Living Forest Communities
Living Forest Communities has partnered with the Trust for Sustainable Forestry to create a unique social enterprise. This new self-sustaining model for social enterprises working towards conservation envisions homeowners living within and protecting the forest for generations to come.
With each project undertaken by the Trust and Living Forest Communities, these two entities are closely linked for the sole purpose of ensuring forest conservation. From the selection of biologists, to in-depth ecological research, to the use of the last dollar earned, the for-profit corporation and the charity share resources, goals and objectives
Living Forest Communities has extensive experience in creating sustainable developments; light-on-the-land infrastructure and services, advanced biological sewage treatment, integrated water management, Platinum-rated Energuide 85 homes, geo-thermal heating and cooling, and narrow, contour-hugging roads. Our conservation communities feature “Not-so-big” homes clustered into traditional European hamlets, and utilize green building technologies. These traditional neighorhood desgin features not only serve to protect the most ecologically sensitive areas of the forest and the social well being of residents, but also promote sustainable activities such as organic gardening, eco-tourism, environmental education, eco-forestry and related value-added uses. Such conservation communities provide the financial means to reduce the environmental impact of development and human activities throughout an intact forest property, and protect the most ecologically sensitive areas of that forest.
Elkington Forest is the current project undertaken by Living Forest in partnership with TSF. With the annual ecological monitoring of this conservation community by our conservation partners – The Land Conservancy of BC and Ecotrust Canada – the single stem harvesting, re-planting and management of the forest will ensure on-going jobs and incomes, and a legacy of forested lands that over time will acquire the characteristics of an old growth forest. We believe that this unique model is one of the best means of saving forest ecosystems in perpetuity, while still providing housing opportunities to the community that lives embedded within it.
The Land Conservancy
The Land Conservancy is a non-profit, charitable land trust working throughout British Columbia. TLC protects important habitat for plants, animals and natural communities as well as properties with historical, cultural, scientific, scenic or compatible recreational value. The Land Conservancy of BC (with the Cowichan Valley Regional District) is the authorized signatory to the conservation and eco-forestry covenants on the Elkington Forest lands, the current project undertaken in partnership with The Trust for Sustainable Forestry. TLC undertakes an annual review of the activities on the land to ensure compliance with the terms and restrictions included in the covenants. Visit the TLC website for more information.
The Nature Conservancy of Canada
The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is a private, non-profit organization working for the direct protection of Canada’s biodiversity through the purchase, donation or placing of conservation easements on ecologically significant lands. The Nature Conservancy of Canada is the owner of the largest intact, deep-soil Garry Oak meadow in Canada. Located 6 km east of Duncan, the Cowichan Garry Oak Preserve and the “Oak Park” home was the original homestead of the Elkington family, and the childhood home of Eric Elkington. In partnership with the Trust for Sustainable Forestry, the NCC will be assisted in its Heritage Preservation program. Visit the NCC website for more information.
Ecotrust Canada is an enterprising nonprofit whose purpose is to build the conservation economy. Ecotrust Canada works at the intersection of conservation and community economic development promoting innovation and providing services for communities, First Nations and enterprises to green and grow their local economies. Ecotrust Canada is the organization that is authorized to provide annual confirmation of the Forest Stewardship Council® certification for the eco-forestry operation at Elkington Forest. Annually, the eco-forestry operation will be required to demonstrate that the forest management operations have been undertaken in compliance with the terms of FSC® certification. Visit the Ecotrust Canada website for more information.