Cattle walk through wildfire smoke during the 2018 fire season, the worst on record in the province. Ranchers are once again being offered a variety of supports after the third-worst wildfire season in B.C.’s history. (Photo credit: Black Press files)

Cattle walk through wildfire smoke during the 2018 fire season, the worst on record in the province. Ranchers are once again being offered a variety of supports after the third-worst wildfire season in B.C.’s history. (Photo credit: Black Press files)

New fund helps farmers, ranchers and apiarists impacted by wildfires

Up to $20 million available to help with extraordinary expenses incurred during this year’s fires

B.C. farmers and ranchers who have been impacted by this year’s wildfires and drought can now access up to $20 million to help with extraordinary expenses incurred for feed, shelter, animal health and safety, and transportation of their livestock due to fire and drought.

Funding for extraordinary expenses is available through the 2021 Canada-British Columbia Wildfire and Drought AgriRecovery Initiative. Extraordinary expenses include reseeding forage, and the replacement of fencing and other critical infrastructure that is not insurable and was damaged or destroyed in the fires.

This funding includes funding for beekeepers to replace their colonies or apiary equipment lost in the wildfires.

The 2021 Canada-British Columbia Wildfire and Drought AgriRecovery Initiative provides assistance for the following:

Wildfire and drought support:

* extraordinary expenses caused by the wildfires and drought related to ensuring livestock feeding needs are not impacted due to feed loss or decreased availability;

* extraordinary expenses caused by the wildfires and drought related to ensuring animal health and safety;

* transportation costs to move impacted animals to a safe feeding location;

* feed for breeding livestock, including cattle, sheep, and horses, based on a feed need requirement;

* contributions toward the re-establishment of tame perennial forage damaged by the fires; and

* where breeding herds are reduced due to lack of forage, support for the herd management costs associated with replacement breeding animals.

Wildfire damages:

* costs to replace apiaries, bee colonies, and beekeeping equipment lost in the wildfires; and

* costs to repair or replace critical infrastructure damaged by wildfire, but not covered by insurance.

“The devastation to B.C. ranches, their livestock and operations from this year’s wildfires and drought has been extensive,” says Kevin Boon, general manager of the BC Cattlemen’s Association. “The announcement of this comprehensive AgriRecovery program will go a long way to assisting producers in their efforts to re-establish their operations and help them recover from the effects of this year’s debilitating events.”

B.C. ranchers can access information and applications for the program online at https://bit.ly/3jM2Mt2. For more information, call 1-888-332-3352 or email AgriRecovery@gov.c.ca.



editorial@accjournal.ca

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AgricultureB.C. Wildfires 2021