2012 Sunshine Coast Community Forest (SCCF) AGM – May 6, 2013
2012 was the year when the true nature of the so called “Community Forest” was revealed in all its brutal reality.
There is nothing in the Annual Report about the arrests of over a dozen people, including an 80 year old Sechelt Elder, trying to protect one of the last natural low elevation forests in the Wilson Creek Watershed.
There is nothing in the report about the Community Forest going to a judge in Vernon, a day’s travel from here, to get an injunction against local citizens. Why were concerned citizens not given an opportunity to respond to the injunction application?
Glen Bonderud states that “the Community Forest operates in a world market … and key markets to watch are exports of lumber and logs to China and Japan”. This is not what the community wants – we want the Community Forest to operate in the Sunshine Coast market and not export logs and jobs off the coast.
Strangely Mr. Bonderud goes on to quote the United Nations regarding forests – quotes we largely agree with but are the exact opposite of what the Community Forest has been doing, such as: an economy based on the depletion of natural resources is not sustainable, new ways of thinking about progress are needed and without forests, the global ecosystem would collapse.
Yesterday some of us visited the once beautiful Wilson Creek Forest, EW 002. It is no longer there. It is now a depleted natural resource, clear cut and sold for a quick buck. It no longer absorbs tonnes of carbon dioxide, cleans the water and provides an integrated life support system for a biodiversity of plants and animals. According to scientists, for decades this clear cut will now become a net emitter of CO2, adding instead of extracting this greenhouse gas from our atmosphere.
There is only one thing to do with this secretive, closed organization which excludes the public from all its regular meetings. We have to go back to square one and reconstruct the Sunshine Coast Community Forest from the ground up and make it an organization that truly respects the forest and the Community it operates in.