The Whitehorse Star



Forestry blueprint officially approved

The Forest Management Plan for the Teslin Tlingit Traditional Territory received formal approval last month at a signing ceremony in Teslin.

Energy, Mines and Resources Minister Archie Lang and Teslin Tlingit Council Chief Eric Morris formally embraced the plan at the signing ceremony.

The plan recognizes the extensive work done by the Teslin Tlingit Council, the Teslin Renewable Resources Council and everyone who contributed to the project since 1999.

"This is the second forest management plan to be brought forward since the Yukon government assumed management of our forests, and it is indeed another milestone on the road to responsibly managing our resources on behalf of future generations," Lang said at the signing.

"We are here today to recognize and acknowledge, with our deepest thanks, the Teslin Tlingit lands department and the Teslin Renewable Resources Council for their lead roles in the development of this plan."

"The purpose of a forest management plan is to provide a development strategy for a sustainable forest-based economy, a key component of our regional economic stability.

"Our plan does this by addressing major forest resource issues and by providing guidelines to develop goals and objectives," Morris said.

"Putting this document together was not an easy task, and I would like to thank the lands department of the Teslin Tlingit Council and the Teslin Renewable Resources Council who dedicated so much of their time throughout this process to this important Teslin Tlingit initiative."

The Yukon government, working with the Teslin Tlingit Council, will establish a joint management committee to begin implementation of the plan.

Implementation will involve determination and allocation of the allowable annual cut and will identify timber harvest projects and site plans for submission to the Yukon Environmental Socio-economic Assessment Act process.

Development will initially be focused on the Pine Lake, Teslin, Sidney Lake, East Teslin River and North Nisutlin River landscape units.