The Community or Heritage Forest, located at the end of Georgia View Road, is 126 ha of land managed jointly by the Galiano Club & the Galiano Conservancy and contains an extensive trail network.
In December 2005 the Community Forest became the island’s first community land donation and this property, with an area covering 312 acres (126 hectares), was transferred to the Galiano Club. Through local bylaws regarding land use, owners of forest lots could choose to donate a large portion of their land to the community in exchange for some development privileges. The Galiano Conservancy Association and the Habitat Acquisition Trust were registered as covenant holders to ensure the property is used as intended in the Galiano Official Community Plan.
On July 23rd, 2006 a fire originating on a neighbouring property quickly spread through the Community Forest lands consuming 79 acres (32 hectares) of the Community Forest.
Due to both logging and wildfire, this property has succumbed to invasive species and as a result has disrupted the natural balance among plants, insects, birds and mammals in the forest ecosystem. The Community Forest is now an example of how human impact can have a devastating influence on the environment. As you walk this property you will notice the invasive Scotch broom in the logging and wildfire areas. You will also notice some of the original forest that was untouched by recent human impact. Although the surviving forest shows evidence of earlier logging and fire, there are a variety of indigenous species of large trees that provide a canopy to protect the forest floor from heating during the peak of summer. Indigenous forest species also serve to absorb carbon from the atmosphere at a greater rate than the non-native species. In contrast, the area affected by the more recent logging and fire is considerably hotter, and makes less contribution to reclaiming carbon and the Scotch broom serves to suppress the natural generation of the forest.
The Adopt A Circle program is an attempt to use volunteer community help to remove the invasive broom and protect the indigenous plants so they can thrive. This will help to kick start natural forest regeneration, the biomass on the forest floor will increase and the forest canopy will return. The eventual result will be improving carbon sequestration, keeping the earth cool and ultimately mitigating climate change. This demonstrates the importance of healthy indigenous forests to offset the impact of global climate change.
If you would like to participate in this project or for more information contact email@example.com