The U.S. National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC) reported that the 2022 wildfire season is actively underway. Year-to-date through April 27, 2022, 21,181 wildfires had been reported and they had burned 1,080,836 acres. The NIFC notes that the past 10-year average, for the same time period, was 14,958 wildfires that burned 727,141 acres.
Weyerhaeuser announced on Thursday that it has reached an agreement to purchase 80,800 acres of high-quality timberlands in North and South Carolina from a fund managed by Campbell Global for approximately $265 million. The acquisition is comprised of highly productive timberlands situated in strong coastal markets.
The Canadian federal government is threatening to act on its own to protect the at-risk woodland caribou and the animals’ habitat in Quebec. Federal Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault gave Quebec until Wednesday, April 20 to provide him with information on how the province intends to protect the woodland caribou and its habitat.
Albert Nussbaum, British Columbia’s acting deputy chief forester, has set a new allowable annual cut (AAC) level for Tree Farm License 53. The new AAC is 240,000 cubic meters. This is an increase of approximately 9.6% from the previous AAC of 219,000 cubic meters, which was set in 2010. It goes into effect immediately.
After an extremely dry winter, which left water levels low and vegetation dried out, much of the State of California is already in wildfire season. Fire experts says that with increasing winds and hot temperatures forecasted to start this week, and no rain or snow expected in the near term, wildfire conditions are not likely to get any better.
The BC government announced harvest deferrals on 1.7 million hectares of timberland in the province. In November 2021, the Province announced it would engage with First Nations rights and titleholders to find agreement on deferring harvest of old growth forests. The B.C. Government is reporting that it has received responses from 188 out of the 204 First Nations in the province.
The Habitat Conservation Plan for state forests in Western Oregon has been released for public comment. The plan is designed to protect critical habitat for 17 threatened species and includes wider no-logging zones near waterways and prohibits or limits harvesting near nesting and foraging grounds for threatened birds.
The Western Oregon Habitat Conservation plan, which was first developed by the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) in 2018, would provide protection for 17 federally listed endangered species while ensuring logging in other parts of the forest to limit the potential of harm to those species.
The spruce bark beetle is continuing to eat its way through the forests in Southcentral Alaska. According to estimates, over 1.6 million acres are now impacted. Time is quickly running out to salvage any marketable value out of the effected wood.
Lawyers for the Nuchatlaht First Nation asked the B.C. Supreme Court to recognize its rights and title and put a stop to logging on their land. The lawsuit filed in 2017 asserts that the governments have denied Nuchatlaht rights by authorizing logging and “effectively dispossessing” the nation of parts of its territory on Vancouver Island’s west coast.