Nakusp and Area Community Forest intends to do selective logging on Box Mountain as part of wildfire mitigation work. 
(Nakusp and Area Community Forest - Contributor)

Nakusp and Area Community Forest intends to do selective logging on Box Mountain as part of wildfire mitigation work. (Nakusp and Area Community Forest - Contributor)

Letter: Wildfire is not threatening the Box Mountain watershed

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Dear editor:

I attended an excellent presentation by professional foresters and biologists that outlined ways to mitigate wildfire risk for ranches, farms, residences at my home in the Chilcotin.

This was in autumn 2017 after we spent eight weeks with our region under Evacuation Alert or Order.

The evening was educational, about managing potential wildfire fuel, understanding fire behaviour, and looking at our properties through a fire risk mitigation lens. A lot of useful information was shared.

There was not, however, any discussion about logging north-facing, damp/mossy watershed areas like Box Mountain. I don’t live there now but grew up riding horses and walking up on the mountain where you can sink into cool moss up to your knees. We still have family property in Brouse and I am very concerned that there is still talk of logging Box Mountain.

READ MORE: Box Mountain residents rally to protect their water

I’ve seen the proposed drawing and it is horrifying – from an aesthetic point of view as well as considering steep slope stability, and potential for sloughing/slides. And considering the loss of ecosystems that we can not get back.

Our granddad, the late Ernie Pigott, said he’d seen thousands of lightning strikes on Box Mountain and watched a puff of smoke appear then die out.

Even in the dry part of summer.

It’s shaded and cool, as anyone who has walked up there can attest. Can it burn? Absolutely. But is wildfire risk threatening enough to log it? No.

I think you’d be hard-pressed to say that with a clear conscience.

Earmarking this site for logging for “Fire Risk Reduction” just seems absurd. The only possible explanation I can think of is mislabeled financial gain. Is that possible?

We have much we can learn about wildfire risk mitigation strategies from the professional foresters, biologists, ecologists.

But we have to wonder about potential conflict of interest and hidden agenda when something like this is proposed.

Patrice Gordon, Nakusp

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