business Corporations Act, must manage their affairs in the interests of shareholders. As interpreted by the courts, this means that corporations must manage for maximum profits or business growth in order to increase share value. Under this system corporations cannot place the long-term sustainability of the forest resource or forest-dependent communities ahead of profits, even if they wanted to (Burda et al., 1997: 38, 89). This section has explored a number of general problems - social, economic, and ecological -which the community forestry model has been proposed to address. To this point, social and economic issues have been included in the presentation in order to provide an integrated view of the argument for community forestry. Tapering the focus towards the subject of this thesis, the next section explores the theorized ecological benefits of community forestry. These features of the model are expected to enhance community planning for ecological sustainability. forest (52% of the productive forest area is less than 40 years old) and suggests that harvest levels should be restricted to "well below the long-run yield for at least several decades" to rejuvenate the forest resource (Robin B. Clark Inc., 1997: 15). 53 3.4 Theorized Ecological Benefits of the Community Forest Model Community forestry may benefit the province by stimulating economic growth, enhancing community stability, creating jobs and opportunities for multiple outputs from the same landbase, encouraging sustainable forest practices, and enhancing long-term timber supply. -The Community Forest Advisory Committee, 1997a: 3 Community forest management can act as an interface, in which environmental and ecological concerns; political as well as sociological considerations; equity issues; and economic and local business implications can be addressed. -Mitchell-Banks, 1998: 21 Small-scale, community-based forestry can become a cornerstone for restoring not only North American forests, but community and culture as well. And it is most likely the only way forestry and the forest products industry will become truly sustainable. -Simpson, 1997: 211 Exuberant quotes like the above seem to imply that the community forest model is inherently endowed with the necessary ingredients to sustain forest communities and the forest resource. These assertions are, to some degree, the reason for performing this thesis. In general, community forestry is expected to promote or achieve social, economic, and ecological sustainability in forest-dependent communities. Yet, as stated at the outset, social and economic issues are outside of the scope of this study. This section lists the specific ingredients, here referred to as the theorized ecological benefits of the model, which describe how the community forestry model is expected to enhance the planning for ecological sustainability in forest communities. To recap, this thesis, and this section, focuses upon ecological benefits for two reasons: 1) Ecological issues are deemed to be higher-order, more fundamental issues than social and/or economic issues. Without a functioning ecosystem, neither social nor economic systems could exist. Many would claim that, without a healthy economy, there would be no money to address environmental issues. This may be true at small scales, over the short-term, but the more fundamental truth is that, without healthy ecosystems, there would be no humans. 2) A thesis does not afford the scope of study necessary to examine ecological, social, and economic sustainability issues in any depth. 54 However, in order to present a complete picture of all the inter-related benefits attributed to the community forestry model, the theorized social, economic, and administrative benefits of the community forest model have been listed in Appendix B. The following list of theorized ecological benefits has been culled from the diversity of authors addressing community forestry in Canada, and B.C. in particular: Community connection with the forest. Community forestry involves a high degree of interaction between a community and a given area of forest. This connection exists in any forestry community but is strengthened in community forestry by the centering of planning and decision making authority in the community (Community Forestry Group, 1995). Authors assert that this connection leads to a "sense of involvement," or "ownership," which, in turn, gives rise to a whole host of other benefits, which follow below (Community Forestry Group, 1995; Cortex Consultants, 1996a; Mitchell-Banks, 1998). Community care for the forest. A number of authors imply that an ethic of concern for forest health is an inevitable outcome of community forestry (Banighen, 1997; Cortex Consultants, 1996a; Drengson and Taylor, 1997; Mitchell-Banks, 1998). The explanation is basically as follows: if community members are connected to the forest, they will be willing to work harder to care for 'their own' forest. Communities which manage 'their own' forest will be "more aware than other communities of the need to maintain and nurture their local forests," because they are looking after their own interests (Cortex Consultants, 1996a: 30). Some point to a deeper, spiritual connection with the forest as the wellspring of community care (see Drengson and Taylor, 1997). Wholistic understanding and appreciation of the forest. Almost all of the community forest proposals reviewed for this thesis mentioned the need to manage forest land for multiple values (see, for example, Cortex Consultants, 1996b: 1; Kaslo and District Community Forest Planning Committee, 1996: 95; and Robin Clark Inc., 1996: 40). For instance, one person interviewed during the Malcolm Island community forest feasibility study listed the goal "to appreciate and manage the forest in many more aspects than as a simple timber resource" (Robin Clark Inc., 1996: 40). In general, Malcolm Islanders expressed that clearcutting, which focuses upon commercial timber almost exclusively, is "the antithesis of their ideal," and hope to manage the forest for such things as salal, agriculture, salvage wood, 55 restoration, tourism, aesthetics, and wildlife habitat (Ibid.: 40). To explain such objectives, Mitchell-Banks (1998) declares that communities, unlike corporations, have a diversity of types of relationships with local forests (e.g. hunting, kayaking, berry picking, aesthetic enjoyment, and so on), and that "this spectrum of relationships ... can lead to a more holistic perspective on the management challenges" (20). On a more spiritual level, Banighen states that the exhaustive planning and information gathering processes (of ecological sustainability-oriented community forests, at least) engender a deep personal relationship with the forest which allows the community to see that the forest is a "complete ecosystem" composed of many assets beyond timber (Banighen, 1997: 230). A wholistic perspective is an extremely important element of any management strategy aimed at whole-ecosystem sustainability. This argument will be developed further in Chapter Four. A Closed Circle of Costs and Benefits. This commonly-cited theorized benefit deals with the issue that, in B.C., the viability of many corporations, and the viability of the provincial government which administers the forest industry, is not dependent upon any one specific area of forest. In particular, corporations which are not tied to TFLs may overcut local forests because they have no real stake in future consequences. On the other hand, many forestry communities are permanent (or semi-permanent) and are dependent upon local forest resources for their long-term survival. A long-term economic connection to a particular area of forest should promote stewardship of, and long-term planning for, that forest. Since communities do not have to manage forests for short-term profits like corporations, they are in a position to "hold the natural resource base in trust for future generations" (Burda et al., 1997: 89). In 1974, the Slocan Valley Community Forest Management Project report noted that local forests took an average of eighty-eight years to reach maturity. In contrast to this, the previous Provincial Government had been in power for twenty years, and the two latest corporate firms had operated in the area for only six years. This led the authors to contend that "the local community represents the only visible group with a binding interest in the long-term sustenance of this valley's resources" (Slocan Valley Community Interestingly, this is essentially the same argument currently offered by forest industry spokespersons and others for the privatization of, or at least the expansion of private control over, Crown forest land (see Drushka, 1985; and Stephens, 1998). Private ownership, goes the argument, will result in enhanced investments in and stewardship of the forest resource since firms will be able to reap the benefits of such costs in the future. The compelling counter-argument is that full or partial privatization would mean a) the conversion of the province's forests to timber-farms and b) the loss of ecological and social accountability regarding the use of the forests (Marchak et al., 1999: 138). The presumption in the community forestry literature is that municipalities have a qualitatively different set of incentives and, thus, would manage forests more responsibly than private forest firms. 56 Forest Management Project, 1974: 4-1). These type of dynamics have led some to conclude that, were local communities to gain control of forestry decision-making, they would then manage the forest in the most careful, informed manner possible because they will ultimately feel the effects of management decisions (Cortex Consultants, 1996b; Robin Clark Inc., 1996). Mitchell-Banks (1998) states that "the conceptual strength of common property and community forestry is the linkage between goals, strategy, actions, and consequences" (20). Local knowledge. There are two aspects of this theorized benefit. First, since the community cares for the forest and feels the effects of management decisions it will be more likely to generate and/or collect information (such as resource inventories or carrying capacities) in order to make better decisions (Cortex Consultants, 1996b). Furthermore, the connection between the community at large and the community forest will increase community awareness of forest ecosystems, natural resource issues in general, and community sustainability (Community Forestry Group, 1995; Cortex Consultants, 1996a). The second knowledge-related benefit is the opportunity a community forest provides for the use of local knowledge in forest planning and management. Local residents, say authors, know the local forest resource best and know its many uses (see "Wholistic understanding," above), and can put this knowledge to work (Burda et al., 1997; Robin Clark Inc., 1996). The Slocan Valley report of 1974 indicated that local technical expertise in their area was quite high, and underutilized by existing firms (Slocan Valley Community Forest Management Project, 1974). Traditional ecological knowledge, or the knowledge of place developed by any long-term resident (including non-aboriginals), is more likely to be used and respected in a community forest. This knowledge is supportive of forest ecosystem sustainability because the practices of long-term dwellers "are in harmony with what the forest can support through its abundance" rather than overly-exploitative (Drengson, 1997: 269). Adaptive Management. The above "benefits" - local forest decision-making based on local knowledge, local actions regulated by environmental feedbacks, and an environment of social connection to the forest and a sense of care for the whole forest system - could be the ingredients of adaptive management of forest resources. According to Burda et al. (1997), centralized management structures are not flexible or adaptable enough to respond to inevitable environmental (and social, economic) changes, while "community-based management enables the people closest to the forest to 57 manage, plan, regulate and enforce the use of forests in their specific places. This creates feedback mechanisms for adapting quickly to changing conditions" (89). Therefore, community forestry is seen as providing an excellent opportunity to practice local adaptive management, even as community forestry itself could be, at the provincial scale, one experiment in the larger-scale strategy of adaptive management of the transitioning forest industry transition - an idea discussed in the previous section. Better Forest Practices. Burda et al. (1997) go on to say that local standards and practices will be more flexible and adaptable to changing conditions than conventional, large-scale standards and practices (89). Paul Mitchell-Banks claims that community forestry has a history of smaller scale, more eco-friendly forest practices (Mitchell-Banks, 1998: 21). Other authors believe that future community forest projects would be smaller in scale, less ecologically disruptive, more responsive to the local ecosystem, and better able to draw from local and traditional ecological knowledge which evolved from experiences with individual, unique ecosystems (Drengson, 1997; Duinker in Cortex Consultants, 1996b). Why is this so? The assumption is that, taken individually and together, the above benefits of the community forestry model will produce an ethic of stewardship of the forest by the community, and a deep understanding of local ecosystem behaviour. These would, in turn, lead to the adoption and implementation of improved forest practices. In order to facilitate an understanding of how these specific benefits inter-relate, a "map," Figure 3.1, has been created. For example, connectedness between the community and the forest creates a closed circle of costs and benefits, which begets an ethic of caring for the forest, which begets a desire to generate better knowledge, which together give rise to an adaptive management system, which begets better forestry practices. (Note: none of the literature reviewed included every theorized benefit listed here; the map is used as a heuristic tool to present the full vision of community forestry which materializes from a reading of the literature.) The above benefits are theorized; they are potential outcomes of an abstracted model. However, no community exists in a lab. In order to conduct an informed case study, it is prudent to recognize, up-front, any limitations of the model. The next section concludes the chapter by exploring a number of obstacles, identified in the literature and by the author, which might inhibit the realization of the theorized ecological benefits. C/0 c E E o o o It-CD c (D CO To o "5> o o o HI "D <D N 'Z o 0 T3 O •4-" ro o i _ i i _ o h-HI DC Z> O * '"2 59 3.5 Potential Obstacles to the Realization of the Theorized Ecological Benefits Not all community forestry authors are unswervingly convinced that community forestry will automatically result in more ecologically-sensitive forest management than what would result from the regulation of private firms. For example, Duinker et al. (1991) state: In theory, community forestry could be a great improvement in forest management over industrial and provincial forestry. However, in theory, industrial and provincial forestry could also be improved along many of the same lines as the improvements that might come from implementing community forestry. (134) These and other authors have offered a number of limitations or potential obstacles of the community forest model which might confront practitioners. These issues, and others hypothesized by this author, were explored in order to ask the most salient questions during the case study research. This section presents these issues. 3.5.1 General Community Issues The first, and most general issue is the 'character' of the community. In particular, the goals, culture, and workload, and knowledge base of the community may affect the ability of a community to manage a community forest for ecological sustainability. Community goals Perhaps the most important and obvious issue is that of community goals. The community may have established the community forest in the first place with the intention of gaining economic or social, rather than ecological, benefits. Community goals may be to liquidate the forest resource in as short a time as possible, which is clearly in conflict with the notion of ecological sustainability. Even though some of the above benefits seem to require a period of time to appear, (for example, it would take time and experiences with the land base before community members felt "connected" with the community forest), it is possible that all of the "inherent" benefits of the model could fail to engender the desire, on the part of a community, to steward the community forest. For instance, Duinker et al., (1991) have reported that one oft-promoted "benefit" of community forestry is that communities will want to more intensively utilize an area of forest than large corporations, which could lead to environmental problems. 60 Culture B.C. in general may not have a culture which is conducive to common property resource management regimes. In a review of community forestry worldwide, Paul Mitchell-Banks stated that Sweden, with a similar culture, geography, political system, and socio-economic system, is more like B.C. than other community forestry-practicing nations. Even so, community forests in Sweden are "manifestations of the communalism or reliance on the commons that played a critical role in Swedish history... Simply put, common resource management has existed for over 2,000 years in Sweden, driven by necessity and nurtured by cultural tradition" (Mitchell-Banks, 1998: 24-25). Marchak et al. (1999) note that "there is sparse history of production cooperatives in Canada," and that "village taunga systems common to Japan and Southeast Asia are entirely foreign to British Columbia," and finally that "there would be a long learning curve for communities and governments that wish to go in this direction [community forestry]" (148). The lack of cultural traditions like those in Sweden and Asia, at least in non-aboriginal B.C., may pose significant problems for the implementation of common property regimes. B.C. communities may simply not have the communal character necessary to implement and reap the benefits of common ownership of forest resources. This does not mean, however, that such social mechanisms would not evolve over a period of time, especially as community members are increasingly driven to put aside their differences and work together to survive the forestry crisis. Workload Given the need for regularly-updated and concise information about the forest ecosystem, the consideration of many variables beyond fibre production, and administrative challenges, ecologically-sustainable timber management is time and resource-intensive work (for more details, see Appendix A). It is quite conceivable that a given community would not have the time and/or resources to carry out such work. For example, Malcolm Island community members, in a 1996 community forest proposal, expressed concern that there would be a lack of energy or commitment on the part of local leaders to effectively implement a sustainable community forest (Robin Clark, 1996). The seriousness of this problem is likely to be greater the smaller the community. This is evidenced by the fact that towns and villages had the lowest response rate to a community forestry survey performed in 1996; they reported that this was due to high workloads as a result of down-loading of responsibilities from senior governments coupled with decreasing transfer payments (Mitchell-Banks, 1997: 10). If small communities couldn't even respond to a survey on community forestry, they might need a lot of aid - in the form of time and money, and possibly expertise - to manage a community forest in an ecologically sustainable manner. 61 Knowledge of ecologically-sustainable forestry planning principles and practices Sustainable timber management also involves a great deal of information about local ecosystems, adaptive management techniques, and appropriate forestry practices. Even if a community desired to properly steward their community forest, that doesn't mean that it would necessarily have the knowledge to do so competently (although there may be an inherent desire to gain such knowledge). Again using Malcolm Island as an example, community members listed a lack of "know-how" as one possible impediment to proper management of the proposed community forest, prompting the study authors to suggest that outside consultation would be necessary (Robin Clark Inc., 1996). Cortex Consultants listed information and education as a significant challenge to the start-up of a community forest, noting that "the initial learning curve is steep" (Cortex Consultants, 1996a: 34). This is more than a technical issue, however. The worldview, or paradigm, under which a resource management institution (including a community) operates will determine the form and content of its technical apparatus. An overly-simplified example would be a community operating under the assumption that economic growth is unlimited by natural constraints. In this case, the community's planning and management of the resource will not be particularly concerned with ecological sustainability. This issue will be more fully discussed in Chapter Four. 3.5.2 Community Participation Issues Is the community forest 'of the community? Community forestry implies that the forest is managed, in some meaningful way, by the community as a whole. This would generally consist of community participation in the strategic, rather than the operational, decisions - including the setting of over-arching goals, determination of the cut level for the entire land base, decisions regarding sensitive and/or protected areas, and any other highly contentious (and important) issues. Many authors have warned that there must be authentic community involvement to make community forestry work. Cathro (1996b) observed that community involvement "means holding workshops and information sessions rather than simply publishing minutes of the committee meeting" (29). Addressing the spirit of participation, Robin Clark Inc. (1996) declares that "democratic control ... would require an ongoing commitment to an open and informed dialogue in the community on community forest issues" (64). To achieve such, the firm suggests the development of a "Community Advisory Board" composed of individuals representing diverse community interests. The authors of a Prince George community forest 62 feasibility study recommend "many types and levels of public involvement" so that the community is "ingrained" into the running of the forest (Cortex Consultants, 1996b: 89). Another author warns that "management by a local community agency should not be construed as sufficient local (public) involvement in decision-making" (Duinker et al., 1994: 718). A related concern is that a small group of local elites could exert significant influence on the management of the community forest to the point of controlling it altogether. This possibility led Burda et al. (1997) to conclude that the management of community forests should be accountable to provincial standards in order to combat the "external pressures of powerful development interests and the internal pressures of elite economic and political classes" and to ensure that "larger environmental and social values prevail over those of short-term special interests" (13). To tie this issue in with the theorized benefits, consider a community forest which is controlled by a small group of stakeholders. In this scenario, the relatively narrow interests of the controlling group could determine management objectives rather than the more wholistic (in theory) interests of the community. Diverse community values Ironically, if systems exist to allow meaningful participation by the community, a diversity of interests within the community could pose a problem. Conflicting public values and desires may make it difficult to achieve a cohesive community vision. Duinker et al. (1994) observed that "representing all interests may prove unrealistic" (717). A feasibility study for the Haida Gwaii region predicted that community divisiveness on sticky issues would mean "challenges in keeping the community together on the community forest," further noting that conflicts could be exacerbated by the existence of seven distinct communities and two cultural backgrounds in the area (Robin Clark Inc., 1998: 5). Achieving consensus between dissimilar (or even mutually exclusive) interests is difficult work, especially if community members have not had open, respectful communications in the past. Interviewees for the Malcolm Island community forest feasibility study described a pattern of "squabbling, bickering, and internal politics" which could seriously undermine agreement (Robin Clark Inc., 1996: 43). Another related concern is the fact that community interests and values are heterogeneous over time. This can pose technical problems as community forest managers attempt to follow public whims which "may change as rapidly as the weather" (Duinker et al., 1991: 132). Without some form of community consensus on the management of the community forest, it would be difficult for the community to coalesce and care for 'their' shared forest. 63 3.5.3 Financial Pressures. Pressures to generate income from community forests are inevitable, especially if the community in question is in economic decline. The question is how the community responds to these pressures. Will it put the long-term stability of the forest (and the community) first, or will it sacrifice sustainability for immediate relief? An example of this issue was reported in Sweden and Norway, where community forests have played an important role in local economies. Mitchell-Banks describes how the community forests' financial importance, and poor leadership by local politicians, have sometimes led to poor stewardship: The potential to generate revenue from the community forest for municipal coffers can create tension between municipal politicians and community foresters, in that some of the politicians are keen to access the potential revenue that timber harvesting can provide, but do not wish to bear any responsibility for impacts on the community forest. This has resulted in political leaders taking a public stand on "saving the trees" in the community forest, but when in discussions with the community foresters the politicians are more aggressive in proposing higher harvesting levels than the community foresters would recommend.... In fact, a few community forests in Sweden and Norway have been over harvested, with a public backlash regarding failed stewardship or management. (Mitchell-Banks, 1998: 24) Financial pressures could also impact community forest management in B.C. forestry communities, where economic hardships have intensified of late. In 1991, Duinker et al. warned that communities might intensify forest exploitation in hard times in order to maintain economic activity, thus compromising "long-term resource stewardship ... [unless there is] a broader (i.e., provincial) interest to balance local interests" (132). In an article criticizing the environmental damage wrought by the current B.C. forestry system, Whitfield claims that calls for the wholesale handing over of forestry rights to aboriginal communities is "overly simplistic," saying that "poverty could encourage partnerships with logging companies and the cut could actually increase" (Whitfield, 1994: 100). Another interesting point relates specifically to one of the theorized ecological benefits described above. Given the existence of a closed circle of costs and benefits in community forestry, forest-derived profits can be reinvested in the forest resource in each locality. However, when prices for timber are poor, "it may be that timber extraction is the only management intervention that can be afforded given forest revenues" (Duinker et al., 1991: 134). Without some form of outside assistance (which to some extent exists under the current forest management system in which the province funds investments in the forest resource through FRBC and other agencies) the community could be left with no finances to manage for multiple values, fund ecosystem restoration activities, or even to simply replant the resource. 64 The very character of community forestry could give rise to another financial concern. Compared to industrial forestry, community forestry is generally smaller in scale and concerned with a wider range of forest values. These two qualities could mean inefficiencies (at least as described by mainstream economics) due to unrealized economies of scale, and the opportunity cost of not maximizing one value (timber) (Cortex Consultants, 1996a; Mitchell Banks, 1997). Community forest organizations must compete with private firms operating in the forest products marketplace, and they simply may not be able to afford to practice ecologically-sustainable forestry. If this is the case, solutions may not be within the realm of local community initiative and instead would involve addressing, at the provincial, national, and even international levels, the inability of the present-day market to support ecologically sustainable commerce. At issue here is whether "green" community economic development efforts like ecologically sustainable community forestry can survive within an external economic, regulatory, and social structure increasingly dominated by free trade versus local self-reliance, economic growth versus qualitative economic development, individualism versus community-mindedness, profit-seeking versus quality-building, and a myriad of other synchronized phenomena which could overwhelm locally-based, ecologically-sustainable initiatives. Some of these issues will be discussed further in Chapter Four. 3.5.4 Government and Private Interests The implementation of community forestry could mean losses for current beneficiaries of the forest resource. Forestry firms, government agencies, and the public outside of the community in question could suffer from the re-allocation of forest lands from centralized to local community control, especially if that control includes the right to divert resource rents from provincial and private coffers to local communities (Cortex Consultants, 1996a). Given these factors, true devolution of control may not result. In discussing the "lessons learned" from the Ontario Community Forest Pilot Project, the Community Forestry Group noted that the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources had not devolved enough power to the pilots to allow them to work as serious community forest experiments (Community Forestry Group, 1995). A reluctance to devolve powers to communities is also evident here in B.C. At a 1993 conference, then B.C. Minister of Economic Development, Small Business and Trade (and the current Minister of Forests) David Zirnhelt cautioned that community forests should not "reduce our ability to protect the interest of the entire province," and asserted the interest of the province to use community forestry to "yield more fibre" (in Mitchell-Banks, 1993: 62, 63). These statements connote the interest of the government in maintaining decision-making power over some aspects of community forestry. Further examples are the CORE regional plans and Land and 65 Resource Management Plans (LRMPs) described in Chapter Two. Local and regional roundtables were established to recommend land use direction in each jurisdiction; the provincial government then creates the actual plans. Another, very recent, example is the new community forest tenure (discussed earlier in this chapter), in which the provincial government retains the right to approve the communities' forest management plans. Witty alleges that new forms of management, like community forestry, are a threat to the provincial governments' hegemony due to the fact that these new arrangements can make "alterations to past power bases, relationships, and interests" (Witty in Mitchell-Banks, 1993: 20). Another author, Julian Dunster, describes the seemingly ubiquitous tendency of bureaucracies to maintain their source of power: Bureaucracies love to build empires and stake out political turf, to be defended at almost any cost regardless of whether or not this yields useful results to the taxpayer. British Columbia is a fine example of this; we have a strongly centralised government; regional planning is forbidden, and district planning is all too often subject to ratification or veto by Victoria. That leads to communities having to pay homage to people outside the area who mean well but may have little or no knowledge of the local situation.... For the centralists, [community forestry] offers up the horrible possibility of diminished empires, relaxed control, and worst of all, diversified patterns of management that exhibit variability, innovation, and adoption of alternative ways of thinking and operating. (Dunster in Mitchell-Banks, 1993: 6) Portions of this excerpt are outdated because this speech was delivered before the 1995 Growth Strategies Act enabled regional districts to engage in some strategic planning. Regardless, the tendency for central powers to retain their decision-making control remains. Even the relatively recent push, in Canada and many other parts of the world, to devolve control from central governments to local agents has generally been to transfer responsibilities, not strategic decision-making power and control, to local governments and organizations. Clearly, private interests stand to lose if communities are allocated forestry lands currently licenced to forestry firms. For some reason, this issue has not been addressed in the community forest literature. The considerable interest of private firms in B.C. forest lands could compel businesses to block community forestry, or at least to attempt to modify the model in such a manner that the rewards of community forestry are somehow aligned with business interests (through co-management of the forest, for example). Status quo interests are generally considered to be a potential conflict for the start-up of community forests. Operating community forests like Revelstoke have already passed this hurdle and should not experience such problems. However, vested interests, particularly the provincial 66 government and private sector, could have influenced the make-up of the RCFC at its inception, impacted its terms of reference, and/or these agents could conceivably be acting today in a manner which would thwart the realization of the theorized ecological benefits listed above (e.g., by prioritizing revenue extraction over stewardship). Indeed, it is possible that the provincial government's interest in maximizing revenue from the forest resource could have been the reason that a community forest tenure with a higher level of community control over forest management (like the new pilot project tenure discussed above) was not available when Revelstoke was first initiating its community forest project. With no such alternative in the early 1990s, Revelstoke had to make do with a TFL. 3.5.5 External Regulations The previous discussion points to the next issue: most community forests are subject to external regulations. This is the case in Revelstoke, where the community forest is actually a Tree Farm Licence (TFL), a form of tenure used by forestry companies across the province since their introduction by the Sloan Commission in the 1950s. Local and regional land use planning processes dictate whether, and to what level of intensity, timber harvesting can occur. The Ministry of Forests then determines, through the provisions of the Forest Act and the Forest Practices Code, the allowable annual cut (AAC) of any licence, and a baseline level of environmental sensitivity to which forest practices must conform (among many other issues). For better or worse, these guidelines seriously limit the flexibility with which any operator can manage the forest. If the mandates and intentions of these Acts and land use plans are counter to ecologically sustainable forest management, they could overwhelm the theorized ecological benefits of the community forest model. Critics contend that this is just the case. Burda et al. (1997) point out that the existing system punishes operators which cut below their designated AAC, even if their intent is to practice highly sensitive forest practices like "ecoforestry" (see Appendix A for a discussion of ecoforestry). This, along with other issues, has stimulated dissatisfaction with the tenure system, especially on the part of environmentalists and environmentally-oriented communities. For example, one community forest proposal document includes the statement that "communities seeking to establish community forests feel that current tenures do not provide sufficient incentive or flexibility for managing non-timber values and do not adequately provide for community objectives, especially where these objectives are not timber-oriented" (Cortex Consultants, 1996b: 25). 8 Section 64 of the Forest Act specifies that a TFL holder must cut to within ten percent of the licence's AAC over a five year period. According to section 66, if the licensee harvests an "inadequate volume" over this 67 Some critics maintain that these problems stem from the philosophical basis of the tenure system, coming as it did out of a belief in the science of sustained yield. Burda et al. (1997) assert that the existing tenure system, including the Tree Farm Licence, "is based on sustaining timber production, rather than on maintaining ecosystem integrity" (28). Robin Clark Inc., in a community forest proposal, elucidate the point in this manner: The current forms of tenure are the result of historical developments, and they reflect the values and beliefs of the period in which they were developed. In particular, they reflect a belief in industrial development as the over-riding goal of forest policy, and in sustained yield as the best way to achieve that goal.... To reflect a more holistic approach to forestry, the concept of 'sustainable ecosystem management' is beginning to replace sustained yield as the guiding principle in forest policy. (Robin Clark Inc., 1996: 47.) These and other authors called for a new community forestry tenure so that communities would not have to be encumbered with older tenures, the purpose of which was to facilitate timber extraction, and which were primarily intended for private firms. These calls have been answered with the Community Forest Pilot Project, and specifically the Community Forest Agreement, whose terms provide significantly more management control to communities. The effectiveness of the new tenure, and degree to which it actually devolves control to communities is, for now, impossible to say. Regardless, Revelstoke did not have a community forest tenure at its disposal when it purchased TFL 56 in 1993. Speaking of Revelstoke, M'Gonigle and Parfitt (1994) believe that the tenure system which the community must abide by pre-empts it from moving towards ecologically-sustainable management of the local forest resource, saying: "If communities are given old corporate tenures and told to maintain old, unsustainable logging levels, nothing changes...." (101). This is clearly a serious issue. If outside regulations overpower community initiative in Revelstoke, the existence of the theorized ecological benefits is obscured because the community is not making some of the important decisions about forest management. In the words of Dunster, "decision making powers that lie beyond the community boundaries is really little more than enhanced input into the status quo system of timber management with add on frills" (in Mitchell-Banks, 1993: 3). To address this dynamic, one of the primary objectives of the case study research was to uncover how, and to what extent, the managers of the community forest have reacted to external guidelines such as land use plans and Forest Service regulations. Another objective was to determine what changes would occur in forest management if the guidelines did not exist. This has period, the Minister or designate may reduce the licensees' AAC and issue a timber sale licence to another party to harvest the deficit. These provisions are as of March 21, 1999. 68 enabled an analysis of whether such issues have had a significant impact on the management of the community forest. Even so, these issues mean that Revelstoke is not the ideal case study for this type of research. Unfortunately, as was discussed in Chapter One, there aren't (yet) any appealing alternative cases in British Columbia. The TFL status of the Revelstoke Community Forest means that this is a case of quasi-community forestry, or of community and Ministry of Forests' co-management of the local forest resource, rather than a "true" community forest. Still, all operators, whether community or private, are subject to many of the same regulations and guidelines, and the case provides ample opportunity to explore the differences between community and private management of the forest resource. 3.5.6 Size and Biophysical Potential The last potential limitation deals with the community forest land base itself. If a community forest is miniscule, it may not be able to provide the multiple values communities desire of it (Mitchell-Banks, 1997). Indeed, a small land base may only be a portion of a watershed, or of a landscape, and thus is not a "complete" forest ecosystem.9 Improper management of surrounding lands could compromise any environmental gains in the community forest. Furthermore, a community forest situated mostly on land with a low biophysical potential will produce a small range of desired benefits (Cortex Consultants, 1996b: 1). Non-productive forests or sensitive land (due to altitude, slope, bogs, and so on) would only sustain very limited harvesting, if any at all, before the health of the ecosystem is affected. Likewise, a community could inherit a forest land base degraded by years of past misuse. This situation would necessitate years of restoration efforts before the land could produce timber on an ecologically-sustainable basis. One would expect that a community dedicated to ecologically sustainable forest management would acknowledge these limitations and scale back harvesting operations to account for them. This chapter defined community forestry and provided some examples of the model; it listed the common problems which the model is intended to address; and it described the theorized ecological benefits considered to be inherent to the model, as well as a number of potential obstacles to the realization of these benefits. In discussing one of the potential obstacles, "Knowledge of ecologically-sustainable forestry planning principles and practices," it was claimed that the paradigm, The author acknowledges that ecosystem boundaries are not sharp, and that wildlife and air in particular pass across these boundaries all the time. However, hydrologic boundaries are relatively distinct, and therefore watersheds can be a useful proxy when defining ecosystems. 69 or the conception of reality, under which a resource management institution operates will dictate the institutions' approach to the resource in question. The argument introduced here is that the chosen paradigm is an extremely important determinant of the success of an institution in achieving planning for ecological sustainability. Chapter four elucidates this argument, and outlines a paradigm, the "Ecological Worldview," which is proposed as being more likely to foster planning for ecological sustainability than the conventional "Western Worldview." 70 Chapter Four: The Ecological Worldview: Introduction and Implications for Community Forestry A number of social and environmental movements share the vision of a smaller-scale, community based, more environmentally sound, and more socially sound future. These visions reflect a fundamental questioning of many current institutions and ideologies in the search for a more sustainable social-ecological system.... Cases [in the book] show, time and again, that local-level institutions learn and develop the capability to respond to environmental feedbacks faster than do centralized agencies. -Folkeet al., 1998; Linking Social and Ecological Systems Community resolves the contradiction between the individualistic society of isolated self on the one hand, and the totally collectivized self on the other. These are not our only options, nor do we have to choose between either exploitation of nature or exploitation by Nature. The way out of such dilemmas is through the creation and perpetuation of healthy, whole communities that, from an ethic of love, grow cultures and characters gentle on the planet and kind to themselves. - Alan Drengson, 1988 "Nature, Community, and Self 4.1 Introduction In the last chapter, the crisis in the forest industry was listed as one reason to experiment with community forestry in B.C. Generally, ways of knowing - called "paradigms" or "worldviews" - are challenged in periods of crisis. Kuhn, who coined the term "paradigm," was originally concerned with paradigm shifts in physics but applied his observations to the philosophy of science in general. He described paradigms as "universally recognized scientific achievements that for a time provide model problems and solutions to a community of practitioners" (Kuhn, 1962: x). Paradigms thus serve to provide a basis of inquiry. Kuhn claims that practitioners using a particular basis of inquiry will inevitably discover anomalies. The accumulation of these anomalies leads to a crisis within the normal problem-solving activity; the crisis then precedes a revolution of thought as to the nature of reality (a new paradigm) (Ibid.: 66-76). Eventually, the new paradigm will also be shed as its weaknesses emerge. Seen in this light, crises are eternally recurring periods of renewal which help human societies to re-visualize the nature of reality. It is beyond the scope of this thesis to determine whether the crisis in the forest industry is the result of an obsolete paradigm. Yet there is definitely a revolution of thought underway, not just in B.C., but across the Western world. This revolution includes new understandings about ecosystems and human interventions in ecosystems. One aim of this chapter is to explore this revolution. 71 On a different note, while the last chapter began to develop a vision of the community forest movement, it did not, however, elucidate the deep, theoretical bases or justifications for implementing community forestry. These justifications are not homogenous; community forestry authors are beholden to a number of traditions. For example, the theorized economic benefits of the model (retaining timber and benefits locally, and so on) share common ground with the community economic development (CED) literature, and the theorized social benefits of the model (the creation of empowered communities, meaningful livelihoods, a 'sense of community', and so on) share common ground with social sustainability and healthy communities literature.1 The theorized ecological benefits of community forestry are the focus of this thesis. While authors promoting such (or who promote a 'wholistic' integration of environment, society, and economy) are diverse in their offerings, there is a recurring philosophical theme among them. This theme, termed by this author the "Ecological Worldview," is the "revolution of thought" discussed in the preceding paragraph. While the B.C. community forestry literature does not contain many explicit references to the Ecological Worldview (theoretical references in general are absent), the theorized ecological benefits of community forestry proposed in the literature, which were described in the last chapter, are extremely evocative of it. Thus, through a discussion of the Ecological Worldview, another aim of this chapter is to develop a deeper explanation of the ecological aspects of the community forestry model. The Ecological Worldview (or the "Ecological Paradigm," the "Green Perspective," the "Person-Planetary" perspective, and so on - see Taylor [1992], Jones [1987], and Drengson [1995]) is a conception of reality that has profoundly influenced a number of inter-related, newly emerging 'movements' and/or fields of study like deep ecology, bioregionalism, ecofeminism, ecosophy, ecological economics, conservation biology, landscape ecology, and ecosystem-based management. The Ecological Worldview is the basis of a radical critique of Western science and the social, economic, and resource management systems founded upon it. Of particular relevance to this thesis is the fact that many authors of this genre promote the devolution of resource management power to local bodies as a critical step in addressing the failings of the "Western Worldview." Such authors believe that sustainable natural resource management requires the development of whole, healthy communities which are integrated with the local ecosystem, and which have a meaningful measure of control over local resource management. Their idea is to build, from the ground up, a sustainable environment, society, and economy. The visions of what this would look like are not homogenous, and in some cases, are relatively unformed (e.g. Norgaard's "patchwork quilt of co-evolving, discursive communities;" see below). Regardless, devolution of control is a strong theme, and the Ecological Worldview is also presented in this thesis as a theoretical justification for community 1 See Appendix A for a list of the theorized social, economic, and administrative benefits of the model. 72 forestry from an ecological perspective, the adoption of which may be critical for the achievement of ecologically sustainable planning. 4.2 The Western and Ecological Worldviews, and their Implications for Community Control 4.2.1 The Western Worldview The Ecological Worldview is mainly a response to the prevailing Western conception of nature and the role of humans in it. The Western Worldview, also known as the "Expansionistic," "Cartesian," or "Technocratic" Worldview, or "Scientific Materialism" and "Modernism," is considered to be the philosophical underpinning of the development of science, technology, and industry in Europe, North America, and the emerging world economies. Though it is beginning to destabilize somewhat, it has been and remains the dominant paradigm of the modem era. To many authors, the works of Descartes, Bacon, Locke, and Newton are seen to have most clearly expressed and epitomized this perspective (Drengson, 1995; Jones, 1987; Katz, 1995; Rees, 1988; Taylor, 1992). Descartes separated subject (mind), from object (the natural world). This 'Cartesian' division helped to form the idea that the universe is not a whole unit, but rather is composed of separate parts, and also "allowed scientists to treat matter as dead and completely separate from themselves" (Capra in Jones, 1987: 236). This meant that, in scientific inquiry, there could be "objective" experimentation and replication of results. Bacon provided a rationale for this inquiry: he urged that humanity was meant to wrest knowledge from nature, using the scientific method, in order to achieve control over it "in the pursuance of its own interests" (Jones, 1987: 236). This requires an essentially utilitarian approach to science and nature, in which a) science should work to develop technologies which will control nature for the needs of humanity, and b) nature is only valuable inasmuch as it provides products and information for human use (Drengson, 1995). According to Katz (1995), it was John Locke who constituted the necessary anthropocentric view of Nature as the property of humans which legitimized the indiscriminate use of Bacon's scientific method: "The Earth, and all that is therein, is given to Men for the Support and Comfort of their being" (John Locke in Katz, 1995: 101). Finally, Newton's physics, and the calculus he created for it, 2 See Taylor (1992), Jones (1987), Drengson (1995), Waller (1980), and Norgaard (1994), respectively, for discussions of each of these versions of the Western Worldview. 3 Jones (1987) suggests that the origin of the view that "nature is a resource to be exploited for the use of humans" is also founded in a number of "powerful, legitimizing traditions" including the Judaeo-Christian tradition, Locke's utilitarianism, evolutionary theory, and Marx's notion of Homo Faber (Jones, 1987: 238). 73 provided a mathematical model of the universe as a machine composed of parts with predictable individual behaviour, predictable interactions and, hence, predictable cumulative behaviour (Holling et al., 1998; Jones, 1987). In this conception of the universe, the focus is on the parts, and the external causal relationships between these parts. A basic assumption is that whole systems can be defined by reducing them down to their constituent elements and the linear causal relationships between these elements. Thus, the natural world is subject to inquiry based on methods steeped in "reductionist" and "linear" thinking (Holling et al., 1998; Jones, 1987). As causality is linear, any changes to the system may be reversed (Rees, 1988). Furthermore, in this perspective the "outside world," or nature, is desacralized, and only scientific "facts" about material reality are considered worthwhile (Drengson, 1995; Rees, 1988; Waller, 1980). Finally, inherent to this perspective is the assumption that humans have dominion over nature (Drengson, 1995; Berkes and Folke, 1998; Jones, 1987; Taylor, 1992). Economics Sciences based on the Western Worldview, particularly physics, seemed to be very successful in predicting the behaviour of the physical world. According to Rees, early economists, "impressed with the spectacular successes of Newtonian physics, strove to create economics as a sister science" (Rees, 1988: 133). Adoption of the 'Cartesian Duality' allowed the creation of a similar dichotomy in economics: "On the one side there are human beings, the satisfaction of whose wants is the single end of economic activity. On the other side is everything else, all of which comes into consideration only as means to the end of satisfying human wants" (Daly and Cobb, 1994: 107). The capitalist market, composed of isolated individuals and driven by self-maximization, was considered to be the supreme form of economic organization (Rees, 1988; Taylor, 1992). Aggregate demand would drive the production of goods and services, seemingly unfettered by natural limits. Economic growth would mean higher wages, more goods to consume and, thus, enhanced human welfare. In fact, the 'successes' of the Industrial Revolution helped to create a "belief in unlimited material progress" achievable through economic growth and technological advances (Holling et al., 1998: 343; emphasis added). To Adam Smith, the ordained founder of mainstream economic theory, 'land' was considered to be a factor of production, although a passive one whose productivity could only be realized through the application of human labor.4 This concept was subsequently refined to the point that, to current 'neoclassical' economists, natural resources are actually the product of human ingenuity; their 4 In economics, 'land' refers to all natural resources. The use of this word stems from the fact that most early economists were primarily concerned with agriculture as a basis for economic activity (Daly and Cobb, 1994). 74 realization comes from the application of mind.5 Therefore, if one material good runs low, technological advances (the manifestation of human ingenuity) will either make more efficient use of the good, or will find ways to use another resource for the same purpose; this is known as the principle of 'substitutability.' Any environmental damage occurring to the world machine 'out there' in the process of satisfying demand would be reversible, and fixable by technology. (Daly and Cobb, 1994: 107-113). It should be noted that Marxism, and other "scientific socialist" perspectives, obviously do not promote the capitalist market as the ideal - they abhor what they consider to be the demeaning exploitation of labour inherent to capitalism. Yet they do share the utilitarian view of nature of the Western Worldview, and the belief that increases in human quality of life can be achieved through science and industrialism (with its consequent dependence upon fossil fuels) and economic growth (Daly and Cobb, 1994). An excellent example of the of the notion of unlimited growth through the application of science is the work of Frederick Winslow Taylor (the founder of 'Taylorist' management techniques). Taylor was an early twentieth-century engineer and former machine-shop worker-turned management theorist who promoted the use of "scientific management" in the operation of manufacturing establishments. His system, which proved to be deeply influential, entailed the universal standardization of trade practices, and the regulation of businesses according to scientifically-discovered and described principles and techniques in order to enhance production efficiency.6 Furthermore, Taylor believed to be a "blighting fallacy," with tremendous "evil effects," the suggestion by members of the labour movement that production should be limited in order to maintain steady jobs (Taylor, 1947: 12). Increasing production through the adoption of scientific principles would result in increased profits; increased wages (although Taylor acknowledged that this 3 "Neoclassical" is the term used to define the economic model based in the work of the classical economists Adam Smith, David Ricardo, and John Stuart Mill in the 18th and 19th centuries. The basic idea is that the "invisible hand" of a purely competitive market, driven by the aggregate demand of self-maximizing, individual consumers, will guide prices and supplies of goods toward levels which optimize the welfare of the whole society. The supply of goods and services is not constricted by ecological limits. The neoclassical model also includes the so-called 'marginal analysis' by Austrian, British, and American economists in the late 19th century, and Keynes' introduction, in the 1930s, of the view that the state must intervene in markets to break-up the inevitable monopolies (or oligopolies) created by capitalism. See John Kenneth Galbraith, 1973, for a more in-depth, yet concise, exposition of the neoclassical model. 6 In short, his "principles of scientific management" were: 1) the recording and tabulating of the great mass of experiential knowledge residing in the heads of the workers, and the reduction of such to a "science of the trade" based on "laws, rules, and even mathematical formulae" which would then apply to any business in the trade; 2) the scientific selection and training of workers according to their innate limitations and abilities; 3) the "bringing together" of the science of the trade and the scientifically-selected worker; and 4) the integration of management and workers such that each develops an intimate, dependent relationship upon the other (Taylor, 1947: 40-45). 75 would only be the case if managers were ethical); and increased greater social well-being through cheaper, more plentiful material goods. Wealth was simply there to be created: Broadly speaking, all that you have to do is to bring wealth into the world, and the world uses it.... this is the fundamental meaning of increase in output in all trades, namely, that additional wealth is coming into the world. Such wealth is real wealth [as opposed to money, which merely represents real wealth], for it consists of those things which are most useful to man; those things that man needs for his everyday happiness, for his prosperity, and his comfort. The meaning of increased output, whether it be in one trade or another, is always the same, the world is just receiving that much more wealth. (Taylor, 1947: 18; brackets added) As this passage shows, Taylors' philosophy did not admit of any natural limitations to production. Natural Resource Management Science The field of natural resource management - which is a combination of the natural sciences, utilitarianism, and the social sciences, particularly economics - was born of the same sort of intellectual context which shaped economics. For instance Gifford Pinchot, the first American forester, saw a great need to conserve the forests of the U.S. - in order to maintain their utility to humans (this was termed the "wise-use" approach to conservation). In his mind, forests were "next to the earth itself, the most useful servant of man" (Meine, 1995: 11). Led by the Pinchot-endowed Yale School of Forestry, forestry as a science embodied this approach. In fact the science of resource management in general, particularly the notion of maximum sustained yield of valued crops, was organized with the primary purpose of exploiting resources in as efficient a manner as possible to meet market demand for them (Berkes and Folke, 1998; Taylor, 1992). Polanyi describes how the ideas of the Western Worldview shaped the new discipline: In the field of resource management, science developed under the conventional reductionistic and mechanistic worldview and, further, it was shaped by the utilitarian premises of the early industrial era. Nature was viewed merely as a storehouse of raw materials; resources were thought to be valuable only to the extent that they could be used to create wealth.... The drive for the domination of nature resulted in the desacralization of the world. Land and natural resources, as well as people's own labour, came to be viewed as commodities. (Polanyi in Holling et al., 1998: 345) In the drive to utilize nature, something akin to Ford's factory model and Taylor's management system was adopted by resource management science. Since the world was composed of parts with predictable behaviours, the yields of individual, valued natural products, such as a particular species 76 of timber, fish, and so on, were believed to be controllable and maximizable with the application of proper 'scientific' management (Berkes and Folke, 1998; Taylor, 1992). To enhance efficiency of production, seemingly random natural variations were to be smoothed out, or "normalized," and overall yields increased. Supporting these methods is the assumption that natural systems are relatively simple, that changes are smooth and predictable, and that perturbations to components of the system (e.g., yield enhancement) will result in only temporary, reversible deviations from one static, pre-set state of equilibrium (Holling et al., 1998). This is the basis for sustained yield forestry (see Chapter Two), and long-term yield maximization of any other resource. The State, including the B.C. provincial government, seems to have completely adopted this approach to resource management. Modern science has demonstrated that it is highly adept at wresting and refining material goods from the natural world for human benefit, at least over the short-term. This is a key objective of the State. For example, Chapter Two discussed how the science of sustained yield management was part of an explicit strategy to utilize natural resources and develop the economy of British Columbia. Another example of this union was the creation of the U.S. Forest Service in 1905, which signaled the absorption of Gifford Pinchot's utilitarian conservation ethic (as well as the man, himself) into American natural resource management bureaucracy (Meine, 1995). The result is a powerful coupling of science and State, and "any attack on science [is] regarded as an attack on society itself (Jones, 1987: 237; brackets added). One consequence of this marriage between science and the State is the fact that, since the natural world is considered by natural resource science to be composed of independent fragments, government agencies charged with their management and regulation are also fragmented. Fisheries, forests, air, water, wildlife, are administered by separate agencies, and are informed by highly specialized sciences. These issues underline the intractability and influence of the dominant paradigm, and are potentially worrisome features of modem natural resource management if the fundamental assumptions upon which it rests are found to be inaccurate. 4.2.2 The Ecological Worldview: Introduction Adherents of the Ecological Worldview believe that the mechanistic, fragmented view of reality offered by the Western Worldview is fundamentally incomplete and inaccurate. They point to 7 It should be acknowledged that the overspecialization and fragmentation in natural resource management has been partially recognized in B.C. (and probably many other jurisdictions as well). For instance, the Forest District Office with jurisdiction over the Revelstoke Community Forest has two in-house Ministry of the Environment employees who are generally responsible for wildlife habitat issues. However, there are another thirty-four (estimated) professional employees in the same office (not including administration or financial personnel); these individuals are primarily concerned with commercial timber. (Source: the B.C. Government Directory; available online at: ) 77 examples where the application of the prevailing paradigm has led to significant problems, including systematic collapses of managed natural resource stocks (Berkes and Folke, 1998; Daly and Cobb, 1994; Holling et al., 1998; Kay and Schneider, 1994; Ludwig et al., 1993), the poisoning of the Earth and its inhabitants by industry (Drengson, 1988; Jones, 1987), iatrogenic illnesses in modem medicine (Jones, 1987); the failure of the modern economy to sustainably and equitably fulfill human material needs (Daly and Cobb, 1994; Norgaard, 1994), the deterioration of community (Daly and Cobb, 1994; Drengson, 1988 and 1995) and increasing anxiety, neuroses, and alienation from society and the natural world on the part of individuals (Boothroyd, 1996; Drengson, 1995; Waller, 1980). The Ecological Worldview has evolved as a way of explaining the causes for problems such as these. It poses an alternative conception of reality characterized more by wholism than reductionism; interdependence rather than separateness; and non-linear and discontinuous, versus linear and smooth, causation and change. This worldview also 're-sacralizes' the natural world by suggesting that all parts of the whole have value in and of themselves and in relation to the whole of which they are a part. (An extension of this is the notion that nature is moral.) Each component of the whole, including humans, microbes, commercial species, and human systems like the economy, cannot exist outside of the whole system in which they are embedded; this means that human beings are in a state of complete interdependence with the natural world. It is therefore not meaningful to think that humans can have 'dominion' over the natural world, as they are merely one component among interdependent equals. If approached with this understanding, repeated experiences with nature are thought to foster a sense of connection to place, or "biophilia," which is described as the innate ability of humans to affiliate with life and nature. This state, in turn, provokes attitudes of stewardship on the part of human communities. In order to be sustainable, each human community must deeply integrate its social and economic systems with the local environment (each of which is unique), and learn, in a process of trial-and-error, to design resource management systems and institutions that are harmonious with nature (Beatley and Manning, 1997: 202; Daly and Cobb, 1994; Drengson, 1988 and 1995; Jones, 1987 and 1988; Taylor, 1992). 4.2.3 The Ecological Worldview: Philosophical Roots The philosophical roots of the Ecological Worldview are many and deep. In tracing these origins, Taylor (1992) claims that modem adherents have found inspiration from traditional Indian and Chinese, and North American aboriginal concepts of the unity of human life with the rest of nature. Others have looked to the animistic beliefs of early Celtic, Germanic, and Nordic societies, as well as the teachings of Muslim, Jewish, and Christian mystical traditions. A more modem associate of the Ecological Worldview may be the organicist, "wholistic" tradition of Leibniz, Hegel, and 78 Whitehead. But, in tracing a direct lineage to today's Ecological Worldview, Taylor starts with the anti-Enlightenment Romanticism of the eighteenth century. Romantics believed that the Enlightenment had strait-jacketed society and culture into only appreciating the quantifiable and rational. They believed that humans and nature were richer than this, and stressed "the importance of the irrational, the emotional, and the instinctual" (Taylor, 1992: 30). In much the same way, nineteenth-century American Transcendentalists like Emerson and Thoreau attempted to re-unify the sacred and the material. They argued that the path to truth was through intuitive reflection and communion with nature. John Muir, something of a pantheist at heart, was deeply influenced by these traditions, and believed that nature had meaning in and of itself (outside of its utility to Q humans). Another early contributor to the formation of the Ecological Worldview was William Morris, a late nineteenth century Utopian thinker who espoused a "small is beautiful" approach "in which humankind is seen as an integral part of nature in a relationship that is active but loving, and in which technology is subordinated to the values of fellowship and beauty" (Ibid.: 30).9 At the beginning of the twentieth century, these philosophical underpinnings began to be supported by concrete, empirical observations. 4.2.4 The Ecological Worldview: Empirical Basis Physics The Ecological Worldview is also founded in observations and descriptions of physical reality. For example, general systems theory, which itself stems from the work of early twentieth century biologists and cyberneticists, views the universe as a series of 'holarchic' wholes within wholes, each of which is self-organizing yet interdependent (Taylor, 1992: 31).10 Another example is modem physics, which may have had the most important role to play in developing the new paradigm. In the early twentieth century, observations about behaviour at the sub-atomic level began to turn physics on its head. Jones (1988) provides the following examples: This conviction divided Muir from the other great early American "conservationist," Gifford Pinchot, who was the first trained forester in the country, its first Chief Forester, and an important architect of sustained yield management in North America. His conservation ethic was utilitarian in nature, and was based in the desire to "make the forest produce the largest possible amount of whatever crop or service will be most useful, and keep on producing it for generation after generation of men and trees" (in Meine, 1995: 11). Clearly, the philosophical roots of the Ecological Worldview did not die at the turn of the century. For instance, Aldo Leopold's A Sand County Almanac (1949), Rachel Carson's Silent Spring (1962), and E.F. Schumacher's Small is Beautiful (1973), helped fuel whole new generations of ecology-minded thinkers. "Holarchy" is a term coined by Arthur Koestler to describe the universe as a hierarchical system of wholes within wholes (Koestler and Smythies, 1968). 79 • Quantum Mechanics shows that atomic particles are not distinctly separate as Newton described, and instead engage in continual energy transfers between each other. This implies "reciprocal relationships in a dynamic process in which the parts are indistinguishable from the whole" (30). • Changes in the sub-atomic world occur in unpredictable, discontinuous 'jerks,' not smoothly. • The "Principle of Non-local Causation" describes the phenomenon wherein change to one part of a system causes instantaneous and unpredictable changes to other parts, implying wholism and non-linearity. • Based on observations of photons of light, Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle states that, at a certain level of resolution, it is impossible to determine exactly how matter is behaving. • The "Wave-particle Duality" means that sub-atomic particles behave both as probability waves and as particles, depending on the experiment and the (subjective) "observer's definition of the situation," (31). Even establishing the existence of particles is tenuous: they have "tendencies to exist in various places and thus manifest a strange kind of physical reality between existence and non-existence" (Capra in Ibid.: 31). Thus, the vision of the subatomic world is very different from that described by the Western Worldview. Instead of the predictable, linear, and fragmented world of Newtonian physics in which humans are separate from the rest of physical reality, we see evidence of unpredictable, non-linear systems characterized by their wholeness, and an inseparability of subject and object. This elemental reality described by modern physics exists underneath and within the reality of common human perception. However, this latter reality, the macroscopic world, still seemed to conform to the linear, predictable, and reversible relationships described by Newton's laws (Kay and Schneider, 1994). Yet a new revolution of thought, this time about the macro world, was just getting underway. Ecology Aldo Leopold began his professional life as a Yale-trained forester and, hence, was a follower of the "wise-use" tradition of natural resource management. However, beginning in the mid-1920s, and intensifying with the 1933 publication of his text Game Management, Leopold broke with Pinchot's vision and promoted a new approach to natural resource management which a) considered all species, not just valued ones, and b) focused on the preservation of whole habitats rather than just the manipulation of their parts (e.g., controlling the populations of "vermin" predators and artificial propagation programs). Leopold, who had come up through the ranks of the Forest Service, was 80 beginning to apply the nascent observations of a new science, ecology, and in doing so revolutionized natural resource management. Ecology was unraveling the beliefs of earlier environmental scientists and natural resource managers by exposing un-perceived complexities and values - these pointed to the need to analyze whole systems, rather than just their constituent parts. True to the essence of the paradigm shift, the traditional environmental scientists themselves were somewhat responsible: The emergence of ecology has placed the economic biologist in a peculiar dilemma: with one hand he points out the accumulated findings of his search for utility, or lack of utility, in this or that species; with the other he lifts the veil from a biota so complex, so conditioned by interwoven cooperations and competitions, that no man can say where utility begins or ends. No species can be "rated" without the tongue in the cheek. The old categories of "useful" and "harmful" have validity only as conditioned by time, place, and circumstance. The only sure conclusion is that the biota as a whole is useful, and biota includes not only plants and animals, but soils and waters as well. (A. Leopold, from a 1939 speech to foresters and ecologists; as cited in Meine, 1995: 24) Due to the influence of Leopold and others like him, by the early 1940s all the natural resource fields began to have "dissenters" who questioned the reductionist and utilitarianist methods and philosophy of the science, as well as the prevailing economic belief that the point of natural resource management was to fuel unlimited material progress. Unfortunately, this growing awareness was overwhelmed by the increasing fragmentation of natural resource education and the concurrent fragmentation of its institutions, as well as the increasing demands for natural resources in the post World War Two economic boom. According to Meine (1995), the result was "increasingly sophisticated management techniques, with an emphasis on large-scale, input-intensive practices and systems; primary, often exclusive, focus on a few commercially valuable components of the ecosystem; increasing economies of scale; standardization in planning and production methods; simplification of natural systems and processes; the development of an insular professional priesthood; [and] increasingly close ties between resource management agencies and politically (and financially) influential user groups and industries" (28-29). In other words, a re-intensification of the belief in conventional resource science, but now applied at a larger scale. In the last two to three decades, the predictive sciences concerned with the macro world have come under increasing suspicion. Of particular relevance to this thesis, modern critics of western-style natural resource management point to a long history of unexpected collapses or declines in managed resource stocks, the transformation of ecosystems to unpredicted and completely different states, or the (albeit rare) collapse of ecosystems entirely. Examples include the collapse of the Newfoundland cod fishery (Holling et al., 1998) and the Califomian sardine and Peruvian anchovy 81 fisheries (Ludwig et al., 1993); the exhaustion of the "inexhaustible" white pine forests of the northeastern U.S. (Meine, 1995); the decline of B.C. salmon stocks (Holling et al., 1998; Rees, 1988); the decline in productivity of cultivated soils in North America and abroad (Ludwig et al., 1993; Rees, 1988); the diminished productivity and biodiversity of second-growth timber stands after clearcutting (Franklin, 1998); and finally, desertification (Kay and Schneider, 1992). Indeed, one team of B.C. biologists has concluded that, over the history of modern resource management, "resources are inevitably overexploited, often to the point of collapse or extinction" (Ludwig et al., 1993: 3). From the perspective of ecology, the reason for these problems stems from inaccuracies in our understanding of a) ecological systems, b) the economic system, and c) the place of humans within them. 4.2.5 Ecosystem Properties and Behaviour As Leopold observed, nature does not behave the way the Western Worldview expects it to. Rather than composed of simple, fragmented systems whose constituents are independent and interact according to predictable laws (including reversibility to static equilibrium), ecologists view ecosystems as "complex, non-linear, multi-equilibrium, and self-organizing; they are permeated by uncertainties and discontinuities" (Berkes and Folke, 1998 [p. 2 of notes]: 12). "Surprises," or qualitative departures from the expected, are the norm when studying ecosystem behaviour. This is because the science is incomplete, and because systems are continually changing. This means that there is an "inherent unknowability, as well as unpredictability concerning evolving, managed ecosystems and the societies with which they are linked" (Holling et al., 1998: 346-47). In Linking Social and Ecological Systems (1998), a team of ecologists described the following features of ecosystems: • Non-linearity: Changes in ecosystems are not linear over space or time. Rather, following from catastrophe theory and chaos theory, small changes accumulate, propagate, and "flip" the system into a dramatically new path of development. Resource management problems are non-linear in causation. • Resilience: Resilience describes the capacity of a system to absorb disturbance before it "flips" into a new path of development. The existence of resilience does not mean the maintenance of the exact same state (since all systems change), but the same or similar cycle of phases. • Threshold: A threshold is the limit of a system's resilience. At this point, a system flips into a new equilibrium state - for example, when "loss of resilience irreversibly flips a tropical forest 82 into a grassland ecosystem" (353). The exact point at which a system reaches a threshold is unpredictable, as is the new state of the system. • Multi-scale: Ecosystems exist at multiple scales of space and time, with numerous non-linear feedbacks between each level. Some changes are gradual (growth of a valuable tree species or ecological succession) and others are fast (fire), but they all have a role in maintaining whole-system resilience. . (Hollingetal., 1998: 352-5). Holling et al. (1998) suggest that Western natural resource management, in the process of maximizing and 'normalizing' yields, has cut off the feedbacks between slow and fast change cycles. It supports the slow changes, but treats the fast changes as disturbances of the desired, "ideal" state. An example would be the suppression of fire and natural insect outbreaks in conventional forest management. These fast changes, however, are necessary parts of the whole cycle of phases in ecosystems. Suppressing them makes the total system more brittle, and even greater disturbances can result. This is similar to Jones' statements that, in dealing with nature "there is no free lunch," meaning that all of our interventions have a cost; and that our interventions meddle with ecosystems' "delicate mechanisms which serve to maintain stability and balance" (Jones, 1988: 34). Jones also warns that, as the human race weakens the natural resilience of ecosystems across the globe, we take on more and more of the responsibility for maintaining these mechanisms, and all life on earth. Holling et al. (1998) also claim that, in contrast to the conventional approach, traditional local resource management systems support the natural resiliencies of ecosystems, and have learned to allow fast changes to perform "creative destruction" in the system, thus maintaining the health of the whole system upon which these societies depend (356). Such practices may involve some short-term losses. However, two prominent environmental scientists contend that conventional resource management practices which "involve maintaining some fixed state in an ecosystem or maximizing some function (biomass, productivity, number of species) or minimizing some other function (pest outbreak) will always lead to disaster at some point, no matter how well meaning they are" (Kay and Schneider, 1994: 37). 4.2.6 The Economic System and the Ecological Economics Critique A similar revolution has occurred in economics. Ecological economists insist that mainstream economics underemphasizes (or completely ignores) the critical role of natural systems in sustaining the economy. Neoclassical economists postulate a closed, self-sustaining economy completely separate from the natural world. With the goal of bettering human welfare, a premium is placed on 83 the growth and expansion of this system. Rees (1988) states that this vision ignores the "self-evident, continuous exchange of material resources (resources and waste disposal), and the unidirectional flow of free energy, between the economic process and the biophysical environment" (134). All material inputs into the economy, and all pollution and waste outputs from it (the economic "throughputs"), are sourced from and dumped into the natural environment. In economic terms, this product-producing and pollution-assimilating capacity of ecosystems is a form of capital - natural capital.11 Thus, rather than independent from the ecosphere, the economy is completely dependent upon it; it is a sub-system. Furthermore, the Second Law of Thermodynamics (the entropy law) states that "all available energy and matter [including nonrenewable resources such as coal and oil] are continuously and irrevocably degraded to the unavailable state" (Rees, 1988: 134). However, the environment, although it depends on a fixed stock of materials, is somewhat anti-entropic within its own system. This is because it receives a constant influx of free energy from the sun with which, through photosynthesis, it recycles materials and self-renews (and, in conjunction with physical processes, creates available sources of energy like oil, coal, and so on.). But the rate of this process is fixed by the amount of solar energy that the earth receives. Since all economies are partially dependent upon the nonrenewable resources created by this process, and upon the disposal of waste into the environment, economic "production" is actually consumption. Economic production, by dissipating available energy and matter, accelerates entropy. Therefore, since economies are growing and the ecosphere is not, "the consumption of ecological resources everywhere threatens to exceed sustainable rates of biological production" (Rees, 1988: 135). The vision presented is of an economy expanding beyond the capacity of ecosystems to produce products and absorb wastes - the economy is cutting into the base of natural capital. According to ecological economists, in order to be sustainable, economies at all scales (local, regional, and global) must reduce throughputs and live off the "interest of our remaining ecological endowment" (Rees, 1988: 136). 4.2.7 The Place of Humans: Interdependency, Community, and the Natural World The final factor is the place of humans in relation to one another and in relation to the natural world. In the Ecological Worldview, human beings are not merely self-maximizing, separated individuals; rather, they are "fundamentally social" and interdependent with one another and the natural world (Daly and Cobb, 1994: 164). To elucidate this interdependence, and the role it plays in " Daly and Cobb define natural capital as "the nonproduced means of producing a flow of natural resources and services" (Daly and Cobb, 1994: 72). 12 This process can only be viewed as anti-entropic within the closed system of the ecosphere. It is quickly interpreted as entropic when viewing it from an extra-terrestrial perspective - relatively high-energy solar radiation is used by the ecosphere, and released to outer space as relatively low-energy infrared radiation. 84 the human sphere, Drengson (1988), and Daly and Cobb (1994) each use Ferdinand Tonnies' concepts of 'Gemeinschaft' and 'Gesellschaft.' According to these authors, loving, nurturing interdependence takes its highest form in community, or Gemeinschaft, rather than in society, or Gesellschaft. As stated by Tonnies, Gemeinschaft is the "intimate, private, and exclusive living together" based in "home life with its immeasurable influence upon the human soul," and includes "folkways, mores, or ... beliefs" (Tonnies, 1957: 33-35). Gemeinschaft occurs on many different levels, from its most basic manifestation, the familial relationship, outward to the local, and even national, community. Gesellschaft, on the other hand, is "public life," the "mere coexistence of people independent of each other," and is a "legalistic concept of social association" (Ibid., 33-34). Tonnies further distinguishes between the two by saying: "Gemeinschaft among people is stronger and more alive; it is the lasting and genuine form of living together. In contrast to Gemeinschaft, Gesellschaft is transitory and superficial. Accordingly, Gemeinschaft should be understood as a living organism, Gesellschaft as a mechanical aggregate and artifact" (Ibid., 35). Daly and Cobb note that within Tonnies' conception of Gemeinschaft was the presupposition of community homogeneity. They do not embrace this vision, and promote instead the idea that Gemeinschaft could occur in a pluralistic, diverse community (Daly and Cobb, 1994: 170). They envision community as any type of society in which "people are bound up with another, sharing, despite differences, a common identity" rather than having "merely legal and contractual" relations (Daly and Cobb, 1994: 170). In this sense, Daly and Cobb are more likely advocating something akin to Boothroyd's "post-gesselschaft" community, rather than a return to Gemeinschaft. Boothroyd (1996), while pointing out the flaws of Gesellschaft, does not over-romanticize the intellectually and individually-oppressive mores, as well as the parochialism, of Tonnies' Gemeinschaft: "To return to gemeinschaft is unthinkable: we know too much.... Community in non-gemeinschaft forms is planned rather than natural (i.e., one chooses to help create it, one is not born into it); it is open (to membership and ideas) rather than parochial; it may be ephemeral; and it is often specialized rather than integrative of place, work, and folk functions" (97). In place of Gemeinschaft or Gesselschaft, Boothroyd promotes "post-gesselschaft" communities which take on an increased role in providing for personal welfare and which "replace greed and power not with gemeinschaft but with willed, open, oneness (WOO); in a word, with love (Ibid.: 98). While Drengson seems to only consider community as occurring in small groups of people (rural towns or small urban neighborhoods; i.e. more like "Gemeinschaft"), Daly and Cobb propose a social order composed of many communities, from the small, intimate town to the national community, each of which is relatively self-sufficient (Daly and Cobb, 1994). The resulting picture is a "bottom-up society, a community of communities that are local and relatively small" (366). Regardless, in both 85 Daly and Cobb, and Drengson's work, community is seen to be based in local and intimate associations of people, and to include the natural environment. The above authors also emphasize that the self-actualization of whole individuals can only occur in the moral, developmental context of this greater community, not in the secular and superficial context of society. Drengson, in particular, focuses upon this aspect of community: A person's primary character must be formed and defined by his/her interpersonal relationships involving the primary care givers as well as other people in the immediate community. Relationships between the community and the larger society to which it belongs,... and to place and Nature, also play an important role in the shaping of character. (Drengson, 1988: 42) In Drengson's vision of community, people are enabled to fully appreciate the value of other humans and Nature through "communion," or "conscious reciprocal awareness," among members (Drengson, 1988: 45). This communion is only possible in the context of healthy, whole communities where interactions are based on love and respect, rather than on contractual, producer-consumer relationships. To Drengson, the unfortunate fact is that policies and practices rooted in the Western Worldview, such as consumerism and the promotion of over-urbanization, have de-valued and degraded the organic connections among humans, and between humans and Nature, and have intensified connections based on contract. As community has been usurped by the dominant paradigm, individuals have become alienated "bottomless vessels" pursuing compensatory external rewards and goals (like material possessions, power, and fame) (Drengson, 1988: 46). Thus, in the Western Worldview, individuals are supposed to interact based on what they can get from the 'other,' not on what they share (whether materially, like goods, or spiritually and emotionally, like friendship and communion with nature). A sense of community, love for others, spiritual fulfillment, and other critical aspects of human existence are all relegated to a second-order of importance, or given none at all. Nature is only valued for what it can provide humans; not for its innate value. In fact, while violence to other humans is still considered to be wrong in the Western Worldview, violence to nature is simply efficient utilization of it because the 'Cartesian division' has led us to believe that a) only humans have value, and b) we do not harm ourselves when we harm nature because we are separate from it. Nature is to be controlled for human gain. The arguments of the ecological economists and the "new" (new to westerners, at least) understandings of ecosystem behaviour do not support the Western conception of humanity, or the place of humans in relation to nature. Since economies are completely dependent on the ecosystem, and since ecosystems are inordinately complex and their behaviour is often indeterminate (e.g., non-86 linear) and hence unpredictable, human societies must abandon the idea that we are separate from the natural world and able to "control" ecosystems. A related concept is something known as the "precautionary principle" - the notion that, since humans cannot know the exact outcome of interventions with ecosystems, we should choose the most conservative, or least disruptive, course of action in order to prevent costly and irreversible changes to natural systems (O'Riordan and Cameron, 1994). The prudent path, at least according to the Ecological perspective, would be to learn as much as we can about ecosystem behaviour and adopt management techniques that secure for humans only that quantity of natural goods and services which does not compromise the resilience of ecosystems -our sole provider. A fundamental conclusion, then, is that we cannot manage ecosystems, we can only manage ourselves and our interaction with them (Berkes and Folke, 1998; Kay and Schneider, 1994; Ludwig et al., 1993; Meine, 1995; Taylor, 1992). This includes limiting our activities, if necessary. Responsibility almost always involves a suspension of at least some of our individual self-interest, or at least the recognition that a portion of our self-interest is dependent upon the interests of the wider community, including nature. This is sometimes known as "enlightened self-interest." Fifty years ago, Leopold noted that land ethics were "governed wholly by economic self-interest" (Leopold, 1949b: 209). While some efforts have been made since then to incorporate broader values into resource management (e.g., recognition of the "existence values" of threatened species), most decision makers still fail to perceive the need to manage ourselves. Facing mounting resource management problems, they have relied on successive technological fixes to the natural world "out there" instead of questioning their own fundamental assumptions and those of their scientists. One example of such was the adoption of "Multiple Use" forestry by the B.C. Ministry of Forests, termed by the Clayoquot Scientific Panel as a "constrained [timber] maximization" approach to the forest (see Chapter Two). Seen from the perspective of a new paradigm, these types of fixes are merely incremental "tweaks" and adjustments, like the ever-expanding epicycles of Ptolemaic astronomy, to practices steeped in the Western Worldview (Berkes and Folke, 1998; Daly and Cobb, 1994; Norgaard, 1994). Promoters of the Ecological Worldview contend that what is needed is a complete paradigm shift in our understanding of the natural world, human existence, and the interface between the two (Drengson, 1995; Jones, 1988; Rees, 1988; Taylor, 1992). 87 4.3 Specific Consequences of the Ecological Worldview in Regards to Community Homo sapiens putters no more under his own vine and fig tree; he has poured into his gas tank the stored motivity of countless creatures aspiring through the ages to wiggle their way to pastures new. Ant-like he swarms the continents. -Aldo Leopold, 1949; "Conservation Esthetic" (166) Ethics, social systems, institutions, and technologies flow from a society's worldview. Holling et al. (1998) term the combination of these features the "cultural capital" of a particular society (349). The cultural capital of modern society is steeped in the mechanistic, fragmented perception of reality of the Western Worldview. The Ecological Worldview, based on the principles of wholeness, interdependence, unpredictability, and the dependence of humans upon the biosphere, requires a new sort of ethics, institutions, and technologies. There are many ideas as to what this new "cultural capital" might look like, and a thorough exposition is beyond the scope of this thesis. Of interest here is a running theme, common to many expositions of the Ecological Worldview, that an important consequence of the new paradigm is the need to re-establish or strengthen local, communal control over local resources. The argument is that small-scale, localized resource management institutions will be better able to care for local resources than the typical instance of centralized, corporate and bureaucratic control. This claim rests on two key issues touched on above: a) ecosystem behaviour is uncertain so we cannot predict how ecosystems will respond to human disturbances, and b) community (as in Gemeinschaft or "post-gesselschaft") creates an environment of stewardship. 4.3.1 Uncertainty and Local Control Uncertainty requires caution in managing ecosystems. It means that our ability to predict the consequences of management is highly impaired, and that we must take an experimental and flexible approach, rather than a prescriptive approach, to resource management (Berkes and Folke, 1998; Franklin, 1998; Ludwig et al., 1993). It means that, to quote the two prominent environmental scientists cited earlier, "our traditional managerial approaches, which presume a world of simple rules, are wrong-headed and likely to be dangerous" (Kay and Schneider, 1994: 33). Also, as was mentioned above, it means that we must turn our attention away from managing ecosystems and towards managing human systems. However, the policies and practices of resource management around the world are overly abstracted from concrete ecosystems because they are informed by the same "simple rules": the 'objective', 'universal' scientific 'truths' of the Western Worldview (Holling et al.; Norgaard, 1994). 88 Resource management is implemented with the ultimate goal of maximizing the yield of discrete species to meet market demand for them, ignoring the fact that these species are embedded in ecosystems. Administration and scientific prescriptions flow from central, specialized institutions in order to effect the most control over resource exploitation (the B.C. Forest Practices Code is an example - see Chapter Two). A reason provided for this over-abstraction from actual living systems is that technologies, fueled by fossil hydrocarbons, have "temporarily allowed modern culture to expand beyond the boundaries of any particular ecosystem;" as a consequence, "modern societies know no ecosystems" (Norgaard, 1994: 165). Centralization and ideological blindness further isolate resource management institutions from feedbacks, rendering them "ecologically illiterate" and inflexible (Folke et al., 1998: 431). Berkes and Folke describe how conventional resource management institutions, through their own "successes," become increasingly inflexible and closed to feedbacks: To supply markets, resource management tries to control a target resource (e.g. supply offish or timber) by reducing the variability of the target resource. This helps meet production targets and economic objectives (e.g. revenue and employment). The management policy is successful in the short term, but its very success causes inadvertent changes in the functioning and resilience of the ecosystem. Over a period of time, management emphasis shifts to improving the efficiency of the methods of resource utilization, and the need for other ecosystem support and services (e.g. water regulation capacity of a forest) and the loss of resilience are not perceived. The ecosystem and the target resource are more vulnerable to surprise, while the resource management institution, devoted to production efficiency, has become more rigid and less responsive to environmental feedbacks, thus setting the stage for a resource management crisis. (Berkes and Folke, 1998: 11) In another article from the same volume, Holling et al. (1998) suggest that this process has led to "a general pattern of sequential exploitation of stocks, from the more accessible to the increasingly less accessible areas, and from the most marketable to the less and less marketable species" (348). Conventional resource management has achieved short-term production goals, but we must ask, if we accept the above analysis, "At what long-term cost?" Traditional resource management institutions, in contrast to the Western norm, are situated locally to the ecosystem in question and have adapted to it. Rather than implementing narrow, rigid prescriptions, these systems actually evolve with the ecosystem. Their knowledge is based on concrete experiences with specific ecosystems, rather than abstracted principles (Berkes and Folke, 1998 [borrowing fromLevi-Strauss]). These traditional, local systems have evolved practices which maintain rather than degrade ecosystem resilience. Furthermore, the systems themselves have 89 evolved flexibility, and sensitivity to ecological feedbacks which will allow them to continue to develop appropriate practices. According to Holling et al. (1998), the result is institutions which 'fit' with the local environment: In contrast to Western-oriented management, these local institutions do not undermine their existence by degrading their ecological life-support system, thereby losing ecological and institutional resilience.... The local community has become a part of the dynamics of its surrounding ecosystem (356). Rather than calling for a return to traditional ways, the authors promote the use of 'adaptive management' by modern societies. Another article in the same volume indicates that adaptive management "deals with the unpredictable interactions between people and ecosystems as they evolve together" and takes the view that resource management practices should be scripted as careful experiments which produce feedbacks from the environment (Berkes and Folke, 1998: 10). These feedbacks are then used to modify policy and practices, ad infinitum. While adaptive management is something of a "rediscovery of principles applied in traditional social-ecological settings," it is more systematic, and includes scientific research (Holling et al., 1998: 358). In a very similar vein, Norgaard (1994) promotes the creation of a network of communities which are coupled with local ecosystems in order to enable the interpretation of, and response to, ecological feedbacks. His proposition is the development of a "coevolving patchwork quilt of discursive communities," which would require increasing local community ecosystem management responsibility and a reduction of linkages to central governments (Norgaard, 1994: 166). 4.3.2 Gemeinschaft, Biophilia, and Stewardship Previously discussed was the notion that human beings only find their full development in community, or in something akin to Gemeinschaft or "post-gesselschaft." In the Ecological Worldview's adaption of this notion, community not only nurtures the development of the individual, it "connects the larger world of nature with the smaller world of self through 'communion' and day-to-day interactions with nature (Drengson, 1988: 42). In other words, 'biophilia' is nurtured. In fact, the definition of community is broadened to include the natural world with which we are connected. This broadening of the concept of community to include nature was perhaps first (and best) formulated by Aldo Leopold, in "The Land Ethic," a 1947 treatise containing the following passages: 1 3 Neither Norgaard nor the contributors to Berkes and Folkes' volume call for the complete devolution of natural resource control to local bodies. Natural resource issues occur at all scales (from local to global); Folke et al. recommend that "the power of centralized management agencies should be redistributed and balanced, not 90 All ethics so far evolved rest upon a single premise: that the individual is a member of a community of interdependent parts.... The land ethic simply enlarges the boundaries of the community to include soils, waters, plants, and animals, or collectively: the land.... In short, a land ethic changes the role o/Homo sapiens from conqueror of the land community to plain member and citizen of it. (Leopold, 1949b: 203-204) Leopold's radical (in the sense of the word meaning 'root' or 'origin', rather than 'extreme') vision was that civilization has obscured our "outdoor roots," and that experiences with nature are essential for a re-connection with these roots. Laying a foundation for ecological economists and the like, he remarked: ...there is value in any experience that reminds us of our dependency on the soil-plant-animal-man food chain, and of the fundamental organization of the biota. Civilization has so cluttered this elemental man-earth relationship with gadgets and middlemen that awareness of it is growing dim. We fancy that industry supports us, forgetting what supports industry. (Leopold, 1949c: 178) Others have noted that, when an awareness of human's dependency on nature is cultivated, individuals and societies do not wish to exploit or damage it because "any abuse of nature is at the same time an abuse of ourselves" (Jones, 1987: 239). Furthermore, each part and process of nature has a role in the whole; thus, everything has inherent value (Drengson, 1995). The "person in community" respects the value of all things. These sorts of metaphysical connections with nature are seen to reinforce the more secular feedbacks described in the previous sub-section. For instance, Folke et al. (1998) observe that traditional, locally-adapted societies - praised for their technical superiority in responding to feedbacks - also have a sense of connectedness to the local landscape, a "personal and spiritual identification with their territories and resources.... The fate of the land parallels their own fate, and this relationship forms the basis for their management of the land and its resources" (428). Many of the authors reviewed here have made the case that an adoption of a similar ethic is necessary to achieve sustainable utilization of resources. Rees (1988) states: "True sustainable development cannot be forced. Rather, it is the natural product of a society that 'comes from' a profound sense of being in, and of, the natural world.... People must acquire in their bones a sense that violation of the biosphere is violation of self (137). Beatley and Manning (1997) point to the eliminated" (432), while Norgaard, whose vision entails a complete re-drawing of political boundaries, still sees a role for "encompassing communities, comparable to national and global governance" (166). 91 importance of feelings of connection with nature, for "such feelings are important because they foster a sense of caring for place, promoting stewardship and the assumption of responsibility for others and for one's surroundings.... In short, the stronger our sense of place, the more we care about and for it" (174). Drengson (1988) emphasizes the role of love for place: "With respect to their local place, well integrated communities will fit into their ecological niche with other natural biotic communities.... The caretakers nurture because they know and love their place, their moral and cultural space. They act, not to dominate it, but to enhance, enrich and continue it" (47). In short, the Ecological Worldview assigns high importance to the somewhat immaterial (in the literal sense of the word) concept of community, to the development of self and connection to place that it produces, and to an ethic of love for nature which grows from these. This must be done at all scales of human social organization, but small communities are the wellspring of experience and enrichment from which these ethical principles emanate: "We are now obligated to create a global sense of community so that Nature and environmental integrity might thrive. The primary community [the small, rural community or neighborhood] and the integrated Self [the individual self-actualized in a communal context] are necessary foundations for realizing such successful global action" (Drengson, 1988: 47; brackets added). Drengson's statement that we are obliged to "create" community in the preceding quote is important. One important aspect of the new, desired state of community that differentiates it from the peasant villages upon which Tonnies modeled his concept of Gemeinschaft is that it is planned, rather than innate. Most of the authors cited in this section, as well as the author of this thesis, do not advocate a return to the parochialism and intellectual torpor of pre-Industrial Gemeinschaft. Rather, the call is for a re-valuing and strengthening of the role of community in connecting humans with each other and the natural world. Appendix A briefly describes two manifestations of the Ecological Worldview in B.C.: "wholistic use forestry" and "ecoforestry;" both of which include strong justifications for locally-based natural resource economies. 4.3.3 Section Summary In summary, the Ecological Worldview provides a rich and extensive theoretical backdrop to the call for devolution of natural resource control to local communities. Small communities are thought to be better able to adjust to ecological feedbacks, and to provide the social context for "communion" with, and an ethic of love for, the natural environment. All of the specific theorized ecological benefits of community forestry described in the last chapter are consistent with the principles of the Ecological Worldview. 92 There are three main propositions drawn from the discussion in this Chapter. The first is that the Ecological Worldview may aid in interpreting and ameliorating the crisis in the B.C. forest industry discussed in Chapter Two. The second is that the Ecological Worldview is a powerful justification for community forestry, and one which provides more theoretical depth and breadth than the reasons for community forestry discussed in section 3.3. The third proposition is that the adoption of the Ecological Worldview - on the part of the community, and specifically whichever group is truly responsible for the management of the community forest - may be necessary for the realization of the theorized ecological benefits listed in section 3.4. 93 4.4 Research Questions The above discussion concludes the literature review. Having covered the theoretical context for the thesis, a full set of research questions may now be presented. The following research questions were developed from the issues raised in Chapters Three and Four: the theorized ecological benefits, the potential obstacles to the benefits' realization, and the Ecological Worldview. The main set of questions are simply the theorized ecological benefits turned into questions about their existence in the case community: 1. Does the Revelstoke community "connect with" and care for the forest? 2. Do Revelstoke community members have a more wholistic appreciation of the forest than private firms? Does this lead to management of the community forest as a whole system (as opposed to only timber)? 3. Does a closed circle of costs and benefits actually occur in the Revelstoke case? If so, does it lead to accountability and better stewardship? 4. Does the RCFC collect more information than the norm for the industry? Is it in a better situation to use local ecological knowledge? 5. Is the RCFC more flexible and open to ecological feedbacks than corporate or government organizations, thereby allowing for effective adaptive management? 6. Does the RCFC engage in better forest practices, on ecological criteria, than private operators in the area? For each question above, the question is also asked, "Why or why not?" Finding answers to these benefits-turned-questions is the main intent of the interviews and content analysis, and is the central thrust of the research. The next six research questions were formed from the "Potential Obstacles" to the realization of the theorized benefits listed in section 3.5. In order to ask the best, most salient questions in the case study research, these limitations were incorporated into the interview questions, or at least kept in mind while conducting the research: 7. Do the Revelstoke community's goals, culture, existing workload, and/or knowledge of ecologically sustainable forest management impact the realization of the theorized benefits? 8. Is there meaningful participation by the Revelstoke community in the planning and management of the community forest? 94 9. What role do internal financial pressures and considerations play in the planning and management of the Revelstoke Community Forest? 10. What role do external government and other financial interests play in the planning and management of the Revelstoke Community Forest? 11. What impact do external regulations have on the planning and management of the Revelstoke Community Forest? How does the organization respond to them? 12. Does the size and biophysical potential of the Revelstoke Community Forest land base impact the achievement of planning and management for ecological sustainability? The final research questions relate to the discussion of the Ecological Worldview in this chapter: 13. Does the worldview of the RCFC affect the realization of the theorized benefits? 14. Is there evidence that the RCFC has adopted the Ecological Worldview? If not, is there evidence that, through accumulated experiences with the community forest, the organization and/or the community is headed in the direction of adopting the Ecological Worldview? 95 The Community Forestry Model and Planning for Ecological Sustainability: Exploring Assumed Synergies in Revelstoke, B.C. Part 2: The Case Study 96 Chapter Five: Revelstoke, and the Revelstoke Community Forest This chapter introduces the case study, the Revelstoke Community Forest, through a discussion of the City of Revelstoke, the events leading to the inception of the community forest, the Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, the community forest land base, and other important contextual issues. 5.1 Revelstoke and Area 5.1.1 Local Geography Revelstoke is situated in the southeastern portion of the province of British Columbia, in western Canada, and within the Columbia-Shuswap Regional District (regional government), and the western half (the former Revelstoke Forest District) of the Columbia Forest District, which itself is part of the Nelson Forest Region (see Map 5.1; see also Map 5.2 for more detail).1 The town sits at an altitude of 455 metres and lies just beside the "big eddy" region of the Columbia River, just north of the confluence of the Columbia and the Illecillewaet Rivers. The town site is nestled between the Selkirk and Monashee mountain ranges, in the Columbia wetbelt, and receives large amounts of precipitation: average annual snowfall in the town this century is 168 inches (Nobbs, 1999: 1). The river and mountain topography give Revelstoke a very picturesque setting (see Figure 5.1). The immediate topography is very steep, with alpine tundra, rock, and ice forming a significant percentage of the land base. The forests are filled with western red cedar, western hemlock, Engelmann spruce, Douglas fir, western white pine, paper birch, western yew, and cottonwood (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1996; Feick, 1995b). Approximately one-half of the local forests in the western half of the Columbia Forest District are over 200 years old. This is due to a lack of natural disturbances and the relatively short history of forestry in the area; still, harvesting and fires have left approximately one-quarter of the forest less than twenty years old (Community Futures Development Corporation, 1998: 2). There is abundant wildlife in the area, including mountain goats, mountain caribou, and black and grizzly bears, and several studies cited in Feick (1995b) indicate that the populations of these animals are threatened by human activity (p. 4-4). 1 Map 5.1 is an older map of the Nelson Forest Region, and shows the former Revelstoke and Golden Forest Districts before they were amalgamated in November, 1997 to form the Columbia Forest District. 97 MAP 5.1 The Nelson Forest Region, with Forest District boundaries Source: Adapted from B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1997c. FIGURE 5.1 Revelstoke, B.C.; the Columbia River; and Mount Begbie. Photo: Scott Aycock, March, 1999. 98 There are two National Parks in the immediate vicinity of Revelstoke: the 260 square kilometre Mount Revelstoke National Park, which borders the town, and the 1349 square kilometre Glacier National Park seventy-two kilometres east. The closest towns with a population of over 3,500 people (Salmon Arm to the west, and Golden to the East) are over 100 kilometres away. Although the Trans-Canada provides a strong East-West link to the outside world, roads are often blocked in winter by heavy snows and avalanches, while in summer mud slides sometimes block the roads (Feick, 1995b). The visitor is struck with the feeling that the surrounding mountains isolate - at least in a psychological sense - the community from the outside world. The town is without any significant agricultural land since most of this was flooded in the making of the Arrow Lakes Reservoir, to the south, in the 1960s. 5.1.2 General and Economic History Aboriginal groups visited the Revelstoke area to fish salmon and pick huckleberries, although (as far as we know) they did not establish permanent settlements in the area due to the deep snows and the danger of avalanches (Revelstoke Chamber of Commerce, 1999). The first European visitor to the area, surveyor David Thompson, arrived in 1811 while mapping much of the upper Columbia River for the Northwest Company. Later adventurers and travelers rested at the "big eddy," where the town now sits, just below the treacherous, un-navigable Death Rapids. In the 1860s, the Big Bend Gold Rush brought thousands of prospectors from around the world to the big bend of the Columbia River, approximately 100 river miles north of Revelstoke, creating a number of impermanent settlements in the region (Nobbs, 1999). Revelstoke itself began as a transportation and supply center for the mining industry in the 1880s (Revelstoke Economic Development Commission, 1995). In 1885, the famous "last spike" was driven at Craigellachie, just west of Revelstoke, creating a Canadian rail link from the Atlantic to the Pacific (Nobbs, 1999). Soon thereafter the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) established a major station and maintenance yard at Revelstoke, due to its strategic location at the westernmost terminus of the difficult passages through the Rocky Mountains, the Purcells, and finally, the Selkirks. Both the mining and transportation sectors needed timber, and a fledgling forest industry was founded. By 1890, logging was the second-most important industry in the Revelstoke area, after CPR, and by 1900 there were thirteen sawmills in the town, employing 300 (Reith, 1987). The town itself was incorporated in 1899 from four main areas: the downtown core, East Revelstoke, Farwell (also known as Lower Town), and Columbia Park, and has since acquired a number of surrounding areas 99 (Feick, 1995b). In 1914, the people of Revelstoke successfully lobbied to have the Mount Revelstoke Area set aside as a national park (Revelstoke Chamber of Commerce, 1999). The first six decades of the twentieth century witnessed gradual growth in the town, although the expansion, in 1930, of a small park centered around Rogers Pass to the present Glacier National Park spurred a small tourism boom. In 1960, the Rogers Pass portion of the Trans-Canada highway was completed, providing a strong east-west linkage to the outside world (Reith, 1987). Starting in the 1960s, three major dams were built on nearby stretches of the Columbia, creating construction-related "megaproject booms" in the town. The first dam, the Hugh Keenleyside Dam, was completed in the 1960s, creating the huge Arrow Lakes Reservoir - reaching all the way from Castlegar to barely south of Revelstoke (and flooding the only significant stretches of agricultural land in the area). The Mica Dam was completed in the 1970s, creating Kinbasket Lake to the north and east of Revelstoke. Finally, the Revelstoke Dam was built just north of town from 1976 to 1984, creating Lake Revelstoke and submerging Death Rapids in the process. The completion of the Revelstoke Dam was the first in a chain of events precipitating a major bust in the town (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1995b). In 1986, the largest local sawmill shut down and on top of that CPR transferred 100 jobs to its Donald facility (Reith, 1987). In the space of two years, the town's population fell from 11,000 to 7,500 and the unemployment rate hit twenty-five percent; at one point, 450 houses were up for sale (Weir and Pearce, 1995: 4). Fortunately, the major sawmill reopened in 1987, and subsequent economic diversification and downtown revitalization projects helped to bolster and diversify the economy. The town has made a comeback. Today, tourism and outdoor recreation are the fastest-growing sectors in the Revelstoke economy (Community Land Use Negotiating Committee, 1995: 5). 2 5.1.3 Current Socio-economic Statistics The 1996 population of Revelstoke was 8,050, a four percent increase from the 1991 population of 7,729. Revelstoke is clearly the population center in the area - the 1996 population of the outlying area from Mica in the north to halfway down Upper Arrow Lake in the south, from Rogers Pass in the east to Eagle Pass in the west, was only 655. Typical of most small towns, the vast majority of the population resides in single-family dwellings. The unemployment rate is 14.2%, considerably higher than the British Columbia figure of 9.6%. Homes seem to be relatively cheap in the town, with an average value of $115,743 compared to the provincial average of $239,745. Average income is $25,233, slightly less than the provincial figure of $27,480. Women's income is much lower; in 1993, women's median employment income, at $11,400, was just over one-third the men's figure of 100 $32,600 (Revelstoke Economic Development Commission, 1995: 21). Still, the total incidence of low-income (including both unattached individuals and people in families) in Revelstoke, 11.9%, is much less than the provincial rate of 19.6%. Educational attainment rates show that Revelstoke residents have considerably less post-secondary graduates than the provincial average. While the attainment rates of lower levels of education are comparable to the provincial figure (of the 6,195 individuals in Revelstoke over age fifteen, 7.8% have less than a grade nine education as compared with the provincial figure of 7.4%), 13.6% of individuals over age fifteen in the province have a Bachelor's degree or higher, while the Revelstoke figure is 6.4%. Together, these figures paint the portrait of a town with a relatively high unemployment rate, but with average wages comparable to that of the province, a lower cost of living, and a lower incidence of low-income individuals and families. The economy is relatively diversified, which enhances stability and resilience, with four leading sectors contributing equally to the economy. The low post-secondary educational attainment rate could be a concern if the town desired to take advantage of emerging, high-skill sectors such as high-tech, education, and information services. 5.1.4 Forest Economy Revelstoke has three sawmills, one cedar shake and shingle mill, and one pole yard. The largest mill is the Downie Street Sawmill (see Figure 5.2), with approximately 225 full-time employees (Lee Olsen, personal communication, 1999). There are also several value-added plants which manufacture a great diversity of products, including cedar finger joints and siding, custom birch furniture, log homes, soundboards for classical and contemporary musical instruments (see Figure 5.3), giftware, and small fishing lures (Community Futures Development Corporation, 1998). The total AAC in the western half of the Columbia Forest District (the former Revelstoke Forest District, stretching from Mica in the north to the Upper Arrow Lakes in the south, and from the crest of the Monashees in the west to the crest of the Selkirks in the east - see Map 5.2) is 467,700 cubic metres (m3) (Community Futures Development Corporation, 1998: 3-8). See Table 5.1 for a breakdown of this volume by licensee and/or designation. As of 1998, the private Beaumont Timber operation (Tree Farm 38) was also producing 50,000 m3 annually, down from 100,000 m3. Despite the decrease, Beaumont is expected to only produce timber until around 2002, at which time there will be no remaining harvestable timber on its land base (Ibid.: 9). Data are 1996, source: B.C. Statistics, 1998; unless otherwise noted. 3 This figure does not include seventy employees who work at Selkirk Specialty Wood, Ltd., an on-site value-added plant which processes lumber from the main Downie plant into specialty items. 101 TABLE 5.1 Timber Allotments in the former Revelstoke Forest District (RFD) Licensee or Designation AAC (m3) Type of Licence Notes I'ope «Si Talhol (Nukusp. 37.700 B.C., but U.S.-owned) Evans Forest Products 100,000 (Golden, B.C.) Revelstoke Communilv 100.000 Forest "Corporation (Revelstoke. li.C.) Tree Farm Licences I I I 23 - onl\ the small northern portion is in the formeisRI-t). TFL 55 11-1. 5() Do'vvnie Timber Ltd. (Revelstoke. B.C.) Bell Pole Co. Ltd. 19,198 (Revelstoke, B.C.) Joe Kozek Sawmills Lid. 18.373 (Revelstoke. B.C.) Small Business Forest 42,841 Enterprise Program ; Timber Sales Licences 12.078 MSIPlQflPHIHHiiHH^ Forest Service Reserve 3,638 Woodloi Licences 1.120 Revelstoke Timber Supply Area 132.1.^ 2 replaceable l-oicsl Licence replaceable Forest Licence replaceable Forest Licence small-volume, short-term < 1-10 years) SBFEP licences small-volume, short-term nip to 10 years) TSLs. Forest Service Reserve small wood lots (less than 400 hectares All of this wood is harvested under the SBFF.P. This is the northern portion of the previous TFL 55. This is the southern portion of ihc previous TFL 55. Dowriie is one of the , , j RCFC partners. Joe Kozek is one oflhe RCF(' partners. Numerous participants Joe Kozek Sawmills Ltd. holds 7.490 m3 Set aside for powerlines, pipelines, etc. There are only two wood lot licences in the I miner RFD. Total all designations 467,700 Source: Community Futures Development Corporation of Revelstoke, 1998: 3-8. 102 FIGURE 5.2 The Downie Street Sawmill. Photo: Scott Aycock; March, 1999. FIGURE 5.3 Guitar Soundboards at D&S Acoustics, Revelstoke Photo: Scott Aycock; March, 1999. 103 MAP 5.2 The Columbia Forest District j Hamber Prov_ Park j; " H F o r t r e s s Lake Wood River \ r v Approximate border of former Revelstoke and Golden Forest Districts National Parks Provincial Parks Marl Creek Prov Park Kootenay Pingston J ! Upper A r r o w Lake Copyrisht 1999 - Columbia Foresi Disliirf Source: Adapted from Columbia Forest District, 1999. 104 As of 1995, there were twenty independent harvesting contractors in town, and seventeen hauling contractors. The forest industry as a whole, including harvesting, transporting, and processing wood and wood products, employed an estimated 600 persons (Revelstoke Economic Development Commission, 1995). Still, Revelstoke is not necessarily a true "forestry town." Accounting for sixteen percent of Revelstoke's basic sector income, forestry-related activities are a distant second to "other basic industries" (29%) in the Revelstoke economy (Home and Powell, 1995: 21) 4 One community document states that forestry, mining, transportation (primarily CPR), and tourism are equally important segments of the economic base (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1995 b). As of 1995, tourism employed 725 persons, the public sector employed 700, and CP Rail employed 400 persons, putting forestry third in terms of number of jobs (Revelstoke Economic Development Commission, 1995: 16-17). Furthermore, contrary to the situation in most forestry towns, employment megaprojects like the Revelstoke Dam and other local dams helped to develop and grow the community's economy. (These projects also established a boom-and-bust economic trend in the town. See Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1995b for more on this.) But forestry, and the cyclical patterns of this industry, has had considerable influence on community well-being. For instance, the 1986 closure of the town's largest sawmill threw 250 people out of work (Ibid.). That same year, the Revelstoke Food Bank reported 300 registered clients (Reith, 1987: 3). In other words, though Revelstoke is not as forest-dependent as some towns in B.C., it has faced many of the same problems, particularly industrial downsizing and closures, and external control of the forest industry (discussed later). This fact is recognized by the community: the Revelstoke Community Forest is an explicit strategy of the municipality to strengthen and stabilize local forest-related income and employment (City of Revelstoke, 1993; Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1995b). 5.1.5 Local Land Use Planning Processes In October, 1994, the CORE land use recommendations for the West Kootenay-Boundary area, which includes the Revelstoke Forest District, were released (Commission on Resources and the Environment, 1994). The plan divided the public land base (the process had no jurisdiction over private land) into five land use categories, with various management constraints or allowances based on environmental, social, and economic considerations. Due to local concerns about the impact of the conservation elements of the plan on the local AAC, the community launched a Community Land Use Negotiating Committee to create a "made in Revelstoke" version (Community Land Use Negotiating Committee, 1995). The recommendations made by the Negotiating Committee were 4 "Other industries" includes manufacturing, transportation, and construction unrelated to natural resources. 105 accepted by the government, and incorporated into the official West Kootenay-Boundary Land Use Plan released in 1995 (Government of British Columbia, 1995). The government invited further local input into the particulars of the plan in the Revelstoke area, mainly the precise location and management prescriptions of the various zones. The Minister's Advisory Committee (MAC), composed of local decision-makers and interests, was formed in 1995 with the objective of providing such guidelines, especially the location and specifications of mountain caribou management zones. Originally requested to deliver recommendations by December 31, 1995, the MAC is still deliberating, although a Draft Plan has been produced. The RCFC has incorporated the caribou, biodiversity, winter ungulate range, and other guidelines of the Draft Plan in its 1999 Forest Development Plan. The final MAC guidelines are expected sometime late in 1999. Another relevant plan is the 1994 Keystone Standard Basin Local Resource Use Plan (LRUP), which details management zones for the popular Keystone Standard Basin backcountry recreation area within the community forest (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1994). These land-use plans, and the reactions of the City of Revelstoke and the RCFC to them, will be discussed in greater detail in Chapter Six. 5.1.6 Revelstoke's Vision Statement In the early 1990s, community leadership perceived that Revelstoke would have to begin to chart a course for itself, seeing that a "boom and bust economy based on resource exploitation no longer provided a viable way of life." A conference focusing on community visioning exercises was held in Revelstoke in 1991; the Mayor and the Economic Development Commissioner both attended and were inspired. A Vision Committee was created, composed of thirty-nine individuals: forty-four percent from social service sectors, twenty-eight percent from economic development and corporations, fifteen percent from the environmental sector, and thirteen percent representing local government (Feick, 1995a: p. 4-5, 4-12). The Vision Statement was ratified in February, 1994 (see Box 5.1). The Vision Statement will be discussed again in Chapter Six. 106 BOX 5.1 . The Revelstoke Vision Statement Revelstoke will be a leader in achieving a sustainable community by balancing environmental, social, and economic values within a local, regional, and global context. Building on its rich heritage and natural beauty, this historic mountain community will pursue quality and excellence. Revelstoke will be seen as vibrant, healthy, clean, hospitable, resilient and forward-thinking. It will be committed to exercising its rights with respect to decisions affecting the North Columbia Mountains. Community priorities include: opportunities for youth; economic growth and stability; environmental citizenship; personal safety and security; a responsible and caring social support system; a first-class education system; local access to life-long learning; spiritual and cultural values; and diverse forms of recreation. All residents and visitors shall have access to the opportunities afforded by the community. (as cited in Feick, 1995: 4). 107 5.2 The Community Forest 5.2.1 Events Leading to the Inception of the Community Forest The history of the community forest really began in the mid-1950s, when Cellunese Corporation (subsequently Westar) was granted TFL 23. This Tree Farm Licence was by and large composed of the Columbia River drainage from Mica in the north to Castlegar in the south, covered half a million hectares, and was granted to support a sawmill and pulpmill complex down in Castlegar (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1995b). A Revelstoke land use planning committee had the following complaints about the history of Westar's tenure in the area: ... regulatory functions were not designed to ensure that the concepts of sustainability of the forest and proper environmental protection of the land were followed. As well, Westar transported logs out of the Revelstoke area for processing and we suffered the cumulative impact of no job creation for our forest industry and detrimental treatment of our land. (Community Land Use Negotiating Committee, 1995: 6) Up until 1986, the remaining timber in the area (i.e., outside of TFL 23) was processed in town at the Downie Street sawmill, then owned by Federated Cooperatives, and at some smaller, local mills. The 1986 closure of the Downie sawmill meant that very little of the locally-harvested timber was actually being processed in the community - ninety-six percent of locally-harvested timber flowed to other regions for processing (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1995b: 3). In 1991, Westar (now defunct) applied to the Ministry of Forests to sell TFL 23 to Pope and Talbot. By 1992, approval had been granted for the transfer of the southern half of the TFL, and a review panel was created to provide recommendations to the government on the particulars of the rest of the transfer. Public hearings were held, and 500 people showed up in Revelstoke to protest external control of local timber. The upshot was that the southern portion of TFL 23 was sold to Pope and Talbot, while the northern portion remained with Westar, and was renamed TFL 55. The review panel had suggested that "the Ministry should seriously consider a variety of alternatives to normal transfer of this tenure such as: devoting the entire northern block to creation of a log market, reducing the AAC by fifty percent and devoting the remainder to a log market, or creating a community controlled forest" (cited in City of Revelstoke, 1993: 2). Subsequently, in 1992, Westar began proceedings to transfer TFL 55, as well as Okanagan Forest Licence A18669 and the Eagle River-Malakwa sawmill (which is just west of Revelstoke), to Evans Forest Products Ltd., an operator based in Golden. This led to another round of opposition (and another packed public meeting), and community leaders began to look into the idea of a community forest. The review panel denied the 108 transfer to Evans, restated its earlier recommendation, and further said "We find that, at a minimum, fifty percent of the AAC from T.F.L. 55 would have to be made available to Revelstoke to meet their needs for stability and future development of the forest industry in their community" (cited in City of Revelstoke, 1993: 3). Ultimately, the municipality, with one million dollars in investments from three local sawmills (Cascade Cedar Products Ltd., Joe Kozek Sawmills Ltd., and Downie Timber Ltd.), one million from a city reserve fund, and two million in loans, was able to purchase the southern portion of TFL 55, renamed TFL 56, in May, 1993, while Evans purchased the northern end (which remained "TFL 55") (Ibid.: 3-4). Map 5.3 depicts TFLs 55 and 56, and the northern portion of TFL 23, as they now appear. Source: adapted from B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998j: section 1.2. 109 5.2.2 The Community Forest Land Base: TFL 56 is in the western half of the Columbia Forest District, in the Nelson Forest Region. To reach it requires about a forty minute drive north of Revelstoke on Highway 23, which itself ends at the Mica Dam. The community forest is rather isolated, and the vast majority of traffic on this stretch of the highway is related to either forestry or the Mica and Revelstoke dams. It is loosely within the traditional territory of the Shuswap Nation, the Ktunaxa/Kinbasket Nation, and the Okanagan Nation. The Ktunaxa Kinbasket Tribal Council has submitted a land claim over much of southeastern B.C., including the community forest land base; however, according to the Operations Forester no archaeological or cultural sites have yet to be discovered (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998k; Del William, personal communication, 1999). The community forest includes all of the Downie Creek drainage, and the southern half of the Goldstream Creek drainage, with a total land base of 119,505 hectares (see Map 5.4). The terrain is very steep, with a great deal of alpine rock, ice, and tundra; and deep, narrow valleys. Due mainly to these conditions, the actual long-term harvesting land base (the operable forest) is only 24,659 hectares. The majority of the operable forest is within the Interior Cedar-Hemlock biogeoclimatic zone, although some of the higher timber lies within the Engelmann Spruce-Subalpine Fir zone. Engelmann spruce-leading stands are the most common in the timber-harvesting land base (thirty-seven percent), followed by western red cedar (twenty-six percent), and western hemlock (twenty-five percent) (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1996: 3, 12). Like much of the province, second-growth stands will not be available to log for another fifty or sixty years (Clarke, 1999), and then with much less volume per hectare than current old-growth stands.1 There are numerous values on the land base other than timber. Interviewees repeatedly identified several areas as having outstanding recreation and environmental values, particularly Downie Creek for river activities and fish production, and the Keystone Standard Basin for hiking and backcountry activities (Interviewees 1, 3, 4, 8, 10, 12, 15, and 17, 1999). In a recent presentation on the community forest, RCFC's General Manager identified the following "other resources" of significance on the community forest land base: 1 See section 2.2.4 of this thesis for a discussion of the province's second-growth. 110 Wildlife: 2 Long-eared Miotis (bat) - red listed Mountain Caribou - blue listed Wolverines - blue listed Grizzlies - blue listed Wolves Mountain Goats Black Bears White Tailed/Mule Deer Pine Marten Commercial Hunting, Guiding, Trapping Two Guiding/Hunting licences Two Trapping licences (Clarke, 1999.) Map 5.4 The Revelstoke Community Forest Source: Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1998a: 21. 2 ~ Considered "Endangered" by the B.C. Conservation Data Centre. Source: B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998j. 3 Considered "Vulnerable" by the B.C. Conservation Data Centre. Source: Ibid. Mining One closed copper mine Recreation/Tourism Two heli-skiing operations, one of which (Canadian Mountain Holidays) operates two lodges in the TFL Hiking Mountain Climbing Canoeing Snowmobiling Hunting Berry Picking Cross-Country Skiing Fishing I l l Of course, there are many other values on the land base, including spiritual, aesthetic, and existence values; and ecological services such as hydrological regulation, carbon storage, and nutrient recycling. Mainly due to prescriptions for caribou and ungulate management, ninety percent of the RCFC's "presently identified operable forest" is covered by environmental constraint zones of some sort (Clarke, 1999). Guidelines in these zones vary, but most require the maintenance of a certain percentage of old trees (over 100, 120, or 140 years of age) in each polygon. 5.2.3 Harvesting and Related Data The RCFC harvests roughly 200 - 225 hectares annually (Clarke, 1999). The Allowable Annual Cut (AAC) for the community forest is 100,000 cubic metres (m3) after the Chief Forester, through Timber Supply Review #1, reduced it from 110,000 m3 (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1996). However, the Long Term Harvest Level - also determined by the Chief Forester - for this area stands at 64,132 m3, which means that the AAC is 55.93% higher than the level which is sustainable over the long term. This is the fourth-highest "overcut" of the thirty-four TFLs in the province. Interestingly, its neighbour, TFL 55 held by Evans Forest Products, is number one (Marchak et al., 1999: 29). Approximately 12,000 m3 of the AAC is harvested through the Small Business Forest Enterprise Program, and is therefore unavailable to the RCFC. Of the outstanding 88,000 m3, an average of 28,000 m3 is low-quality pulp wood and is sold, generally at a loss, to whoever will take it. By the terms of the licence, half of the remaining 60,000 m3 of sawmill wood must go to the three mill partners at cost, and the rest must be sold on the market, with no preference as to buyers (Clarke, 1999). Still, in order to fulfill their mandate to support the local forest industry, most of the harvesting is contracted to local firms, and some efforts are made to direct the fifty percent of the timber that must go to the open market to local businesses. These efforts notwithstanding, the staff estimates that local processors have about a $5-10/cubic metre advantage over distant processors due to transportation costs. By the terms of its licence, and unlike most other TFLs, the RCFC is not allowed to operate a timber processing facility. To sell its wood, the RCFC began using Cascade Cedar's log yard in 1993. In 1996, the RCFC established its own log sort yard north of town, on the road to the community forest. Here the fifty percent of timber destined for the open market is sorted into decks, in order to get the highest value for each timber type, and to help fulfill (especially local) clients' needs for specific species, sizes, and grades of timber. 112 5.2.4 Structural and Other Details Revelstoke's community forest is administered by the Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation (RCFC), a quasi-independent company owned by the municipality. The RCFC Board of Directors includes councilors, city management, and community members. Mayor Geoff Battersby has been Chairman of the Board since start-up, and was a very important figure in establishing the community forest.4 It has a very small staff, limited to a General Manager, an Operations Forester, a Woodlands Supervisor, an Accountant/Comptroller, and an Administrative Assistant. Forest planning and mapping, timber cruising and engineering, road building, timber harvesting and hauling, log sort yard scaling and loading, and silviculture are all contracted out (Clarke, 1999). The Corporation holds monthly Board meetings, as well as Annual General Meetings, which are specifically intended to generate public input into the management of the community forest. In addition, the RCFC publishes Annual Reports, which provide corporate financial accounts, general operations information, information about the hiring and firing of staff, and brief accounts of current issues (e.g., the MAC process or the use of alternative harvesting practices). The organization sponsors numerous civic, athletic, and recreational groups in the community, and has provided a small grant the last three years to the Columbia Mountains Institute of Applied Ecology, on which the RCFC Operations Forester serves as a Board member. Economically speaking, there is every indication that the RCFC is a successful business, recording healthy profits each year since 1994 (even in the last few years, during a forest industry recession in the province), and providing an annual dividend to the city of between $60-90,000 (Louise Thrale, personal communication, 1999). 5.2.5 Plans External planning documents like the Keystone Standard Basin LRUP and the MAC plan obviously impact the RCFC by setting various management guidelines for various areas on the community forest land base. Furthermore, the Forest Act requires Tree Farm Licence holders to prepare Five-Year Forest Development Plans. These plans are prepared in order to provide information to the public and the administering government agencies on the location and scheduling of cutblocks and roads; management strategies for bio-diversity, soil conservation, water, fish, wildlife, and other forest resources in these areas; to demonstrate a recognition of "the economic and cultural needs of people and communities;" and, finally, to describe how "higher-level plans" (e.g. 4 Mr. Battersby was mayor when the community forest began in 1993. In 1994, another individual was elected to this office, but Mr. Battersby remained Chairman of the Board of RCFC. In 1996, he was elected mayor again. 113 LRMPs or LRUPs) in the region are to be accommodated (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1995a). The content and format of these plans, as well as public consultation processes, are tightly controlled through the Forest Practices Code and the Forest Development Plan Guidebook. At the time this thesis was prepared, the RCFC's 1999-2003 Forest Development Plan was still being reviewed. Internally, the RCFC develops annual Business Plans and, from time-to-time, Strategic Plans which help guide management of the community forest on issues such as markets, in the former case, and how to response to the MAC, in the latter. Finally, the RCFC's Vision Statement (see Box 5.2), and the City of Revelstoke Vision Statement (Box 5.1) are points of reference when making strategic-level decisions. BOX 5.2 The Revelstoke Community Forest Vision Statement The Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation (RCFC) will manage and operate its Tree Farm Licence in a sustainable manner that will enhance the forest resources while respecting the principles of environmental stewardship, integrated use and public participation. A commitment to a lasting relationship with the land that comprises TFL 56 will provide the foundation for management practices. As a profitable, self sufficient operation, now and in the future, RCFC will provide the following sustainable benefits: • responsible forest stewardship, consistent with the principles of the Forest Practices Code; • local control of resources; • local timber processing; • local employment; • forestry training and education; • outdoor recreational activities; and • funds for community development. (Clarke, 1999.) With this overview providing context, Chapter Six will discuss the Findings of the Case Study Research, utilizing both the theorized ecological benefits of community forestry and the Ecological Worldview as a framework. 114 Chapter Six: Primary Findings This chapter opens by providing some details of the research method. Then, section two presents the primary findings with respect to the theorized ecological benefits of community forestry. 6.1 Research Method Several sources of data were used for this thesis, including key informant interviews, archival material, secondary data, and other documentation. 6.1.1 Interviews There were seventeen interviews, which were the primary means of gathering information. All but two of the interviews were performed during a ten-day period in March of 1999, and the remainder were recorded by phone in the following April. Each interview was recorded on a portable tape recorder, later transcribed into a computer file, and then printed out onto paper. All of the interviewees are local Revelstoke residents, and were chosen due to their expertise as key informants in the following categories: environmental scientists, RCFC staff, local politicians, forest industry workers and business-owners, environmental activists, B.C. Ministry of Forests staff, and miscellaneous individuals considered to be well-informed about the Revelstoke Community Forest. Due to the subject matter of this thesis, the environmental scientists are more numerous among the interviewees than the other groups. Two interviewees asked to be interviewed confidentially, while several others requested that portions of their interviews be confidential. A list of the interviewees, as well as their experience and interest, follows: Interview 1: Francis Maltby Interview 2: Bill King. Interview 3: Dave Raven Interview 4: Andy Parkin Local independent environmental activist; long-time resident (18 years); Commission on Resources and the Environment (CORE) and Land Use Negotiating Committee environment representative; ecosystem and backcountry recreation planning consultant; ex-Canada Pacific Rail (CPR) employee Retired politician (local and provincial level); active trade unionist and later Labour Minister; RCFC Board member; resident since 1952; employee of CPR for 39 years; involved with the Negotiating Committee as a citizen. Columbia Forest District Manager; long-time local resident; from a family of foresters. Moderate environmental activist; member of the Revelstoke Environmental Action Committee (REAC); resident for 19 years; teacher at a local elementary school. 115 Interview 5: Michael Morris Interview 6: Jack Heavenor Interview 7: Bob Clarke Intcrncti X: ('ONFII)KNTI \ l . Interview 9: Del Williams Inlvnicw 10: C O N K I D K N T I \ L Interview 11: Bruce McLellan Interview 12: Cindy Pearce. Parks Canada ecologist; involved with the Minister's Advisory Committee (MAC); 13-year resident. Manager of Downie Timber; 10-year resident; came to Revelstoke to re-open Downie Timber in 1988; former Westar employee. General Manager of RCFC; former employee of Canfor in Fort St. John's, B.C. Long-time resident and professional biologist. RCFC Operations Forester; registered professional forester; Board member of the Columbia Mountains Institute for Applied Ecology; former Forest Service employee in Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands). Interview 13: Wayne Scott Interview 14: Steve Harvey Interview 15: Doug Weir Interview 16: Hank Krawczyk Interview 17: Geoff Battersby Local professional biologist. Research biologist for the Forest Service (focus: caribou and bears); lives in Revelstoke (since 1992), but works across the province. Freelance forestry consultant in Revelstoke (RCFC has been a client); member of the MAC; works for the local forestry skills centre; registered professional forester; ex-member of the Forest Practices Board; involved with the provincial Timber Supply Review. Owner of Encampment Creek Logging, RCFC's primary contractor; 25-year resident. Owner of D&S Acoustics, a local value-added manufacturer (instrument soundboards); purchases some logs from RCFC. Revelstoke and Area Economic Development Commissioner; 13-year resident; major player in initiation of the community forest; first Executive Director of RCFC. Forest Resource Manager for Canadian Mountain Holidays (which has two operations and one lodge in TFL 56); 9-year resident; involved with CORE; the Negotiating Committee, and MAC; works professionally with 16 other licensees. Mayor of Revelstoke; long-time resident; as Mayor in 1993, was a critical player in winning the TFL and establishing the community forest corporation. Each interview was open-ended, allowing for additional and probing questions, although a core set of questions was asked of each interviewee. A full list of these questions can be found in Appendix C. As the research was qualitative in nature, responses have not been subjected to quantitative or statistical analysis, although points where agreement was reached by a large number or a large majority of the interviewees are noted. 116 The reliability of the interviewee responses should be commented upon. The forest industry is the center of much debate in British Columbia, and individuals often separate themselves into factions, identifying themselves as being either "for" or "against" industrial forestry. Each group has formal and informal spokespersons, a language, and a paradigm (whether it is acknowledged or not). In this dogmatic and dualistic context, communications about forestry can often sound more like political position statements than sober, personal beliefs based upon observations and insight. The thesis interviews were no exception to this. Therefore, in order to provide some context, to emphasize the salience of statements, or simply to group the responses, interviewees are occasionally reported as being members of one group or another, such as RCFC "insiders," environmentalists, biologists, and so on. Only one of these groups, the RCFC "insiders" is consistently and easily defined: those individuals who are or who have been professionally tied to the community forest organization, whether as staff or Board members, contractors, or industry partners. This group consists of Interviewees 2, 6, 7, 9, 13, 15, and 17. 6.1.2 Other Information Sources The archival and other data collected included the following: RCFC meeting minutes, plans, and annual reports; City documents and public hearing minutes relating to the initiation of the community forest; other local and regional land-use plans, maps, and discussion papers; B.C. Ministry of Forests documentation related to TFL 56 and regional timber supply analyses; a RCFC timber supply analysis; and secondary data from a series of studies conducted by Jenny Feick in the mid-1990s on Revelstoke-area environmental values and public processes. These sources of information were occasionally used as the basis for findings, but more often were used to corroborate interview data. Given the great quantity of data collected for this thesis, data was organized into table format. A table was generated for each research question containing all interviewee responses and other information deemed pertinent to the question. In using the tables, interviewee responses provided the starting-point in approaching the "answer" to each question, and other sources were then used to flesh out and/or to corroborate the interviewee material. When interview responses differed significantly and there was no archival evidence to help judge responses, a diversity of possible findings are reported. 117 6.2 Findings Related to the Theorized Ecological Benefits We 're going to hit some point where we've got a sustainable timber supply; the ecosystem that was originally there is going to be completely gone, but we 're going to have a sustainable timber supply. So let's be critical in our definitions, and sustainably providing timber to the mill is not my definition of sustainability. - Interviewee 1 (Revelstoke-area environmental activist), 1999 In terms of growing trees and the ecological sustainability of our tree-growing operations, we can keep cutting at approximately the rate we've forecast forever and ever. There '11 always be sixty to one hundred thousand cubic metres of wood to harvest off of our TFL. Ecologically, we're working on maintaining caribou habitat ... we're trying to come up with methods where we can continue harvesting and maintain caribou.... And we're cutting in high-elevation forests, but we'll still probably be able to sustain all those other species out there. But, it's kind of an unknown; there's all these things coming up that we learn as we continue. - Interviewee 9 (RCFC Operations Forester), 1999 This section presents the findings with respect to the theorized ecological benefits presented in Chapter Three. It also discusses some findings related to the main limitation of the case study - the existence of external regulations which dictate forest planning and management (discussed in Chapters One and Three). 6.2.1 Theorized Benefit: Community Connection With and Care For the Community Forest. Given an opportunity to manage a forest, the community forestry literature predicts that communities will perceive the interdependencies between themselves and the land. This will lead communities to meaningfully "connect" with and "care" for the forest they are managing when compared to the average private operator. These feelings are then expected to lead to enhanced stewardship of the forest. In order to explore whether the Revelstoke community has a sense of "connection" with and "care" for the community forest, the following questions were asked during the interviews: • Does the community have an awareness of the community forest land base? • Does the community feel a sense of connection and care for the community forest? Findings Interviewees unanimously asserted that the community is aware of the community forest's existence - particularly with respect to the following economic and social achievements of the RCFC: maintaining local forest employment, ensuring that local wood is milled locally, and hiring local 118 contractors and consultants. Furthermore, the RCFC was considered to be a rather high-profile organization in the community, as a sponsor of community events, clubs, and other organizations. However, when asked whether the community felt a sense of connection with the community forest land base - the actual focus of this question - those interviewees who distinguished between the RCFC and the land it manages were equally unanimous in stating that the average community member was largely unaware of it. Two interviewees, including the RCFC General Manager, suggested that the average community member would not know where it is (Int. 5 and 7, 1999). Some also suggested that the community doesn't distinguish between the community forest and other areas of land in the area (Int. 5, 10, and 12, 1999). Several interviewees indicated that hunters, fishers, and recreationists value the community forest land base for its value to their particular pastime, but do not attach any particular significance to the fact that it is a community forest (Int. 5, 10, and 17, 1999). One stated that, for instance, "there's no particular pride in going fishing in the community forest" (Int. 5, 1999). Numerous reasons were offered for this lack of awareness and connection, the most commonly reported being the relative isolation of the community forest from the community (Int. 4, 5, 9, and 17, 1999). Other reasons provided included: a lack of opportunities for public involvement in the management of the community forest (Int. X 1 , 1999), a lack of public events in the forest (Int. 10, 1999), the community forest is "too new" to generate much community awareness or connection (Int. 2, 1999), and the complexity and technical aspects of modern forest management do not allow people to become too involved with the land base (Int. 7, 1999). When probed as to whether or not the community has a heartfelt "care" for the community forest land base, no interviewee provided evidence for this theorized benefit. Some described a sense of pride among community members that the City was managing a portion of the forest industry for itself (Int. 1,11, 15, 1999), but this does not constitute a "care" for the actual land base. Most noted that the community, particularly that element of the community involved in forestry, cares about the economic benefits that the land base affords them - which is its instrumental rather than its inherent value (Int. 1, 3, 5, 6, 8, 11, and 14-17, 1999). One interviewee put it this way: / think there's two communities here. There's the community that is defined by active participation in the logging industry.... And they look at that land base as a more secure source of timber and their primary focus and interest in it is as a timber producer. In terms of the general public who aren't involved directly in the forest industry, I think they 're aware that the city owns it; they hope it will generate a bit of ' Outside of the two interviewees who wished to have the entirety of their interviews anonymous, several interviewees asked that portions of their interview be reported confidentially. When such passages are reported in this thesis, they are referenced with an "X". 119 revenue to help with the tax base and it's just a bit of a feel-good, non-issue. I don't think they really have strong feelings one way or the other. (Int. 8, 1999) To complete the analysis of this theorized benefit, it is necessary to probe further. Clearly, feelings of connection with and care for the land base - if they exist - will not impact forest management and planning unless the RCFC acts as an extension of the community. For this reason, the following question was also asked of the interviewees: • Does RCFC management reflect community values?2 How do you know? Findings Of the sixteen interviewees who were asked this question, all but two of the interviewees (Interviewees 4 and 5) felt that the RCFC was managing the community forest in a manner which would satisfy the average community member, but not necessarily all community members. This assertion was based on the assumption that the average community member is mostly interested in the economic and social aspects of the operation, but, as a tertiary consideration, also wants better-than-average forest practices. In a typical response, one interviewee claimed, "I think this community is largely interested in jobs, ... short-term and continued jobs as well, and that seems to be what RCFC is primarily about. It's an industrial forest that is there to be managed for forest products more than anything else" (Int. 11, 1999). According to the manager of the Downie Street Sawmill, "the majority of people in the community are realistic and they support a fairly aggressive, commercial approach to the Tree Farm Licence within the framework of good forestry practices" (Int. 6, 1999). And, speaking to environmental issues, the Operations Forester said, "there's a care in the community for the environment, but it's not an extremist viewpoint.... We're [the RCFC] kind of middle of the road, environmentally speaking, and the community is like that as well" (Int. 9, 1999). Some of the RCFC "insider" interviewees noted that part of the reason for establishing the community forest was the community's desire to improve forest practices in the area, especially over those exhibited by Westar (Int. 2, 9, 17). On this point, of those interviewees who felt comfortable responding to the question (fourteen), there was unanimous consent that the RCFC and the community at large care more for the land base than Westar did. However, it should also be acknowledged that, with one Interviewee 1 was not asked this question. 120 exception (Interviewee 6, the former Westar employee), Westar was rated as being an extremely poor operator. Some of the interviewees claimed that the values of a portion of the community - those with an interest in ecological issues - are not being reflected in RCFC management (Int. 1, 4, 10, 1999). A local, moderate, environmental activist had this to say: "I don't think they're interested in managing it [the community forest] with sustainability and ecological values at all. And that's a bit of a disappointment. I would like to see them doing some more selective cutting and more innovative logging" (Int. 4, 1999). This person, and one other interviewee, also claimed that people with "a sympathy for ecological values keep quiet" in regards to community forest management (Int. 1,4 [quoted], 1999 ). When probed for reasons as to why this is so, a more ardent (and blunt) environmental activist claimed that the people in power used "subtle pressures" in order to silence dissenters such as himself: "This is a small town, an isolated town, they can use pressures, and they do use pressures; subtle pressures that can affect your ability to get an income" (Int. 1, 1999). Interestingly, when asked why they believed that RCFC management reflected community values, several community forest "insiders," responded that they weren't hearing much negative feedback from the community, in other words, assent by default (Int. 7, 15, 17, 1999). Given the dissent expressed by some of the interviewees, this belief should probably be examined further. Other "insiders" claimed that public interest would only be piqued if the community forest began losing money (Int. 9, 17, 1999). For instance, the mayor stated: We don't get much turnout at our public annual meetings, and I suppose that's because everybody's happy that we're not spilling any red ink. If we ever spill any red ink, we'd have big turnouts, I'm sure. (Int. 17, 1999) The opinions of the environmentalists and those of the "insiders" are suggestive: perhaps there would be more discussion within the community about the community forest's management if the more environmentally-minded citizens felt comfortable expressing their views. Summary The community's "connection" is weak with the community forest land base. For the average community member, and especially for those involved with the forest industry, the connection is based on the land's instrumental value for maintaining forestry employment and keeping wood local - not in the sense of a connection and care for the land through some sort of "land ethic" where the community exhibits a heartfelt care for the land. Many reasons were offered for this, including the 121 remoteness of the community forest and the lack of community activities and involvement with the land base. RCFC management is seen as reflecting the values of the average community member who desire economic returns, but some interviewees suggest that some community members' environmentally-oriented values may not have room for expression in the public forum. These findings point to several themes - the original goals of the community forest, community values, public participation processes, and corporate and community economics - which will be discussed again in the final chapter. 6.2.2 Theorized Benefit: Wholistic Appreciation of the Forest To recap, this theorized benefit says that communities, since they are composed of a variety of individuals with different values and interests, will have a wholistic appreciation of the forest (i.e., will see values in the forest beyond fibre). To explore this theorized benefit in the Revelstoke case, interviewees were asked the following questions: • Does the community view the community forest as more than just a source of timber? • If so, what other values are important? • What is the most important value to the community? Findings There was unanimous agreement that community members perceive other values on the land in their area. Most of the interviewees noted that many Revelstokians are involved in outdoor activities, including hiking, hunting, fishing, backcountry and heli-skiing, berry picking, nature photography, snowmobiling, and so on, and that these pursuits lead citizens to appreciate other values in the community forest (Int. 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 10, 11-13, and 15, 1999). Important to the central questions of this thesis, however, two interviewees maintained that the community's appreciation of recreational values in the forest was equally applied to other forests in the area, and hence had nothing to do with TFL 56 being community-owned (Int. 3 and 5, 1999). Three others further suggested that only a few people perceived anything more than fibre on the community forest land base (Int. 4, 11, and 17, 1999). Two more felt that, while other values are recognized, they aren't discussed much and, in the words of one, "other attributes, values, are very much secondary, and perhaps not even secondary but further down the list" (Int. 8 and 16 [quoted], 1999). One interviewee made the point that, while some may perceive values on the land base that are important to them, that doesn't necessarily translate into a wholistic appreciation of what's going on in a forest system (Int. 10, 1999). 122 One interviewee made the case that the initiation of the community forest actually seemed to lessen community members' concern for non-timber values, specifically wilderness conservation values, because once the community gained control over the land base the desire to create employment and revenue from the timber on it overwhelmed other interests (Int. 1, 1999). As evidence, he cited the fact that, previous to 1993 (when the community forest was conceived), community leadership had been pushing for a wilderness park in the Downie Creek watershed as part of the Protected Areas Strategy. This interviewee claims that, after the inception of the community forest, the issue was dropped and now the area is being logged by the RCFC. The following remark made by the Downie Street Sawmill manager likewise points to the possibility that community control has increased community members' appreciation of economic considerations: The benefits of RCFC to this community from my perspective, rather than the people in this community who aren't quite as keen on commercial forestry as I am, is that they've really brought on a sense of realization of what the forests around us are all about in terms of contributing to the social and economic benefits of stability. When the City got into the business of holding a forest licence, a whole change in attitude in this community [occurred] in terms of support for the industry in general.... After RCFC, you begin to see a change in people realizing the benefits in commercial forestry. (Int. 6, 1999) As with the last theorized benefit, community perception of other values is relatively meaningless unless the RCFC itself plans and manages for those other values. Therefore, the following questions were also asked of the interviewees: • Does the RCFC plan and manage for values other than timber? • How does the RCFC compare with the industry average in terms of managing and planning for values other than timber? • Where would you put the RCFC on a scale from one (1) to ten (10), if one is managing and planning only for the output of one value (fibre), and ten is managing equally for all values? Findings Many interviewees began their response to these questions with the statement that the legislation requires forestry firms to plan and manage for values other than timber, and that the RCFC along with all other forestry operators are probably managing for other values only to the extent that they 123 have to (Int. 5, 6, 8, 11, 12, and 16, 1999). One interviewee, whose work involves interacting with sixteen other licensees across the province, was uniquely eloquent on this point: Given that you didn't have the Code, I'd bet dollars to donuts that they'd be in the riparian removing timber. Given that the caribou weren 't an issue raised by [the Ministry of the Environment], / doubt that RCFC or anybody else out there would take the initiative to manage the forest with caribou habitat in mind. (Int. 16, 1999) Still, in assessing the RCFC's compliance with established requirements, most of the interviewees believed that the organization does a better-than-average job of managing for other values than the average industrial operator in the area (Int. 6-16, 1999). Most of the RCFC "insiders" adamantly pointed out the lengths to which the organization plans for other values, providing examples such as managing for mountain caribou habitat (an old-growth-dependent species) and wilderness recreation, and underlined the fact that these endeavors have reduced their profits (Int. 2, 7, 9, 17, 1999). Two "insiders" were also quick to state that managing for other values has to be "balanced with the fact that we're a business" (Int. 2, 9 [quoted], 1999). Moreover, many of the interviewees, including the RCFC Operations Forester, also stated that the RCFC is not in a qualitatively different class of its own, and that it is similar to other local firms which operate at the environmentally "good" end of the spectrum in the area (Int. 6, 8, 9, 1999). The District Manager, who oversees all the operators in the entire Columbia Forest District, refused to differentiate between the RCFC and other operators, saying that they "all rank high" (Int. 3, 1999). As has been stated, the RCFC was generally considered to be a relatively good performer insofar as complying with existing regulations. At the same time, all of the interviewees indicated that the RCFC has lobbied local land-use planning processes in order to impact these very regulations. The General Manager, Operations Forester, and a Minister's Advisory Committee (MAC) member asserted that the intention of the organization is to make sure the environmental constraints spelled out in land use plans are scientifically legitimate (Int. 7, 9, and 12, 1999), which is not unethical. Yet most other interviewees stated that the goal of RCFC lobbying has been to reduce environmental constraints to timber harvesting in order to promote economic values (Int. 1, 5, 6, 8, 10, 11, 16, 1999). Indeed, the Operations Forester said that, referring to an earlier draft of the MAC plan that included more highly-restrictive habitat zones than the current plan, he was "quite concerned that the imposition of strict zones throughout our Tree Farm Licence would be really detrimental to us. In terms of being an economically-viable operation" (Int. 9, 1999). Intentions aside, the upshot is that the RCFC has been lobbying for reductions in environmental constraints, and these reductions have 124 helped maintain the organizations' cut level. One biologist summed up the RCFC's approach to environmental regulations this way: They are very willing to try experimental cuts and different techniques [in order to comply with existing requirements]. They will respond to review of their plans and modify things as requested frequently. To have less impact on wildlife.... At the same point, they have consistently worked for lower levels of management for biodiversity, for ungulate winter range, and for caribou. A lot of other companies haven't done as much to reduce the guidelines that apply to their land base as the RCFC has because they haven't been as involved in the land use planning operation. (Int. 8, 1999) Thus, the RCFC is considered to be ethical and creative insofar as its operational compliance with environmental regulations, yet at the same time it is believed to be very actively lobbying - at the local land-use planning level - to make such regulations less restrictive of timber production. The average score given the RCFC for the third question above was 6.0, indicating that interviewees perceive the RCFC to be focusing mainly on timber while other values are moderately considered. Perhaps not surprisingly, the biologists and environmentalists consistently gave the organization a lower score than did the "insiders" and the Forest District Manager (whose job it is to facilitate the efficient production of timber on a sustained-yield basis while considering other values, or "constrained maximization"). The former group; Interviewees 1, 4, 5, 8, 10, and 11; gave the RCFC an average score of 3.0 (scores ranged from 1.5 to 6.5), indicating that the RCFC focused mainly on timber values, with very little attention to other values. The latter group; Interviewees 2, 3, 6, 7, 9, 13, 15, and 17; gave the RCFC an average score of 7.5 (scores ranged from 5 to 9), indicating that the RCFC is much closer to the theorized benefit wherein all the values of the forest are valued equally. Summary The community does seem to recognize the existence of non-timber values on the community forest land base, as well as on the rest of the local, forested area. These tend to be recreation values. However, indications are that the majority of community members view timber as significantly more important than other values, and that the community-owned status of TFL 56 does not necessarily cause community members to perceive more values on that land base than on others in the area. In fact, community-based forest management may have actually undermined Revelstoke community members' appreciation of the 'whole forest' in the drive to realize the tree farm's economic values. The RCFC does plan and manage for non-timber values, as do the other local licensees, but the degree to which any profit-seeking forestry firm - private or otherwise - would do so in the absence 125 of compulsory legislation is uncertain. In the case of the RCFC, the tenor of its input to local planning processes hints that the organization would perform less management for other values in the absence of legislation. Insofar as complying with regulations which demand management for other values, the RCFC is considered to be comparable to other "good" (i.e., more environmentally-friendly) industrial operators in the area. Finally, the environmental scientists interviewed, all of whom gave the RCFC high marks for compliance, indicated that the RCFC greatly emphasizes timber over other values. These findings point to several themes - the role of external regulations, the community's values, corporate and community economics, and the operating paradigm of the RCFC - all of which will be discussed again later in the thesis. 6.2.3 Theorized Benefit: Closed Circle of Costs and Benefits Community forestry organizations are generally headquartered close to the forest they manage and are dependent upon this forest for their long-term survival. Due to these conditions, these organizations are expected to be more likely than large private firms to steward the land base and make decisions which reflect long-term costs and benefits, rather than be motivated to liquidate or neglect the forest in the pursuit of short-term profit maximization. The following questions were asked to determine whether the RCFC, in its planning and management, is taking such an approach to the land base: • Is the RCFC a long-term initiative for the community? If so, does RCFC decision-making reflect this long-term commitment? • Are there other groups in the area that feel the impact of RCFC decision-making? If so, how are they reacting? Findings The RCFC seems to be at least intended to last over the long term. "Insiders" often pointed to the RCFC Vision Statement, which includes clauses connoting the intention to "sustainably" manage the forest, and to form a "lasting relationship with the land" (See Box 5.2). They also referred to specific actions of the organization which they believe actualize this vision (Int. 2, 7, 9, 15, and 17, 1999). These actions mainly involved RCFC's policy of "cutting across the profile" rather than harvesting only the best wood, and the fact that the organization is cutting in both high and low-cost harvesting sites in order to maintain some high-quality, low-cost wood for the future. The RCFC's Operations Forester claimed that other companies high-grade their timber (cutting the best timber 126 from an area, and leaving the worst behind) because of their drive to maximize profits over the short-term. According to the Operations Forester, the RCFC also maximizes profits, "but in the long-run, not in the short run" (Int. 9, 1999). Even so, the General Manager noted that short-term financial viability remained critical because "if it's not financially viable in the short term, then the long-term becomes a moot point ... for us because the community is not going to tolerate subsidizing it" (Int. 7, 1999). One interviewee went further and stressed that the RCFC strives to keep the cut up regardless of the long-term consequences: "I would say that, in the short term, RCFC, like every licensee, is doing their best to maintain the cut at what they think is reasonable and feasible to keep on going. I don't see that they're making short-term plans to deal in the long-term" (Int. 16, 1999). Another interviewee, a Ministry of Forests biologist, said that "in general I think the forest industry is trying to maintain a high level of cut and around now, particularly in this area ... people are starting to really question whether we can sustain the cut with what we're doing now" (Int. 11, 1999). In other words, even when narrowing our view to include the sustainability of timber only (and forgetting biodiversity, resilience, and so on) the RCFC and other local operators may be cutting too much. A desire to maintain the cut is certainly apparent in the following example of RCFC decision-making. In his interview, the General Manager explained how, starting after the next twenty to thirty years, the community forest will begin to experience a severe timber shortage. The reasons for this involve the current timber inventory, the bimodal and bipolar age-class distribution on the land base, and the obligation (through the Minister's Advisory Committee Draft Plan and other requirements) that the RCFC manage for other values. The story begins with the fact that the community forest was originally endowed with approximately ten million cubic metres of mature wood on the operable land base. Westar, and lately the RCFC, harvested that figure down to approximately six million cubic metres. In conventional forestry, the organization would be allowed to harvest down to around two million metres, or about twenty percent of the potential volume on the operable land base, which (according to Forest Practices Code requirements) would leave enough wood for future harvesting and for environmental issues such as biodiversity. However, as part of the local land use planning processes, another two million metres must be left standing to support other values, primarily caribou habitat. That means the RCFC may only harvest down to four million cubic metres (m3), leaving it with only two million cubic metres of presently-mature wood left for harvesting. At its current Allowable Annual Cut (AAC) of 100,000 m3/year, this corresponds to only about twenty more years of wood. According to sustained yield forestry, this would not be a problem if the forest had been scientifically managed so that, as old-growth timber volumes were drawn down, second-growth timber would come on line. Unfortunately, due to past over-cutting and insufficient reforestation, the community forest has very 127 little wood in the intermediate age-classes - in other words, the forest inventory is heavy at both ends with old-growth and very immature wood. This means that, while the currently mature timber volume is being drawn down, there will be no wood to replace it for approximately another five to six decades (Silvatech Consulting Ltd., 1999).3 It is mainly for these reasons that the RCFC AAC is, as was reported in Chapter Five, almost fifty-six percent higher than what is considered sustainable by the Ministry of Forests. According to the RCFC General Manager: "As this mature draws down, and hence, all your flexibility, your ability to adapt to markets and that gets less and less, we come right down to a point that gets tight, tight, tight. We can easily see twenty, thirty [years of wood available], but that last twenty years [until the second-growth becomes available] is just going to be a real crunch out there" (Int. 7, 1999). In order to combat this crunch, the RCFC is attempting to draw wood into the operable portion of the land base by harvesting above the Operable Cut Line, by using small-patch clearcuts and other "innovative harvesting practices" in caribou zones, and by harvesting in areas with stands considered to be unmerchantable in the past." When asked if there were any negative implications to harvesting above operability, the General Manager acknowledged that road-building in unstable terrain could be an issue, as well as the possibility that re-establishing forests at high elevations could be difficult due to the thinner soils and a harsher climate. One interviewee noted that "we have no idea of what it's going to take to grow a tree up there. We have no idea what the impact is on the environment...." (Int. 16, 1999). Aware of the timber-crunch situation outlined above, one interviewee suggested that "the only way they might stay afloat, one way is that they reduce the cut to as low as they can survive and then they might have a long-term chance, but they've been lobbying to [keep the cut up]" (Int. 10, 1999). These and other issues will be discussed more later, but they are presented here in order to highlight the degree to which the RCFC is attempting to maintain its cut level. In order to avoid a large reduction in cut which could be necessary to maintain future timber harvests (ignoring whole ecosystem sustainability for now), the organization has chosen some rather risky practices. Regardless of these potential problems, the RCFC is at least concerned with future timber sustainability, and is taking some strides (such as cutting across the profile and using innovative harvesting practices) to attempt to ensure that the company has wood to harvest on TFL 56 in the This situation is not unique to Revelstoke. On average, in the rest of the province most second-growth forests will not be available for another five decades (see section 2.2.4). Furthermore, even after this second-growth does come on line, the volume per tree will be significantly less than what can be realized from old-growth stands. This is the falldown effect discussed in Chapter Two. The Ministry of Forests defines the Operable Cut Line as "a line drawn on a map to differentiate between areas that are operable and those that are not, given status quo harvesting and reforestation technology. Inoperable areas are not economically viable to harvest without seriously impairing the site or other resource 128 future. The overall indication was that, to the extent they can do so without spilling red ink in the short-term, the RCFC has a desire to maintain long-term timber sustainability on the community forest land base. Whole forest ecosystem sustainability, however, is different than timber sustainability (which expresses the continual production, and human use, of one discrete part of the forest). Although one non-"insider" interviewee, the local forestry consultant/MAC member (Interviewee 12), insisted that the RCFC's Board and management are concerned equally with future timber sustainability and with the health of the whole land base over the long-term, many others disagreed. Several interviewees, including most of the environmental scientists, felt that short-term economic goals superseded any long-term whole-ecosystem concerns and dictated decision-making on the part of the organization (Int. 1, 4, 5, 8, 10, and 16, 1999). One interviewee expressed concern that, even on the economic level, the RCFC may be compromising future tourism employment and income by not preserving the aesthetic and biological integrity of their land base (Int. 4, 1999). Another interviewee claimed that the RCFC's "innovative forest practices" are, ecologically speaking, "taking risks with non-timber values in order to get access to wood" (Int. 10, 1999). Another interviewee, an ecologist involved with the MAC process, noted that the RCFC's actions to keep the cut up "aren't leaving them much of a cushion" in regards to maintaining non-timber values on the land base. He went on to indicate that "common sense would dictate" the use of the precautionary principle in making management decisions of such import (Int. 5, 1999). Furthermore, the interviewee who was noted above as insisting that the RCFC Board and staff care for the whole land base beyond just sustaining timber production also acknowledged that the organization is not leaving a lot of room for error (Int. 12, 1999). Interestingly, several of the environmental scientists who strongly insisted that the RCFC is not making long-term, ecologically-based decisions in its planning and management also provided an economic rationale for this behaviour (Int. 1, 8, and 10, 1999). When asked whether the RCFC was managing the community forest for long-term considerations, one interviewee said: Well, long-term in any economic business would be twenty years, and I think they 're in that ballpark. But, in terms of ecological timescales, of course not, the current economic system would penalize them out of business. (Int. 10, 1999) In the same vein, a biologist pointed out that: The community forest model does promote long-term stewardship but the overall emphasis in their operating still has to be turning in a viable business cycle over one values. The operability line is used to determine the operable land base in long-run, sustained yield calculations (B.C. Ministry of Forests, 1998A). 129 and five-year periods.... If the land base can't produce what they require to be viable, they're still forced to produce what they feel they need to be viable. It [the community forest model] can't solve that essential conflict. (Int. 8, 1999) In other words, even if the RCFC Board and staff wanted to reduce the cut on the land base, and make the corporation's practices more environmentally sensitive, it might not survive competition from lower-cost producers. Expressing this issue at a larger scale, another interviewee claimed that the pressure to feed local mills - whose capacity he believed is higher than the capacity of forests to produce wood - overwhelms any initiative through collective land use planning processes or by individual businesses to make long-term decisions in forestry in the Revelstoke area (Int. 1, 1999).5 Summary The findings indicate that the RCFC desires to ensure long-term timber sustainability on the land base, although not to the extent that the corporation is willing to spill red-ink in doing so. In striving to maintain the cut at an economically-appropriate point, however, the organization does not seem to be operating with long-term whole-ecosystem sustainability in mind, and may not even be ensuring timber sustainability beyond the next twenty years. In fact, it may not be possible for the corporation to plan and manage the forest for long-term ecological sustainability due to the need to minimize prices in the forest products market. These findings hint at a few themes - the original intention and goals of the community forest, corporate and community economics, the guiding paradigm of the organization, and the organization's response to external regulations - which will be discussed again later in the thesis. 6.2.4 Theorized Benefit: Better Use and Generation of Local Knowledge This theorized benefit includes the predictions that a) community forest organizations will be more motivated than other operators to generate and collect knowledge on the land base in order to improve decision-making, and b) community forest organizations provide more opportunity for the use of local knowledge, including traditional, anecdotal, and scientific knowledge. In order to determine the degree to which this theorized benefit has been realized in the Revelstoke case, the following questions were asked of the interviewees: • Is the RCFC using local knowledge in its planning and management of the community forest? Mill overcapacity is discussed in Chapter Two, section 2.2.6. 130 • Is the RCFC generating more knowledge about its land base than the average local operator? Findings Tallying the responses, of the fifteen interviewees who were comfortable answering the question, thirteen responded that the RCFC was using locally-based information sources - to varying degrees and of varying qualities. Of the sixteen interviewees who were comfortable answering the next question, eleven stated that the RCFC generates more knowledge about its land base than the average local operator. Supporting these findings, the RCFC's 1999 Forest Development Plan reports that input from local hunters and guide-outfitters was incorporated into the plan, and also notes that the organization has worked closely with Canadian Mountain Holidays (CMH) on areas where heli-skiing might occur (this was confirmed by Interviewee 16, a CMH representative) (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1999). Several of the interviewees observed that most of the staff and Boardpersons of the RCFC are long-time locals, which affords local insight into planning and management (Int. 12, 13, and 15, 1999). The General Manager and an RCFC contractor each claimed that the small size and concise form of TFL 56, and the long-term nature of the tenure, allows one to "become familiar with your land base and the little intricacies out there" (Int. 7 [quoted] and 13, 1999). Several others noted that the RCFC seems to expend more money and resources on information-gathering on their land base (Int. 3, 8, 9, and 11, 1999). And finally, many interviewees observed that the RCFC does its best to utilize local technical skills (for such things as timber inventories, geotechnical issues, etc.) and local contractors (Int. 2, 3, 9, 12, 13, 16 and 17, 1999). Taken together, the tallies and other evidence indicate a relatively strong validification of this theorized benefit. As a note, one interviewee claimed that it was the quality of the staff, their "wise, thoughtful mindset," rather than the community-based nature of the tenure, that causes the organization to generate better knowledge, although this interviewee also made the point that community forestry "creates a place for people who maybe don't fit into the traditional mindset" (Int. 12, 1999). There are also some interesting supplementary findings which should be reported. These relate to the external requirements for information-gathering, and to the nature of the information used and gathered by the RCFC. First off, several interviewees indicated that Forest Practices Code guidelines, more than anything else, determine the type and amount of information gathered by any licensee, and, in fact, actually constricts the gathering of un-conventional, or traditional knowledge from the land base (Int. 6, 7, 9, and 10, 1999). As one interviewee put it, 131 The opportunity to really utilize local ecological knowledge is somewhat limited because you are enforced by the Forest Practices Code to use certified professionals; you 're bringing in geotech guys, you 're bringing in hydrologists; you 're bringing in biologists. Their local knowledge could be pretty skinny, but they have the certification [required by the FPC].... The sort of anecdotal evidence to do with wildlife populations, that kind of stuff, this stuff has been taken over by professionals. (Int. 6, 1999) As an example the Operations Forester noted that, were the community forest not subject to provincial regulations, one significant change in RCFC management would be to rely much more on in-house and local expertise in bridge and road building (Int. 9, 1999). Another issue raised by the interviewees was the type of information used by the RCFC. One interviewee who indicated that the RCFC generated more information than most firms also pointed out that the organization excelled in gathering data which supported its cut level, and does not gather information out of a concern for non-timber values (Int. 8, 1999). In fact, the large majority of examples of information gathered by the RCFC were timber values-oriented (such as growth yield projections and timber inventories), which corroborates this claim, although the Operations Forester and General Manager each discussed the collection of wildlife habitat data. One interviewee made a strong case that the RCFC actually resists ecological information because of the potential for it to put a downward pressure on the cut. He began his case by pointing out that the Community Land Use Negotiating Committee (see Chapter Five) had recommended ecological inventories for the Revelstoke region (see Community Land Use Negotiating Committee, 1995: 10 and 24). When provided with an opportunity to inventory the ecosystems of the community forest, the RCFC passed:6 In fact, I see evidence of moving away and resisting knowledge.... There was a proposal to do an ecological mapping of the Downie drainage, and that went to the forest corporation, and that was [to be funded] through Forest Renewal back when they had a lot of money, and that one just disappeared into the netherworld.... There's no interest in having that information because it may constrain your ability to get the timber out. (Int. 1, 1999) This and a further interviewee also claimed that un-conventional sources of local knowledge were "snickered" at by the RCFC and other industrial forestry operations, and by the government agencies which regulate them (Int. 1 [quoted] and 10, 1999). As a last note, Interviewee 10 noted that there Recommendation 24 reads: "Government should adopt ecosystem inventory techniques and an ecosystem management strategy similar to those being developed in the Prince Rupert Forest Region" (Community Land Use Negotiating Committee, 1995: 15). 132 aren't any First Nations communities, nor is there a history of First Nations knowledge in the area, for the RCFC to consult. Summary The RCFC does appear to use local knowledge and generate more knowledge than most operators for use in the planning and management of the community forest land base. Some interviewees felt that the RCFC might actually use more local ecological knowledge were it not constrained by the FPC. On the other hand, some other interviewees felt that, while the RCFC is information-rich, the type of information it collects is used to support timber values and not to inform decision-making in order to steward the entire forest ecosystem. Therefore, the findings indicate that the theorized ecological benefit is quantitatively realized in the Revelstoke case - the organization generates more knowledge, and uses more local knowledge - but the quality of this knowledge may not be consistent with the types of information necessary to properly steward the whole forest ecosystem. These findings bring up a few issues - the organization's response to external regulations, the guiding paradigm of the organization, and public participation in the community forest - which will be discussed again later in the thesis. 6.2.5 Theorized Benefit: Adaptive Management Since community forest organizations are expected to be small in scale and headquartered close to the managed forest, to "care" for the health of the whole forest, to have a long-term relationship with a specific tract of forest, and to be situated and motivated to collect good knowledge, they should be better able to perform adaptive management of the forest. That is, recognizing the uncertainty inherent to ecosystem "management," the organization will be able to a) design quasi-experimental interventions in the forest ecosystem (e.g. try different harvesting systems), b) perceive feedbacks from the forest subsequent to the planned human interventions, and c) adapt planning and management to reflect these feedbacks. In order to explore whether this theorized benefit is occurring in the Revelstoke case, the following question was asked of the interviewees: • Is the RCFC practicing adaptive management? Please give some examples to justify your response. 133 Findings Of the sixteen interviewees that responded to this question, thirteen answered that the RCFC practices adaptive management, and a number of interviewees (including a few "outsiders") emphasized that the RCFC is, relatively speaking, a very flexible and creative organization, willing to engage in innovation on their land base (Int. 2, 7, 8, 9, 12, 16, and 17, 1999). These findings were corroborated by a couple of statements made by RCFC staff. For instance, the General Manager acknowledged the uncertainties inherent to forest management: For us to say we know everything that's going on out there is just silly, and as more information is gained and as we see how things respond to different treatments, we 're adapting all along. (Int. 7, 1999) The General Manager went on to note that the small scale of the land base enhanced his organizations' ability to perceive information and adapt, saying "As a forester, this is a really nice-sized piece of land. You can get your mind wrapped around this" (Int. 7, 1999). The Operations Forester attributed the RCFC's success at adapting to circumstances to "being small and being close to all the operations and being able to see where you've made a mistake or where you may have improved something" (Int. 9, 1999). Finally, the RCFC's consistent sponsorship of the Columbia Mountains Institute of Applied Ecology (CMIAE), an organization dedicated to linking scientists with land managers in the Columbia Mountains, and the fact that the RCFC Operations Forester serves on the CMIAE Board, underlines the corporation's interest in acquiring applied knowledge from the land base, a prerequisite for adaptive management. It is worth noting that, while these findings are supportive of the theorized benefit, two interviewees claimed that the organization was flexible and adaptive due to the quality of the staff rather than due to the community-based nature of the tenure (Int. 8 and 12, 1999). Accepting that the RCFC is adaptive, the question remains as to how this might impact ecological sustainability in the community forest. In other words, what is the nature of the organization's adaptive management; to what end is it used? The interviews and archival evidence indicate that the RCFC is flexible and adaptive primarily to achieve the ultimate goal of maintaining the cut on the land base, not to maintain the overall ecological sustainability of the land base while harvesting. The following statement by the Mayor, made in response to the question of whether the RCFC is performing adaptive management, is illuminating in this regard: "We're doing lots of innovative things in response to problems on our land base" (Int. 17, 1999). As it turns out, the focus of the innovations isn't on achieving harmonious practices on the land base, it is upon fixing some 134 constraining issues - issues such as caribou habit which can only be perceived as "problems" only when seen in light of an over-riding goal to maximize timber. Although some of the RCFC's innovations represent attempts to minimize the adverse impacts of harvesting, the difference in ends is very important, as the following discussion will reveal. While many interviewees believed that the organization is practicing adaptive management, few were able to give examples of such, and even less seemed to know what the concept means.7 Of the few examples offered, the only pro-active example was a project designed to enhance timber values. This is a program of experimental plots where intensive timber management (such as thinning, fertilization, and pruning) is being used to "see what effect that might have on increased growth rates in this valley" (Int. 2, 1999). While experiments in enhancing timber values are not necessarily negative to whole-system ecological sustainability, there is also no reason to believe that they are supportive of it. The rest of the examples were re-active in nature. One was the RCFC's program of harvesting above the Operable Cut Line (discussed in section 6.2.3). This endeavor is aimed at mitigating the loss of harvestable land base (and hence, the volume of cut) in the community forest caused by the implementation of caribou habitat guidelines in local land-use planning processes.8 The other re-active example given was the use of "innovative harvesting methods" by the RCFC in order to continue harvesting within areas designated as caribou habitat. As evidence of this, the Draft RCFC Forest Development Plan of March, 1999 includes the statement that alternative silviculture systems are being tested "to allow harvesting in sensitive wildlife habitat while minimizing adverse effects" (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1999: 12). In both examples, the RCFC is reacting to externally-imposed environmental guidelines, and experimenting with risky practices in order to maintain their cut level. Risk in itself is not a bad thing; it is inherent to adaptive management. There is always the risk that environmental feedbacks from management practices will be negative. However, when using adaptive management from an ecological perspective, the fundamental objective is the maintenance of whole-ecosystem sustainability while harvesting. Taking risks in the context of maximizing timber is a qualitatively different exercise. One interviewee put it this way: 7 A number of the interviewees did not have a grounding in natural resource management principles. Even among those that did, the concept of "adaptive management" was not always recognized. The interviewer provided the following definition to all of the interviewees: "Adaptive management is a process whereby one perturbs a natural system, monitors the feedbacks, analyzes the results, and changes management practices in order to incorporate the results." 8 Harvesting above the operability line was clearly acknowledged by the RCFC's General Manager as essential to maintaining the economic viability of the organization in the face of mounting environmental constraints (Int. 7, 1999). 135 What it really means is doing experimental stuff at high risk.... So, I think in doing adaptive management they 've been very willing to go into flood plains, ... to do partial cutting in caribou and winter range valleys.... So, is that a good thing or a bad thing ? They appear to have done it simply save their own cut.... It's taking risks with non-timber values in order to get access to wood that might otherwise, in a progressive vision, not be available to them. (Int. 10, 1999) Judging by the rest of that interview, the "progressive vision" alluded to by this interviewee would most likely be informed by the Ecological Worldview discussed in Chapter Four. This means that forest planning would be based on an extensive foundation of information about the forest ecosystem, which would then - with an ethic informed by the precautionary principle - generate management practices. Feedbacks would be monitored, with subsequent incorporation of findings into management practices in an iterative process. One interviewee felt that this sort of practice should emerge from community-based forestry, at least if "the sentiment is there to do a kind of management that is ecologically responsible.... The opportunities are there [in Revelstoke], but I would say they're not being exploited" (Int. 1, 1999). One significant problem with the RCFC's adaptive management seems to be the lack of a comprehensive core of knowledge about the ecosystem driving their adaptations. One interviewee, while discussing RCFC's above-operability harvesting, had this to say: We realize that we have poor data in the valley bottoms and midslopes, and if we would agree that we have poor data there, then we would have to agree that we've got virtually no data higher up the slopes. I think that moving the harvesting above operability to mitigate caribou concerns is perhaps another way of getting volumes without really mitigating caribou concerns. (Int. 16, 1999) The Chief Forester of British Columbia also expressed concern that the RCFC's plans to harvest timber above operability were not supported by good information. During the first provincial Timber Supply Review process, the RCFC submitted a timber supply analysis for review. The analysis, performed in 1995, included a long-term harvesting land base of 24,659 hectares, an eighteen percent increase over the previous figure of 20,930 hectares. This increase was due to the inclusion of some previously unmerchantable stands, and 2427 hectares of stands above the Operable Cut Line. The Chief Forester did not whole-heartedly accept this proposal because of the inherent unpredictability of working above operability and the lack of information justifying RCFC's figures: 9 Interestingly, RCFC staff know that they are engaged in a risky undertaking. For instance, the General Manager, as was noted in section 6.2.3, acknowledged that there could be environmental impacts to cutting in 136 / am aware that the terrain above the Operable Cut Line is very rugged and often characterized by steep slopes, with shallow soils and significant bands of bedrock at the surface.... A proposal to increase the operable land base by 18% should be supported by some field work and map-based criteria to verify the probability that such an increase is appropriate from both economic and environmental perspectives. In this case, there is no field work to substantiate the figure of2427 hectares, nor any historical performance in these areas. Later, he noted the impact on biodiversity of harvesting above operability: / note, too, that the licensee's proposal to incorporate previously inoperable land into the timber harvesting land base would further restrict biodiversity management options by reducing the amount of area that would otherwise continue to carry older stands. And finally, in providing his rationale for a lower cut on TFL 56 than that desired by the RCFC, the Chief Forester focused upon the risk and uncertainty involved in operating on the community forest land base: To preserve future options, to provide a suitable margin of error to accommodate the high risk and uncertainty inherent in this unit, and to ensure a smooth and gradual transition to what I expect to be a lower long-term harvest level than that projected in the base case [of the RCFC timber supply analysis], / have concluded that a 9 percent reduction is needed at this time. (Pederson, 1996) As it turned out, the Chief Forester granted the RCFC a "partition cut" which set targets for harvesting above operability. If these targets were met, the area of land used to determine the long-term harvest could be expanded. RCFC staff have informed the author that they have exceeded the cut targets. This "proves" that the economic viability of harvesting above operability, at least when done in conjunction with harvesting in lower-cost areas to achieve an acceptable average cost, is sound. However, the long-term environmental viability of harvesting in these areas - the impact on habitat, reforestation, terrain stability, and so on - is unknown. The significance of this finding is the fact that the RCFC's decision to harvest above operability was motivated by economics, not by ecosystem-based information. This on a land base where the response to human interventions is uncertain to an unusual degree, and where there is a high presence of non-timber values. Each of these conditions should warrant very conservative interventions. areas above the Operable Cut Line. 137 Summary The findings indicate that the RCFC is, relative to other operators in the area, a very flexible, creative, and adaptive forest company. The small size of the organization and its "localness" to the managed forest seem to provide it with an enhanced opportunity to engage in sensitive, adaptive management. However, the organization is adapting to externally-imposed environmental guidelines rather than to environmental feedbacks from management interventions. This is a qualitatively-different type of adaptive management than what is predicted by the theorized benefit, and may have adverse effects upon ecological sustainability in the community forest. These findings have touched upon several themes - the organization's response to external regulations, corporate economics, and the guiding paradigm of the organization - which will be discussed again later in the thesis. 6.2.6 Theorized Benefit: Better Forestry Practices Taken together, all of the previous theorized ecological benefits of community forestry are expected to lead to the adoption of, ecologically speaking, better forest practices. In order to explore the existence of this benefit, the interviewees were asked the following questions: • Are RCFC forest practices "ecologically better," given current knowledge, than the average for the industry? • How would you rate the industry on a scale of one to ten, if one (1) was the worst practices imaginable, ecologically speaking and given current knowledge, and ten (10) was the best? • How would you rate the RCFC on the same scale? Please Note: These questions were not designed to judge whether the RCFC, or the forest industry as a whole, is achieving ecological sustainability through its forest practices. The questions were designed to determine whether there is a discernable difference between the industry and the RCFC. Findings Of the fifteen interviewees who felt comfortable responding to the first question, six said that RCFC practices were better, and the remainder indicated that they were roughly equivalent to the rest of the industry. No interviewee considered RCFC practices to be worse than the industry average. Interestingly, when responding to the numerically-based questions, twelve out of the sixteen interviewees gave the RCFC a higher score, by the slight average margin of 0.8. Two interviewees 138 felt that the RCFC used significantly better practices than the industry average, one of which (the RCFC General Manager) claimed that the RCFC's use of innovative harvesting techniques is "driving a lot of the improvements with other companies and operators here" (Int. 7 [quoted] and 12, 1999). The archival evidence also indicates that RCFC practices are at least at the good end of the spectrum. A 1997 audit of the corporation's management and practices found that it met or "substantially" met government regulations such as the Forest Practices Code (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1997). Furthermore, a 1997 survey of 146 Revelstoke-area "ecosystem management stakeholders"10 indicated that the RCFC is perceived as having a "modestly good" environmental track record. In the same study, the RCFC was also considered to be well ahead of "other timber licensees" as far as its environmental track record (the RCFC ranked fifth out of eleven possible organizations, while "other timber operators" ranked eleventh) (Feick, 1998: 12). Still, most of the thesis interviewees who felt that the RCFC was better than the industry average also noted that it was in the same spectrum as the rest of the industry, or were comparable to other "good operators" in the area (Int. 2, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 16, 1999). Bell Pole Ltd., a private company, was often cited as another "good" local operator. This lack of a substantial difference between the RCFC and other good operators may have been the reason why several interviewees were unwilling to say that the RCFC used better forest practices, but at the same time gave the corporation a slightly better score on the numerical question. In other words, their practices are good, but not qualitatively different than what would be expected from the rest of the industry. Many interviewees also indicated that the precise and all-encompassing requirements of the Forest Practices Code make it difficult to distinguish between the RCFC and the other local operators (Int. 1, 3, 6, 9, 13, and 15, 1999). Two interviewees also made the case that, without the Code, all operators including the RCFC would engage in much worse forest practices (Int. 11 and 16, 1999), implying a downward pressure on the environmental quality of forest practices. Another interviewee noted that the RCFC operates at about the same level as industry because "it's the cheapest way to operate" (Int. 8, 1999). The General Manager indirectly provided a rationale for this downward pressure when he made the case that, were the RCFC to greatly increase the environmental sensitivity, and hence the costs, of its practices, it would be in danger of putting itself out of business: I'd say we're trying to operate a point above them [the other operators]. And doing that, we may be raising our costs a little bit.... They're basically setting the market. You can't get too far out of step or otherwise you'll be out of business. (Int. 7, 1999) These were individuals identified as having a stake in the outcome of ecosystem management policies and programs in Revelstoke's two local National Parks - Mount Revelstoke and Glacier. 139 In a business environment, then, every operator would want to comply with current regulations in order to avoid costly penalties, but there would be no incentive to further enhance environmental performance because as costs rise, the ability to compete lowers. The RCFC could price itself out of the market by engaging in environmentally-sensitive practices due to their higher cost. Summary The findings show that the RCFC is considered to be a "good" operator, as far as the environmental sensitivity of their practices, yet not to be qualitatively different than the other operators. Moreover, given the fact that the RCFC is competing with other local businesses to sell its product, there may be little room for the organization to qualitatively enhance the environmental friendliness of its practices. These findings touch upon two themes - corporate and community economics and the guiding paradigm of the corporation - which will be discussed again in the final chapter. Another issue, the organization's response to external regulations, is also alluded to in these findings. This is the topic of the next section. 6.2.7 The Role of External Regulations As has been repeatedly stated in this thesis, the main limitation of the Revelstoke case is the fact that the community forest is a Tree Farm Licence, and therefore is subject to a myriad of detailed rules and regulations affecting forest planning and management. In a way, government regulations soil the purity of the lab in which the subject, the RCFC, is being observed. For example, since "constrained maximization" (the term which the Clayoquot Scientific Panel used to describe the Ministry of Forests' approach to forestry - see Chapters Two and Four) is the prevailing paradigm of B.C. forestry legislation, it might prove difficult or impossible for the RCFC to plan and manage differently. However, all community forest organizations will be subject to some sort of outside influences (albeit not necessarily to the same degree as the RCFC), and one can always inquire as to how an organization responds to such. Furthermore, to steal a metaphor used by the Columbia Forest District Manager in his interview, an individual can build a shack or a mansion, both of which comply with the building code, but one product is much better than the other (Int. 3, 1999). In presenting the findings about the theorized ecological benefits above, care was taken to consider the role of external regulations when appropriate. Considering this, the issue of external regulations is presented here in general terms only. To analyze the effect of external regulations on RCFC planning and management, the interviewees were asked the following questions: 140 • How does the RCFC respond to provincially-imposed regulations? Specifically, does the organization "push the envelope" in order to engage in "ecologically-better" planning and management; does it comply with regulations; or does it "push the envelope" to engage in "ecologically-worse" planning and management? • If the community forest was not on a Crown land TFL, but on property owned by the City, would the planning, management, and practices be different? If so, how? In general, the findings, both those reported above (especially in sections 6.2.2 (Wholistic Appreciation of the Forest), 6.2.3 (Closed Circle of Costs and Benefits), 6.2.5 (Adaptive Management), and those presented in this section, indicate that the RCFC is not "held back" by outside regulations from becoming a qualitatively-improved, ecologically, forest company. As was stated above, the RCFC is considered to be very good at complying with existing regulations, yet at the same time the organization lobbies very effectively to change those regulations in order to decrease environmental constraints to timber harvesting. While these findings have already been reported in the discussion on the theorized ecological benefits, there is more evidence, and there are additional issues, to relate. To begin it must be noted that, of the sixteen interviewees who felt comfortable responding to the first question, every interviewee but one (Interviewee 1) stated that the RCFC complies with existing regulations, and five indicated that the organization goes beyond Code forestry requirements (Int. 6, 7, 9, 12, and 17, 1999). This is consistent with the findings reported above in which RCFC forest practices were considered to be at the good end of the spectrum. At the same time, however, ten interviewees indicated that the RCFC lobbies to reduce environmental constraints in order to defend its cut (Int. 1-3, 6-11, and 16, 1999). While some of these interviewees (Int. 3, 7, and 9, 1999) argued that RCFC lobbying was performed ethically and discriminately, the evidence remains that the pressure from the organization is to reduce environmental constraints. Several pieces of archival material also provide evidence for this. One, an RCFC strategic planning document, identifies "land use planning" as the principal "key threat" to the organization, followed by "government policy," which includes the Forest Practices Code and decisions about the AAC (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1998c: 2). Another document details a Strategic Planning meeting held subsequent to the publication of the above record, and describes the General Manager's concern with the habitat requirements of the MAC's land use plan proposal, and his 141 ongoing work to "resolve RCFC's concerns regarding their analysis and the impact it will have on the TFL" (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1998b). In fact, every RCFC annual report from 1993 through 1998 contained at least one statement of concern over the impact of land use plans on the AAC of TFL 56. But the following statement, from the General Manager's Report in the 1993-94 Annual Report, begins the story of one particularly illuminating case of the RCFC's interaction with external regulations: Another concern has been the spectre of massive landbase withdrawals through the Protected Area Strategy and the Commission on Resources and the Environment's Land Use Strategy. While we have patiently participated in the land use strategy game, we have never-the-less been unnerved by the extent to which potential withdrawals have been focused squarely on top ofT.F.L. 56 in the North Columbia area.... IfT.F.L. 56 is heavily impacted by the CORE process, we will immediately initiate negotiations and discussions with the Provincial Government to ensure the people of Revelstoke's investment is protected. (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1994: 8) As it turns out, the CORE report did recommend a great deal of highly-constraining habitat zones in the North Columbia Mountains, many of which were within T.F.L. 56. These zones, called "Special Management" zones, were defined as "areas of land where management emphasizes conservation of special values (e.g., biodiversity, recreation, consumptive-use watersheds)" (Commission on Resources and the Environment, 1994: 51), and covered a number of the valley bottoms in the North Columbias (see Figure 6.1). Outside of protected areas, special management zones are the most conservative of B.C. land-use designations. According to one Board member, the RCFC was very concerned with the CORE plan because its interests were being threatened (Int. 2, 1999). Another interviewee, the Manager of one of the community forest's industry partners, said that the RCFC was "fairly aggressive in defending the cut" subsequent to the release of the CORE report (Int. 6, 1999). Revelstoke's leadership was also very concerned about the CORE report, and, true to the General Manager's statement above, launched a Community Land Use Negotiating Committee to create a "made-in-Revelstoke" land-use plan for the Revelstoke area. The Negotiating Committee's report stated that "The release of the CORE report... has raised some very significant concerns. Together with other land use initiatives and decisions (reduction in the AAC through the Timber Supply Review and the Forest Practices Code) the cumulative impact has the potential to devastate the economic and social structure of Revelstoke and the surrounding communities" (Community Land Use Negotiating Committee, 1995: 3). In general, the Negotiating Committee requested: 1) a moratorium on AAC decreases until the next TSR, 2) gradual phase-in of any actions which would result in employment cut-backs, 3) local development of management guidelines, and 4) 142 attention to "critical habitat and ecosystem requirements" (Community Land Use Negotiating Committee, 1995: 2). In March of 1995, the official West Kootenay-Boundary Land-Use Plan was released, with significantly less Special Management Zones in the Revelstoke area, especially in the valley-bottoms (see Figure 6.1). Furthermore, the definition of Special Management Zones was diluted to "areas where the full range of resource use will proceed, but in a way that respects sensitive natural and cultural values" (Government of British Columbia, 1995). The plan stated that the government "accepts the work of the people of Revelstoke [i.e. the Negotiating Committee] and confirms the resource management zones which they have proposed," and further noted that "the community will be invited to continue its work to provide the Minister of Forests with advice on land-use issues. The immediate priority will be to provide advice on application of Forest Practices Code guidelines, caribou habitat needs, alternative harvesting and silviculture techniques and location of areas for enhanced forestry" (Government of British Columbia, 1995). This refers to the MAC process which is still under way. Subsequent to the release of the official regional land use plan, the 1994-95 General Manager's Report made the following statement: On a more positive note, the uncertainty surrounding the CORE Report and its impact on the TFL 56 landbase has largely been resolved. The final decision by government reduced the amount of area tied up in Special Management Zones from the original proposal, thereby lessening the effect on our Allowable Annual Cut. The involvement of the Revelstoke Area Negotiating Committee was instrumental in arriving at an acceptable 'made in Revelstoke' solution. (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1995a: 4) According to one interviewee, the RCFC was the "torch bearer for the community in response to CORE.... They were the people that negotiated afterwards and, in fact, they were primarily responsible for significant changes in the CORE recommendations for this area" (Int. 1, 1999). These claims cannot be verified, but the following things are clear: 1) many community leaders, including the Mayor, are highly involved with the RCFC (whether formally, as in being on the Board, or informally, through interpersonal networks); 2) both the RCFC and the official community leadership were concerned with the impact of the CORE plan on the cut; 3) the RCFC and the community leadership were highly involved in the post-CORE negotiations; and 143 4) the final output of the process was the reduction of environmental constraints on the RCFC land base. One really interesting aspect of this story is the role that the community forest organization plays as a negotiator in land-use planning compared to what could be expected of an average private operator of the same size. This is not too surprising since the RCFC Board is filled with local politicians and other community leaders, a fact which provides the organization with a great deal of experience, savvy, and clout to use in highly political exercises such as land use negotiations. Furthermore, a community forest organization has more credibility than a private operator - the former is supposed to represent and look after the interests of a group of citizens, while the latter is perceived to be concerned only with its own bottom line. What this means is that a community forest organization such as the RCFC is better able to push its own agenda, whatever that may be. In this case study, that has been protection of the cut. As a final note, when asked if the RCFC would act differently on private land, none of the fourteen interviewees who responded said that the organization would initiate more environmentally-friendly harvesting planning, management, and practices. Fully nine interviewees believed that the RCFC would initiate no substantive changes whatsoever (Int. 1, 2, 6, 8, 9, 12, 13, 15, and 17, 1999). Two felt that a lack of provincial cut-control measures would allow the organization to cut more with the market (Int. 4 and 7, 1999). Another believed that the organization would spend less time and resources on forest development planning (Int. 3, 1999). Finally, two individuals stated that the organization would probably become worse, environmentally, and focus more on timber values (Int. 11 and 16, 1999). Summary The findings indicate that external organizations do not limit the RCFC from becoming a more qualitatively-improved timber operator, ecologically-speaking. In fact, the planning, multiple-values, and harvesting practices requirements of provincial regulations and local land-use processes are most likely keeping the RCFC and the other local operators at a higher level of environmental friendliness than would be the case without them. Furthermore the community-based nature of the RCFC seems to allow the organization a higher degree of impact on local environmental standards than would be expected from a private operator of the same scale. This does not mean that all organizations will follow suit; community forest organizations in other jurisdictions with different predominate values may use their credibility and savvy to strengthen environmental standards. Therefore, the model does 144 not necessarily lead to higher environmental standards, but it may lead to greater local power over the composition of local standards. 6.2.8 Section Summary This section has discussed the specific findings in regards to the theorized ecological benefits. In some cases, the findings indicated a weak-to-medium realization of the theorized ecological benefits (e.g., those theorized benefits dealing with knowledge generation, adaptive management, and forest practices). Yet, in these cases the quality of RCFC planning and management was still found to be mainly timber-focused. In other cases, there seems to be very little, if any, realization of the theorized ecological benefit (e.g., those theorized benefits dealing with community "connection with and care for" the forest, a wholistic appreciation of the forest, and a closed circle of costs and benefits). As the previous discussion on external regulations emphasized, the organization does not seem to be pushing to improve its practices, ecologically speaking. The general picture is of a community forest organization that does not, qualitatively speaking, plan and manage in the manner predicted by the theorized ecological benefits. This does not mean that the organization is "bad" — for one, it has accomplished a number of social and economic benefits for the community that one would not expect of private forestry firms." Even environmentally, the organization is at the "good" end of the spectrum relative to the average forestry operator. However, as Chapter Two described, the average for forest planning and management in British Columbia has not produced an ecologically (and possibly not economically or socially) sustainable forest industry. Chapter Four showed that small improvements to "business as usual" may not be sufficient to create an ecologically-sustainable forest industry in British Columbia. Rather, a qualitative departure from the status quo - the adoption of a new paradigm - may be the only way to effectively address the crises and iatrogenic illnesses of modem resource management. The reasons that the RCFC has not achieved this type of paradigm shift are likely numerous, and could not be adequately assessed in a Master's Thesis. However, some likely suspects were uncovered in the process of gathering, analyzing, and constructing the findings related to the theorized ecological benefits. The next chapter will discuss these issues. "These include, but may not be limited to: stabilization and strengthening of the local forest sector through a guaranteed supply of timber to local industry; local hiring (of contractors, staff, and consultants); access to wood through the log sort-yard; and enhanced feelings of community empowerment. 145 146 Chapter Seven: Discussion of Some Localized Issues In the last chapter, after discussing the findings related to each theorized benefit, a list of general themes alluded to by the findings was provided. These themes included: the original goals at the inception of the community forest, community values, public participation, corporate and community economics, and the guiding paradigm of the RCFC. They concern local experiences, conditions, assumptions, and goals. This chapter discusses these issues, and explains the role these indigenous factors may play in limiting the realization of the theorized ecological benefits in the Revelstoke case. 7.1 Findings and Discussion of Indigenous Experiences, Conditions, Assumptions, and Goals The information in this section enriches the findings reported in the last chapter by delving deeper into some of the reasons why the RCFC plans and manages as it does. These local, contextual issues are considered to be very important, and some further research and/or data analysis was performed in order to present them in as thorough a manner as possible. Most of the subject headings reported here were anticipated in section 3.5 of this thesis, "Potential Obstacles to the Realization of the Theorized Ecological Benefits," although a few elements presented themselves during the course of the study. 7.1.1 Original Goals at the Inception of the Community Forest1 Beginnings are important; they help set the culture and the tone of an organization. This sub-section discusses the original goals of the community forest and how these impact the realization of the theorized ecological benefits. To preface, the research has shown that, while there were some environmental motives for establishing the community forest, social and economic considerations were particularly important. The main piece of evidence for this finding is the official proposal for the community forest, "City of Revelstoke Proposal to Purchase and Manage a T.F.L. Represented by One-Half of Tree Farm Licence #55," a document authored by the City of Revelstoke. To begin, it is evident from the document that Revelstoke's leadership felt resource-based industries would remain highly-important to community well-being, and therefore believed that such industries should be brought under a greater degree of local control: 1 Most of the information for this section is derived from archival evidence published around the time of the community forests' establishment. 147 There is no doubt that the future of Revelstoke will continue to be tied to the resources of the region. Accordingly, direct control of the resource base will protect forest industry employment and provide security and stability for the community. (City of Revelstoke, 1993: 4) Thus, the community forest would be established for economic goals: Revelstoke stands to gain substantial benefits from the acquisition and operation of a community based T.F.L.... A central consideration is that the T.F.L. would provide economic security and stability for the forest industry sector in the Revelstoke economy. (Ibid.: 22) In addition to these statements, the document lists five official Objectives for the community forest, none of which emphasize environmental values (see Box 7.1). Although the first objective mentions a balance of "economic, environmental, and social values," it does not provide any explicit environmental goals that could be achieved by establishing a community forest. Such "motherhood" statements do little to guide decision-making when faced with a trade-off between, for instance, short-term economics and long-term environmental sustainability. In fact, given the City's reactionary response to processes such as CORE and the Protected Areas Strategy, the first Objective seems to imply that the City would be better able to balance economic, social, and environmental values in order to ensure that the "forest industry and related businesses" will not be unduly hindered by externally-imposed environmental constraints . Local control of the forest resource and the pursuit of economic goals dominate the remaining Objectives. As a note, it seems that the Forest Service played something of a role in emphasizing the economic aspect of the new community forest. According to the District Manager, " the very beginning we were very clear in saying, 'You are a business. You must operate as a business. You are not a charity, you're not a government. Get that through your headspace'" (Int. 3, 1999). 148 BOX 7.1 City of Revelstoke Objectives for Establishing a Community Forest "(a) Local Control of the Resource Base: The future of the forest industry and related businesses in Revelstoke will be better secured with local control. The community is better able to balance the economic, environmental and social values impacted by the forest land base. (b) Local Processing of the Local Resources: Revelstoke wood processors have less than 50% of their log consumption secured by tenure and there is insufficient timber otherwise available to sustain these at their present level of operations. Their continued success depends on an increase in the wood supply. Local logging, hauling and forest management companies will have increased security with local control and processing. (c) Investment: The forests are the wealth of B.C. and community of Revelstoke should share in this wealth. It is the clear objective of the City of Revelstoke to operate the T.F.L. as a business to earn a profit. Profit from the operation of the T.F.L. will be made available for City capital projects. (d) Reserves: It is the objective of the City to fund its share of the acquisition and working capital costs from the Electrical Utility Reserve Fund in the amount of $1 million and not from Property Tax Revenue. (e) Forest Industry Participation: Revelstoke based wood manufacturers must participate in the acquisition and management of the T.F.L. in order to provide the City of Revelstoke with the industry knowledge and experience required. The foregoing five objectives reflect the position taken by the residents of Revelstoke at the Public Hearings regarding the transfers of T.F.L. #23 and T.F.L. #55. There was a unanimous request for local control of local resources" (City of Revelstoke, 1993: 4-6). Forest Service influence notwithstanding, the indication is that community members' stated desires for the community forest are generally consistent with the official Objectives. As the short paragraph at the end of Box 7.1 states, the Objectives largely reflect the submissions made by Revelstoke citizens at the October 1992 public hearing - which was held consequent to Westar's proposed transfer of TFL 55 to Evans Forest Products (as discussed in Chapter Five). The vast majority of the local submissions at the hearing were concerned with community economics (see McEachern and Associates, 1992). There were, however, a number of submissions at the public hearing which at least mentioned the need to improve local forest management practices. A few of these individuals took the next step and claimed that community-based management would help to ensure stewardship on the land base (see especially Maltby, Parkin, and Wells submissions, McEachern and Associates, 1992). The 149 following quote, taken from Pat Wells' (of the B.C. Wildlife Federation) submission, is a good example: Bottom line - logging by an out-of-town company is not what is needed in the North Columbia. If biodiversity and environmental integrity are to be maintained in the remaining old-growth of the North Columbia, the sensitive hands-on management by locals is a prerequisite. (McEachern and Associates, 1992: 69-70) Coincidentally, two of the three individuals who provided an environmental rationale for the community forest (at the public hearing) were interviewed for this study. These individuals expressed disappointment that the potential environmental benefits of community forestry had not, in their minds, panned out. Furthermore, they and another interviewee felt that the inception of the community forest had been packaged by the City as part of the Community Vision process (the two activities occurred at around the same time), and believed that the community forest had not achieved the sustainability objectives elucidated in the Revelstoke Vision Statement (see Box 5.1) (Int. 1, 4, and 8, 1999). Summary The findings show that the community forest was not established to achieve ecological goals, although there were some environmental "motherhood"-type statements associated with the community forest at its inception. This could have serious consequences for the realization of the theorized ecological benefits. For instance, if the RCFC staff and/or Board were faced with a decision between short-term economic values such as timber, and environmental (and long-term economic) values such as biodiversity, the corporation would most likely sway the balance towards timber emphasis. This would not be consistent with the theorized benefit, "Wholistic Appreciation of the Forest." Still, the desire to pursue community forestry for environmental objectives is present in the community, although this seems to be a minority position. If more of the community was interested in these types of issues, it is possible that the goals of the organization would include more environmentally-oriented content, and the theorized ecological benefits could have been realized to a greater degree. This touches upon the community's shared values and goals, which are the subject of the next sub-section. 150 7.1.2 Values, Experiences, and Participation In this sub-section, the values and experiences of the community of Revelstoke will be more thoroughly examined in order to provide some important contextual information. Furthermore, some conclusions are drawn as to the impact of the community's shared experiences and values upon the planning and management of the community forest. Public participation is also discussed in this sub-section because there are several correlations between the community's participation in the community forest and the values of community members and community leaders. Particularly helpful to the exploration of some of these issues has been the work of Jenny L. Feick, a researcher from the University of Calgary. Feick conducted several exhaustive surveys in Revelstoke from 1994 to 1997 as part of various projects studying the community's environmental values, local ecosystem management initiatives, and the Revelstoke Vision Statement (see Box 5.2). Community Experiences and Independence For the past fifteen years, the City of Revelstoke has embarked upon many programs designed to empower the community, including economic and tourism strategies and a downtown revitalization project in the mid-1980s (which weren't so common then as they are now), business and entrepreneurship training initiatives, community resource-use round tables, the purchase of the community forest itself, the community visioning exercise, the current Minister's Advisory Committee (MAC) process, and a number of others (Feick, 1995b: 4-11). In one of her studies on the municipality, Feick discusses the sense of independence that has helped to catalyze such a large number of community-led initiatives. Revelstokians' independence seems to flow from three main sources. First, Revelstoke's geographical isolation by mountains and distance from other communities "leads to a sense of independence or self-reliance and a desire for control." In the words of one of Feick's interviewees, "They can't go outside the community for resources all the time so they rely on their internal resources" (Feick, 1995b: 4-8). Second, a history of external control over, and the resulting instabilities in, local natural resources and the local economy (e.g. dam construction, the boom-and-bust cycles of forestry, and local environmental degradation without local economic benefits), has engendered in the community a desire to establish a locally-based and stable economy. Finally, senior-level government jurisdictions overlap in a confusing and uncoordinated matrix in the Revelstoke area, which makes it very difficult for external governments to achieve integrated and sensible governance and leadership regarding resources, social services, economic development, infrastructure, and so on. This has not improved Revelstokians' comfort level with external control, and "intensifies the community's desire for local control of resources and meaningful input into decisions affecting it" (Feick, 1995b: 4-6). 151 Feick's findings regarding Revelstokian independence are corroborated by the statements of several interviewees for this thesis. Some noted that the community's leadership has been very motivated to, and effective in, impacting and/or controlling local land-use planning processes (Int. 1, 3, 10, 12, 1999). Indeed, the existence of several local land-use planning processes, including a pre-CORE Revelstoke area round-table, the Revelstoke response to CORE via the Negotiating Committee, and the current MAC process, demonstrates a legacy of recent local involvement in resource issues. In the opinion of one interviewee, it is a boon to the community that local leaders have the strength of will and vision to take such control: If you look at what's happened in the MAC, or any of our land use debates, they've been accelerated in Revelstoke.... There's good leadership in town, and you really have to learn to appreciate what Mayor Battersby and some of these guys ... just how strong they are as leaders, but also the vision is there that they can control their own destiny. (Int. 3, 1999) Another interviewee discussed how the topographical, and particularly the historical, factors discussed above have instilled a profound distrust within the community of anything non-local. This interviewee also claimed that this attitude is particularly strong among the community forest's leadership: Q: How does the RCFC respond to external regulations ? A: With the same level of contempt as every other licensee. And with an extra level, because in this community, anything that comes from outside is not very welcome period.... This community is very isolated, physically.... Consequently, when something comes in from outside, like a regulation, there's a natural skepticism about it and a cynicism that 'we '11 only adopt it if it fits for us' kind of attitude. In the community forest, because of the characters that are there, especially at the Board level, this is particularly strong.... This community's principle contact with the external world was around the dam and the business with Westar's Tree Farm Licence [the proposed transfer to Evans which would have left Revelstoke with almost no timber for local processing]. That's a part of history. They 're used to being treated, and they expect to be treated, like shit from somebody from the outside. And they expect to have to stand up and stomp their feet for their own rights; that's just given. (Int. 12, 1999) Seen in this context, then, the RCFC's response to external land-use planning can be viewed to some extent as but one in a series of instances of the City standing up and stomping its feet for its own rights. The deeper implication of this finding is that external efforts to impose environmental constraints on local industry are likely to continue to be challenged in Revelstoke. If recent history is 152 any indication, the challenge will be largely successful. If external environmental organizations, the provincial government, or even regional bodies like the former West Kootenay-Boundary CORE roundtable desire local compliance and acceptance, they must educate for change from the inside-out. In other words, a value-shift among the community members is necessary. Community Environmental Values The values of Revelstoke community members, and the potential impact of such upon the planning and management of the community forest, came up several times in the interviews. The section on the community's "connection with and care for" the community forest (see section 6.2.1), reported that most interviewees believe the average Revelstoke citizen to be primarily concerned with the economic performance of the community forest (Int. 1,3,5, 6, 8, 11, and 14-17, 1999). Furthermore, almost all of the interviewees indicated that the RCFC was being managed in a fashion which reflected the community values of the average Revelstoke citizen. Since community values can be of principal importance in determining the nature of initiatives like community-based forestry, further exploration of this subject was deemed necessary. Feick's research into Revelstoke seems to show a high level of environmental awareness in the community. In a 1994 study of environmental values, attitudes, and priorities in Revelstoke (performed through personal interviews; n=60), Feick found that Revelstokians selected environmental and social factors as being most important for their quality of life, and expressed values which are consistent with the principles of Deep Ecology, a philosophy which is consonant with the Ecological World View.2 Yet, when citizens had to choose between economic, environmental, and social concerns, most selected an economic issue as the "number one priority issue" for the City of Revelstoke. Also, in ranking the relative importance of the priorities listed in the Revelstoke Vision Statement, Revelstoke citizens ranked "first class education system" and "economic growth and stability" as most important, ahead of the only environmental priority in the Vision Statement, "environmental citizenship." Feick concluded that there seemed to be un-recognized contradictions among Revelstokians' values: Canadians typically have high awareness about the environment but a poor record in terms of environmental impact..., indicating that their values are not always The following is Feick's definition of Deep Ecology: "Deep Ecology is a philosophy encompassing the values of a sustainable society. Its central premise is "eco-centric", that is it focuses on the health of the ecosphere, the Earth. Humans are not seen as better than or separate from nature. Proponents of Deep Ecology seek transformation of societal values and organization to enable living things to have rights. It differs from so-called 'Shallow' ecological views which seek to control and manage nature or take short-term protective measures to prevent pollution that threatens human health" (Feick, 1995a: 2-3). 153 synchronous with their actions. This conflict in integrity of values may also exist in Revelstoke. A majority demonstrated high states of moral reasoning, expressed a 'Deep Ecology' perspective, and cited social and environmental factors as being important to a high quality of life. Yet when faced with a trade-off in priorities between economic, social, and environmental issues, most selected an economic issue. (Feick, 1995a: 37) These findings are not particularly surprising, given the resource-based and tumultuous economic history of the community. Past instabilities have probably bred in the citizenry a deep desire for economic development. At the same time, people feel warmly about the environment, and want to protect it. What one would expect from these two seemingly-conflicting values is a community with a somewhat lukewarm approach to environmental issues, and this seems to be the case. During his interview, the Operations Forester had this to say about Revelstoke's ecological focus: Well, I've lived in a lot of communities in B. C. and you get a sense for them. I lived in the Queen Charlotte Islands and there is a strong ecological, environmental force there. And I've lived in other towns like Houston, B.C. [where there isn't], and Revelstoke is kind of operating in-between. (Int. 9, 1999) Another indication of Revelstokians' environmental values is the Revelstoke Vision Statement. In another study, Feick noted that the Statement, presumably a manifestation of the community's shared desires for the future, seemed to lack a clear, efficacious commitment to environmental values or to sustainability in general: Some important and vague terms are not defined, including 'sustainable community,' and what constitutes a balance of 'environmental, social, and economic values.' Vision statements need to be supported by a companion document outlining definitions and goals to facilitate implementation. (Feick, 1995b: 9-4) This is an important point, because without clear definitions it is impossible to guide decision-making towards a common goal, especially one so all-encompassing and difficult to achieve as community sustainability. Related to this problem is the fact that there does not seem to be a clear consensus or understanding within the community as to what "sustainability" means in the first place. In another of Feick's studies, between one-quarter and one-third of her sample (n=127) "provided definitions incorporating limits to growth and ecologically sustainable development, [and] about a third 154 interpreted sustainability and related terms as maintaining or continuing current levels of growth, development, and lifestyles" (Feick, 1995b: 9-7). One reason why the community is reluctant to embrace environmental values seems to be the high degree of participation in natural resource extraction. A number of interviewees indicated that, were fewer people directly involved in forest-based industries, the community's values and the community forest's management would probably look rather different (Int. 1, 6, and 9-12, 1999). In discussing the model of community forestry which would realize the theorized ecological benefits, one interviewee, an environmental activist, put it this way: The model would work remarkably well in Nelson, it would work probably good in the West Kootenays, it would work well in the Slocan Valley. I would argue, for the rest of B.C., and Revelstoke is a good example, where you're resource-based, where your income and your economics are based on those resources, your chances of hitting the ecosystem model are extremely poor without a higher level of oversight or regulations.... All we're missing here is the Sierra Club, WC2 [the Western Canada Wilderness Committee], and a huge population base that does something other than forestry; otherwise, there'd be an issue here [with the way in which the community forest is being managed]. (Int. 1, 1999) Although he was coming from a very different perspective on the subject, the Forest District Manager also noted this lack of community activism for ecological values. When asked how community groups were responding to the management of the community forest, he said: It's not a question of having the community saying, 'We have this heartfelt feature that's being harvested, and therefore you can't go on.' We don't have protesters up here saying, 'You 're not going to log,' and if we did we may have to make choices differently. It's not the Slocan Valley. (Int. 3, 1999) Generally speaking, Revelstoke's citizenry probably does not want an "eco-model" of community forestry. It is not terribly surprising, then, that they do not have one. Public Participation Regardless of the direction they wish it to take, the community at large participates very little in the planning and management of the community forest. The RCFC Annual General Meeting (AGM) The town of Nelson, the Slocan Valley, and the West Kootenays are south of Revelstoke and (at least the first two areas) are infamous among logging circles for being difficult to work in due to community opposition to large-scale industrial forestry. Accordingly, the area is considered by B.C. environmental organizations to be 155 is the primary forum for public participation in the community forest. At this meeting, the Chairman's Report, the General Manager's Report, and the Financial Statements are presented, and questions and comments are taken from the floor. Minutes from the 1994-98 (excluding 1996, for which minutes were not available) AGMs show relatively low turnout: an average of eighteen to nineteen "interested public" attended. This figure is misleadingly high, however, because the first AGM was attended by thirty-three members of the public, and attendance has since fallen to twelve to sixteen people. More importantly, those attending the meetings have involved themselves very little. In all four years for which minutes were available, a total of nine questions or comments were received from the public, none of which were directed at forest planning or management in general, or at environmental issues in particular. Most, in fact, concerned issues such as the threat of outside regulations to the corporation's economic viability, corporate revenues, and funding sources for silviculture (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, [annual]). The only other formal forum for community involvement is the Forest Development Plan (FDP) review, which all licensees are required to conduct annually. The RCFC General Manager and the Operations Forester informed the researcher that the only members of the public they see at these reviews are contractors curious as to how and where the next five-years' cuts are expected to occur (Int. 7 and 9, 1999). Although the official policy of the RCFC is that community members can approach staff or the Board at any time with their concerns, such ad hoc input should complement, not constitute, public participation in the community forest. One interviewee suggested that the RCFC does "a lousy job, and they know it" of communicating with the community around it (Int. X, 1999). What is unclear, however, is the extent to which community members would involve themselves if given more opportunity to do so. Several interviewees suggested that the incredible complexity of modern forest management intimidates community members from involving themselves with the community forest, especially at such forums as the FDP reviews (Int. 2, 8, and 10, 1999). This is certainly not surprising, since FDPs are extremely difficult to understand without training in forestry or resource management. As would be expected from the discussion of community values above, several interviewees also suggested that Revelstokians would probably only involve themselves in the community forest if the corporation began spilling red ink, or if it reduced the cut on the land base (Int. 8, 9, 11, 16, and 17, 1999). Indeed, one concluded that the community is basically "hands-off' when it comes to any aspect of local governance: particularly well-informed and enlightened. 156 This is a pretty hands-off community. Basically, whether it be the city council or the Ministry of Forests or whatever, we don't get a lot of public input. You're expected to just get on with things and do a good job, and you don't get much feedback unless you screw up on something. (Int. 8, 1999) But, begging the question of the adequacy of the RCFC's public participation processes, why should the community be involved in the first place? For instance, why should we expect community members to know, with forest management as an example but applying the question equally to any other resource use, what types of practices and techniques are more likely to sustain forest ecosystems? According to one interviewee: People are not very informed about the issues.... if you show up at the five-year Development Plan review and start wading through the complexities of the Code and the rules and what's happening, I don't think anybody who isn't a paid professional ... could make any sense out of it. I mean, I read the literature and I know that a thirty metre buffer [in riparian areas] doesn't channel all the sediment. It's not adequate to get fisheries values, but how would you expect the public to know that? (Int. 10, 1999) Even if the majority of the community members held values consistent with the Ecological Worldview and were able to participate fully in the process, they would not necessarily know how to go about implementing ecologically-sustainable forest management in the real world. Such a detailed level of knowledge about ecosystem science should not be expected of the average community member. However, and the theorized ecological benefits as well as the discussion of the Ecological Worldview in Chapter Four predict this, one could expect that cumulative long-term experiences with the whole forest would facilitate community members' adoption of certain basic "standards" of ecologically-sustainable forest management - standards such as care for the health of the forest, recognition of uncertainty and the need to guide interventions by the precautionary principle, management of the whole forest system rather than one economically-desired component, and so on. Armed with these understandings, community members could be reasonably expected to make meaningful input into the community forest. For instance, a group of community members could request that ecosystem inventories be performed and that these should guide harvesting. If this type of process is underway in Revelstoke, and there is little evidence that it is with regards to the community forest, it may be happening at too slow a pace. For instance, one interviewee noted that the community is undergoing a transition in outlook "from resource-based to New Age," but stated that it is "not certain that resource practices can move as fast as those kinds of community shifts have" (Int. 12, 1999). Recall that T.F.L. 56 is the fourth-most overcut T.F.L. in the 157 province, which means that old-growth ecosystems have been and are being harvested and replaced with second-growth at a far greater pace than is sustainable even by timber-sustainability criteria (Marchak et al., 1999: 29). At the present time, it seems that other community desires, like revenue and immediate jobs, are overwhelming longer-term goals. Without more opportunities for people to involve themselves with the community forest and to love it, the people of Revelstoke will not be able to fully "connect" with the forest and become meaningfully involved in its planning and management before the forest ecosystem is irrevocably altered. Finally, another issue deserves attention. It was reported in the last chapter that most of the RCFC "insiders" believed the community supported the current management of the community forest due to the lack of public comment indicating otherwise: this was termed by the author as "consent by default" (see section 6.2.1). Some of the interviewee responses, however, make a strong case that this belief should be re-examined by the RCFC staff and Board. To begin with, several interviewees questioned whether community leaders held environmental values, and made the case that these individuals are not open to environmentalists' input (Int. 1, 4, 8, and 10, 1999). Speaking of his experiences with a pre-CORE land use planning process, one said, "The feeling I got was that it was going to be industry-driven and they didn't really want anybody else's point of view there that wasn't representing industry interests" (Int. 4, 1999). This individual went on to state that, while he used to attend the RCFC's public meetings, he did not do so anymore because "it's a bit like breaking your head against a brick wall" and said that "I don't think they particularly want input from the environmentalists or anybody who's not looking at it to make bucks out o f (Ibid., 1999). Another claimed that the "key people" involved with the community forest "are not environmentally-oriented at all. Quite the extreme opposite" (Int. 10, 1999). Finally, two interviewees asserted that the MAC process is dominated by individuals with a timber industry background, and that it lacks a committed voice for the environment (Int. 4 and 8, 1999). These interviewees' contention is that participation by environmentalists is not welcomed in the Revelstoke area. One interviewee made the particularly interesting case that community-based management in Revelstoke has made this situation even worse. Rather than providing him with a voice in local resource debates, his contention is that the community-based nature of the RCFC, compared to the private ownership of most forestry firms, actually limits his opportunity to provide input: It's going to be more difficult for me to criticize something that's at home here, than it is Westar Timber or Evans.... Essentially, if you want those other [non-timber] values now it's placed in the context of you're against the mill, you're against your neighbour who's a forest worker. 158 (Int. 1, 1999) This interviewee went on to describe how negotiations over forestry in Revelstoke, in his opinion, had taken on a very negative, and personal, tone: / was involved in a local Negotiating Committee after CORE... and I would sit in meetings and have people from the forest industry stare at me. It wasn't that I was talking about a conservation value, it was 'Francis is the problem.... We don't have a problem out there, we have a problem with this individual or that individual.' Needless to say, a lot of people just shut up. (Ibid., 1999) According to this interviewee, his participation has caused him to become a "pariah" in the community, and has negatively impacted his ability to obtain employment. In his estimation, then, the community forest "doesn't empower our voices in the community, it works towards silencing and alienating" (Int. 1, 1999). This interviewee's assertions about the personalized nature of the debate were corroborated in two ways. First, other interviewees noted the existence of this sort of attitude among community members (Int. 4 and X, 1999). Second, several interviewees who are pro-forestry, and therefore on the other side of the debate, made reference to one or more "self-serving" "rabid environmentalist(s)" who "don't do anything for the community," and don't "give a damn about whether anybody makes a living" - comments which focus more on the person than the issue (Int. 3, 13, 14, and 17, 1999). As a counterpoint, some interviewees alleged that the difficulty any environmentalist might have in being heard in Revelstoke stems more from the environmentalists' own poor negotiating and listening skills than it does from any problems with local public processes (Int. 2, 3, and 13, 1999). One emphasized that "some people tend to hold the view that they have the key to it all, and if it's not readily accepted, then they're alienated from the process.... It's a cop-out, and I think they owe more to themselves and the community than that" (Int. 2, 1999). Regardless of where the "fault" lays, the indication is that there is something of a struggle of egos and personalities among those parties interested and involved in land-use processes in Revelstoke. Feick noted this in her study of the Vision Statement, and concluded the following: Perceived power relationships within the community threaten to undermine the vision's achievability. In order to provide leadership in sustainability, citizens need to focus on the big picture of achieving that goal, and not become embroiled in personal and negative thoughts about other individuals in the community. (Feick, 1995b: 9-9) 159 Negative interpersonal dynamics may also undermine efforts to sustainably manage the community forest. If decision-makers have a preconception that environmental activists are unreasonable persons, they may be inhibited from really listening to any valid issues that the activists raise. To make matters worse, some of the activists may have developed a strident and confrontational tone in every debate which makes it particularly easy for the decision-makers to develop the perception that they are unreasonable. At the same time, the appearance that local leadership is not interested in listening to the environmental community could nip in the bud any attempt by environmentalists to communicate valid concerns which should be aired. It is certainly conceivable that local leadership is not simply power-hungry and elitist, and actually is concerned with doing what they feel is best for the community. It is just as conceivable that environmentalists are not "just self-serving," and have a deep and valid concern with local resource-extraction activities and the implications for ecological and long-term economic sustainability. Of general concern, dysfunctional communication between community leadership and other groups and individuals does not build trusting, mutually-informed discussions within the community. With respect to the topic of this thesis, the upshot could be that a) environmental interests are not properly incorporated into the planning and management of the community forest, and b) community forest management, due to a constricted communication flow, may be unaware of environmentally-based concerns about their management and practices. The lack of community involvement also means that some of the theorized ecological benefits have very little chance of being realized in Revelstoke. For instance, the involvement of diverse members of the public is the engine which drives the "Wholistic Appreciation of the Forest" benefit. Also, without community involvement there could likely be very little "Community Connection With and Care For" the community forest land base. Indeed, without meaningful community involvement, a community forest is actually just a community-owned forest. Summary Revelstokians' shared experiences have led them to distrust outsiders and their policies. They are an independent group, and have worked very hard for the past fifteen years to create a strong and stable economy. Changes which improve ecosystem planning and management in the Revelstoke area will more likely come from within than from without. That said, Revelstokians already have a relatively high degree of affinity for (as in, respect for the inherent value of) the natural environment. At the same time, they consider economic issues to be more important. This is likely due to a large number of factors, including the boom-and-bust and resource-based history of the local economy, as well as a lack of consciousness of what sustainability 160 means and implies (e.g. "maintain economic growth" is not synonymous with sustainability). Therefore, it is likely that decision-makers will compromise environmental values if they come into conflict with economic values. From a short-term view (one-year business cycles or a term of political office), these two values are likely to be perceived to be in conflict, although the Ecological World View predicts that, over the longer term (centuries) and at a wider scale (global) the economy cannot exist without a healthy environment. Even at a local scale, the wholesale conversion of forests into timber farms through clearcutting and other conventional practices could impair future economic prospects (e.g. tourism) and certainly would impact quality of life in the region. As it now stands, however, the community seems more interested in maintaining a stable short-term economy through maintaining the cut than in maintaining stable ecosystems in perpetuity. It is not surprising, then, that the community forest operates relatively conventionally compared to how it might operate in an eco-centric vision. Given more opportunities for public input and involvement, however, the community could gradually come to "connect with and care for" the community forest. This could lead to greater appreciation for non-timber values as people, beginning at an early age, develop personal and/or spiritual experiences with the surrounding forest. Public participation events could include school outings to the forest; nature hikes; demonstrations of different harvesting techniques; wilderness and wildlife "encounters;" recreational outings like kayaking and mountaineering; even visits to local businesses which benefit from the many values of the community forest such as the sawmills and value-added concerns which benefit from the timber, and the heli-skiing operations and guide-outfitters which benefit from other attributes of the forest. What is necessary is to build in the community an understanding that T.F.L. 56 is theirs, that its fate belongs in their hands, external regulations notwithstanding. This would not preclude harvesting; in the spirit of Leopold's "land ethic" it would simply mean that people would recognize what a rich resource they have in the land base that comprises T.F.L. 56, a resource not limited in value to what may be hauled out on the back of a logging truck. Indeed, it could foster the ecological community-mindedness that comprises "enlightened self-interest," as well as an appreciation that the community forest is not simply a "resource," but a nesting of living ecosystems that have a right to exist beyond their utility to humans. With greater community support for environmental values, local environmentalists would likely have enhanced opportunities to provide valuable input. At the same time, if they are given a respected voice in the community, the environmentalists should be empowered to recognize the need to listen to others' concerns in order to arrive at ecologically, socially, and economically-appropriate planning and management of the community forest. 161 7.1.3 Corporate and Community Economics No matter how ecologically sensitive a company's management may be, there is always, necessarily, a bottom line to its operations. It must create profits from the forest or it will not survive. Survival, however, is always measured in short time units. - M. Patricia Marchak, Falldown (1999) This sub-section will explore the role that economic factors play in the planning and management of the community forest, and specifically how these are impacting the RCFC's environmental performance. These factors stem from the rules and realities of the current marketplace, as well as from the ideological assumptions held by Revelstoke's leadership and the role that the community forest is envisioned as playing in the community economy. Corporate Economics When asked which set of values - economic, social, or ecological - are the first priority for the RCFC, every interviewee except the Operations Forester stated that economics come first. Further evidence for this economic precedency is found in the minutes of the RCFC's 1998 Strategic Planning Meeting. The strategic plan lists projects under the following categories: Continue, High Priority, Middle Priority, Low Priority, and No Priority. The only project relating to environmental values, "Seek certification of forest practices when appropriate" appeared in the last category, "No Priority" (Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, 1998b). This is not surprising since, as was discussed before, the intention at the inception of the community forest was to establish the RCFC as a business aimed at accomplishing social and economic objectives. This basic fact has some implications for the realization of the theorized ecological benefits. Since the organization is a business, it needs to make a decent return on its investment in order to survive. To make a decent return on its investment, the RCFC has to log economically. This maxim was emphasized a great deal by the RCFC "insiders" and the Forest District manager when discussing such issues as the RCFC's harvesting practices or the firm's lobbying efforts to reduce environmental constraints (Int. 2, 3, 6, 7, 9, 13, and 15, 1999). Generally, this is considered to be a "hard truth" of business, the kind of fact that is non-negotiable and driven by the relentless, unsentimental reality of the bottom line. A non-"insider" interviewee put it this way: The bottom line ... is that, whether it's a community forest or not, they are going to go out there and log. That's the bottom line; that's what they do, and if they are faced with a constraint that will remove AAC from them, they will fight it and do like every other licensee will do. So, from the operational side of a TFL, whether it's 162 community forestry or not, it's business as usual, quite frankly.... The reality is, just like any other business that a community would get involved with, there will be the managers there looking at the bottom-line dollars, and sure we can all talk about environmentalism and nice and pretty and all of the rest of that kind of stuff, but if we can't log, we don't have a business. (Int. 16, 1999) Regardless of the fact that most people report this truth while justifying their own selfish behaviour, it is convincing in the Revelstoke case. The most intractable issue is that the RCFC must compete with other logging firms in the province. If the firm was to pursue more environmentally-sensitive yet higher-cost practices than the norm for the industry, it could be undercut by lower-cost firms. While comparing the environmental sensitivity of RCFC forest practices with those of other forestry firms, the General Manager put it this way: "I'd say we're trying to operate a point above them. And doing that, we may be raising our costs a bit.... but they're basically setting the market. You can't get too far out of step or otherwise you'll be out of business" (Int. 7, 1999). Another interviewee, whose work brings him into contact with firms across the province, noted that his experience "is that there's not much opportunity to go beyond Code requirements because you further constrain your own business and you basically cut your own throat" (Int. 16, 1999). Thus, it is little surprise that the RCFC was considered by most interviewees to be operating in a manner not dissimilar to other forestry operations, a finding reported in the last chapter. These market-based impacts upon forest practices relate to another aspect of the external regulations issue. While other businesses do have a role in "setting the market," at a deeper level it is regulations like the Forest Practices Code which position the parameters of the playing field on which the businesses compete. Specifically, the Code and other regulations establish something of a minimum level of costs which must be incurred by forestry operations in order to protect the resource and other values. Returning to the issue of how the RCFC would behave in the absence of such regulations, the General Manager noted that the removal