Forest management, industrial development, and climate change are large-scale disturbances agendas in northern BC ecosystems. In many cases, these impacts are short-term while other influences have a longer-term effect. When ecosystems are no longer able to cope or respond effectively to disturbance and related change; they may become vulnerable and at risk. To manage vulnerable and at risk ecosystems, Ecosystem Restoration (ER) practitioners need to understand when ecosystems are vulnerable and what management changes can be made that will foster increased ecosystem resilience. ER practitioners can offer practical science-based treatment options to restore the ability of ecosystems to provide valuable ecosystem products and services.
In 2006, grass-root efforts to conduct ecosystem restoration (ER) work in the Vanderhoof Resource District began. In 2013, the Society for Ecosystem Restoration in North-Central BC (SERNbc) was established to expand ER programming to the Omineca Forest Region. SERNbc was registered as a non-profit society under the Society Act. In 2014, SERNbc finalized a Strategic Plan to guide its growth in the Omineca Forest Region. In 2016, SERNbc was asked to offer ER services to the Skeena, Omineca, and Northeast Forest Regions throughout northern BC.
A strategic plan was completed in 2016 to guide SERNbc’s growth and to develop a strategic and rigourous approach to identifying and prioritizing ecosystem restoration projects. These expansion activities are guided by the strategic planning process which was completed in July, 2013.
"Healthy and resilient ecosystems in Northern BC."
To manage the structure and function of vulnerable and degraded ecosystems in Northern BC to achieve a desired condition that will sustain ecological services and socio-economic needs.
To identify, treat, and monitor vulnerable and degraded ecosystems in Northern BC;
To foster collaboration and coordinate ecosystem restoration programming in Northern BC;
To acquire technical information on ecosystem restoration and disseminate to partner organizations, First Nations, and other stakeholders; and,
Equity - We ensure appropriate representation from all regions in Northern BC including diverse representation from SERNbc Board of Directors and Membership;
Growth - We will support the development of ecosystem restoration activities at all scales in Northern BC;
Impact - We will measure our effectiveness against science-based, defensible, goals and be able to demonstrate tangible, on-the-ground results at the appropriate scale; and
Continue Improvement - We strive to learn, improve, and do better tomorrow than we did today.
The following principles are fundamental to the development of SERNbc and to the effective delivery of strategic ER priorities. These principles will guide decision-making as an organization:
SERNbc is a partnership driven organization recognizing the critical need to develop collaborative programming with governments, First Nations, NGO’s, academia and other proponents in Northern BC.
SERNbc may add value to the activities of industrial partners in support of ecosystem services; where industrial activities do not consider ecosystem values. SERNbc will not assume the obligations of industry but may improve and provide mechanisms for holistic delivery. Where SERNbc is approached with ecosystem restoration opportunities; their alignment with SERNbc’s vision, mission, and values will be assessed.
SERNbc is interested in growing the restoration economy and supporting the development and delivery of ecosystem restoration programming across Northern BC, through a variety and multitude of independent delivery agents. Where invited, SERNbc will seek to collaborate, augment, or support all initiatives.
The authority to implement ecosystem restoration programming on public lands rests with the Province, First Nations, and other land managers. Where SERNbc is approached by private landowners and other proponents with ecosystem restoration opportunities, their alignment with SERNbc’s vision, mission, and values will be assessed.
SERNbc relies on an array of external funding sources to develop and deliver ecosystem restoration programming. Where possible, opportunities for revenue generation will be explored.
The development of ER programming will be supported by a regional and/or landscape level understanding and the identification of at-risk ecological priorities.
SERNbc will strive to implement an ecosystem-based management approach that recognizes the full array of interactions within an ecosystem, including humans, rather than considering single issues, species, or ecosystem services in isolation.
SERNbc recognizes the need to consider and balance ecological, social and economic values in the development and delivery of ecosystem restoration programming and will engage in a collaborative stakeholder-focused processes to ensure benefits to multiple values.
SERNbc is governed by a Board of Directors who represent SERNbc’s membership. The Directors provide valuable expertise and strategic direction for SERNbc and help to assess program priorities, develop and approve policy, evaluate program outcomes, and conduct many other important functions. There are three executive positions on the board including the President, Vice President, and Secretary/Treasurer.
SERNbc has one full-time manager whose role is to implement SERNbc programming, manage ecosystem restoration projects, support Board activities, and assist with fund raising and outreach and extension activities.
SERNbc governance is detailed in its constitutions and bylaws which are updated and approved by the Board. SERNbc is also guided by a number of policy and procedures such as:
SERNbc is interested in collaborating with all organizations interested in planning, implementing, and funding ecosystem restoration programming in northern British Columbia.
Membership includes anyone interested in Ecosystem Restoration in Northern British Columbia. SERNbc has a diverse membership including the Provincial government, academia, First Nations, non-profit and non-government organizations, industry representatives, and other important stakeholders.
To become involved in the society, please email the coordinator.
Ministry of Forest, Lands, Natural Resource Operations, and Rural Development, Land Based Investment Program, Habitat Conservation Trust Fund, Fish and Wildlife Compensation Programs Environment and Climate Change Canada – Habitat Stewardship Program and the Aboriginal Fund for Species at Risk, Forest Enhancement Society of British Columbia, and the Forest Carbon Initiative.