Canada’s temperate rainforests, which are located on the Pacific Coast in the province of British Columbia, contain some of the largest trees in the world – the so-called giant trees. These trees stand only behind California’s Redwoods and Sequoia trees in terms of size. The oldest of these trees can be found in the South West part of British Columbia. The copious amount of rainfall which the region receives coupled with mild winters allow trees in the area to grow relentlessly.
However, Al Jazeera reports that only a handful of these large trees now remain on the lower mainland and Vancouver Island regions of British Columbia due to commercial logging activity in the region. The logging activity is also putting pressure on the delicate ecosystem which is dependent on the forests.
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The responsibility of protecting the forests has fallen on environmentalists and at times the local indigenous communities. Al Jazeera report claims that government regulation of logging activities in the province have so far been lax. Protests and conservation campaigns, which began in the 1980s, resulted in protection for a few areas, such as the Clayoquot Sound on Vancouver Island and the Great Bear Rainforest on the central and north coast, are a few of the better-known examples.
Even as citizens are waking up to rampant logging in British Columbia and calls for conservation of these forests is growing, the commercial logging industry is looking to expand towards the last tracts of these forests.
Hopefully, citizens now see these giant trees as something more than an industrial commodity.