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

“Does Kirby care?” Heiltsuk Nation using geo-targeted ads in Houston, Texas for justice

The Heiltsuk Tribal Council has called out Kirby Corporation for the Nathan E. Stewart oil spill

“No excuse” for killing of two young grizzly cubs

Reader hopeful someone will come forward with information

UPDATE: U.S. firm fined $2.9M for fuel spill that soiled B.C. First Nation territory

The Nathan E. Stewart spilled 110,000 litres of diesel and heavy oils in October 2016

No delivery services hard on local families

New parents Candace Knudsen and Bjorn Samuelsen spent five weeks away from home

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Canadian high school science courses behind on climate change, says UBC study

Researchers found performance on key areas varies by province and territory

Six inducted into BC Hockey Hall of Fame

The 26th ceremony in Penticton welcomed powerful figures both from on and off the ice

RCMP investigate two shootings in the Lower Mainland

Incidents happened in Surrey, with a victim being treated at Langley Memorial Hospital

CRA program to help poor file taxes yields noticeable bump in people helped

Extra money allows volunteer-driven clinics to operate year-round

Recall: Certain Pacific oysters may pose threat of paralytic shellfish poisoning

Consumers urged to either return affected packages or throw them out

How a Kamloops-born man helped put us on the moon

Jim Chamberlin did troubleshooting for the Apollo program, which led to its success

Sexual harassment complaints soaring amid ‘frat boy culture’ in Canada’s airline industry

‘It’s a #MeToo dumpster fire…and it’s exhausting for survivors’

Most Read