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    SCIENTIFIC & TECHNICAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE

    TERMS OF REFERENCE

    As of March 18, 2002

    BACKGROUND

    A.1 The Pilot Project

    In June 1999 the BC government added Part 10.1 to the Forest Practices Code of BC Act to enable results-based pilot projects.  The intent of the pilot projects is to experiment with ways to improve the regulatory framework for forest practices while maintaining the same or higher levels of environmental standards.

    Canadian Forest Products Ltd., Slocan Forest Products Ltd., Louisiana-Pacific Canada Ltd., and the Ministry of Forests- Small Business Forest Enterprise Program (i.e., known as the participants) prepared a detailed pilot project proposal that provides the basis for the Fort St. John Pilot Project Regulation.  Beginning in 2000, the participants established a public advisory group comprised of representatives from important local interests, with the exception of Treaty 8 First Nations.  The advisory group reviewed the draft detailed project proposal and draft regulation, reviewed comments from the general public and provided advice to government on the suitability of the project.  Cabinet accepted the proposal and draft regulation late in 2001.

    The participants are also aiming to achieve a Sustainable Forest Management System (SFMS) to the CSA standard for the pilot project area.  Following approval of the pilot project regulation, the Public Advisory Group (PAG) is providing advice to the participants on values, goals, indicators and objectives to be considered in the development of a sustainable forest management plan for the pilot project area, the Fort St. John Timber Supply Area (TSA).  The PAG will continue to have a role in providing input relevant to the Sustainable Forest Management Plan.

    In addition to a public advisory group, the participants are establishing a Scientific Technical Advisory Committee to provide strategic and technical input for consideration in the development of the Sustainable Forest Management Plan (SFMP).

    The Scientific Technical Advisory Committee is a team of well-recognized and respected professionals who bring a diverse set of knowledge in sustainable forest management.  In addition to members of this committee, other specialists may be brought in to review the input from the public advisory group and make recommendations to the participants on possible operational methods, strategies, training and other considerations.

    A.2       Description of Pilot Project Area

    The pilot project area covers the same area as the Fort St. John Timber Supply Area (TSA), which are essentially the crown lands within the Fort St. John Forest District.

    The Fort St. John TSA is bisected by the Alaska Highway, which runs generally in a north-south direction.  East of the highway, the topography is gently rolling terrain, part of the Alberta Plateau, which extends to the Alberta border.  West of the highway, the terrain is increasingly more rugged, as part of the Rocky Mountain foothills.  Further west, the Rocky Mountains form the western boundary of the TSA.

    The TSA incorporates the southern portion of the Muskwa-Kechika Management Area, a series of contiguous protected areas and special management zones.  Management of the Muskwa-Kechika focuses on maintenance of high wildlife, biodiversity and wilderness values.  This is accomplished, in part, through the establishment of approved local strategic plans, which provide direction to local resource management including forestry, oil and gas, parks and commercial recreation.

    The Fort St. John TSA will also serve as the ”Defined Forest Area (DFA)” for which SFMS certification will be sought.

    B.  ROLE

    The overall role of the Scientific Technical Advisory Committee is to provide strategic input for consideration in the development and implementation of the Sustainable Forest Management Plan (SFMP).  Additionally, the scientific and/or technical experts may assist the participants in the identification of appropriate indicators, objectives or strategies to address values and goals derived through the public advisory process.  The Committee may also provide an overview and comments on the adaptive management framework that will be used by the pilot participants.

     The participants are responsible for the development and implementation of the SFM plan and will carefully consider recommendations of the Public Advisory Group and the Scientific Technical Advisory Committee.

    C.  OBJECTIVES

    The Scientific Technical Advisory Committee will:

    1 Become familiar with the intent and direction for the pilot project
    2 Provide their overall perspectives on possible approaches for the SFMP.
    3

    Provide input on information, training and other issues as related to the SFMP to pilot participants and the public advisory group as required. 

    4 Provide input on the SFMP strategic approaches/options.
    5 Provide strategic input to the design, modeling and monitoring of the SFMP.
    6 Review and provide feedback on the final draft of the SFMP

    D.  TIMELINES

    March    2002  Establishment of Scientific Technical Advisory Committee
    Feb-May 2002  Provide input related to Values and Objectives from the Public Advisory Group.  Liaise with Public Advisory Group, if required
    April 23  2002  Orientation to pilot project, assess issues, scope directions (phase 1).
    May-June 2002 Scope directions (phase 2-3)
    May-Sept. 2002 Provide input to participants related to the development of SFM plan.
    Fall-winter 2002 Review and provide feedback on the draft SFMP
    2003- ? Meet 2- 4 times a year to provide strategic input on implementation and monitoring of SFM plan

    E.  STRUCTURE

    The Scientific Technical Advisory Committee may consist of representatives from areas such as:
    ·        
    Biometrics
    ·        
    Estate modeling
    ·        
    Fisheries biologist
    ·        
    Forest ecology
    ·        
    Hydrology
    ·        
    Inventory and timber supply
    ·        
    Natural resource economics
    ·        
    Range and forage mgmt.
    ·        
    Soil science
    ·        
    Traditional ecological knowledge
    ·         Wildlife ecology

    The participants will invite and select the representatives.  Once established, the Committee or its individual representatives may make recommendations for changes to the range of technical expertise represented and/or specific individuals to consider.  The participants will finalize any changes to the membership.

     F.  ROLE OF REPRESENTATIVES

    Generally, the Scientific Technical Advisory Committee will work as a team to provide input to the participants for their consideration.

    If the representatives make recommendations to the participants that could result in direct personal benefit (i.e., contracts), this interest/benefit is to be identified at the time of the recommendation. 

    Each representative is invited to stand as a member of the Committee until Dec. 2003.  At that time, each representative and the participants will review ongoing participation.  An annual review will be done to ensure the ongoing interests of the representative in serving as a committee member.  The participants will approve all extensions for existing representatives and recommendations for new people.

    At times, Committee members and others may be contacted to provide direct operational input, training, etc.  These operational activities are not seen as within the mandate of the Committee.  If a Committee member is involved and remuneration is expected, a written contract must be in place prior to commencement of work.

    G.  COMMUNICATION

    The Scientific Technical Advisory Committee will:

    1.       Communicate directly with the participants or a designated representative to:
    a)       request technical or scientific information
    b)       provide strategic technical or scientific knowledge, information and advice

    2.       Receive information from the participants as to:
    a)       the recommendations from the Public Advisory Group
    b)       the progress and update of the SFM plan and selection of objectives and indicators

    3.       Communicate with the media on topics related to the Pilot project only with the prior agreement of the participants

    H.  COMMITTEE RESPONSIBILITIES

    The Scientific Technical Advisory Committee is a body that exchanges ideas amongst themselves and with the participants and advisory groups, if requested.  As such it is not a decision-making body but rather it is an advisory and recommendations body.

    The Committee will be requested to make recommendations to the participants related to the development and implementation of the Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) Plan.  The participants will be responsible for reviewing and considering the recommendations of the Committee for the development and implementation of the SFM Plan.

    All representatives of the Scientific Technical Advisory Committee agree to accept the Terms of Reference.

    I.  REIMBURSEMENT OF COMMITTEE REPRESENTATIVE

    Travel and direct meeting cost reimbursement will be paid only on receipt of an expense form and relevant expense receipts. Mileage will be reimbursed at the rate of $ 0.42/km GW1]

    No reimbursement for time related to committee meetings is available.  If a committee member is interested in developing a contract related to the implementation or monitoring of the SFM Plan, this interest must be made clear to the Committee (see Section C) and considered by the participants.

    J.  REVIEW OF TERMS OF REFERENCE

    The Terms of Reference will be reviewed bi-annually. Any revisions will be reviewed and agreed to by the representatives of the Scientific Technical Advisory Committee and the participants.

    ACCEPTED: ________________________________________________________________