11/09/2013

Logging Vancouver Island's Last Stands

Below is Cathedral Grove and its huge ancient trees - up above trees just like them are being cut down
 by logging giant Island Timberlands. But don't worry - it's all legal. Photo: TJ Watt


How much of Vancouver Island's dwindling patches of old growth forest do logging companies wish to cut down? All of them. 100% And if not that, then as much as they can get away with.

On October 19, MLA Scott Fraser and myself met with Island Timberlands’ CEO Darshan Sihota, and asked him if he was intending to save any old-growth Douglas-fir forests – his reply was that it was his legal right to log it ALL. 

So despite the BC government’s scientists formerly designating these vital wildlife habitats for protection when they were still within the Tree Farm Licence, Island Timberlands sees nothing wrong with harvesting the old growth forests across all their lands. 

This even includes the mountainside above Cathedral Grove, Canada’s most famous old-growth forest.

- Jane Morden, coordinator Port Alberni Watershed-Forest Alliance 

It is evident that there is no one in industry or government with enough gumption to do the right thing. That is why you will hear them talking a lot about rights and laws, jobs and the economy, but not so much about responsibilities, natural law and morality, or sustainability.

Timberlands bigwig Sihota thinks that all the ancient Douglas fir on "his" lands belong to him and he can do as he wishes with them. It says so in the law. But laws that allow this travesty to continue to the point of the extinction of an entire ecosystem is what Thomas Aquinas called a "perversion of law".


Natural law holds that law and morality are connected. How inconvenient this must be for corporations and their shareholders.

Law is not simply what is enacted in statutes. If legislation is not moral, then it is not law and has no authority. This view is frequently summarized by the maxim: “an unjust law is not a true law”.


In order for man-made law to be valid it must accord with higher law. The highest laws are the laws of nature. If we break those we are setting ourselves up for some severe punishment down the road regardless of what human courts say.

Logging the last wild ancient trees knowing that we will never see the likes of them again on these lands is surely breaking all the laws of nature.

Bad things happen when good people act as passive participants in the destruction. Only we can save the last big trees.


A visit to the Ancient Forest Alliance FB page right now is a crash course in the liquidation of our remaining primal forests. I highly recommend a visit to see TJ Watt's aerial shots of Vancouver Island's last stands of undisturbed old growth.

The last big tree and land grab is on its way in BC. This time they are desperate and have full governmental support, both provincially and federally. They are coming for our trees. And how much do they want?

All of it. 100%

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