Invasive Plant Council of British Columbia to host highly anticipated forum

IPCBC News Release, Jan. 13, 2010: WILLIAMS LAKE—The Invasive Plant Council of British Columbia will host a highly anticipated “Unique Habitats, Unique Challenges” forum in Richmond, January 19th to 20th to address issue of invasive plants in British Columbia. 

Invasive plants are silently invading British Columbia’s unique landscapes, fertile range and agriculture lands, fragile ecosystems, and vibrant communities at an alarming rate. These ‘unwanted’ invaders cost taxpayers millions of dollars each year in rising management costs and lost productivity to industry, and alter ecosystems critical to wildlife.  

To address this issue, over 140 experts, land managers, concerned individuals, and a diversity of high caliber speakers are joining the Invasive Plant Council of British Columbia (IPCBC) at their exciting 5th Anniversary Celebration and Annual Public Forum “Unique Habitats, Unique Challenges.” This forum will be held at the Delta Vancouver Airport Hotel in Richmond, BC from January 19th to 20th, 2010.

This two-day forum will highlight a diversity of informed choices, practical solutions, and collaborative approaches that can reduce the introduction and establishment of unwanted invasive plants. Speakers will discuss engaging topics including “Weed Spotter” programs for increased surveillance, collaborative approaches for increasing Aboriginal involvement, and bioenergy crops as a potential pathway of invasion. Councils from across Canada will also share stories of success and highlight unique programs.

Additionally, this forum will highlight issues pertaining to aquatic invasive species, discuss current monitoring and management programs, and describe future steps to minimize impacts. A diversity of distinguished speakers, including Doug Konkin, Deputy Minister of Environment; Dr. Mark Sytsma, Portland State University; Dr. Richard Old, XID Services Inc.; and Dr. Ann Eastman, Ministry of Agriculture and Lands, will address forum participants. 

“The year 2009 has been an important benchmark for the Invasive Plant Council of BC in its fifth year. Partnerships with regional committees, government, industry, volunteers and sponsors led to the successful delivery of many new programs, including the “Action Now” Hot Spots program that saw the inventory of 14,000 hectares of invasive plants and treatment of almost 400 hectares across the province,” said Invasive Plant Council chair, Duncan Barnett.

“This event will provide an excellent opportunity for networking among participants that will enhance invasive plant management in BC and across Canada,” said Invasive Plant Council executive director, Gail Wallin.   

By ‘spreading the word, not the weed,’ BC can reduce the negative and escalating impacts of invasive plants…get involved! Membership is free and open to anyone willing to work collaboratively. Find out more about “Unique Habitats, Unique Challenges” and other events and programs at:

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The IPCBC is a grassroots, non-profit society working collaboratively to build cooperation and coordination of invasive plant management in BC. Workshops, activities, and events, such as the IPCBC’s “Unique Habitats, Unique Challenges” forum, educate the public and professionals about invasive plants and their potential risks. Events like this forum will continue to assist the IPCBC in “spreading the word, not the weed” through outreach and education; thus minimizing the establishment of invasive plants.

The IPCBC has grown rapidly since its inception in 2004. Initiated and mentored under the vision of the Fraser Basin Council, the Invasive Plant Council of BC is recognized across the country for its leadership in building collaboration to the challenging and exploding problem of invasive plants. 
For more information, contact the Invasive Plant Council of BC (IPCBC): • (250) 392-1400 •

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