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NEED TO KNOW

SEPTEMBER 2016 • VOL. 3, ISSUE 5

101 PLANS Kitimat company based in the past, but ready for tomorrow

Inside N 2 K Another Yes Lax Kw’alaams landslide vote to continue LNG talks

Piloting Wind South Hazelton’s Gitxsan company leads convoy

More Graduates Northwest program up for global award

Young Builders Vanderhoof construction company blazes new path


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You

asked ENVIRONMENTAL about PROTECTION

You’ve told us that environmental protection is important - it is to us too. We’re doing what we can now to help expand the existing level of ocean knowledge and research in Northwest BC. Have you seen either of these two amazing mammals? The harbour porpoise and humpback whale are two species the Vancouver Aquarium’s North Coast Initiative (NCI) is most interested in. The NCI is gathering information to better understand these mammals along the coast. You can help! The NCI is asking the community to report their sightings - they received over 1500 in June and July alone! To report a sighting, you can go online at wildwhales.org, call 1-866-472-9663, or use the WhaleReport mobile app which can be downloaded for free. We are proud to support this initiative! Prince Rupert LNG is a proposed LNG facility on Ridley Island near Prince Rupert, BC. To learn more about what we’re doing now, visit www.princerupertlng.ca/socialinvestment. Stay up-to-date by signing up for our email updates on our Contact us page. We also encourage you to come visit Rosa and Herb at our local Prince Rupert office located at 610 2nd Avenue West.

Rosa Miller

Herb Pond


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NEED TO KNOW

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Publisher & Editor-in-Chief Todd Hamilton Prince Rupert Ed Evans, Sales Kevin Campbell, Reporter Shannon Lough, Reporter Terrace Rod Link, Editor Bert Husband, Sales Erin Bowker, Sales Kitimat Louisa Genzale, Sales Devyn Ens, Reporter Smithers Grant Harris, Sales Nick Briere, Sales Chris Gareau, Editor Houston Mary-Anne Ruiter, Sales Burns Lake Laura Blackwell, Sales Flavio Nienow, Editor Fort St. James/ Vanderhoof Pam Berger, Sales Vivian Chui, Reporter Barbara Latkowski, Reporter Haida Gwaii Chris Williams, Sales Andrew Hudson, Reporter N2K CONTACT INFO:

Vanderhoof Fort St. James Burns Lake Houston Smithers Terrace Kitimat Prince Rupert Haida Gwaii

• • • • • • • • •

250-567-9258 250-567-9258 250-692-7526 250-845-2890 250-847-3266 250-638-7283 250-632-6144 250-624-8088 250-559-4680

N2K is a Black Press publication mailed or delivered by carrier to more than 30,000 homes and businesses throughout Northwest B.C. Our Head Office is located at: 737 Fraser Street, Prince Rupert, B.C., V8J 1R1 250-624-8088 Fax: 250-624-8085

C

NORTHWEST B.C.’S INDUSTRY MAGAZINE

ongratulations to the mayor and council for returning democracy to the people of Lax Kw’alaams. Earlier, a much-ballyhooed “near-unanimous” rejection — reported loudly by national media outlets — of the Pacific NorthWest (PNW) LNG project near Port Edward, B.C., was allegedly conducted with just a show of hands during a somewhat public meeting. Last month, the Lax Kw’alaams Band held an engaged and well-informed referendum on the project. Devoid of the previous strong-armed, mob-mentality vote, in a true democratic style, the Lax Kw’alaams Band voted 532-280 (65.5 per cent) in favour of continuing to work with the province, the proponent and the band to ensure that the project moves forward properly. “This is another step in a process that could lead to the Petronas project becoming a reality. We will have meetings with the appropriate parties — [consortium leader] Petronas, the province and the federal government — to see what the next steps are for this proposed project. I appreciate the views and concerns of everyone and take them very seriously. We have not moved from our position about the environment, which is a very important component,” said Lax Kw’alaams Mayor John Helin following the vote. Obviously, not all are in favour. With a vote of this scale and importance, in a true democracy, there are never unanimous results. But the 65.5 per cent “yes” vote is dramatic. Detractors to the vote, many of whom hail from the concrete paradises of the Lower Mainland or urban elsewhere, complain they did not receive a ballot in time — hardly a legitimate beef if, as they contend, they were truly concerned. Polling stations were open for three days (far cry from even our national elections) at several sites and long distance members (a.k.a. those who don’t live or work anywhere near or on their traditional lands) were mailed ballots in plenty of time. Further, members were given objective pros and cons of LNG projects, including Pacific NorthWest, and more details in the voting package. An independent review and its findings were also distributed to members, along with opportunities to attend at least four community meetings conducted by the Lax Kw’alaams Band during the summer, where the PNW proposal, environmental protection mitigation plans and opportunities for Band members were reviewed. As well, the online information is extremely comprehensive. At the end of the day, this is a triumph of democracy and common sense over threats, brow-beating, strong-arm tactics and hysteria. We salute John Helin and the Lax Kw’alaams members for seeing through the antagonistic misinformation, rhetoric and acknowledging the socio-economic benefits of the project in a practical, meaningful and thoughtful method. The Lax Kw’alaams haven’t fully said yes, but at least, they have said convincingly, the majority aren’t going to be bullied into saying, “No”.

Todd Hamilton N2K Publisher publisher@thenorthernview.com

Out-of-area subscriptions now available e-mail: circulation@thenorthernview.com

View our e-version for free at: www.thenorthernview.com/eeditions


September 2016

IN THIS ISSUE

AWARD WINNING Northwest training program in consideration for global award 8

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BABINE AGREEMENT Burns Lake’s Lake Babine First Nation takes bigger stake in forestry program 12

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101 PLANS Longstanding Kitimat family business ready for the next wave 25

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YES VOTE Lax Kw’alaams band casts landslide vote in favour of continuing LNG talks 7

3

NK 2

Volume 3 • Issue 5

YOUNG BUILDERS Former apprentices celebrate five years of Vanderhoof construction success 13

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PROTECTING THE ENVIRONMENT Pacific NorthWest LNG has been working with local First Nations, the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA), Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) and other agencies to develop mitigation plans that would minimize any potential construction impacts of the project on aquatic wildlife – in particular, fish and marine mammals.

Mitigation measures during in-water construction would include: Use bubble curtains to help reduce the level of underwater noise during impact pile driving at the berth and along the trestle

Only conduct sub-tidal blasting between November 30 to February 15

Monitor underwater acoustic noise

Adhere to noise pressure level limits to help avoid injury to fish and behavioural disturbances of marine mammals

Halt any dredging activity at the Material Offloading Facility from April 15 to July 15

Halt impact pile driving at the Pioneer Dock or Material Offloading Facility from April 15 to June 30

Implement an ongoing marine mammal observation program during in-water impact pile driving

Conduct work in coffer dams emptied of water with external bubble curtains when conducting impact pile driving at the anchor block and tower block

We look forward to continuing to build on the productive relationships that exist with area First Nations, our regulators and federal agencies to ensure the environment remains protected as Pacific NorthWest LNG constructs and operates the facility.

PacificNorthWestLNG.com

Canadian Energy. Global Reach.


LAX KW’ALAAMS VOTES 66.5% IN FAVOUR OF CONTINUING LNG TALKS By Kevin Campbell The Lax Kw’alaams Band membership has voted for its elected mayor and council to continue engaging in talks with the province and Pacific NorthWest (PNW) LNG in regards to Pacific NorthWest’s proposed LNG export facility on Lelu Island. With 532 of 812 votes in favour of the ongoing talks, 65.5 per cent of voters demonstrated their favourable opinion of continued dialogue when all the votes were tallied Thursday. “This is another step in a process that could lead to the Petronas project becoming a reality. We will have meetings with the appropriate parties - [consortium leader] Petronas, the province and the federal government - to see what the next steps are for this proposed project,” said Lax Kw’alaams Mayor John Helin, in a press release. Members were posed the question if they would be interested in continued talks with industry and government officials if the environmental concerns were properly mitigated. Members were given listed pros and cons of LNG projects, including Pacific NorthWest, and more details in a voting package. An independent review and its findings were also distributed to members, along with opportunities to attend at least four community meetings conducted by Lax Kw’alaams council during the summer,

“This is another step in the process that could lead to the Petronas project becoming a reality.” - John Helin where the PNW proposal, environmental protection mitigation plans and opportunities for Band members were reviewed. “The Government of British Columbia congratulates the Lax Kw’alaams Band for voting in support of continuing their discussions with us. Pacific NorthWest LNG will create jobs and new economic opportunities for members of the Lax Kw’alaams and, collectively, we will ensure the export facility upholds the highest standards environmental protection,” said Rich Coleman, Minister of Natural Gas Development. Petronas is expected to review the finalized version of the project after federal review and if the project and its environmental mitigation measures are accepted by the Government of Canada.

-N2K-

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More Graduates More Skills More Awards Northwest training program wins prestigious international award

N

ot only are 10 students celebrating after recently graduating from the Northwest Aboriginal Canadian Entrepreneurs (NW-ACE) program, but program officials themselves are raising a glass to a couple honourable distinctions. The NW-ACE program, a partnership between the Tribal Resources Investment Corporation (TRICORP), the University of Victoria’s Peter B. Gustavson School of Business and Northwest Community College was named a 2016 recipient of the Alan Blizzard Award from the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (STLHE).

8

By Kevin Campbell The award, given out once every two years, recognizes significant collaboration in teaching and student learning. The NW-ACE program brings together First Nations entrepreneurs, high-profile mentors, and teachers and professors for six weeks of interactive, in-class learning, followed by 12 weeks of mentorship and coaching in the trade or discipline of the student’s choice. “When we got that award, I thought it was pretty cool,” said Cory Stephens, TRICORP learning enhancement officer last week. “I did a little bit of research on it and usually groups that win this award are very prestigious in engineering and all kinds of more

high-profile fields of study ... We’re extremely proud of that award.” The NW-ACE program faculty and administration were recognized in an STLHE annual conference in late June at London, Ontario’s Western University. At the same time, the program has been awarded by the International education business Partnership Network and the Conference Board of Canada with the Gold Global Best Award, a distinction given to excellency in the category of entrepreneurship and enterprise skills for the North America region. The award recipients of TRICORP, the Peter Gustavson School of Business

N2K

and Service Canada also have the chance, in a September awards ceremony in Oslo, Norway, to win the Global Best Overall Award. Jacquie Ridley, TRICORP chief operating officer, will travel to Norway to accept the award at the ceremony. “Our people are gaining high-quality university level skills in our communities and immediately applying those skills to start successful businesses. I am proud to see our clients become self-reliant and serve as role models for other Aboriginal people in the communities that TRICORP serves,” said Frank Parnell, TRICORP chief executive officer.

9


NEIGHBOUR HELPING NEIGHBOUR Kitimat’s family-run business begins at the beginning By Devyn Ens

1

01 Industries in Kitimat has grown from the bottom up, but at its heart it remains true to what it started as in 1968; a familyrun business that strives to help its neighbours. The company was started by William Meiers, a German immigrant who was very proud to have become a Canadian citizen, so much so that he named his new company in celebration of the 101st Anniversary of Confederation. Meiers originally came to Kitimat to assist with the construction of the original Alcan

smelter, an industry staple for the town. These days, the company is run by William’s son Thom Meier, and son-in-law Mark Harnadek, with a staff of nearly 75 people. “Back then it was 101 Roofing, Sheet Metal and Plumbing,” explained construction manager Harnadek. “Forty-eight years later, we’re in three distinctly different markets.”

VANDERHOOF and DISTRICTS CO-OPERATIVE ASSOCIATION 15 Cardlock Locations: Fort St. James To Quesnel, Terrace To Valemount. Fuel Tanks Sales & Rentals, Bulk Fuel and Oil Deliveries: Vanderhoof Toll Free: 1-888-545-2667, Quesnel: 1-888-992-2667, Prince George: 1-866-309-2667 Houston: 1-800-848-6347, Terrace: 250-635-9595

Continued on Page 11


101 PLANS

From Page 10 The company now provides services to residential, commercial, and industrial clients, which can range from re-shingling the roof of a house, constructing a building for a car dealership, or completing unique and custom projects for clients. “I find that to be really invigorating, that we’re always doing something unique, and we don’t just get stuck doing the same thing over and over,” said Harnadek. “You can’t just specialize in one thing, you really have to diversify if you want to have a chunk of volume pass through your business,” said general manager Meier. The company also recognizes that in a small town, and a small market such as the Northwest, “you’re only as good as your reputation.” “Because it’s a smaller demographic, we get to know our clients not just on a business level, but on a personal level,” said Meier. “It always seems like there’s a history there that you can identify with, and oftentimes, I hear stories about ‘well your Dad came up here 35 years ago and did this job,’” he added. Making those connections has been key to the company, who after wrapping up work on the Kitimat Modernization Project (KMP) at Rio Tinto, are looking to the future optimistically. “It would be fantastic for us to have that opportunity present itself again and do it again with one of our LNG proponents or somebody else like that,” said Harnadek. “We want to see some significant industrial development in the region, to do again what KMP has done in the past, so that’s where we want to be.

-N2K-

N2K

GITXSAN FLEET PILOTING WIND POWER PROJECT By Catherine Matheson

W

estern Canada’s largest pilot car fleet based in South Hazelton is finishing a massive project this

month. The Gitxsan Development Corporation’s new fleet, commissioned in March, is about to finish a project ferrying up to 460 huge loads of wind farm equipment through Northern B.C.  “Our safety service business has really taken off,” said Rick Connors, GDC president and CEO. “We have more than 55 vehicles in the fleet right now that are running from the Port of Stewart into Tumbler Ridge and also over to the Alberta border.  “We are also doing wind farm movements from the U.S. up to the Okanagan.  The fleet is ferrying loads up to 230 feet long. “They are the largest loads that the B.C. road system has ever seen,” said Connors.   “We bring them all in pieces off the ships in the port of Stewart and Totran Trucks move the equipment on behalf of General Electric and they are bringing them up to Tumbler Ridge. We are providing the safety services to Totran to help them do that.

“They are the largest loads that the B.C. road system has ever seen.” - Rick Connors “We move basically during the dark hours. Middle of the night until about 6 a.m. We stage it and move it through. And then we pick it up and move it again.” It takes three days to move one load from start to finish. The first day stops just outside Smithers, the second just outside Prince George, and the third day the load is delivered to Tumbler Ridge. The private power firm Pattern Energy Group LP is building the $400 million wind farm at Tumbler Ridge. Connors said the fleet is building a reputation for safety and service, and has several more projects lined up.  “We are up to about 100 employees  who are managing two or three runs in a night (with various projects),” Connors said.

-N2K-

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role in forest and land stewardship and making it easier for the nation to bring financial benefits to the community,” said John Rustad, Minister of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation and MLA for Nechako Lakes. Lake Babine Nation’s licence is unique among First Nations woodland licences in that it extends through two timber supply areas - the Morice and Lakes timber supply areas. This was the seventh First Nations woodland licence issued since the province began the program in 2011. Licences have also been awarded to the Huu-ay-aht First Nation, Wei Wai Kum First Nation, Hupacasath First Nation, Tseshaht First Nation, Canim Lake Indian Band and Lheidli T’enneh First Nation. According to the provincial government, these area-based, direct-award forest licences give First Nations a stronger role in forest and land stewardship and make it easier for First Nations forest companies to secure investment and loans. .

-N2K-

This harvester and forwarder, a $1 million piece of equipment, could create more jobs and address the issue of fallen dead trees with little impact or damage to existing trails.

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ake Babine Nation (LBN) is expected to strengthen its participation in the forestry sector now that the province has awarded them a First Nations woodland licence. The area-based licence has an initial term of 25 years; it covers 36,500 hectares and has an allowable annual cut of about 74,000 cubic metres. The new licence is expected to enhance employment and economic opportunities for LBN. Chief Wilf Adam said LBN is currently in negotiations with industry to determine who will buy their wood. The licence also supports ongoing reconciliation discussions between the province and LBN. “As stewards of the land, we welcome the benefits that the agreement will bring to the community and the increased opportunity to shape and manage the use of resources around us,” said Chief Adam. Leaders of LBN had been working for the past four years with the province, local industry and the community for this licence. Earlier this year, LBN council told representatives of the major forestry licensees in the region that the status quo needed to change. Although forestry drives the regional economy, LBN was holding only four per cent of the harvesting rights in its territory. “I have spent my life watching logging truck after logging truck drive the logs and profits out of our territory, for the benefit of others,” Chief Adam said earlier this year. “This is simply unacceptable.” This licence is the first of two First Nations woodland licences expected to be awarded to the nation. The second license, in the Bulkley Timber Supply Area, is expected to be issued within the next two of years. “It’s great to see the Lake Babine Nation taking on a more direct

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APPRENTICES

NO MORE

Young builders building quality by being attuned

C

By Vivian Chui

elebrating its fifth birthday in residential construction this year, Northern Homecraft Ltd. is run by a youthful staff from owner to apprentice — all between the age of 19 to

35. The Vanderhoof-born company was founded in April 2011 by Shay Bulmer and Beau Jackson, who were apprentice carpenters of the same company at the time when its owner closed shop and left the community. “We realized that there’s room in the market in Vanderhoof for us to have a company and run it the way we thought a construction company should be run,” Bulmer said. “There’s room for high quality construction at a competitive rate with respect and integrity being our top priority when it comes to relating to our clients.” The young builders are interested in projects customized by each client, rather than cookie-cutter structures. “We like to work with people to create a home, not just a house,” Bulmer said. “We’ll consult with our clients well in advance of construction, in some cases we work with interior designers and decorators, to get what people we want, or they’ll get us onboard and build a house that they’ve been working with a client on. “So it’s much more attuned, with some unique elements to the home, instead of just status quo.” Bulmer says work hasn’t stopped once since the beginning, with projects continuing throughout the seasons. “We try to pick and choose our work accordingly, doing larger

N2K

“I think people respect that decision in the end.” - Shay Bulmer

interior renovations in the winter and new construction during the summer, but it doesn’t always go that way,” he said. “We build year-round.” Their success so far can be attributed to their focus on not compromising quality for the sake of budget, Bulmer said. “What we would rather do is redesign the project according to budget, but still incorporate all the important elements of construction,” he said. “Sometimes it’s tough to explain to folks why we can’t have the granite countertops and the expensive engineered hardwood, that it’s more important that we put the money into improving the environment in the home, or building envelope. “I think people respect that decision in the end.” Next spring, two apprentices will be leaving for school to return later as a journeyman carpenter and a third-year apprentice. “One of our biggest fears is that we run out of work, our guys go out and find another job, and it’s hard to get them back,” Bulmer said, “We haven’t laid people off yet.”

-N2K-

13


LABOUR SHORTAGE T

By Shannon Lough

he labour pool is drying up. The working population is aging and retiring, youth are expected to leave and the population growth is flat or declining, according to a report by the Asia Pacific Gateway Skills Table. The study was conducted to examine the Prince Rupert and Port Edward economy and labour force as the regional economy shifts from a natural resource industry into global trade through increasing port activity. Labour demands are expected to increase once the container terminal expansion is completed in 2017. If the Port of Prince Rupert expands further south in the next 10 years, the study estimates more than 10 per cent of the workforce will be employed by the Fairview Container Terminal. But the report states that by 2030, the working age population is expected to drop to 60 per cent from its current level of approximately 67 per cent. “The local workforce can meet the demands of the terminal expansion for 2017, but at the expense of the other industrial, retail and hospitality employers in the area,” the study states. There are higher proportions of unemployed people, First Nations

Depot and Parts

and tradespeople in the North Coast than in the rest of the province. Yet, there are lower proportions of high school graduates and immigrants. The high levels of unemployment is due to seasonal work. “To overcome the labour shortage in this region, detailed local planning efforts will need to be made to maximize the local workforce,” said Krista Bax, executive director, Asia Pacific Gateway Skills Table. “Developing employer driven solutions to break down existing barriers to get more people in the local labour force is needed to increase participation of local First Nations, women and the local part-time workforce.” The region’s population has 43 per cent First Nations, compared to 5.4 per cent in the whole province and the report found there is still unemployment and underemployment among the young populations from Lax Kw’alaams, Metlakatla and Kitkatla. To increase participation in the labour force, the study offers three solutions: increase participation of First Nations in the city and on the reserves, increase participation of the part-time workforce and increase female participation.

-N2K-

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LNG Canada: Supporting workforce development in British Columbia Manley McLachlan, President of the British Columbia Construction Association (BCCA)

When LNG Canada was designing its approach to workforce development, one thing was clear from the start: it couldn’t just focus on the LNG Canada project alone. LNG Canada recognized that to be successful, it needed to think about skilled trades training more broadly. It takes five to 10 years to create a skilled tradesperson, so in addition to investing in skilled workers who are already trained and qualified, LNG Canada needed to find ways to invest in future workers – those still in high school – and current workers – those just entering and in the middle of their apprenticeships. LNG Canada partnered with the British Columbia Construction Association (BCCA), put $1 million into creating a new fund called the LNG Canada Trades Training Fund, and targeted the funds to support apprentices by paying tuition for entry level, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th-year apprentices. “This fund is an excellent example of an LNG proponent recognizing that there needs to be a continued investment in moving people through the apprenticeship system,” says

“This fund is an excellent example of an LNG proponent recognizing that there needs to be a continued investment in moving people through the apprenticeship system”

Manley McLachlan, President of BCCA. BCCA administers the $1 million fund, and to date, more than $500,000 has been awarded from, with over 400 individuals benefitting from the initiative. The Trades Training Fund is a private fund, and is available to all the trades regardless of where the trainee is located in BC, whether apprentices intend to work on an LNG project or not. “LNG Canada’s goal is to hire British Columbians first and support small businesses that may not have the resources to help their apprentices cover training costs,” offers McLachlan. In an apprenticeship, the majority of training is hands on, but employees are required to attend technical in-class training for about six weeks each year.

The average cost of tuition is $1,200, and the employee also gives up six weeks of wages to attend. In a survey BCCA conducted with the employers who have participated in LNG Canada Trades Training Fund initiative, more than 85 per cent said the training would not have been possible without support from the fund. That’s about 340 apprentices to date who would not have been able to continue their apprenticeships and move toward journey person status without LNG Canada’s support. “LNG Canada needs to be commended for their vision,” says McLachlan. He encourages employers to apply online, on behalf of their employee. BCCA then confirms the individual is employed and enrolled in training. When the training starts, the Trades Training Fund pays the training institution directly, so the individual isn’t out of pocket waiting for a refund. For more information about the LNG Canada-sponsored Trades Training Fund, visit: bccassn.com This space is a collaborative promotional venture by LNG Canada and N2K


MAKING A SAFE PORT

EVEN SAFER. In a port with a reputation as one of the world's most accessible harbours, local marine agencies combine talent and technology to keep ships and cargoes safe. For Canadian Coast Guard communications officers like Jennifer, extraordinary responsibility is all in a day's work. Watch Jennifer's part of the story at rupertport.com.

N2K - September 2016  

i20160908112859182.pdf

N2K - September 2016  

i20160908112859182.pdf