In celebration of its 10th anniversary, the CNC Research Forest Society (CNCRFS) has launched a legacy fund supporting projects in communities CNC serves.

The Society is calling for applications towards legacy projects with a focus on environmental improvement, renewable natural resource education, as well as outreach programs, outdoor recreation improvement, or social/environmental commitment to the local communities. The successful project with receive up to $30,000 per year for three years.

“The idea is to promote and support any projects that enhance the environment or reduce any environmental impact, or work towards natural resource education, any types of those ideas are fully fundable,” CNC Research Forest Manager Carl Pollard told MyPGNow. “Say if someone had an idea that reduces energy consumption, reduces pollution, do an environmental clean-up, those would all be eligible projects. If someone wanted to start a new natural resources education program for youth in our area, that would also be a great idea that would be funded.”

Pollard stated that when the CNC Research Forest was founded in 2009, it was intended to be a long-term sustainable endeavor, so the legacy fund is intended to reinforce that idea. The forest was established to provide a new revenue source to sustain and revitalize the College’s natural resource and forestry education and provide for new research and learning opportunities for CNC and its students.

“CNC and CNCRFS are both very excited about this opportunity to create new partnerships and lasting legacies for local people focused on the sustainability of our natural resources,” said Tara Szerencsi, CNC Vice President of Finance and Corporate Services.

The spruce beetle outbreak began to noticeably affect the CNC Research Forest in 2015. The onset resulted in a new management plan and two timber supply reviews in an attempt to reasonably forecast tree mortality and develop a quick management response. As a result, the CNC Research Forest has to increase the harvest level to remove spruce beetle populations and salvage spruce timber prior to significant degradation from drying and decay.

Though the forest industry is currently experiencing difficult circumstances affecting many people in the region, Pollard said it is the long-term mandate of the CNCRFS to ensure the Research Forest provides important benefits to students and local natural resource research for many years to come.

“There is now the opportunity to re-invest a portion of the sale of the timber back into the natural resources and people fo the region served by CNC through this new legacy fund,” said Pollard.

The CNCRFS legacy fund is open to individuals, businesses, community groups, First Nations communities, government agency, as well as secondary and post-secondary schools in and around Prince George, Bear Lake, McLeod Lake, Mackenzie, Quesnel, Fort St. James, Vanderhoof, and Burns Lake.

Applications packages and instructions can be found on the CNC website. Deadline for applying is August 16, at 4:00 p.m.