June 2021 eNews

Hello CDFCP subscribers!

We have some exciting CDFCP updates to bring you in this edition, including: CDFCP's submission on BC's proposed Forest Carbon Offset Protocol, an invitation to comment on our revised Conservation Strategy (2020-2025), and an overview of CDFCP's recent local government pilot projects.  Read on to find out more!

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CDFCP calls for modernization of BC's Forest Carbon Offset Protocol

CDFCP's Response to BC's Proposed Forest Carbon Offset Protocol 

The feedback period for BC's proposed Forest Carbon Offset Protocol (FCOPv2) closed on May 31st. The CDFCP Steering Committee assembled its comments in this submission.  It calls on the Climate Action Secretariat to apply a nature-based approach to its offset protocol, by ‘bundling’ carbon offsets with biodiversity and climate change adaptation co-benefits, such as old growth, species and ecosystems at risk, wild salmon habitat, watershed and wildfire resilience, water security, and cultural assets. These co-benefits are vital, because ecologically degraded landscapes offer local communities fewer options to adapt to rapid climate change.

The CDFCP submission also recommends that the offset protocol enable regional approaches and small projects.  Per hectare, southwest BC's Coastal Douglas-fir forests (CDF) have among the highest carbon storage capacity of any forest in the world. Along with carbon storage they provide critical ecosystem services including such as source water protection, salmon habitat protection, biodiversity, and recreation.  However, BC's CDF zone also faces the highest development pressures in the province, and is a region dominated by small parcels of private (~80%) and often First Nations land.  For small carbon projects on small land parcels, the offset tracking and administration requirements are considerable, making carbon projects too expensive and too onerous for many local governments, private landowners and First Nations communities. 

 A nature-based carbon offset policy which: 1) enhances biodiversity and climate change adaptation co-benefits, 2) enables regional approaches and small projects, and 3) incentivizes local governments and smaller land holders, would contribute to overcoming the barriers to conserving biodiversity and ecosystem services presented by escalating land and timber prices. It would also make BC consistent with the highest forest carbon offset standards in other world jurisdictions and markets, and help attract buyers looking for high quality forest carbon offsets that also protect biodiversity.

Learn more about the promise and challenges of developing credible nature-based carbon offsets in this recent article by the Pembina Insitute. 

Invitation to comment on CDFCP's updated Conservation Strategy

The CDFCP's Conservation Strategy sets a 30-year vision and goals for the Coastal Douglas-fir Conservation Partnership (CDFCP), with objectives and actions identified for the next five years (2020–2025). The intent is to review and update this strategy at least every five years.

Our Steering Committee has been working on strategy update since the Fall of 2020. The new draft outlines three core goals for working towards a vision of ecological integrity for Coastal Douglas-fir and associated ecosystems (CDFAE). These are:
  1. CDFAE values (including species and ecosystems at risk) are incorporated into local and regional policy and  planning processes, and integrated into nature-based solutions for climate change mitigation and adaptation.
  2. Additional protection and stewardship of CDFAE is secured.
  3. CDFCP capacity to deliver the above goals is enhanced and sustained.
As a CDFCP member, you are invited to review and provide comments on our draft 2020-2025 Strategy.  We will be accepting comments until June 30th, 2021. Comments can be sent to

To download the draft Strategy please click here. 

Local Government Pilot Projects

Since the majority of rare and threatened coastal Douglas-fir forests and associated ecosystems (CDFAE) are on private land, local governments have an important role to play in its conservation and protection. To complement its Conservation Planning in Coastal Douglas-fir Ecosystems Quick Guide for Local Government, the CDFCP has been working on a framework for supporting the incorporation of CDFAE and species and at risk values into local government planning processes. In January, the Cowichan Valley Regional District, Municipality of North Cowichan and City of Courtenay agreed to be the first three local governments to pilot the ecosystem mapping aspects of the framework. All three government are currently undertaking reviews of their Official Community Plans.  Allison Haney, a wildlife biologist and GIS specialist with experience developing environmental mapping for local government planning, was contracted to help produce draft maps for the three local governments.

The mapping input layers included wetlands and watercourses, conservation areas, and environmentally sensitive areas. A draft environmentally sensitive areas layer was developed from a number sources, based on data availability for each local government area.  The core data included sensitive ecosystem inventory mapping, critical habitat maps for species at risk, and Conservation Data Centre element occurrences for species and ecosystems at risk.  In the case of Courtenay, mapping layers developed for their 2019 Urban Forest Strategy were also integrated, to determine areas of contiguous forest cover. From these layers, broad-brush first-cut alignments for potential conservation corridors were also derived. 

Stay tuned for our summary lessons learned report, which we are currently developing in collaboration with our local government partners, the City of Courtenay, the Municipality of North Cowichan, and the Cowichan Valley Regional District.
This project was undertaken with the financial support of: 
Ce projet a été réalisé avec l'appui financier de:

Get in touch!
Do you have a project that the CDFCP could support? If so, please contact to discuss further. We are always looking for opportunities to support our members.

We also welcome new organisations, local governments and individuals to join the CDFCP by signing our Statement of Cooperation

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Our Mission:

To promote the conservation and stewardship of the Coastal Douglas-fir and associated ecosystems in south-western British Columbia through sound science, shared information, supportive policies, and community education.

CDFCP Conservation Strategy

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