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Last updated on April 20, 2014 at 14:04 EDT

Natural Resources Canada: Government of Canada Continues to Support Efforts to Mitigate Wildfire Risk in MPB Affected First Nation Communities in B.C.

August 20, 2008

OTTAWA, ONTARIO–(Marketwire – Aug. 20, 2008) – The Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development on behalf of Gary Lunn, Minister of Natural Resources today announced additional funds of up to $10.8 million from the Mountain Pine Beetle Program for continued efforts to reduce wildfire risk to Mountain Pine Beetle (MPB) affected First Nation Communities.

“Today’s investment further demonstrates our Government’s continued commitment to mitigate the impacts of the mountain pine beetle in British Columbia,” said Minister Strahl. “This funding will assist B.C. First Nation communities in applying FireSmart principles to protect public safety and property on reserves and on adjacent provincial crown lands.”

Today’s funding is in addition to $5.1 million that the Government of Canada has spent to assist First Nation communities in dealing with MPB infestation on reserve lands since 2004.

Through the Mountain Pine Beetle Program, the Forest Fuel Management projects assist B.C. First Nation communities to plan and treat forest fuels on First Nation reserve forest lands. The Government of Canada provides funding to Tribal Councils and Bands to deliver the planning and fuel-reduction activities under the program. NRCan is working with the B.C. Ministry of Forests and Range, Indian and Northern Affairs (INAC) and First Nations on forest-fuel management planning and treatments on Crown Lands adjacent to First Nation reserve lands.

Federal funding will support measures on reserve lands to apply Fire Smart guidelines to protect communities from the threat of wildfire.

All First Nation bands and tribal councils within MPB affected lands are eligible to apply for funding for forest fuel management and hazard tree removal on reserve lands.

In January 2007, the Government of Canada announced the Mountain Pine Beetle Program, a $200-million investment to slow the eastward spread of the mountain pine beetle epidemic, to recover economic value from impacted forests and to protect forest resources and communities.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

The Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development on behalf of Gary Lunn, Minister of Natural Resources today announced up to $10.8 million in funding from the Mountain Pine Beetle Program for continued efforts to reduce wildfire risk to Mountain Pine Beetle affected First Nation Communities.

NRCan’s news releases and backgrounders are available at www.nrcan.gc.ca/media.

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