Northern Rockies Regional Municipality

News Release: Forest Sector Rejuvenation Roadmap

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Northern Rockies Regional Municipality

PRESS RELEASE

A Roadmap for Forest Sector Innovation in the Northern Rockies

 

FORT NELSON - Mayor Bill Streeper tabled a Roadmap to rejuvenate forestry to the Northern Rockies Regional Municipality.  After seven years of inaction in the local forests and the closing of the Canfor mills, the Regional Municipality has developed a conceptual model to revive the local forest industry.

The Roadmap details moving from producing dimension lumber, OSB and plywood to manufacturing higher value products from the abundance of green timber that exists within the local forest.  The plan is to develop a cluster of manufacturing facilities in the region that complement one another and fully utilize the wood coming from the forest, including the residue from the manufacturing mills.

The forest will be managed using practices based on the principles of long-term stewardship so the forest sector will be part of building a sustainable diversified economy for the communities within the Regional Municipality.  Rather than having one principle company harvesting the timber in the local forest, the concept is to have several along with BC Timber Sales.  Some of these could be owned by local First Nations as a means of providing opportunities for these communities to become an integral part of the forest industry.

“Regional Council and I believe a new model is required where strategic decisions regarding local forestry and manufacturing sectors are influenced more by local people rather than driven by decisions made in Victoria” said Mayor Streeper. Over the past 10 months the Regional Municipality has been developing, in consultation with stakeholders, First Nations and advisors, a vision for the local forest sector and how the model will be implemented. 

A new governance model is being proposed based on two partnerships involving the Regional Municipality, First Nations and Government.  One partnership is focused on providing guidance to the management of the local forests and the other on encouraging investors to build a cluster of smaller manufacturing mills within the region.  Both will deliver on the local vision for the forest and the manufacturing complex.

The Regional Municipality is committed to working with local First Nations in the development of a joint proposal to implement the Roadmap for submission in the fall to Minister Thomson of the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations. 

 

Media Contact:

Jack Stevenson, Director

Community Development and Planning

Office: (250) 774-2541 Ext 2041

Mobile: (250) 321-1605

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