BEC subzones differentiate between regional climates. Proximity to Pacific Ocean and elevation are the main driver of climate. If we are going to adequately maintain the biodiversity of coastal forests, we will need to protect an ecologically functioning portion of each Biogeoclimatic subzone (BEC Unit).

Map of Bioecoclimatic Zones of SCFD

Forestry has a language of abbreviations and acronyms:

In the BEC parlance, a wetness indicator such as very dry, dry, moist or very wet, precedes the maritime descriptor. In general, the higher the elevation, the wetter it gets!

Here’s an example abbreviation: CWHxm. The means the Zone is Coastal Western Hemlock and the subzone is very-dry maritime. CHWvm means Coastal Western Hemlock very-moist maritime.

Here are some pictures to help you get a “feel” for BEC Zones and Subzones:

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