Canfor and Canfor Pulp work with a wide range of stakeholders. There is significant public involvement in the development of our Sustainable Forest Management Plans.
Our proprietary Creating Opportunities for Public Involvement (COPI) database supports our public communications by identifying who is responsible and measuring system performance. It provides both a record of stakeholder contact information and a repository for communications, and can be used to send out information and generate reports. The database includes spatial information that identifies areas of geographic interest and links to overlapping tenure holders such as guide outfitters, trappers and mineral tenure holders.
The Forest Stewardship Council’s reassessment report for our East Kootenays operations in 2014 found we used the COPI database to notify those who may be affected by our operations – and were responsive when we received comments. When planning operations in the Houston area, we managed stand level retention near a major wetland to enhance small mammal populations and habitat connectivity to accommodate a trapping tenure holder.
We rely on staff knowledge, Public Advisory Groups associated with our forest certification program commitments, newspaper advertisements, open houses and presentations to local government, associations or interest groups to develop our list of stakeholders. Staff in all locations meet with local and regional interests and with other forest users so we can be sure their needs and concerns are considered when we are drawing up our management plans.
In the Houston area, more than 100 meetings were held with local participants when developing the sustainable forest management plans. More than 200 people with an interest in how local resources are managed contributed their knowledge and expertise, representing a cross-section of interests including recreation, tourism, ranching, forestry, conservation, water, community and First Nations.
When changing weather conditions resulted in complaints about smoke from debris pile burning in the Kootenay operating area of BC, we sent in an excavator to pull apart the smoldering piles, and called local residents to apologize. Our employees reviewed debris pile burning standard work documents and made changes to avoid a similar situation in the future.
Canfor Pulp has been active in airshed management since we built our first mills in Prince George in the 1960s. We recently invested $180 million in three significant air quality improvements and they are delivering real, measurable results. Forest research centre FPInnovations worked with us to monitor the city’s air quality before and after the mill upgrades, and found a significant drop in the percentage of time odour is detectable.
In 2014, we created an interactive air quality kiosk at Prince George’s Exploration Place science centre so residents can access real-time air quality data, and see how the city’s air quality is improving.
We take steps to ensure our activities have minimal impacts on recreational opportunities such as hunting, fishing, hiking and canoeing – and we manage a number of campsites and trails across British Columbia and Alberta. In the Prince George area, we supported the Tabor Mountain Recreation Society, an umbrella group representing more than eight outdoor recreation groups, toward the legal establishment of a network of recreation trails (407 kilometres) and 27 staging areas on Tabor Mountain east of the city. We will help the society with an inventory of the recreation trails, and with site improvements such as trail brushing and earthworks to create a parking area.