10/06/2013

Who is watching our public lands?

Illegal tree poaching by individuals - this 800 year old red cedar in Carmanah Walbran
Provincial Park was cut, sectioned, and hauled away for shakes or roof shingles.
Photo: Torrance Coste



Who is watching what is happening in our public lands? Well, if you can cut down and haul away a hugely valuable 800 year old red cedar IN a provincial park, I'd have to say no one is keeping tabs on our public resources.

"I'll tell you what irresponsible is - 10 years ago there were 194 park rangers in British Columbia, there's under 100 now." - NDP Scott Fraser in 2012

In the 2002 Raincoast report "Losing Ground: The decline in fish and wildlife law enforcement capability in B.C. and Alaska," author and wildlife scientist Dr. Brian Horejsi concluded the following:

"Wildlife populations and biological diversity are endangered by chronic underfunding and marginalization of wildlife conservation-oriented enforcement programs in British Columbia and, to a lesser degree, in Alaska. This period of measurable political disinterest and low and declining priority now approaches 20 years in duration. 
There is little evidence available to the British Columbia or Alaska public to indicate that current enforcement capabilities are sufficient to provide effective compliance with fish and wildlife regulations, a problem being aggravated by escalating and uncoordinated land use activities. 
In every capability measure examined, capability today is significantly lower than it has been previously. Enforcement and protection staff are presently unable to effect widespread and long-lasting changes in resource user behavior in either Alaska or B.C. 
While fish and wildlife protection capability in Alaska has slipped...the evidence indicates that B.C. has now crossed the threshold at which protection of fish and wildlife populations and their habitat by enforcement services has effectively and materially been abandoned."

Governments at all levels have abandoned their responsibilities as stewards of our shared public lands. Everything from oil to coal to gold to wildlife and old growth trees is being ruthlessly plundered and poached whether by "legal" or "illegal" means.


Legal tree poaching by corporations - this 800 year old red cedar on King Island, which is in the Great Bear Rainforest, was cut, sectioned and hauled away for building products.
Photo: Bedrohte Natursch├Ątze

By all accounts no one in government is watching anything except their own bank balances.


Without oversight on our public lands we can expect that they will be destroyed for the benefit of short term personal gain and shareholder profit.


1 comment:

  1. Anonymous6/2/15

    The group of young men who poached this ancient cedar, are known. They are under surveilance at this writing.But their is no proof! They do not have enough forest rangers to do anything. These guys go from the U.S. to Canada at their every whim, and case the forests for choice trees. They carry loaded weapons, and there needs to be a "shoot to kill" order on the books by the rangers. This might curtail some of this destruction, and thievery!

    ReplyDelete

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