May 29 is the “Day of the Honeybee.” BC is celebrating the growth of an industry that started with the arrival of two hives in Victoria during 1858. There are now 47,000 colonies, whose activities a $250-million-a-year agricultural industry. BC also produces $10 million worth of honey. The provincial Minister of Agriculture, Norm Letnik, says this is a time to remember how much bees contribute to “our lives, our economy and our food supply.” Gwen Barlee suggests we should celebrate the Day of the Honeybee by Banning Neonicotinoids. Continue reading Celebrate The Day Of The Honeybee By Banning Neonicotinoids→
Rare Birds was birthed out of friendship. One of the inspirations was the film “How to boil a Frog,” that Mary Jordan and Val MacKay-Greer saw at the 2011 Kamloops Film Festival. The film maker had wanted to bring hope to his daughter’s generation. It brought forth hope in Mary and Val as well. They were attracted to a communal lifestyle. Continue reading Rare Birds: A Newly Founded Yet Fully Mature Community→
As a woodworker on the drier southern BC coast with a very small woodlot, and some working familiarity with the timber journey – from seed to old tree and from sawn lumber to sailboat, it seems obvious to me that there’s still a tug of war between two polarized goals in forestry. One strives for Quantity, the other strives for Quality. It’s a simplification I know, but then we could also call it Ishmael’s battle between Takers and Leavers, and ask who is winning. Nearly always in our modern addiction to economic growth, gross volume wins over real value. But the short-term quest for higher quantity has already severely compromised long term timber quality in many coastal watersheds. Does this have to be the eternal dilemma in our transient relationship with wild forests, trees and wood? Or is this really a false dichotomy built on ignorant assumptions? Is there a better middle path, a more gracious future in a truly sustainable forestry?
I believe that most of us now realize that a mature forest ecosystem is a complex community of interconnected, interdependent organisms demonstrably capable of developing, expanding and sustaining itself. To appreciate this, we only have to consider the forests that existed in much of North America and, more specifically, on our Pacific Coast, when we Europeans arrived.