Page 1

december 2018

your regional connection for news & events in prince george & the central interior

e t u n i M t s La

HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE


2

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018


Thursday, December 6, 2018

|

www.pgcitizen.cA

3

Race to build tallest wood building about sustainability Gateway news service

F Team V Architecture handout photo

Do Janne Vermeulen – architect, director and founding partner of Team V Architecture based in Amsterdam – spoke at the Wood Works B.C.’s annual Wood Solutions conference on Nov. 6 about the importance of building tall structures in wood.

or Dutch architect Do Janne Vermeulen, the “space race” to build the world’s tallest timberbased building is no longer a matter of pride, but more of a sustainable imperative. “I don’t think it matters who gets the highest first,” Vermeulen said following her presentation last month to a sustainable-building conference in Vancouver. “What’s interesting to see is that it helps to get attention for tall wood buildings,” which is the important part “because if you get one, you might get two, if you get 10 you might get 20 and with 20, you might get 100.” Vermeulen’s Amsterdam-based

firm, Team V Architecture, is in that race with its design for Haut, a 73-metre (240-feet-tall) hybrid mass-timber residential building in a new, sustainability focused residential district of that city. And multiplying the numbers of buildings defined as sustainable, sequestering carbon in renewable wood construction materials, is becoming more important at a time when warnings about climate change are becoming more stark. Vermeulen spoke in a keynote address to Wood Works B.C.’s annual Wood Solutions conference on Nov. 6., which did doing double-duty this year as a weeklong gathering of international policy makers. — see ‘WE MANAGED, page 4


4

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018

‘We managed to do it’ — from page 3 The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, in an October report, warned of irreversible changes if people don’t take immediate and substantial reductions in their greenhouse-gas emissions beyond what they are taking now. If people don’t, they are courting global temperature increases in as little as 12 years that would speed up the melting of sea ice, cause droughts, famine and floods that are worse than the UN had previously anticipated. Responding, in British Columbia, means implementing initiatives such as the province’s Energy Step Code, an optional set of energy-efficiency standards, or the Canadian Build Smart standards, according to conference organizers. With wood recognized as a low-carbon option, “it is imperative to offer technical knowledge through learning opportunities in wood products and building systems,” said Lynn Embury-Williams, executive director of Wood Works B.C. In past years, the Wood Solutions conference has highlighted local vanguard projects such as the all-timber Wood Innovation and Design Centre in Prince George, which is now home to UNBC and Emily Carr University of Art and Design programs aimed at fostering the use of wood in construction. The 18-storey timber-hybrid Brock House residence at UBC has also taken centre stage at Wood Solutions. This year the climate aspects were more firmly at centre stage of the week’s events than in previous years when the focus was as much on promoting B.C.’s value-added

gatewaynews

Team V Architecture handout image

Haut, a 73-metre-tall hybrid mass-timber residential building proposed in Amsterdam, is seen in an artist’s rendering released by Team V Architecture. manufacturing of forest products. “That (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) report is just another statement in a long series of statements that emphasizes the need for this kind of collaboration,” said Rob Bernhardt, CEO of Passivehouse Canada, about this week’s events. Canada has a “very good policy framework,” with its Build Smart initiative, Ber-

nhardt said, but governments need more encouragement in implementation. “Doing is far more difficult than planning,” Bernhardt said. And Vermeulen said she is hopeful that her firm’s Haut project, along with other projects that have been built or are under development stand as examples for a different kind of tall skyline than those dominated by towers built out of hard materials

such as glass, concrete and steel. “We imagine that a great big, high city can be soft, comfortable, and to a large part, made out of wood,” Vermeulen said. And Haut is an example for how well the project is being accepted, Vermeulen said. “We managed to do it and we managed to sell the apartments and we didn’t encounter any insurance or mortgage or any kind of process problems.”


Thursday, December 6, 2018

|

www.pgcitizen.cA

5


6

gatewaynews

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018

LNG, pipeline star in B.C. economic outlook Gateway news service

E CP photo

A model shows the proposed LNG Canada natural gas liquification plant and marine terminal in Kitimat. Construction of the $40 billion project is expected to drive a boom in jobs and construction across northern B.C.

mployment will accelerate in B.C.’s north over the next couple of years, with construction of liquefied natural gas infrastructure and pipelines fuelling a boom in jobs and residential and commercial construction, according to the B.C. Regional Economic Outlook report. Meanwhile, employment growth in Metro Vancouver and southwestern B.C. is predicted to slow to just over one per cent in 2019 and 2020, as labour shortages and a tight housing market continue to be friction points for businesses and workers, respectively. Overall, economic growth is expected to fall to between 2.5 and three per cent from 3.8 per cent in 2017.

Total employment will spike on the North Coast in 2020, with the construction of the $40-billion LNG Canada export terminal at Kitimat and the 700-kilometre TransCanada Coastal GasLink from Dawson Creek, said Bryan Yu, Central 1 Credit Union’s deputy chief economist. Terminal construction will require up to 7,500 workers at its peak. “We expect that boom to last until the plant is complete in 2023,” he said. “There will be impacts on housing and jobs along the length of the pipeline, too.” Related investment will boost nonresidential building permits on the North Coast by about 1,000 per cent by 2020 over the value of permits in 2017, according to Central 1’s new B.C. Regional Economic Outlook report. — see ‘I CAN SEE, page 7


gatewaynews

Thursday, December 6, 2018

|

www.pgcitizen.cA

7

‘I can see us being busy here for the next 10 years’ ­— from page 6 The northeast will also benefit from job growth, but in about two to three years’ time when gas drilling and extraction ramp-up to service the Kitimat plant and pipeline. The LNG terminal announcement has already caused ripples in the local real estate market, including an attempted $1,000-a-month rent increase and a flurry of home-buying, mainly by outside investors, said Kitimat Mayor Phil Germuth. “That (home-buying spree) caught everybody by surprise, no one expected that frenzy, including the realtors,” he said. To ease the impact of LNG construction on Kitimat’s real estate market, LNG Canada has contracted the oilpatch housing firm Civeo to install enough modular buildings for 4,500 workers, he said. Civeo will operate a second permanent camp in Kitimat for 440 workers, and Horizon North will build a temporary camp just outside of town to house another 1,000. Site preparation at the terminal, camp construction and a new road have already brought considerable benefit to the town of

8,300, said Germuth. “I can see us being busy here for the next 10 years,” he said. “Once LNG Canada is ramping down, we hope Chevron’s LNG will be ramping up.” The Lower Mainland will continue to suffer labour shortages in part due to high housing costs, the report says. Government interventions aimed at cooling the real estate market will lead to modest price reductions in southwestern B.C., but also – unhelpfully – a drop in residential building permits. “We’ve seen sales slow dramatically as a result of the new federal lending criteria, among other things, but that’s a bit of an outlier” said Yu. “Industries like technology, TV and film and tourism are all doing quite well.” Indeed.ca lists more than 38,000 job vacancies in the Vancouver area. “The labour market will continue to be very tight,” he said. While job growth is expected to be modest on Vancouver Island, a steady in-flow of retirees from across Canada and young

families priced out of Metro will push the median price of a home to nearly $500,000 in 2020, the report says. “People have been priced out of Vancouver for a number of years and they are looking elsewhere, like Victoria, Nanaimo and Campbell River, where they can find work or set up their own remote working environment,” said Yu. The housing market in B.C.’s southern In-

terior, the Okanagan and the Kootenays is expected to remain flat as a result of tighter mortgage rules, the effect of B.C.’s speculation tax and general weakness in Alberta’s economy, which affects local oilpatch workers, tourism and the property market. “Residential transactions will decline in 2018 by 13 per cent in the Kelowna (area) and by 11 per cent in (the Thompson Okanagan) overall,” the report said.


8

gatewaynews

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018

Canadians support vaping regulations

F

AP file photo

A national survey looks at Canadians’ attitudes towards e-cigarette use and the apparent prevalence of vaping among different age groups. An electronic cigarette is demonstrated in Chicago on April 23, 2014.

or the past couple of years, vaping has become ubiquitous in certain Guest Column urban areas across Canada. Some of the country’s residents have become Mario Canseco Special to Gateway enthralled with the idea of inhaling mercials in the United States. and exhaling vapour produced by Vapers were quick to point out that their e-cigarettes or similar devices. product was not tobacco, so it should not When Research Co. asked a represenface the same restrictions as a regular tative sample of Canadians if they had “vaped” over the past year, only 11 per cent cigarette. Almost six years later, there are still some major vaping-related legislative answered affirmatively. The practice is curchallenges developing rently more popular across North America. among residents aged Almost nine in 10 In the United States, 18 to 34 (19 per cent), respondents to our survey establishing a thorough and drops to single countrywide legislation digits among those (88 per cent) favour has taken years. In most aged 35 to 54 (eight prohibiting the sale of places, a person has to per cent) and those vaping products to minors. be 18 years old to buy aged 55 and over (six e-cigarettes, but some per cent). of the flavours and offerings are extremely While vaping might be perceived as another “millennial thing,” it is not as catch- tempting to minors. While the American Food and Drug ing as some would assume. Our survey shows that four in five of Canada’s youngest Administration is studying issues such as age verification for online and retail adults – a sizable majority – did not use an sales, recently re-elected New York Gov. e-cigarette in the past 12 months. Andrew Cuomo has said he plans to issue Regionally, vaping is more prevalent in an outright ban on the sale of flavoured Atlantic Canada (15 per cent) and Alberta e-cigarettes in 2019. New York may not be (13 per cent), followed by Ontario (11 per the only state to pursue such a plan. cent), Quebec (10 per cent), British CoIn Canada, the federal government relumbia (nine per cent) and Manitoba and cently took action to deal with the e-cigaSaskatchewan (eight per cent). Proponents of vaping have been relatively rette regulatory limbo, and the decisions proved very popular with Canadians. successful in marketing their product as a Almost nine in 10 respondents to our healthier alternative to tobacco. Back in 2012, an advertisement featuring survey (88 per cent) favour prohibiting the sale of vaping products to minors. actor Stephen Dorff called attention to the — see IF YOU VAPE, page 9 long-standing ban on tobacco product com-


gatewaynews

If you vape, you might not get a date in B.C. — from page 8 More than seven in 10 Canadians agree with restricting any reference to e-cigarettes as healthier than standard tobacco products (73 per cent) and restricting the use of testimonials and “lifestyle” advertising for vaping products (71 per cent). These two measures effectively ensure that a campaign like the one that featured Dorff never has a presence on Canada’s airwaves. In addition, three in five Canadians (62 per cent) are in favour of banning certain flavours of vaping products, such as “confectionery,” that have proven to be exceptionally attractive to minors in the United States. Canadians are also almost universal in their wish for vaping products that contain nicotine to display a warning, similar to the one used for tobacco products (91 per cent), and three-in-four (76 per cent) agree with banning the use of e-cigarettes in public places where smoking is currently prohibited. Aside from the regulatory framework, there is a secondary issue: attractiveness. In our survey, half of Canadians (50 per cent) say they would not consider dating a person who uses e-cigarettes. Women are slightly pickier on the issue of vaping (53 per cent say no, compared with 47 per cent of men). The proportion of Canadians who appear

British Columbians are particularly intolerant when it comes to e-cigarettes: three in five (60 per cent) would not consider dating a vaper – the highest proportion reported in the entire country. to be thrown off by vaping is high across all age groups. British Columbians are particularly intolerant when it comes to ecigarettes: three in five (60 per cent) would not consider dating a vaper – the highest proportion reported in the entire country. It took decades of lawsuits and legislation to do away with the iconic images of cigarette smokers in magazines. Vaping may be relatively new to the scene compared with humanity’s relationship to tobacco, but Canadians are decidedly welcoming of policies that look at the practice in a similar light: if you want to vape, vape in a place where it doesn’t affect me. And keep the products out of the reach of children. Mario Canseco is the president of Research Co.

News Tip? Call 250-562-2441

Thursday, December 6, 2018

|

www.pgcitizen.cA

9


10

gatewaynews

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018

B.C. forestry’s bull-market ride could be over soon Gateway news service

U

ntil about six months ago, B.C.’s forestry companies were riding a lumber bull market. Record-high lumber prices in the U.S. had muted softwood lumber duties, and B.C. forestry companies were netting record profits. But the party may be over. A shrinking timber supply, high log prices in B.C. and a sudden drop in lumber prices in the U.S. have created a sudden bear market for B.C. sawmills. Last month, B.C.’s largest forestry company, West Fraser Timber Co., announced it was cutting a third shift from its sawmills in Quesnel and Fraser Lake, resulting in 135 layoffs. “We think the majority of those

Cp file photo

Softwood lumber is pictured at Tolko Industries in Heffley Creek, B.C., April 1. Shrinking supply and a drop in lumber prices in the U.S. is hurting the province’s forest industry. folks are going to be able to land in other opportunities within our company in our other operations,”

James Gorman, vice-president of government and corporate relations for West Fraser Timber, told

Business in Vancouver. “But at the end of the day, that’s still 135 positions that won’t exist in British

Columbia in the forest industry.” Starting in January, West Fraser will take about 300 million board feet out of production – roughly 13 per cent of West Fraser’s B.C. production. Almost all other major forestry companies are also cutting production in the fourth quarter, including Conifex Timber, Tolko Industries, Canfor Corp. and Interfor Corp. Tolko announced last month that it would lay off 100 workers at its Quesnel sawmill, and on November 9 Conifex announced that it is temporarily curtailing its production at its Fort St. James sawmill for two weeks, affecting 180 to 200 workers. In October, Interfor announced it would reduce production at all three of its B.C. Interior mills. — see TIMBER, page 11


gatewaynews

Thursday, December 6, 2018

|

www.pgcitizen.cA

11

Timber prices in B.C. among highest on continent — from page 10 On Nov. 1, Canfor announced it was curtailing production at all of its B.C. sawmills. Two weeks ago, Teal Jones Group shut down sawmills for one week – its seventh one-week curtailment this year. “The lack of availability of logs was the main driver for us taking the downtime,” said Teal Jones CFO Hanif Karmally, adding that the level of raw log exports is a contributing factor. The recent curtailment announcements came at a time when B.C. forestry companies were announcing hundreds of millions of dollars in acquisitions outside of Canada. Tolko recently announced it is taking a 50 per cent stake in a lumber mill in Mississippi, and Canfor announced Nov. 9 that it is buying a sawmill in South Carolina for $110 million. And, on November 15, Canfor announced it is investing $580 million to take a 70 per cent stake in a Swedish lumber company. American lumber prices have fallen by roughly half since May: to just over US$300

per 1,000 board feet from nearly US$600. The higher lumber prices had muted the impacts of U.S. softwood lumber duties. But now that prices have fallen, companies will be feeling the pinch. “When you’ve got scarce fibre, which pushes prices for it up, and then you’re paying duties on top of that, and your market price has declined significantly, that puts companies into the bite,” said Susan Yurkovich, president and CEO of the Council of Forest Industries. “And that’s why you’re seeing announcements about curtailments, either temporary or permanent.” It’s not lower lumber prices in the U.S. so much as high log prices that are the biggest problem for B.C. companies. “Timber prices in British Columbia are now among the highest in North America, and that’s a result of too many mills chasing too few trees,” Gorman said. The mountain pine beetle infestation, which started more than 20 years ago, has been a short-term blessing and a long-term curse for B.C. forestry companies.

A surplus of dead and dying trees meant a timber supply bonanza. But most of that beetle-killed timber has been used, and more recently wildfires have taken a bite out of an already shrinking annual allowable cut (AAC). Fires in 2017 took 22 per cent out of the AAC for Quesnel and 18 per cent for Williams Lake, for example. Doug Donaldson, minister of forests, lands and natural resource operations, was unavailable to comment on government policies on the annual allowable cut or log exports. But Gorman said there’s not much the provincial government can do about the problem anyway. Forestry companies have known for about a decade that a long-term decline in B.C.’s AAC was coming, which explains why so many B.C. companies have been investing in sawmills in the U.S., where there is still an adequate timber supply. The biggest players now own more sawmills in the U.S. than in Canada. David Elstone, executive director of the

Truck Loggers Association, which represents logging companies, said sawmill curtailments will affect loggers, depending on how long they last. “The scary aspect of this whole story is, while the balance sheets have been repaired through the good times for the sawmills… contractors are left with balance sheets that have not grown any fatter. It just means we’re probably going to have a lot less contractors when it comes out the other side here.” The “other side” could be more than 50 years away. In 1987, B.C.’s AAC peaked at 90 million cubic metres. The long-term forecast is for an AAC of 58 million cubic metres by 2025. The AAC is expected to return to between 65 million and 70 million cubic feet by around 2075. Meanwhile, over the next decade, demand for lumber in the U.S. is expected to remain strong, and Canada will continue to be its main supplier, according to a recent report by ForestEdge LLC and Wood Resources International LLC.


12

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018


Thursday, December 6, 2018

|

www.pgcitizen.cA

13


14

gatewaynews

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018

Project to study B.C.’s wolverines Gateway news service

A

new project aims to find out more about the life and lifestyle of the ghost of the deep forests of British Columbia, the wolverine. The Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation along with the Forest Enhancement Society of BC will undertake a project to study the range, movements and habitat of wolverines in the south coast region, including Squamish. Brian Springinotic of the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation says it is important to study these creatures because human activity and climate change may be having a significant impact on them. It is also important to understand what and how far ranging those impacts are, he says. “Wolverines are this iconic, elusive species in BritJonas Ekstromer/TT via AP

A wolverine at Stockholm’s Skansen Zoo on July 3, 2015 seeks shade. The Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation and Forest Enhancement Society of BC have launched a study to learn more about B.C.’s wolverine population.

ish Columbia. Wolverines capture people’s attention. There’s a lot of myth and stories about wolverines,” Springinotic said in an interview. “But we don’t know enough about the science around wolverines on the south coast.” The three-year project aims to find out the number of wolverines in the area, their habitat needs, pressures on the landscape and how to accommodate human growth while respecting the territory of the animals. The study will include setting up of camera traps and bait stations to find out the habits and movements of the furry, ferocious predators. In spite of the image that they portray, Springinotic says the animals are shy, elusive creatures that don’t seek human contact. “I spend a lot of time in the woods and I’ve never seen a wolverine in the wild,” he said. Wolverines are found in various regions around the province, according to the provincial environment ministry’s website. The only areas of B.C. where they do not regularly occur are the Lower Mainland, the dry sections of the Fraser and Okanagan valleys in the southern Interior and the Queen Charlotte Islands. — see ‘THEY ARE, page 15


gatewaynews

‘They are a real articulation of wilderness and B.C.’ — from page 14 Springinotic says they live in the deep forest and at high elevations. He says his organization feels a moral obligation to do what it can to maintain wolverine populations so future generations of British Columbians have a chance to see them in the wild. “They are a real articulation of wilderness and B.C.,” he said. The project to study wolverines is one of about 150 that are being funded by the foundation, which describes itself as a “non-profit charitable foundation” supported by hunters, anglers, trappers and outfitters. The other projects include a census of the mountain goat, monitoring endangered grizzly bear populations and improving mountain caribou calf survival. Wolverines are among the largest non-aquatic members of the

weasel family. They are mediumsized, stocky, bear-like animals with short, thick-set legs and large paws. Males and females are similar in appearance, but males are larger, weighing up to 20 kilograms, while adult females grow up to 14 kilograms. The animals are listed as a species of concern in the province, which means they are susceptible to human activity. Springinotic says wolverines are a part of British Columbia’s natural heritage, and seen as mythical creatures that are fearless, tireless and something to be respected. “Long before there were movies and comic books about wolverines, First Nations had a real image and myth and story around wolverines because they are such an iconic and quite elusive creature in B.C.”

Thursday, December 6, 2018

|

www.pgcitizen.cA

15

Olympian guest at UNBC fundraiser Gateway staff Olympic gold medallist and two-time world curling champion Jennifer Jones, will be the headline speaker at the fifth annual University of Northern British Columbia Timberwolves Legacy Breakfast on March 6. Jones is Canada’s most decorated and recognized woman curler. She won gold as skip of the Canadian women’s team at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, going undefeated over 11 games. More recently, Jones won her second women’s world curling title in March in North Bay, Ont. “We could not be happier to welcome Jennifer to the Charles Jago Northern Sports Centre and have her be a part of our annual

Jones Legacy Breakfast fundraiser,” said UNBC Athletics and Recreation Director Loralyn Murdoch. “Jones has accomplished so much in her sport and life including a major comeback post ACL injury, to being wife, parent and winning an Olympic medal. I am

very excited to hear her story and hope that she inspires all who attend.” Jones also has strong academic credentials. A graduate of the University of Manitoba, where she completed her Bachelor of Laws degree in 1999, Jones has worked as a lawyer both in private practice and as in-house counsel in a corporate setting. In its five-year history, the Timberwolves Legacy Breakfast has raised more than $250,000. Tickets are $90 for an individual seat, or $720 for a table of eight. Other ticketing options are also available. The doors open at 6:45 a.m. and the breakfast begins at 7 a.m. For information, or to register a table, visit www.unbc.ca/legacybreakfast.


16

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018

gatewaynews

ICBC says concussions, mental health injuries fall under new claims cap Gateway news service

C

oncussions and mental health problems caused by an automobile crash will be considered a “minor injury” and fall under the new $5,500 cap on pain and suffering, according to new rules set by the provincial government. Attorney General David Eby signed a cabinet order that declared sprains, strains, aches, cuts, bruises, minor whiplash (including forms called TMJ and WAD), concussions and mental health issues caused by vehicle crashes to be designated minor injuries under new caps that begin April 1, 2019. The inclusion of concussions and mental health has worried some lawyers and health care practitioners opposed to the cap, who say it can take a long time for symptoms of brain damage, depression or post-traumatic stress to show and that the long-lasting effects are not minor for those suffering.

mild concussions fully recover within three In response, the Insurance Corp. of B.C. months. said it has set special rules for concussions Doctors of B.C., which represents physiand mental health injuries. ICBC will concians, was consulted on sider them to become the timeline and agrees major injuries not When we look at with ICBC, said presilimited to the $5,500 things like dent Dr. Eric Cadesky. pain and suffering cap concussions, pain “When we look at if they persist for more things like concussions, than four months, said and the emotional pain and the emotional the president and CEO, consequences of a car consequences of a car Nicolas Jimenez. accident, four months is a accident, four months “The advice we got from the medical good indicator of whether is a good indicator of whether those condicommunity is they are those conditions are going tions are going to imtrickier to diagnose to improve or not. prove or not,” he said. and trickier to, quite The NDP government frankly, treat, so we are — Dr. Eric Cadesky passed legislation to better to proceed causet the insurance caps tiously and put them earlier this year in an attempt to save more on a short time frame,” Jimenez said. than $1 billion annually from the cashOther minor injuries – whiplash, sprains, strapped public auto insurer, reduce the etc. – will only be considered major if they rising costs of claims and prevent ICBC rate are still problems after 12 months. ICBC cites medical research that indicates hikes. Broken bones and other more serious approximately 85 per cent of people with

injuries do not fall under the $5,500 pain and suffering cap. B.C. was the last province in Canada to have a fully tort-based insurance claims system, frequently leading to lengthy and costly court cases. Disputes over the new caps on pain and suffering claims will first go to a new civil resolution tribunal process that’s mainly been used for strata disputes. People can still sue for such things as the cost of future care and loss of wages. To compensate for the cap, the government has raised significantly raised the fees ICBC pays for medical treatment, and added kinesiology, acupuncture, massage therapy and counselling to the list of approved services. Drivers at fault in a crash will also get full medical care costs, instead of lesser benefits outlined in the old rules. But B.C.’s Trial Lawyers Association, which has opposed the cap, said the latest details remain troubling. — see ‘THERE’S NO, page 15


gatewaynews

Thursday, December 6, 2018

‘There’s no such thing as a minor concussion’ — from page 16 Even with a four-month time frame for concussions and mental health, the new regulations set a steep definition of “incapacity” that a person will need to suffer to be considered as having a major injury, said lawyer Ron Nairne, the incoming president of the association. That incapacity definition includes being unable to work, go to school or complete the “activities of daily living” defined in the rules as preparing your own meals, managing finances, shopping, using public transportation, cleaning your home and managing your medication. “That is so narrowly defined that it will be very difficult for people to escape the definition of minor injury based on that particular provision,” said Nairne. He said it appears government is trying to set rules that “capture the majority of claims” as minor, and concussions along with mental health should be excluded. “There’s no such thing as a minor concussion because concussions are a form of brain injury,” said

Nairne. “The government is doing the exact opposite, and deeming these to minor injuries.” Other reaction was mixed. The Physiotherapy Association of B.C. said Tuesday the changes are a positive step because ICBC is expanding the list of treatment providers and fees to enhance psychotherapy recovery. But ROAD B.C., an organization that represents some other types of health care providers, said the new definition of minor injury is beyond what most British Columbians would consider fair. One other change in the new rules set by Eby is that government has dropped a proposal to allow motorists to spend an extra $1,300 a year for additional insurance to get a cap of $75,000 on minor injuries. “It was an idea,” said Jimenez. “But it’s not something that was embraced and put into our policy framework. These are really complicated changes, and I think quite frankly we are proceeding on the basis of get the system change in, and we’ll monitor and evaluate as we go.”

|

www.pgcitizen.cA

17

Drugs seized from Isle Pierre home Gateway staff An estimated $50,000 worth of drugs was seized and seven people were arrested Wednesday when RCMP executed a search warrant on an Isle Pierre Road home, 30 kilometres west of Prince George. About 1.5 kilograms of what police believe to be methamphetamine and one kilogram of what police believe to be cocaine were located in the home, along with cash, drug trafficking paraphernalia and a loaded firearm. Four men and three women were taken into custody and later released, pending further investigation and charge approval from Crown counsel.

This is significant disruption to drug trafficking in our community. — RCMP statement “This is significant disruption to drug trafficking in our community,” RCMP said. “The Prince George RCMP is committed to enforcement and prevention initiatives that combat the possession and sale of drugs in the community.” The detachment’s street crew unit carried out the raid with help from the North District RCMP’s emergency response team.


18

gatewaynews

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018

Don’t let work throw off your diet

D

uring the holiday season cookie exchanges, potlucks and other special meals take center stage and making healthy choices can prove difficult. Navigating workplace holiday functions and the overload of treats available at work can be overwhelming. Unfortunately, working in a stressful environment can also cause us to stop doing the things that keep us healthy. Stressed workers can feel as if they don’t have enough time or energy to prepare healthy food or stay physically active. A stressful work environment where workers experience high demand, low job control and low social support can lead to skipping meals, eating at workstations, extra snacking and a preference for calorie dense foods. When less healthy food options are all that’s available, you can be left with a difficult choice: eat something that’s

Food for Thought Kelsey Leckovic unhealthy, or nothing at all. The American Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) conducted research on workplace eating behaviours and found some surprising results, which they released in June, 2018. Of the 5,222 working adults surveyed, 22 per cent obtained food from their workplace at least once per week accounting for an average of 1,277 additional calories consumed per week. The majority of those additional calories (71 per cent) were coming from free foods, available in common areas, which are generally highly processed and high in fat, sugar and sodium; think brownies, cookies,

cakes, candy and pizza. Major barriers to healthy eating in the workplace include a lack of access to healthy food choices and easy access to unhealthy ones. As you become stressed or tired throughout the day, it’s more likely you’ll turn your attention to those free treats. There are many other factors that influence our individual eating behaviours, including our perception of our own diet quality, our level of fatigue and the social pressure we can receive from coworkers, all of which can cause us to make less healthy choices when feeling stressed. Justifying behaviour is one way we rationalize unhealthy choices and habits, especially in the workplace. It can be easy to overestimate the benefits of our healthy actions, while underestimating the impact of our less healthy decisions. It may seem as if an extra slice of birthday

cake or a couple Christmas cookies are no big deal, but every diet decision you make contributes to your overall health and most people have a tendency to underestimate the calories they consume. Plus, when you’re eating chips, cookies, and cake every day, are they still just treats? Or a regular part of your diet? While it may be virtually impossible to prevent unhealthy foods from being available in your workplace, you can give yourself healthy options by having nutritious snacks on hand. If you have a fridge at work, bring low-fat yogurt, cottage cheese, hummus, carrots and celery sticks, or cutfruit. No fridge? Stock your desk or locker with dry cereal, peanut butter and crackers, canned fish, mini bagels, low-salt pretzels or nuts. You can help to eliminate at least one barrier to healthy eating by making nutritious options easily available. — see HEALTHY SNACKS, page 20


Thursday, December 6, 2018

|

www.pgcitizen.cA

19


20

gatewaynews

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018

Healthy snacks can be a hit

News Tip? Call 250-562-2441

— from page 18 Healthy eating in the workplace can contribute to the enhancement of your physical and mental well-being and help reduce absenteeism and increase productivity. Everyone has a role to play in creating and promoting a workplace environment that supports healthy eating. While there is nothing wrong with showing appreciation for your coworkers by bringing them food during the holidays, or anytime, keep in mind that the types of foods brought into the workplace can impact the dietary habits of the individuals in that environment. Bringing in a box of mandarin oranges or a tray of vegetables with hummus can be

Everyone has a role to play in creating and promoting a workplace environment that supports healthy eating. just as much of a treat as a box of chocolates or a tray of squares. For healthy recipes to share with your coworkers, go to Dietitians of Canada’s recipe website at www.cookspiration.com. — Kelsey Leckovic is a Registered Dietitian with Northern Health working in chronic disease management.


gatewaynews

Regional district to accept fridges and freezers for free Gateway staff

T

he Fraser-Fort George Regional District will be taking in old fridges, freezers and any other major appliances containing ozone-depleting substances at no charge starting in January. It means the current charge of $22.50 per unit will be waived with the Major Appliance Recycling Roundtable, an agency operating on behalf producers, covering the handling costs under a one-year pilot program. FFGRD waste diversion program leader Laura Zapotichny said more than 1,500 units were accepted at the Foothills landfill last year and there was an “overwhelming response” when the items were accepted for free during a roundup in conjunction with the Junk in the Trunk event in September. “Based on what happened a couple short

months ago with one round up event, I’m really hopeful that people will come and bring us back these appliances now at no charge because everything is being taken care of by this stewardship program.” The program will apply to much more than fridges and freezers. Zapotichny recited an extensive list of items containing refrigerants and other gases harmful to the planet’s ozone layer: wine coolers, air conditioners, dehumidifiers, washers, dryers, range hoods, ranges, built-in ovens, surface cooking units, dishwashers, food waste disposal units and trash compacters. “The regional district has accepted most of those products already for no charge as most of our facilities have a metal-recycling bin,” she added. “The bonus in signing on with MARR is that now they cover the cost of recovering the ozone-depleting substance – the freon – out of the chiller unit in it.” — see ‘There’s definitely, page 22

Thursday, December 6, 2018

|

www.pgcitizen.cA

21


22

gatewaynews

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018

‘There’s definitely a need out there so that’s great that they’re dropping the fee’

Gateway photo by Brent Braaten

The Fraser-Fort George Regional District will stop charging a dumping fee for old fridges and freezers starting Jan. 1.

— from page 21 The FFGRD will launch an information campaign through its website and local media when the program starts up. “We’re trying to hit all mediums so that people are aware,” Zapotichny said. Recycling and Environmental Action Planning Society executive director Terri McClymont welcomed the move. She also noted the strong response at Junk in the Trunk and added she hopes it will put a dent in illegal dumping. “There’s definitely a need out there so that’s great that they’re dropping the fee,” she said. It wasn’t all good news when FFGRD directors approved participation in the program during their monthly meeting last week. They also voted for an across-the-board 5.9-percent increase to the fees it does charge for handling various types of solid waste. The hike, which will also come into effect at the start of 2019, means the basic weight-based tipping fee will add up to $90 per tonne, an increase of $5

over the current rate, with higher fees applied to more difficult-to-handle refuse. The per-tonne rate for condemned foods, creosote treated wood, dead animals and off-road truck tires will be $164.90, while for bulky waste, contaminated soils and concrete, it will be $107.20. For camp waste, food processing waste, gypsum or wallboard, pumpings and wood ash from industrial operations, it will be $90. Asbestos and so-called “international waste” will cost $330.35 per tonne. And the FFGRD will charge $164.90 per unit for vehicle hulks and $11.90 per medium truck tire. However, the cost of dropping off “small loads” of up to 100 kilograms of household garbage will remain at $6, which McClymont said is a good deal. “That $6 covers a lot,” she said. “It’s the people handling it once it gets there, it’s the transporting it up to the landfill, it’s the machinery that puts it into the landfill and compacts it, it’s the renting of the space of the landfill, so that $6 is pretty minimal to drop off a truckload of garbage.”


Thursday, December 6, 2018

|

www.pgcitizen.cA

23


24

www.pgcitizen.ca | Thursday, December 6, 2018

Gateway - Last Minute Holiday Gift Guide  

your regional connection for news & events in prince george & the central interior

Gateway - Last Minute Holiday Gift Guide  

your regional connection for news & events in prince george & the central interior

Advertisement