Inland Temperate Rainforest

For years, the Wilderness Committee has been working with allies to help safeguard one of BC’s most unique old-growth forest ecosystems – the world’s only inland temperate rainforest.

In southeastern British Columbia, 600 kilometres inland, the majestic spires of the Columbia and Rocky Mountains capture moisture from air moving inland from the Pacific Ocean. The west-facing slopes and valley bottoms of these mountain ranges are cloaked in lush humid forests of redcedar, western hemlock, mosses, ferns, and lichens. It’s the only place on Earth where this type of temperate rainforest ecosystem exists so far from the sea.

In this humid climate, there are trees up to 1,800 years old in forests that have been evolving uninterrupted for thousands of years. Tragically, in the last 50 years, clearcut logging has ravaged this rare landscape.

This region contains the headwaters of the Fraser and Thompson River systems, a significant portion of the upper Columbia River, and many connected wetlands. It also provides critical habitat for the endangered mountain caribou, a species that is totally dependent upon old-growth forest at all elevations of its home range. The mountain caribou is on the brink of extinction, as are many other species that call this region home, including grizzly bears, wolverines, mountain goats and bull trout.

Excessive logging, fragmentation by roads, and flooding by hydroelectric development have had serious impacts on this stunning region and its threatened wildlife.

Because of the hard work of conservationists and local groups like the Save the Cedar League, some areas within the inland temperate rainforest have now been protected by the BC government as Old Growth Management Areas (OGMAs). But large swaths of this unique forest remain unprotected. The Wilderness Committee and our allies have proposed a network of protected areas in this region, and we continue to push for a solution that ensures protection for all old-growth forest and remaining intact areas, as well as the species that call this region home.

For more info:

Click here to visit the Save the Cedar League website

Click here to visit the Valhalla Wilderness Society website

Recent Developments

40 weeks 1 day ago
The Ahousaht First Nation says mining and clearcutting will be banned in its territory in favour of long-term conservation and sustainable development.
43 weeks 2 days ago
Clayoquot Sound Conservation Alliance supports Ahousaht leadership in conservation and community development goals announced today

Take Action

It's Time for the BC Government to Ban Raw Log Exports

Write a letter now!

The export of raw logs is a crisis in BC. Despite outcry from forest communities, unions, policy experts, political leaders, environmental groups and thousands of citizens, this controversial practice has reach record levels in recent years.

The spike in raw log exports, facilitated by the BC government, has been a disaster for BC’s environment and our forest economy.

The province – and especially the coast – has seen dozens of mill closures and thousands of lost jobs. BC is the only province that exports raw logs in large volumes, and as a result, it has less jobs and creates the less value per tree harvested than any other province in Canada.

We’re sending trees, money and jobs out of BC – and we’re doing it at a faster rate than ever before. If we put the logs we exported in a single year onto logging trucks and lined those trucks up end to end, they would stretch from Vancouver to Thunder Bay, Ontario!

This is a problem that our provincial government has a responsibility to address.

So far, it’s been municipal governments that have shown leadership on raw log exports.

The Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities (AVICC) is a body comprised of the mayors, councillors and regional directors for all cities, towns and districts on Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands, Discovery Islands and the Sunshine Coast. In April 2015, the AVICC passed a resolution to call on the provincial government to re-examine raw log export policy.

This local government pressure is important, but now it’s critical that we let our provincial leaders know that we stand behind this call for action on the raw log export crisis!

Please take action today: tell our provincial policymakers to honour the call from forest industry workers, municipal governments, environmental groups and concerned citizens and ban raw log exports once and for all!

You can write a letter now urging the BC government and opposition party members to take action on our forest policy and ban raw log exports in BC!

More info:


Photo: Raw logs on the Fraser River, ready for export. (Paul Joseph via Flickr)

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