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Kootenay-Boundary Regional Land Use Plan


July 4, 2000

Resource Management Division
Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks
Ministry of Forests
Ministry of Energy and Mines

Overview of the draft Higher Level Plan for Kootenay Boundary Land Use Plan Implementation Strategy

Government intends to establish a Higher Level Plan (HLP) under the Forest Practices Code (FPC) to declare forestry-related components of the Kootenay Boundary Land Use Plan Implementation Strategy as legal requirements. Approval for this HLP is needed from the Minister of Environment, Lands and Parks, the Minister of Forests and the Minister of Energy and Mines.

The ministers will consider public comments on this HLP. The plan will be revised as appropriate before final approval. Comments on the draft HLP are invited for a 60-day period during July, August and September, 2000. It should be noted this review and comment period is only for the HLP, because the Kootenay Boundary Land Use Plan and its Implementation Strategy are already government policy.

Canada, British Columbia, and First Nations in the Kootenay-Boundary area are continuing with treaty negotiations, the results of which may ultimately lead to changes in the Higher Level Plan. Neither the Kootenay-Boundary Land-Use Plan as a whole, nor the pending HLP, purport to resolve any outstanding issues concerning aboriginal rights or title.

District Managers must ensure strategic and operational plans under the FPC are consistent with legally established HLP objectives. District Managers may review the rest of the KBLUP-IS among the many policy and other factors they consider in approving strategic and operational plans. However, they do not have the legal authority to require licensees to implement the rest of the KBLUP-IS unless they determine it is necessary to adequately manage and conserve specific forest resources.

In the early 1990s, government established the Commission on Resources and the Environment (CORE) to help resolve regional and local land use issues. The commission established the East and West Kootenay Core tables. After extensive deliberations the tables submitted their reports to the commissioner, who in 1994 submitted his recommendations to government. Government announced the Kootenay Boundary Land Use Plan in March 1995, and the more detailed Implementation Strategy in 1997.

The following elements of the Kootenay-Boundary Implementation Strategy will be made into a Higher Level Plan:

  • In addition to old forest retention targets, there will be mature forest retention targets.
  • Regional connectivity and location of important avalanche tracks will influence the location of mature and old forest retention.
  • Green-up will be reduced while patch size will be increased.
  • Enhanced Resource Development Zones for timber will be confirmed.
  • Fire-maintained ecosystems will be restored.
  • Streams within domestic watersheds will have increased protection.
  • Scenic areas will be established.

Government is also considering the inclusion of an economic objective in the HLP. A report from the Deputy Minister of Forests is available for public review. This report recommends that Ministers consider including an economic objective in the Higher Level Plan. The economic objective, if accepted, would ensure a review should the short to mid-term timber supply fall below an acceptable limit. During the 60-day review and comment period for the HLP, government staff will also comment on this recommendation. Government will not make a decision on the economic objective until after the public review period has ended.

Also proposed is the delegation of authority to vary the HLP objectives from the three ministers to the Regional Manager of Forests and the Regional Director of the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks. This will ensure necessary amendments are efficiently processed.

Overall, this will provide greater certainty for both environmental values and the forest industry. It is anticipated there will be no major impacts on the short-term regional wood supply.

Comments received will be summarized and made available to the public. These comments will also be considered by the Ministers of Forests; Environment, Lands and Parks; and Energy and Mines in finalizing the Higher Level Plan. Subsequent advertising of the impending order later this year will announce the effective date of the HLP.

Copies of the draft Higher Level Plan, the Deputy Minister of Forests’ report on the economic objective, and the draft delegation of authority letter can be obtained at the Ministry of Forests regional and district offices in the Nelson forest region. Copies can also be obtained at the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks regional office in Nelson, and the MELP sub-regional office in Cranbrook. The Higher Level Plan can be viewed on the Ministry of Forests and the RMD web sites. Comments on the HLP should be delivered to Garry Darychuk, Ministry of Forests, Nelson Forest Region, 518 Lake Street, Nelson B.C., V1L 4C6. Comments on the plan can also be made through the following email address:

For more information visit the Ministry of Forests Web site at

or the RMD Web site at

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Last Updated: 07/05/00

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