Local group plans rally against B.C. old-growth logging

Fighting old-growth logging

A group of protestors will take to Kelowna's Kerry Park Saturday in opposition to the logging of British Columbia's old-growth trees.

Old Growth Okanagan, a local activist group recently organized in response to the logging of Vancouver Island's Fairy Creek Watershed, will begin their protest at 10 a.m. on the Highway 97 pedestrian overpass near the Parkinson Rec Centre, before moving to The Sails in downtown Kelowna at 12 p.m.

"We are nothing without our nature,” said Waseem Hakhroo, one of the founding members of Old Growth Okanagan.

“Everything we have is because of our environment around us. To take away such a crucial part of this ecosystem is devastating. This is after all one world, one big system, what we do here doesn't just affect us. It affects the whole world."

Hakhroo started the local group by hanging a single banner over the pedestrian bridge on April 14. On May 31, about 100 people met up for a rally in downtown Kelowna, marching in solidarity with those at the Fairy Creek blockade.

To date, 158 people working to block the Teal Jones' logging of old growth forests have been arrested at the blockade.

In their press release, Old Growth Okanagan acknowledged the importance of the forestry industry, but urged the provincial government to protect old-growth forests in particular.

“Rather than placing blame on the corporations, it is imperative to instill a sense of social responsibility on corporations such as Teal Jones,” said group member Brandon Croyden. “Exploitation of these ancient forests is advantageous to none and has the power to threaten our very existence.”

The group is demanding a province-wide moratorium on old-growth logging.

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