Northern Rockies move forward with Forest Rejuvenation Project

Photo by Montana Cumming

FORT NELSON, B.C. — The Northern Rockies Regional Municipality is moving forward with a forestry industry revival project, arguing the region offers what amounts to one of best existing green baskets of timber in the province — which has only been minimally impacted by the Mountain Pine Beetle.

To that end, in 2013, the Regional District council initiated the Forestry Rejuvenation Project focused on enlisting the interest of potential forest sector investors and the province.

It emphasizes the purpose of the initiative is to develop the economy of the region to the benefit of all the stakeholders involved.

The new governance model being proposed will not require legislative change, but it will need to be backed up with a solid business case regarding what can be accomplished once governance is changed.

A municipal delegation is preparing to head to Victoria on April 11 for talks with the province on the new partnership, which would make opportunities available and facilitate investment by industry.

The 2008 closure of the Canfor OSB and plywood mills in Fort Nelson resulted in the loss of about 550 full-time equivalent, direct jobs and in total about 1,400.

NRRM Community Development Officer, Mike Gilbert, says two things coincided.