Kwiakah First Nation Takes Bold Step Towards Conservation and a Thriving Future

June 26, 2024

Kwiakah First Nation Takes Bold Step Towards Conservation and a Thriving Future 

The Kwiakah First Nation, located on the central coast of British Columbia near the top of Vancouer Island, is leading the way in sustainable land management with the creation of the M̓ac̓inuxʷ Special Forest Management Area (SFMA). This innovative project marks a shift from industrial logging practices to a "living tree" tenure, prioritizing the health of the forest ecosystem alongside the well-being of the Kwiakah community. 

For nearly a century, the Kwiakah Nation has witnessed the impacts of traditional logging on their territory. Now, through a tripartite agreement with the Province of BC and Interfor, they're forging a new path forward. The M̓ac̓inuxʷ SFMA encompasses over 8,000 hectares of land, effectively doubling the area under protection in Kwiakah territory. 

“We as Kwiakah people have a vision of the future — where nən (grizzly bears) and their cubs roam through the mossy, misty forests of our territory, finding a bounty of berries, roots, and fish to eat, and where Kwiakah youth only know their forests as protected and abundant,” says Chief Steven Dick of the Kwiakah First Nation. 

The Kwiakah Nation are leading this project and BC Parks Foundation – through your support – helped purchase and protect private lands in the area, working in cooperation with Nature United, the Nature Conservancy of Canada, and the Province of BC. 

“We are grateful to the Kwiakah Nation for their steadfast dedication to conservation and all of their hard work—and it is always a lot of hard work to forge a new path,” says BC Parks Foundation’s CEO Andy Day. “It was also great to see so many other partners working together for the forests, grizzly bears and communities in the area. Temperate rainforests play a vital role in mitigating climate change, storing carbon and producing the oxygen we breathe. It doesn’t get more important than that.”

Learn more about the beautiful places you've helped protect.