Unit 1 - What is Forest Stewardship?

Lesson 2: Forest Management Plans

The Alberta.ca website states that "Alberta has demonstrated commitment to the principles of sustainable forest management and responsible stewardship through the development of rigorous legislation and policies for the protection, conservation and sustainable management of forests. Government foresters and biologists work alongside forest industry representatives to develop long-term plans that ensure forest values are maintained for future generations."
Under the authority of the Forests Act, Alberta has developed strict standards for forest management planning.

The legislation and policies, referred to in the above statement, provide details to ensure forest activities are carried out in a sustainable way.  Those details are contained in Forest Management Plans, which are approved by the Government of Alberta, with input from the public and other stakeholders.
A Forest Management Plan includes forest management objectives, strategies and commitments while also identifying the intended method of cutting, reforesting, and managing timber resources within a defined area of responsibility.
The Forest Management Plans, providing for sustainable management of forest resources, are prepared for a 10 year term and contain the following components:

  • the extent and size of the forest management area they cover,
  • specific stands identified for harvest in the next 10 years,
  • intended reforestation treatments to be implemented.

Forest Management Plans are detailed and thorough documents that include collaboration of the forest industry, government agencies, other resource users and the public.

Click here for the Forest Management Plan approved for Weyerhaeuser Grande Prairie; you can see that it is for the years 2011 - 2021; the five page Table of Contents gives you an idea of the detail involved.

When planted trees are growing at rates equal to or above the rates that came back after a natural forest fire, then we have an indication that our stewardship is working.

Good stewardship will result in natural processes not being overly disrupted by development activities ... and a variety of benefits to society will thereby be sustained.