Pile burning fall 2023
Wednesday October 4, 2023
The following is information that Wetzin'kwa Community Forest Corporation provided to BVCCSC and other organizations in Wetzin'kwa's Resource User Group:
As we transition into autumn, I wanted to inform the user groups of upcoming plans for burning this fall. However, with the dry fall experienced last year, there are quite a few piles to burn, including several on the ski hill road. The District and BCWS will be burning piles in the Seymour Ridge area and WCFC will be burning several piles along the treatments on the ski hill road. These burns will be conducted under optimal conditions to ensure that proper venting and precautions are taken to minimize smoke emissions.
The Wetzin’kwa Community Forest Corporation (WCFC) will be conducting fall slash pile burning operations at various times during the month of November. We do so to ensure we are in compliance with fire hazard abatement practices established for the Province of BC. Our preference of course is to utilize as much of the timber resource as possible when harvesting occurs in a given area. However with the lack of local markets for logging residue (e.g. tops, rot, defect, branches etc.) there are often slash piles associated with harvesting operations. These slash piles, if left on a forested landscape have the ability to accelerate the spread of any wildfire in the area and create conditions that can impose an undue risk of wildfire occurrence adjacent to the community interface.
WCFC annually conducts slash burning operations to mitigate the wildfire risk to communities and to ensure compliance with established regulations that govern our operations. However this year we would like to advise the communities of the Bulkley Valley why we do so and to make everyone aware that a portion of this burning will occur within eyesight of town.
WCFC also invokes best management practices around our fall burning operations and will do so once again this year. We will acquire custom venting forecast through the Ministry of Environment and will have ensured piles are assembled in a fashion that will burn hot and relatively clean. We will wait to ignite piles until the risk of escape is low and we will light the piles early (~9am) when daytime venting is best suited to favorably disperse smoke. WCFC is striving to ensure that this portion of our forest operations is done as well as it can be with as few adverse effects as possible on the communities of the Bulkley Valley and beyond.
WCFC continues to seek opportunities to find alternative methods to open burning and to reduce the annual amount of burning needed within the community forest boundaries.
Thank you to everyone involved with burning operations in the Bulkley Valley. We truly look forward to a low impact slash burning program and to the understanding of this operational requirement from the communities at large.
Silvicon Services Inc.
Wetzin'kwa Community Forest Corporation (WCFC) - General Manager