Tue, 1 Sep 2020

Perseverance Pays Off

Perseverance Creek, photo by Sara Kepner

Perseverance has paid off and on September 1st the Cumberland Community Forest Society (CCFS) completed the purchase and protection of 226 acres of beautiful forest and creek in the Perseverance Creek Watershed.

The Perseverance Creek purchase is the largest and most costly to date for the CCFS. This ambitious 2.5-million-dollar project has also been unique from the previous 3 purchases the CCFS have made due to historic impacts on the landscape and the complex creek system that runs through it. Perseverance Creek is a salmon-bearing tributary into Comox Lake and the drinking water supply for over 45,000 Comox Valley residents. The protection of the Valley’s drinking water is the responsibility of the Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD) and the purchase was supported as part of Comox Lake Watershed Protection Plan (WPP).

This has been a truly remarkable journey and an inspiring collective effort. This 2.5 million dollar undertaking would not have been possible without the profound collaboration of individuals, families, artists, athletes, restaurants, brewpubs, professionals, businesses, local government, foundations, and community organizations big and small. CCFS would like to thank everyone involved for being part of this historic conservation effort.

The CCFS is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. Formed in the year 2000 by a group of village residents concerned about logging adjacent to the community, the CCFS has since purchased and protected over 500 acres of threatened forest lands. These lands are protected for ecological conservation and low-impact recreation. As part of this recent purchase process, the CCFS has also become a conservation covenant holding organization, and the CCFS joins their partners and friends at the Comox Valley Land Trust in holding responsibility for the long-term protection of the forest. CCFS expresses how much of an honour it has been to hold this responsibility on behalf of our community.

The work has only just begun and restoration, regeneration, and biodiversity projects are already under development to begin to address historical impacts on the landscape. The business of buying and protecting land doesn’t stop once the purchase is made. Together we all have a responsibility to be stewards and active partners in caring for these lands and waterways and the living things that call it home.