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August 2-9, 2004
BC allocates $96,500 to protect fire-stricken South Okanagan from invasive plant species
OSOYOOS, BC-British Columbia will spending $96,500 to protect fire-stricken areas in the South Okanagan region from the effects of invasive plants and weeds. The plant management projects, focused in the areas affected by last year's Anarchist Mountain and Vaseux wildfires, are part of the province's recent commitment to spend $8 million over the next two years - the most BC has ever spent on invasive plant control - to combat invasive plants and weeds (ELW July 5-12, 2004). Weed management is particularly important in the South Okanagan, where fire-stricken areas are highly susceptible to encroachment from invasive plants. "We are working to protect range land, park land and recreational values in the South Okanagan, and prevent invasive weeds from encroaching on our vineyards, orchards and farms," said Water, Land and Air Protection Minister Bill Barisoff. The provincial investment is being supplemented by contributions from Environment Canada, the University of British Columbia (UBC) and Fortis BC, bringing the total funding to $119,500. Post-fire weed management in the Anarchist area will study the impact of the wildfire and help protect this area, which is home to a number of threatened and endangered plants and animals. Similar projects in the Vaseux area will focus on protecting range land and biodiversity in this sensitive ecosystem.