Logging truck carries a load from B.C. coastal forest. (Private Forest Landowners Association)

B.C. government extends coastal log export rules for six months

Premier John Horgan promises reform at loggers’ convention

The B.C. government has extended its log export orders for Northwest B.C. by another six months, allowing coastal logging contractors north of Vancouver Island to export a large share of their harvest.

But “raw log” export policy is about to change for all producers who export logs from B.C. Crown land, Premier John Horgan said Thursday. The current policy for provincial land involves a “surplus test,” where logs must be advertised for local sale first, before being declared surplus and allowed for export.

“We’re going to turn that upside down,” Horgan said after an address the annual convention of the Truck Loggers Association in Vancouver. The government will use “carrots and sticks” to reduce exports and create investment incentives for lumber and pulp production, he said.

Horgan announced a revitalization plan with five goals, including rebuilding solid wood and pulp milling to process more wood in B.C., improving harvest efficiency, tightening up timber bidding systems to make sure bids are independently made, and auditing private forest land logging.

Cabinet orders for log exports out of the Haida Gwaii, Mid Coast, Nass, North Coast and Northwest Interior timber supply areas were extended Thursday, but only to July 2019. The Haida Gwaii and Mid Coast orders allows 35 per cent of logs to be exported, except for cypress and cedar, and the Nass order allows up to 100 per cent export. The North Coast and Northwest Interior orders allow up to 20 per cent.

RELATED: Bright spots ahead for B.C. forest industry in 2019

RELATED: B.C. lumber mills struggle with low prices, log shortages

“For the last 20 years, employment on the coast has declined by about 40 per cent,” Horgan told the convention. “Lumber production has dropped by 45 per cent, pulp production by 50 per cent. At the same time, log exports from Crown land have increased by nearly tenfold.”

The northern regions have been subject to relaxed log export rules for many years, due to a lack of mill capacity within economic reach of remote areas. The special allowance was reduced from 35 to 20 per cent by the previous B.C. Liberal government in 2013, with a portion retained to keep loggers working in remote regions where there are few viable options for trucking to sawmills.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Rescued snowmobilers ill-prepared for emergency, Castlegar RCMP say

Two men rescued Wednesday night were not ready for overnight in back country

Senior curling provincials setting up for exciting finish

Standings tight as Senior curling teams push for provincial playoffs

Police share more details on occupants and suspicious van in Fruitvale

Vehicle in question offered young girl a ride to school on Feb. 19

B.C. Interior free from measles

Vancouver measles outbreak hasn’t spread to the B.C. Interior

Man injured in police shooting near Nelson has died

The death follows an incident in Bonnington on Feb. 13

Sell regulated heroin to curb B.C.’s overdose problem: report

B.C. Centre on Substance Use points to organized crime and money-laundering as contributing factors

Man charged in stabbing of woman, off-duty cop outside B.C. elementary school

Manoj George, 49, is facing two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of assault with a weapon after the incident on Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Why do zebras have stripes? Perhaps to dazzle away flies

Researchers from University of Bristol look into why zebras have stripes

Poll: More voters believe Canada doing worse under Trudeau government

22 per cent believed the country is doing better and 27 per cent said things are the same

HBC shuttering Home Outfitters across Canada

North America’s oldest retailer is revamping its various stores to improve profitability

BC SPCA investigates Okanagan woman with prior animal abuse convictions

BC SPCA is investigating a property near Vernon

Man wanted for sex trafficking, confinement may be heading to B.C.

Kevin Myrthil, 26, is also accused of assault on a 19-year-old woman at an Edmonton hotel

B.C. Speaker Darryl Plecas resumes battle with suspended staff

Committee meets at B.C. legislature to consider new allegations

Northern B.C. train derailment due to broken axle could happen again: TSB

CN coal train derailment caused by broken axle can happen again without a different way to inspect

Most Read