Protect more of watershed, says councillor Tanner

Protected area is only about 10 per cent of the property

Not only does Qualicum Beach councillor Scott Tanner support the municipality’s purchase of logging rights on a property on the west side of the Little Qualicum River, he wants the town to do more.

In 1986 the municipality purchased the 100-acre property for $150,000, but the former owner, MacMillan Bloedel, retained the cutting rights.

The town purchased those logging rights in 2010 for $185,000, but Tanner noted the move only protected about 10 per cent of the DL10 property, most of which had already been logged.

“Shortly after  selling the land to the Town of Qualicum Beach, MacMillan Bloedel logged the eastern side of DL10, which is about 80 to 90 per cent of the land,” Tanner said.


“However, there was about 10 to 15 per cent of the land base on the western side of the Little Qualicum River where the access was quite challenging.”

In early 2000, MacMillan Bloedel was sold to Weyerhauser. At that point, Tanner said, the town began negotiations to purchase the logging rights for the remaining land.

“One option was to give Weyerhauser a little higher density on their neighbouring land in the regional district and in return they would put a conservation covenant on DL10, as well as on their own lands that were adjacent to it on the lower flood plain.”

However, the negotiations were plagued by a continually changing cast of characters.

“One of the things that created some challenges was that in the middle of negotiations Weyerhauser was sold to Island Timberlands. Many of the employees with Weyerhauser we had been working with were transferred. At the Regional District of Nanaimo level, many of the senior administrators transferred to the Capital Regional District, so trying to keep continuity was a real challenge.”

Weyerhauser rose to that challenge however, extending the deadline to purchase the logging rights on two occasions, in 2006 and again in 2008. In 2010 however, the town was given the word that the company was done.

“They said ‘that’s it,’” Tanner said. “The town recognized this land is quite significant in terms of the town’s future water supply and they came up with the money.”

Tanner said he wants to see the Regional District of Nanaimo expand the protected area in the floodplain of the Little Qualicum River in order to help  safeguard the area’s water supply.

“In my opinion, if that area were to be logged, in the next 10 to 15 years we would see tremendous changes in the river.”



Just Posted

The Arrowsmith Search and Rescue Society has outgrown its home at the Coombs-Hilliers Fire Department and will soon move to its new operations hall at the Qualicum Beach Airport. (PQB News file photo)
The Qualicum Beach Farmers Market is one of the organizations approved for a grant-in-aid by the Town of Qualicum Beach. (PQB News file photo)
COVID-19: Town of Qualicum Beach awards $80K in relief funds to community groups

Pandemic has put a financial strain on many organizations

The remains of the Mid-Island Co-op in Whiskey Creek along the Alberni Highway on Friday, June 18, after a blaze the day before devastated the gas station. (Michael Briones photo)
VIDEO: Whiskey Creek gas station destroyed by fire after camper van explosion

Nine fire departments responded to the incident, no injuries reported

Black Press file photo
RCMP seek suspect in Vancouver Island-wide crime spree

Crimes stretched from Deep Bay to Qualicum, Ladysmith, Chemainus and Youbou

Things are looking up for Vancouver Island as zero COVID-19 cases have been reported for the first time since October. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Island records zero new COVID-19 cases for the first time since October

For the first time since October, the province is reporting zero new… Continue reading

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

A 58-year-old B.C. woman says she was attacked by a deer while out walking her dog last week. (Paul Chiasson/THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Deer attack in southeastern B.C. leaves woman cut, battered and bruised

Liz Royer says she was out for a run last week when the deer appeared out of a bush and charged

Most Read