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

,,
Abbotsford’s Run For Water transforms into Upstream Challenge for 2021

Throughout the month of May participants can take on a number of different activities in the Valley

Commercial trucks head south towards the Pacific Highway border crossing Wednesday (April 14, 2021). The union representing Canadian border officers wants its members to be included on the frontline priority list for the COVID-19 vaccine. (Aaron Hinks photo)
CBSA officers’ union calls for vaccine priority in B.C.

Border officers at ports including South Surrey’s Pacific Highway should ‘not be left behind’

Cannabis plants visible under bright lights inside a large facility at Shxwha:y Village on July 6, 2018. The reserve was home to the licensed producer for Indigenous Bloom, which opened up a dispensary on the Kwaw-Kwaw-Apilt reserve. On April 12, 2021, Shxwha:y announced Health Canada approval for a licensed production facility at the village. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Chilliwack’s Shxwha:y First Nation approved for cannabis cultivation and processing facility

It will be the first majority-owned Indigenous on-reserve licensed facility in Western Canada

The Fraser Valley Bandits chose Brandon University’s Anthony Tsegakele in the first round of the 2021 CEBL Draft. (Submitted)
Fraser Valley Bandits reveal 2021 CEBL Draft choices

Abbotsford-based club selects Quebec’s Anthony Tsegakele in first round

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Feb. 1, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps to 1,168 Wednesday, nearly 400 in hospital

Now 120 coronavirus patients in intensive care, six more deaths

Moss covered branches are seen in the Avatar Old Growth Forest near Port Renfrew on Vancouver Island, B.C. Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. blockades aimed at protecting old-growth forests reveal First Nation split

Two Pacheedaht chiefs say they’re ‘concerned about the increasing polarization over forestry activities’ in the territory

Everett Cummings in a tribute video posted to dignitymemorial.com.
Mechanic’s death at Fraser Surrey Docks leads to $200K fine for company, union says

Photos of rally outside Surrey court posted on ILWU’s ‘Kill A Worker Go To Jail’ Facebook page

Richmond RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng said, in March, the force received a stand-out number of seven reports of incidents that appeared to have “racial undertones.” (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
‘Racially motivated’ incidents on the rise in B.C’s 4th largest city: police

Three incidents in Richmond are currently being invested as hate crimes, says RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng

A still from the video taken of a violent arrest on May 30, 2020 in downtown Kelowna. (File)
Kelowna Mountie charged with assault for caught-on-camera violent arrest

Const. Siggy Pietrzak was filmed punching a suspected impaired driver at least 10 times during an arrest

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

A screenshot from a Nuu-chah-nulth healing song and performance created in collaboration between Hjalmer Wenstob and Timmy Masso. (Screenshot from YouTube)
VIDEO: Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation brothers produce COVID-19 healing song

Hjalmer Wenstob and Timmy Masso share dance and inspiration.

Most Read