Alternate Forestry Use Workshop At Island Summit

October 1, 2015

NANAIMO – The 9th annual ‘State of the Island’ Economic Summit will be held at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre in Nanaimo later this month. To be held October 28 and 29, the two-day event will involve keynote presentations, workshops and a unique networking opportunity for business and government leaders from across Vancouver Island.

One of the planned workshops will examine the health and future of the Vancouver Island forest industry. The coastal forest industry in general and on Vancouver Island in particular has become concentrated in producing three main products, logs, pulp and dimensional lumber for export. Incremental technological improvements to efficiency help hold onto market share but do little to improve the corporate bottom line or the local economy.

In Europe, where the over-arching goal is to maximize the value added potential of wood fiber, a very different industry has evolved. Integration of forestry and manufacturing as well as innovation in development and use of products like cross laminated timber (CLT) and laminated veneer lumber (LVL) have revolutionized the construction industry in Europe. The potential for industry diversification is vast.

The planned session entitled: Our Forests – A Renewable Resource with Untapped Potential will examine that potential, while pointing out where local and regional producers are failing to capitalize on new markets and technologies.

In its literature, the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance (VIEA), the organizers of the State of the Island event, state: “A large gap exists between what could be and what is. We need opportunity analysis, regulatory change, partnerships, investment and commitment to building a new generation of forest products on Vancouver Island – economically, socially and environmentally sustainable.”

This session (one of many planned during the two day event) will explore the opportunities and challenges in moving to a new reality of forest products manufacturing. Participants in the workshop will include.

  • Peter Moonen, Sustainability Coordinator, Canadian Wood Council, Co-Moderator
  • Ron Cantelon, VIEA Chair, Co-Moderator
  • Clint Parcher, VP, Fibre Supply, Coastland Wood
  • Brian Howrysh, President, BC Wood Specialties Group
  • Paul Sadler, CEO, Nanaimo Forest Products

Interested groups and individuals can register for the Summit online at the following link.

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