Protesters in forest-related garb at the Forest March BC rally in Centennial Square. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)

Protesters in forest-related garb at the Forest March BC rally in Centennial Square. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)

B.C. residents rally to protect old-growth forests

Protesters at B.C. legislature and dozens of B.C. communities stage ForestMarchBC 2021

On the doorstep of the B.C. legislature, attendees of the ForestMarch BC 2021 rally made their message clear Friday in Victoria: government promises to reduce old-growth logging and include Indigenous peoples in B.C. forestry decisions are not happening fast enough.

They were there as part of a province-wide event scheduled in nearly 30 communities across the province, including Vernon, Vancouver and Revelstoke.

The provincial government was largely the target of the protesters, who said it is stalling on enacting 14 recommendations from an old-growth strategic review published last September. More delays means more destruction of stands of ancient forests, they said.

RELATED: B.C. suspends some old-growth logging, consults communities

Longtime environmental advocate and Order of Canada member Vicky Husband, who drew a great cheer from the crowd of about 90 people at her introduction, referenced herself and previous speaker Pacheedaht First Nation member Bill Jones as the elders amongst the forest protectors.

“And we are still fighting for what I like to call the ancient forest,” she said as the rally begun in Centennial Square. “That’s what we’re standing up here to protect and it’s going to take a lot of public action and outrage. This government just lies, they don’t intend to protect anything … I was saying over 30 years ago we’re over-cutting our forests, and we still are.”

In Nanaimo, about 45 people took part in a short march to stage a demonstration on the Pearson Bridge.

“If we don’t have forests, we don’t have watersheds and if we don’t have watersheds, we don’t have drinking water. We don’t have streams that flow down from up in the forests where the salmon spawn. With no salmon, no orcas,” June Ross of the Vancouver Island Water Watch Coalition said in her address to the crowd.

Leah Morgan of Extinction Rebellion Nanaimo said all living things are interconnected in the environment and removal of the last old growth forest stands will fundamentally change the ecosystem and eliminate biodiversity on the Island.

“We know that we live in complex web of life on the Earth and every intricate thing, from the smallest thing that we cannot see, even with a microscope, to the biggest things on the planet are all connected,” she said

Morgan said logging protesters manning logging road blockades leading to old growth forest at Vancouver Island’s Fairy Creek watershed near Port Renfrew also need support to “hold the line so we can preserve that forest.”

Protesters have maintained logging road blockades in the area since the summer of 2020.

For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.

RELATED: Activists hunker down to protect Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew from logging

RELATED: Environmental group calls on province to preserve old-growth forests

forestryprotest

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Longtime environmental advocate Vicky Husband speaks at a ForestMarchBC rally on Friday in Victoria’s Centennial Square. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)

Longtime environmental advocate Vicky Husband speaks at a ForestMarchBC rally on Friday in Victoria’s Centennial Square. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)

Just Posted

A small memorial to Rich Goulet was started at Pitt Meadows Secondary after his recent death. (Neil Corbett/The News)
LETTER: Rename Pitt Meadows school gym in coach’s honour

Rich Goulet was considered one of the provinces best basketball coaches and died recently

Doug Nolin, a Maple Ridge senior, snapped this picture of his pet pigeons taking flight down by the old Albion ferry dock. “What a beautiful land we live in,” he said. (Special to The News)
SHARE: Chirp, chirp: Ridge senior captures pigeons taking flight

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon.

Pamela Franklin captured this picture of a raccoon in Maple Ridge, “chilling” in her backyard, on her storage bin. (Special to The News)
SHARE: Lounging in the spring sun

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon.

Debbie Noseworthy snapped a sunset picture the first day of daylight savings as seen from the dikes off 216th Street in Maple Ridge. (Special to The News)
SHARE: Sky on fire over Maple Ridge dikes

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon.

Darlene Martin captured this ‘breathtaking’ view of a sunset and the Fraser River as taken from Osprey Village. (Special to The News)
SHARE: View from Osprey Village breathtaking

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon.

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and Premier John Horgan describe vaccine rollout at the legislature, March 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
1,262 more COVID-19 infections in B.C. Friday, 9,574 active cases

Province’s mass vaccination reaches one million people

People walk past the Olympic rings in Whistler, B.C., Friday, May 15, 2020. Whistler which is a travel destination for tourists around the world is seeing the effects of travel bans due to COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Adults living, working in Whistler, B.C., eligible for COVID-19 vaccine on Monday

The move comes as the province deals with a rush of COVID-19 and variant cases in the community

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
UPDATE: RCMP investigating after child, 6, dies at motel in Duncan, B.C.

The BC Coroners Service is conducting its own investigation into the circumstances around the child’s death

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

RCMP display some of the fish seized from three suspects who pleaded guilty to violating the Fisheries Act in 2019, in this undated handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - RCMP
3 banned from fishing, holding licences after overfishing violations near Vancouver Island

Mounties seized the group’s 30-foot fishing vessel and all equipment on board at the time

B.C. Premier John Horgan responds to questions during a postelection news conference in Vancouver, on Sunday, October 25, 2020. British Columbia’s opposition Liberals and Greens acknowledge the COVID-19 pandemic has presented huge challenges for Horgan’s government, but they say Monday’s throne speech must outline a coherent plan for the province’s economic, health, social and environmental future. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Horgan’s NDP to bring in throne speech in B.C., Opposition wants coherent plan

Farnworth said the budget will include details of government investment in communities and infrastructure

FILE - An arena worker removes the net from the ice after the Vancouver Canucks and Calgary Flames NHL hockey game was postponed due to a positive COVID-19 test result, in Vancouver, British Columbia, in this Wednesday, March 31, 2021, file photo. As vaccinations ramp up past a pace of 3 million a day in the U.S, the NHL is in a tougher spot than the other three major North American professional sports leagues because seven of 31 teams are based on Canada. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP, File)
Vancouver Canucks scheduled to practice Sunday, resume games April 16 after COVID outbreak

Canucks outbreak delayed the team’s season by eight games

Most Read