B.C. timber industry in throes of change, as premier warns of ‘exhausted forests’

By Brenna Owen
Canadian Press in Vancouver is Awesome
December 21, 2022
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

British Columbia’s forest sector has “never been under greater stress,” Premier David Eby says. There is an “inescapable recognition … that change is needed to ensure our forest industry is sustainable,” he writes in his mandate letter for the new forests minister, Bruce Ralston. Eby’s letter to the minister of water, land and resource stewardship, Nathan Cullen, meanwhile, says “short-term thinking” in land management has led to “exhausted forests.”  The new premier’s pointed language to his ministers highlights how British Columbia’s forests sector is in the throes of change, as the province embarks on plans to “modernize” how forests are managed amid ecological concerns, fluctuating lumber prices and dwindling supply of trees for harvesting.  Bob Simpson, who served as mayor of Quesnel, B.C. between 2014 and 2022, said the province’s forest sector is “stuck in a time warp,” carrying on with clear-cutting and exporting raw logs and lumber at a pace ecosystems and the timber supply cannot maintain.

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