A Forest Stewardship Plan (FSP) is the only operational plan that is approved by government under the Forest and Range Practices Act (FRPA). The FSP describes strategies and results necessary to achieve consistency with objectives that have been set by government: As long as the approved strategies and results are being followed, forest operations can proceed.
Through the FRPA, the government has set objectives for the following values: soils, timber, water, fish, wildlife, biodiversity, visual quality, and cultural heritage resources. In addition, legislation describes how objectives can be set through regulation or higher-level plans for recreation, resource features, and forage. Results and strategies must be consistent with these objectives. For example, if a plan area includes a stream, the results or strategies for riparian areas must be consistent with government’s overall objective to conserve water quality, biodiversity, and fish and wildlife habitats.
In addition to the strategies and results, some values are also managed through practice requirements under the Forest Planning and Practices Regulation; these serve as standards for on-the-ground practices. Since these practice requirements are part of the legislation that must be followed, they are not described in the FSP. For example, the regulation contains practice requirements to protect fish and fish habitat by maintaining fish passage and stream channel integrity, and ensuring activities are timed to minimize risk to fish and fish habitat.
To allow different results and strategies to be applied to different areas where necessary, the FSP describes general areas where forest activities may occur. These areas are known as Forest Development Units, or FDUs, and are shown on maps included as part of the FSP.
The FSP does not identify individual block or road locations – instead, the blocks or roads have to be consistent with the results and strategies, and meet the practice requirements in the legislation.
For detailed information on the FRPA and FSPs, go to the BC Ministry of Forests FRPA website at http://www.for.gov.bc.ca/code/