The Logan Lake Community Forest Corporation has taken top spot in 2019 for community forests, winning a community forestry award along with a $10,000 grant.
Established in 2016, the Robin Hood Memorial Award for Excellence in Community Forestry and accompanying grant are given annually to the community forest that best exemplifies the values exhibited by the late Robin Hood, a British Columbia community forest pioneer, and the B.C. community forest program.
Those values include innovation and leadership in land management, building and maintaining social licence and involvement with the local community and First Nations and providing social, economic, cultural and environmental benefits to the local community and First Nations.
Approximately 260,000 cubic metres of fibre have been harvested under the community forest’s tenure, with more than $3 million of the revenue being directed back into the community through more than 40 groups and initiatives.
The Logan Lake Community Forest Corporation is also a leader in wildfire mitigation for community interface areas, having completed extensive fuel management that contributed to Logan Lake being recognized as Canada’s first FireSmart community by FireSmart Canada. As of 2018, it has also completed a 10-year, landscape-level wildfire risk management plan for the entire community forest tenure area.
The corporation also hires high school students through its Youth FireSmart Team program, in collaboration with the District of Logan Lake and the Logan Lake Wellness, Health & Youth Society. The program educates the students and gives them hands-on skills in spacing, pruning, piling woody debris, tree and plant identification, wildfire behaviour and biodiversity. It also includes discussions on career paths and university applications.
Much of the funding for its FireSmart activities and planning is provided through the Strategic Wildfire Prevention Initiative, Community Resilience Investment program and Forest Enhancement Society of B.C.
In July 2017, its FireSmart work was put to the test by a human-caused fire south of town. With no ladder fuels or dense understory to climb up the canopy, the fire remained only a grass fire and was able to be contained by municipal fire crews and the BC Wildfire Service.