Become a Forest Professional

Provincial legislation requires anyone practising professional forestry in BC be registered with, and regulated by, the Association of BC Forest Professionals (ABCFP). This protects the public interest by ensuring registered forest professionals meet specific educational and professional standards and can be held accountable for their work and conduct.

These legislative requirements are detailed in the Forest Professionals Regulation, the Professional Governance Act (PGA) and ABCFP Bylaws.

The simplest avenue to becoming a Registered Professional Forester (RPF) or Registered Forest Technologist (RFT) is to earn a degree or diploma from a nationally accredited program. Several BC and Canadian post-secondary institutions offer accredited forestry programs. However, many other forestry-related programs are not accredited. Non-accredited programs may not provide the core knowledge you need to become a registered member of the ABCFP. 

You can graduate from a non-accredited program and still apply for registration with the ABCFP but you may be required to take additional educational courses or other gap-filling measures.

Registered Professional Foresters

Are in the registered member class and have rights to independently practise in all aspects of professional forestry.

Natural Resource Professionals

Are in the associate member class and may only engage in limited aspects of professional forestry that have been approved by the ABCFP Council. They generally have a conservation or environmental science background.

Silvicultural Accredited Surveyors

Are in the associate member class and are generally involved in forestry activities related to silviculture surveys.

Transferring Forest Professionals

Are professional foresters or forest technologists from other Canadian jurisdictions whose professional qualifications are recognized by the ABCFP. They may be entitled to full or partial practice rights in BC.

Registered Forest Technologists

Are in the registered member class and have rights to independently practise aspects of professional forestry according to their scope of practice. RFTs generally specialize in on-the-ground fieldwork and perform technical forestry functions.

Accredited Timber Cruisers or Evaluators

Are in the associate member class and may only engage in forestry activities related to the areas of timber inventory, timber valuation, appraisal and timber supply.

Special Permit Holders  

Are for individuals who don’t have the educational requirements to become registered professionals but are deemed qualified to practise in a very limited area of professional forestry.