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Horsefly, Quesnel Lake-area logging topic of discussion at upcoming open house

The meeting will get underway at 10 a.m. at Horsefly Community Hall in Horsefly, B.C.
A logging truck crosses the Horsefly River bridge at Horsefly Oct.6. On Saturday, Oct. 14 an open house is taking place to discuss concerns around logging in the area. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

Logging in the Horsefly River watershed will be the topic of discussion at an open house set to take place Saturday, Oct. 14.

Hosted by the Horsefly River Roundtable, representatives from the Ministry of Forests, Tolko, West Fraser and BCTS are expected to be in attendance.

The open house will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Horsefly Community Hall in Horsefly, B.C.

Presentations get underway at 10 a.m. with an introduction by representatives from the Horsefly River Roundtable, followed by an update on the timber supply review and partition, and the fisheries-sensitive watershed. Following the presentations, attendees will get a chance to discuss operational plans with BCTS, West Fraser and Tolko staff.

The meeting was initially requested back in June when the Horsefly River Roundtable and stakeholders requested an immediate moratorium on all industrial forest-related activities in the Horsefly River Fisheries Sensitive Watershed as they sought more information on logging activities.

“Obviously we don’t want logging to stop but we would like to put on some pressure to have the area assessed by boots on the ground,” Helen Englund, a member of the roundtable, said at the time.

Last year, the Horsefly River Roundtable held a community meeting in May with Tolko Industries Ltd. representatives present. More than 100 residents, property owners and concerned citizens attended that meeting and filled out a survey.

Results from the survey showed most people were concerned about logging in areas around Horsefly Lake, Prairie Creek, Lemon Lake, Millar Road, Antoine Lake, Quesnel Lake, Crooked Lake, Upper Horsefly River, Woodjam, and McKinley Lake.

There were also concerns raised about fish and wildlife habitat and the watershed, water quality, roads, wildfire risks, the type of silviculture systems being used, property values, recreational values and biodiversity.

Logging plans and a request for feedback were also given to property owners at Quesnel Lake junction, some of whom said their concerns were left unanswered by the ministry.

The Ministry of Forests confirmed to the Tribune in June that 40 per cent of harvesting in the Williams Lake Timber Supply Area (TSA) in 2022 came from the Horsefly, Beaver Valley and Likely area.

- With files from Monica Lamb-Yorski

About the Author: Williams Lake Tribune Staff

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