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B.C. Conservation Organization To End Blockades

Thursday, June 30th, 2022 8:59am

By Meg Polson

A B.C. conservation organization, whose volunteers have blocked busy roadways in hopes of stopping old-growth logging in the province, says it is shifting strategies and ending the blockades.

A B.C. conservation organization, whose volunteers have blocked busy roadways in hopes of stopping old-growth logging in the province, says it is shifting strategies and ending the blockades.

In a short statement on Wednesday, Save Old Growth said it will "de-escalate disruptive actions on critical transportation infrastructure. 

This spring and summer, the group has brought traffic to a standstill on major highways and during rush hours in Metro Vancouver, Victoria, Nanaimo, and Revelstoke.

The actions have resulted in dozens of arrests and conflict with motorists over the disruptions. The province said it respects people's right to protest, but the blockades are inappropriate.

A Save Old Growth spokesperson would not provide further information about the decision on Wednesday. Just weeks ago, it said traffic disruptions would continue until old-growth logging ceased in the province.

Save Old Growth's news release said it is now turning its attention to other tactics, including public outreach and events.

Save Old Growth said it continues to "request the government take urgent steps to permanently protect B.C.'s remaining old-growth forests."

It and several other conservation groups have been critical of how the B.C. NDP has moved to overhaul forestry practices in the province.

It says ecologically-rich areas continue to see the loss of trees, some up to 1,000 years old, and the province is moving too slowly to protect trees, consult with First Nations and is not providing them with enough funding to develop other industries and help workers in logging communities.

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