Chips can only be used outside of the 100 metre circle around residential structures. Photo courtesy SRD

Chips can only be used outside of the 100 metre circle around residential structures. Photo courtesy SRD

SRD accepting applications to use woodchips

Community projects must be fire safe

Organizations looking to use wood chips for public purposes can submit applications to do so to the SRD until March.

The regional district is accepting applications until March 4, 2022, but not all projects will be approved. Wood waste disposal occurs under the FireSmart Residential Driveway Wood Chipping Service, funded through the Union of B.C. Municipalities. After hearing from residents that keeping the wood chips in the community was preferred, the SRD has reached an agreement that will allow local use of the chips, while keeping with the UBCM policy.

“The SRD has been made aware of concerns over the Union of BC Municipalities policy regarding the current method of wood waste disposal offered under the FireSmart Residential Driveway Wood Chipping Service. We understand some residents would like to see the wood chips kept in their community rather than have them disposed of at another location.” said SRD Chair Brad Unger. “This method allows us to reach agreement between our residents and the current UBCM policy.”

Proposals should keep fire safety in mind, especially considering the fact that woody debris can cause fires to spread.

“In low fuel moisture conditions such as a high or extreme fire danger rating, the low fuel moisture conditions of both mulch and woody debris support a very high probability of ignition potential from (embers),” said a release from the SRD. “Applying or re-distributing the woody debris within the community to be used around gardens and homes on smaller lots would not be consistent with core recommendations from Firesmart BC.

“In addition, wood chips dry out faster and stay dryer longer than bark mulch and therefore present a higher threat than bark mulch from a garden centre,” it said.

The SRD said that proposals must ensure that chips are only used outside of FireSmart’s “non-combustible zone” and “priority zones 1 and 2.” That is, beyond 100 metres of residential structures. All proposals will be vetted through the UBCM before being approved.

If your community organization is interested in submitting an application, please visit www.srd.ca/woodchips-application. For more information about how to better FireSmart your home and property please visit www.srd.ca/emergency-preparedness.

RELATED: Strathcona Regional District receives FireSmart funding

Financial assistance for flood-ravaged households, businesses expanded to cover more of B.C.



marc.kitteringham@campbellrivermirror.com

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