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ILA 58th Conference & Trade Show ]

www.tla.ca

[ INSIDE

Spring 2016

History and Vision: A Historical Presidency for Jacqui Beban A Path to Mutual Successful Change: Contractor Sustainability & Industry Competitiveness

PM # 40010419

The Ever Changing Goalposts of the Environmental Movement

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 1


2 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016


CONTENTS

SPRING 2016 Volume 39 Number 1 www.tla.ca

26

55

Columns & Departments

Cover

7

26 History and Vision: A Historical Presidency for Jacqui Beban

8

President’s Message

Looking Forward: A Presidential Vision for the TLA Jacqui Beban

Executive Director’s Message

By Hans Peter Meyer

David Elstone

Features

Revise Bill 13 and Create Jobs in BC’s Forest Industry

23 ILA 58th Annual Conference and Trade Show: Be the Change for Forest Safety

Build a Healthy Forest Industry, Build a Healthy Province

10 Interior Logging Association’s Message Wayne Lintott

13 North West Loggers Association’s Message

Fighting for Our Future: Supporting the Trans Pacific Partnership Bill Sauer

15 Market Report

BC Coast Industry Competitiveness: Good News and Bad News Russ Taylor

16 Safety Report

WorkSafeBC 2016 High Risk Strategy for Forest Overview Bjarne Nielsen

18 Legal Report

Bill 13: What It Is and Why It Matters Steve Ross

20 Business Matters

Incentive Programs: Innovation May Not Be As Costly As You Think Chris Duncan

Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations

31 Round-Up: The 73rd Annual Truck Loggers Association Convention & Trade Show TLA Editorial

38 First Nations & Forestry: Working in Industry Today Ian MacNeill

44 The Path to Mutual Successful Change: Contractor Sustainability & Industry Competitiveness TLA Editorial

50 Embracing Change in First Nations Relationships Robin Brunet

55 The Ever Changing Goalposts of the Environmental Movement Jim Girvan

Cover photo: Hans Peter Meyer *The cover photo was not taken at an active worksite.

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 3


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The Truck Loggers Association 2016 Executive & Directors

Interior Logging Association 2015-2016 Board of Directors

Chairman Reid Hedlund Jacqui Beban Mike Richardson First Vice Chairman Randy Spence Second Vice Chairman Len Gudeit Don Banasky Past Chairman Ed Smith David Elstone Directors Lee Callow Ted Beutler Guido Claudepierre Howie McKamey Dennis Cook Dave McNaught John Drayton Clint Parcher Randy Durante Mark Ponting Matt Edmondson Barry Simpson Frank Etchart Doug Sladey Scott Horovatin Matt Wealick Jeff Kineshanko Adam Wunderlich Hedley Larsen Associate Directors George Lambert Bill McDonald Tim Lloyd Tim Menning Brian Mulvihill Ron Volansky Carl Sweet General Manager Wayne Lintott Adam Pruss Administration Nancy Hesketh Editorial Board Don Banasky Jacqui Beban James Byrne Interior Logging Association Graham Lasure 3204 - 39th Avenue Wayne Lintott Vernon, BC V1T 3C8 Brian Mulvihill Tel: 250.503.2199 Fax: 250.503.2250 Bill Sauer

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E-mail: info@interiorlogging.org Website: www.interiorlogging.org

SPRING 2016 / VOLUME 39 / NUMBER 1 Editor Brenda Martin Contributing Writers Jacqui Beban

Robin Brunet Chris Duncan David Elstone Jim Girvan Wayne Lintott Ian McNeill

Hans Peter Meyer Bjarne Nielsen Steve Ross Bill Sauer Russ Taylor Steve Thomson

For editorial information, please contact the Truck Loggers Association: Tel: 604.684.4291 Email: trucklogger@tla.ca For advertising, please contact Advertising In Print: Tel: 604.681.1811 Email: info@advertisinginprint.com

Sustainable growth through healthy forests and healthy British Columbians. Truck Loggers Association members know that a healthy forest means jobs and economic growth. Pacific Blue Cross is a proud partner of the TLA in supporting workforce health and productivity.

Truck LoggerBC magazine is published four times a year by the Truck Loggers Association, with content and support from the Interior Logging Association and the North West Loggers Association. Its editorial content seeks to reflect issues facing the industry and to provide readers with current information on BC’s forest industry. All rights reserved.

Advertising Sales & Design Layout office:

Advertising In Print 200 - 896 Cambie Street, Vancouver, BC V6B 2P6 Tel: 604.681.1811. Fax: 604.681.0456 Publication Mailing Agreement No. 40010419. For subscriptions, contact office@tla.ca or 604.684.4291. Send change of address notices and covers of undeliverable copies to:

4 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

The Truck Loggers Association Suite 725-815 West Hastings Street Vancouver, BC V6C 1B4 E-mail: contact@tla.ca

Tel: 604.684.4291 Fax: 604.684.7134 Website: www.tla.ca


from the Editorial Board DESK...

W

elcome to the Spring 2016 issue of Truck LoggerBC. It was good to see so many people out at the 73rd TLA Convention & Trade Show. Attendance at our skill development sessions on Wednesday—where we dove deep into the mechanics of steep slope technology—was particularly impressive. Here is a special thanks to our sponsors, speakers, delegates and TLA staff for making this year’s convention such a wonderful success. The Interior Logging Association’s 58th Annual Conference & Trade Show is taking place on May 5-7, 2016 in Vernon. The TLA is holding our own board meeting in conjunction with the Conference and we are all looking forward to meeting Minister Thomson and enjoying the excellent outdoor equipment show. We hope to see many of you there. Two feature articles in this issue expand on three sessions that took place at the TLA Convention. This year, we offered real-time, online audience polling during the Minister of Forests Breakfast and the final panel session, “A Path to Mutual Successful Change.” We used these polling results and the panelists’ response from the final session to put together an excellent article that addresses both contactor sustainabil-

ity and industry competitiveness. The second article, “Embracing Change in First Nations Relationships,” reviews what each of the four speakers said during their presentations and then gets deeper into the issues. First Nations’ role in the forest industry is evolving and these people have a vision for its future. Continuing with our First Nation focus, the second part of our two-part series on elders and younger people working in BC’s forest industry is included in this issue. We were excited to read about the variety of jobs younger First Nations people are working at today and the hope they have for the forest industry. This is a 64-page magazine—16 pages more than we planned for—so we can’t begin to comment on all the content. But please read our four reports—Market, Legal, Safety and Business—as well as our excellent feature on environmental non-governmental organizations (ENGOs) moving the goalposts after agreements are signed and industry has made their business plans. As always, we hope you enjoy our magazine and that you find it informative. If you have any feedback or comments, please contact Brenda Martin, Director of Communications, at 604.684.4291 ext. 2 or brenda@tla.ca. - The Truck LoggerBC Editorial Board

RE: “Knowledge is Power: Understanding the 60 Day Compensation Window” – Truck LoggerBC, Fall 2015

I

write to clarify what I think may be a misunderstanding of the application of the 60 day compensation rule in the Forestry Service Providers Compensation Fund (FSPCF). There is a formula that allows compensation for the first unpaid invoice plus 30 days, to a combined maximum of 60 days of unpaid work. The formula sets the start date as the beginning of the period covered by the oldest unpaid invoice. It is a rare contractor that has not had a slow paying licensee at least once. If the first time a contractor had to wait for payment ended up locking in a start date for the 60 day window, then it is likely few if any contractors would be eligible for FSPCF compensation. Therefore, if there is a late payment in the normal course of business that covers the oldest unpaid invoice, then the start date of the 60 day potential compensation window also moves forward. A contractor that continues to work after there are 60 days of unpaid invoices outstanding does so at his own risk. However, he may choose to do so for any number of reasons. If late payments are received in the normal course of business they will be applied first to the oldest invoice. Once it is paid the start date of the first unpaid invoice will move ahead accordingly and more recent work will be included in the maximum 60 day compensation window. If things go well, the contractor will be paid in full sometime after the end of the logging season, and compensation is no longer an issue. If there is an insolvency, the contractor can apply to the fund. The contractor can receive compensation of a maximum of 60 days’ worth of invoices, starting at the first unpaid invoice. In exchange he must assign all his receivables from that licensee to the FSPCF. The Authority will then attempt to realize on those receivables.

In the case where the licensee disappears or has no assets, the assigned receivable will likely be worthless. Other times the Authority might receive a few cents on the dollar. In the very unlikely event that the Authority is able to collect more than just the 60 days’ worth of receivables the excess, after collection costs, will be given to the contractor. I don’t expect that will ever happen. I mentioned earlier the “receipt of payment in the normal course of business”. That is meant to contrast with payment as a result of a legal process such as a seizure of logs. The distinction is necessary because otherwise a contractor could, for instance, work unpaid for 120 days, seize logs worth 60 days’ work, apply that to what he is owed, and then claim for the second 60 days. Doing that would mean the FSPCF was essentially covering the last 60 days of invoices unpaid in the normal course of business, not the first 60 days. That was clearly not the intention of the legislation. Contractors are reminded that the purpose of the FSPCF is to allow them to extend up to 60 days’ credit to a licensee knowing they can apply to the FSPCF if they are not paid. As soon as they are owed more than a maximum of 60 days, they will not be protected by the fund for the excess. Any contractors that are unsure about the application of the rules to their particular circumstances are invited to contact the Eric van Soeren, FSPCF Authority, at 250-537-1533 or by email at eric@vansoeren.net. Yours truly, Eric van Soeren, FSPCF Administrative Authority

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Jacqui Beban

TLA President’s MESSAGE

Looking Forward: A Presidential Vision for the TLA

R

eflecting on my term as vice-president, I realize the importance of the TLA’s advocacy effort on behalf of our members. This advocacy supports the industry as a whole and the many rural communities where our members live and work. I am truly honored to represent the TLA as president and appreciate the support I receive from the TLA board, staff and membership. As I look forward to my term as president, my goal is to continue on this path and to use the TLA 2015-2017 Strategic Plan as my guide. Fostering relationships that promote our vision and advocating for contractor sustainability will, I believe, benefit the industry as a whole. One only needs to look at the recent layoffs and mill disruption in Port Alberni caused by a contractor rate dispute to understand that we are all in this together. One member of the supply chain cannot benefit at the expense of the others because it puts communities at risk.

So what are the issues we need to keep working on?

Encouragement and support for supply chain development is critical. Healthy, strong and respectful relationships are another key step to the improvement of the industry as a whole. Relationships with First Nations communities continue to be a TLA focus. We include First Nations editorial in each issue of our magazine to highlight and show our support for First Nations forestry partnerships and success stories. We understand that change happens at a grassroots level and we need to educate the industry about the opportunities that are out there. Building relationships with other associations also helps to create a unified voice when presenting issues to government. The TLA has been working with the ILA and NWLA and together we are meeting, strategizing and presenting a unified voice to government. Government has appreciated this approach because all

contractor associations are represented at each discussion and our message is clear. An improved working relationship with the Coast Forest Products Association (CFPA) has also helped on many files and although we have some differences of opinion on a few items, many of our objectives are similar. As we look forward to the 2017 provincial election, it is almost certain that log exports will be back in the media. Any business owner will tell you, one of the keys to success is having access to diverse markets and the coastal forest industry is no exception. And while log exports are part of that diversification, this does not mean that logs will not be available to our local mills. Diverse global markets help the industry harvest the full profile of the Allowable Annual Cut (AAC). This will allow us to better manage our forests on a sustainable basis and will actually result in more wood delivered to our local mills.

ers and organizers for another successful convention. The attendance was excellent and the feedback we received from the attendees was very positive. One of the most powerful talks I ever witnessed was given by Wiremu Edmonds from New Zealand at Wednesday’s keynote luncheon. The message was clear in his “Stand in the Gap” presentation: Everyone has someone who relies on them and cares about them and so our workers must come home safely to their loved ones every day. This overriding objective is not negotiable in our industry. I also welcome Mike Richardson of Tsibass Construction to the Executive as Vice President. Mike brings the unique perspectives of having been on both sides of the fence as logger and contract manager. Such insights will be valuable as we address the advocacy issues I identified above. Finally, I would personally like to thank Don Banasky for his strong

I believe communicating, building trust and aligning our goals will be key for the success of the TLA. At the core of our association is always a desire to advocate for contractor sustainability for our members. To be able to harvest and haul logs; make enough to re-invest in equipment, safety and infrastructure; to be able to support local communities and, in the end, have a business that can attract new employees is at the heart of a successful coastal forest industry. Given the wealth that is evident in the public forests that we all make our living from, it seems this goal makes sense for everyone. During my ten years on the TLA Board, I’ve learned that for every question we ask, three more are asked of us. Advocacy is always a learning process. That said, I believe communicating, building trust, and aligning our goals will be key for the success of the TLA, the forest industry and BC as a whole. I sincerely thank the TLA staff, speak-

leadership and professionalism while leading the TLA over the past two years. He has worked hard for the membership and has represented us well with government, other associations and industry stakeholders. I was fortunate to have the opportunity to watch and learn from him while I was Vice President and appreciate that he will remain an integral part of the TLA Executive in his new role as the Immediate Past President. Jacqui Beban, President, TLA Tel: 250.951.1410 Email: jacquibeban@gmail.com

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 7


David Elstone

TLA Executive Director’s MESSAGE

Build a Healthy Forest Industry, Build a Healthy Province

W

hat does the forest resource sector mean to the success of the province of British Columbia? At first glance, the recently released annual budget for the provincial government shows that the answer to my question is not so apparent. Direct revenue from all natural resources (i.e., mining royalties or, in the case of forestry, stumpage) makes $2.3 billion for the province. Forest resources directly generate some $1.3 billion or almost 60 per cent of all natural resources revenues—a fair size number that has grown over the past few years. However, in comparison to overall revenues of $47 billion, which includes personal and corporate income taxes of $24 billion, our industry’s significance seems less when compared to the prominence of tax payers’ dollars. A healthy forest industry is critical to the stability of our province’s overall economy. It’s what provides the tax revenues to finance the healthcare, education and social services that British Columbians have all come to rely on. I guess-estimate that a minimum of 30 per cent of tax revenue comes from rural communities outside of cities based on the distribution of the population in cities vs. those who are not. Typically, rural communities rely on the natural sources sector—namely forestry—for economic activity. So while the forest resource’s direct contribution is about 2 per cent to 3 per cent of overall government revenues, the employment and well paying jobs that forestry generates in rural communities, means the indirect contribution of the forest resource to our province is substantial. Independent timber harvesting contractors and their suppliers are the economic backbone of BC’s rural communities. It is generally these businesses that are generating employment in the woods near the rural communities. However, it has been the TLA’s message that contractor sustainability, or in other words, the viability of contractors’ businesses has increasingly become a concern. And following the logic I have

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drawn out, if the forest resource via logging contractors is at risk, so too is the tax generating ability of our rural communities. My concern is based on survey results taken at the TLA Convention last January. The audience said 66.3 per cent felt that contractors were not sustainable. Another 60.9 per cent answered that they saw their business was at risk or were uncertain because of industry issues. And then only 10.4 per cent said that their relationship was good with their major licensees. A consequence of weakening contractor sustainability would be that the supply chain breaks, impacting the delivery of logs to sawmills.

ties of the original intent of Bill 13 was identified by then Forest Minister Dan Miller back in 1991. “The stability of many families and, indeed, many communities are dependent on contractors maintaining secure and fair contracts with holders of timber rights in their vicinity” (Hansard). The legislation that followed was Bill 13 and its purpose was, as Minister Miller stated, “to improve the balance in these contractual relationships. It will also provide a quick and inexpensive system for resolving contract disputes. This will ensure security and fairness for all parties in timber harvesting in British Columbia.” The TLA’s advocacy message is this. It’s

It’s been 12 years since the last changes to Bill 13, so it would be prudent governance to review this legislation. And in fact, that prediction came true with the situation in Port Alberni where part of Western’s ADP sawmill was closed in February due to a log shortage because of a contract dispute with the local contractor attempting to keep his business going. Not only were the mill workers temporarily laid-off, so too have been the many loggers, and forestry consultants and...the list goes on. All the while, Western records a 100 per cent improvement in Q4 EBITDA (operating earnings) over a year-ago. Clearly, Western can afford to run the mill. Contractors need to have a level playing field when it comes to negotiating contracts and business relationships with their major licensees that employ them. Otherwise, as we have seen in Port Alberni, we expect more instability and turmoil for communities in the future. I think one of the solutions to contractors’ and the industry’s problems rests with the current amendments of Bill 13. There is an article on page 18 that describes what Bill 13 does. For the mayors and MLAs reading this letter, the value to their communi-

been 12 years since the last changes to Bill 13, so it would be prudent governance to review this legislation. Clearly it has not been an effective tool for contractors to utilize in its current form. With only a single successful arbitration in 12 years, how much more evidence is needed? Bill 13 or replaceable contracts were put in place to act as a counterweight to the dominant influence of the major tenure holders over the forest resource, by helping re-distribute the prosperity that the publicly owned forests provide to the people that live and work in them. Replaceable contracts are not the most efficient form of supply chain management, but neither is the oligopolistic control of the timber tenure rights in British Columbia. The cracks are forming, but hopefully change can occur before there is an irreversible impact on our tax payer base in rural BC communities. David Elstone, RPF, Executive Director, TLA Tel: 604.684.4291 ext. 1 Email: david@tla.ca


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Wayne Lintott

Interior Logging Association’s MESSAGE

Revise Bill 13 and Create Jobs in BC’s Forest Industry

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ver the last year, I know there has been a lot of talk on the coast about the need to review Bill 13. I’ve been part of those conversations as the ILA and TLA work together on various advocacy issues. As we move forward, we need to remember that Bill 13 isn’t just a coastal issue. It applies to the whole province and it impacts contractors who belong to the ILA as well. When you drill right down to it, Bill 13 isn’t even just a Bill 13 issue. Right now, it’s being used to grind contractors down and set a ‘market rate’ that doesn’t allow contractors to be sustainable. This ‘market rate’ spills over from Bill 13 contracts and affects the rates that all logging contractors are paid. Not only is it a provincial issue, it is industry wide too. It’s been 12 years since Bill 13 was updated and these days it is clearly not serving the forest industry well. It’s time for change and the TLA and ILA are working together to make that happen. While advocacy is an important part of a logging association’s mission, so is community building. With that in mind, be sure to attend the ILA’s 58th Annual Conference and Trade Show being held on May 5, 6 and 7th at the Vernon Atrium Hotel, previ-

ously known as the Vernon Lodge. The theme is “Be the Change for Forest Safety” and we are teaming up with the BC Forest Safety Council to provide a day of important safety sessions as part of the Interior Safety Conference being held in conjunction with the ILA Annual Conference and Trade Show on Saturday, May 7th. Other big highlights of this event are the Friday Luncheon with guest speaker Minister Thomson and the Western Night Dinner & Dance featuring Lee Dinwoodie and Band. I hope to see many people there!

This ‘market rate’ spills over from Bill 13 contracts and affects the rates of all logging contractors. Finally, I’d like to update you on the ILA’s Forestry Heavy Equipment program. We had 16 students in the fall program and they have all graduated and are working in the Forest Industry operating equipment. Again we would like to acknowledge Amanda Black and her employer West Fraser Timber for their continued support to make our program operational. A special thanks also to the contractors, Aspell Contracting, Ken Ilnicki Devel-

Join the ILA again this year for their excellent trade show and BC Forest Safety Council’s Interior Safety Conference. 10 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

opments, Essential Evergreen, Jordco Enterprises, Ilnicki Developments Ltd., M.W. Sharke, Newco Logging, Rolston Lakeside Services, Trev’s Contracting and Tsi Del Del Enterprises. These contractors all took on students which they supervised and trained to become knowledgeable in operating individual pieces of logging equipment. On the Log Truck Driver program we had an intake of four students. Two students have graduated and are out driving under our mentorship program. Two more will be graduating shortly

and will be assigned to an experienced driver for the completion of the mentoring period. Again thanks to the following companies for their interest in our program and mentoring the students, D&T Bonner Enterprises, Tyler Yuill Trucking, Ken Ilnicki Developments Ltd. & RCL Contracting. A note of thanks must be passed on to Rocky Ashton of Rocky Forest Management Ltd., Gillian Watt of Holmwood Resources, Nancy Hesketh of the Interior Logging Association, Ray Trenholm and staff of TRU at Williams Lake and Kamloops for helping manage and keeping the administration on track. The success of these classes clearly shows that people are interested in joining the forest industry and—even in these difficult times—we have contractors stepping up to train new workers because they understand the importance of a well trained workforce. Now we just need Bill 13 revised so it can level the playing field between contractors and licensees. This will ensure contractor sustainability so our contractors can continue to create secure, well-paid jobs in their local communities and hire the students we’re training.


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Bill Sauer

North West Loggers Association’s MESSAGE

Fighting for our Future: Supporting the Trans Pacific Partnership

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heard Ed Fast, a member of parliament who recently served as the Minister for International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, speak in March about his recent accomplishments including the historic agreement of the Canada European Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) in principle and the signing of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). Both CETA and TPP are aimed at creating a more competitive Canadian economy by deepening Canada’s trade and investment ties in large, dynamic and fast-growing economies around the world. Fast iterated that Canada is long past the ‘drawers of water and hewers of wood’ category of trade in the global economy. In fact, Canada now ranks worldwide as fourth largest exporter of engineering services and first largest of mining services. That innovation and resourcefulness is also represented in our value-added forest industry. As we know in British Columbia, our resources are an important aspect of our economy. For all of us in the forest and wood products industries, expanding markets for what we do best can only benefit our futures. Our individual businesses will be able to attract new employees when we offer long term, profitable horizons. For example, with only one major primary breakdown facility west of Smithers, the forest industry in the Pacific Northwest has relied heavily on foreign markets. When the export markets are healthy, the harvest sector in our area is also busy. But when export markets are bad, our area is deathly quiet. Japan has tariffs of up to 10 percent on forestry and value-added wood products. Vietnam applies tariffs of up to 31 percent, Malaysia of up to 40 percent, Australia and New Zealand of up to 5 percent and Brunei of up to 20 percent. The TPP will eliminate tariffs on forestry and value-added wood products and

create new opportunities in key markets such as Japan, Malaysia and Vietnam. Under the TPP Agreement, Canada’s forestry and value-added wood products industry will be able to capitalize on the business opportunities created by the growing needs of the Japanese market, including products such as lumber, oriented strand board, worked coniferous and non-coniferous wood, builders’ joinery, plywood and veneer panels. Canada’s exports in this sector will also now have an advantage over competitors outside of the TPP region (for example, the European Union, Russia and China). By generating opportunities for Canadian forestry and value-added wood products, the TPP will create advantages for Canadian businesses and workers. There are always those that decry any—and in some cases every—new opportunity to find markets for Canada’s resources. ‘We will lose sovereignty,’ ‘jobs will be shipped offshore’ and other largely speculative and often ill-informed complaints fill the pages of some news services. For too many years, Canada relied heavily on one market—the US—and, as so many of us know from painful experience, the one basket approach doesn’t work well. The TPP will open up the potential purchasing power of over 800 million new customers. With those new customers, comes the equal potential for new value-added products that we may not have ever dreamed of to date—but may become the ‘next big thing.’ When Fast addressed concerns about the TPP, he explained “the Trans Pacific Partnership carries with it a six month termination clause.” In other words, if you don’t find benefit to nearly free trade with 11 more countries and all their potential consumers—one that doesn’t have to be re-negotiated and relitigated every few years—you can shake the sawdust from your jeans and ride off into the sunset. March headlines shouted “Chrystia

Freeland heralds ‘real breakthrough’ on softwood lumber negotiations.” Further quoting Minister Freeland, she states that “what we have committed to is to make significant, meaningful progress towards a deal—to have the structure, the key elements there a 100 days from now.” Again we know from history, that until the ink is dry on the signature line, US lumber companies will oppose the import of softwood, claiming Canadian companies have an unfair advantage with their preferential access to Crownowned lands with lower stumpage fees. But the TPP may also just represent that surety and continuity we have all been dreaming of. While International Trade Minister Chrystia Freeland signed the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal in a ceremony in New Zealand on February 3 of this year, that signature represents little more than an ‘agreement in principle’. The agreement may take up to two additional years to ratify and put into place. Two years that the forest and wood products industries can lobby their Members of Parliament and help them understand the contribution our industry makes to the revenue stream. This government has promised billions in infrastructure spending—with the TPP, we can not only help underwrite that promise, but our own successful futures as well. Finally, if you’re interested in learning more about the TTP, the government has some good, easy to understand information about it at international.gc.ca—just type TTP into the search engine once you get there.

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 13


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14 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016


Russ Taylor

Market REPORT

BC Coast Industry Competitiveness: Good News and Bad News

I

n assessing the BC coast’s delivered log and sawmill competitiveness, the evidence is very clear on some of the longer term trends. Since 1987, about 50 sawmills have closed, where 27 of these closures occurred since 2004. BC coast lumber production has plunged from 4.7 billion board feet in 1987 to 1.4 billion board feet in 2015. With less than 30 sawmills left in operation, one may conclude that the BC coast has been a graveyard of sawmills over the last 30 years. The good news is that all of the high cost mills have been closed. All of the remaining mills are survivors with better cost structures and increased output, where many have a reasonable chance of continuing on. Sawmills need ongoing capital spending to remain competitive and efficient and there is strong evidence of this occurring at some mills (such as in many Western Forest Products mills), but other mills still may be running on borrowed time. As a result, the future of the BC coast’s sawmilling industry will be tied to those mill owners that see a future and are able to further invest in, or innovate with, their mills. And equally important is having access to predicable supply and cost of sawlogs—this has been made more difficult with the increasing Asian (led by China) log export demand since 2009. WOOD MARKETS has been assessing the competitiveness of BC delivered log costs, sawmill costs and margins and other elements in comparison to other competing regions since 2000. WOOD MARKETS’ most recent biennial Global Timber / Sawmill / Lumber Cost Benchmarking Report was produced late last year and covers logging and sawmilling costs in 29 countries and regions on five continents. The report focuses only on structural lumber mills and includes detailed costs for two categories of mills: “average” and “top-quartile” mills, including the BC coast. To provide some perspective from this biennial report, various cost catego-

ries at “average” mills in 29 countries or regions were ranked: from 1 (best) to 29 (worst). The ranking for the BC coast was documented to show the position and trend in BC coast costs since 2002 and here is a summary of the results:

have been below average for North America and were negative in 2006 to 2010; despite this, it improved to reach its best ranking in 2014. The rankings only provide perspective relative to other countries. For example,

BC Coast “Average” Sawmill Ranking in Global Survey Category

2002

2008

2014

2010 to 2014 Rank Trends

Delivered Log Costs

29

11

15

FLAT

Sawmill Costs

29

12

23

FLAT to WORSENING

Lumber Revenue

7

15

22

WORSENING

Earnings (EBITDA)

19

19

16

FLAT to IMPROVING

Scale: 1 = BEST; 29 = WORST Source: WOOD MARKETS’ Global Cost Benchmarking Report (2015) The survey results show rankings only and many factors are in play. For example, currency exchange rate changes can increase or decrease the BC coast costs, and therefore the ranking is relative to other regions—regardless of any real cost changes. Other factors at work include changes in lumber prices in key markets, in ocean freight rates, in government policy, and other factors. So, what conclusions or trends can be extracted about the BC coast “competitiveness ranking” in relation to other sawmill regions that produce structural lumber from the Global Benchmarking Report since 2002? • Delivered Saw Log Costs: they are above the global average for “average” mills, but the overall trend has seen lower costs from 2002 to 2010, but they have been rising slightly (worsening) in the rankings since then. • Whitewood Sawmill Costs: they are above the global average for “average” mills, but the overall trend has seen a steady rise (worsening) in the rankings since 2008. • Lumber Revenue: this has been quite volatile in the rankings, but has generally been close to the global average but did rise (worsen) in 2014 to its highest rank. • Whitewood Sawmill Margins: they have been near the global average, but

with Europe’s lumber market being weak since 2012 and North America’s being better, European mills have slipped in the rankings while North American regions have improved. What is positive in the ranking trends is that delivered log costs have been heading in the right direction. Reductions in the delivered log costs on the BC coast between 2002 and 2010 have been significant in Canadian dollars per cubic metre despite some small reductions in the rankings. This is because there will always be countries or regions with lower log costs, such as in the BC Interior and the Prairies. While the trend in the ranking of sawmill margins at “average” BC coast mills have been improving, the actual earnings are still very low in Canadian dollars per cubic metre: the highest actual EBITDA earnings have not been higher than 5 per cent of lumber sales since 2000 in our surveys, with losses recorded in 2006 to 2010. This seems to tie into an erosion in the ranking of sawmill costs, where “average” BC coast sawmills still tend to have high costs with some mills less competitive. For the BC coast, it is important to realize that sawmill costs for processing larger old-growth timber (Continued to page 48)

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 15


Bjarne Nielsen

Safety REPORT

WorkSafeBC 2016 High Risk Strategy for Forestry Overview

T

he 2016 Forestry High Risk Strategy (FHRS) was developed by examining claims data and identifying work processes and activities to find out which had the highest potential for causing serious injury. It represents year three of a five-year strategic direction for prevention activities. The hope is that the Forestry High Risk Strategy will help WorkSafeBC inspections be as impactful as possible by focusing on those areas of timber harvesting which represent exceptional risk to workers. We expect that consistent and resolute application of the Forestry High Risk Strategy over time will result in a measurable reduction in injuries, serious injuries, and fatalities. Good news for the whole industry. Identified high-risk work activities Harvesting Phase Manual Falling

Mechanized Harvesting

Mech. Injury/ Area of Risk • Control of tree (falling cuts) • Risk assessment (windfall, danger tree, etc.) • Brushing

Log Transporting

Inspection Focus 1. Falling cuts 2. Danger tree and windfall assessment and plans 3. Unnecessary brushing practices 4. New faller training locations 1. Maintenance work plan and lockout 2. Three Point Contact procedures 3. Steep slope assessment plans 4. Site planning and layout

Maintenance work Getting off and on machinery Equipment – loss of stability Congestion

• • •

Struck by Logs Slips and Falls Congestion

1. 2. 3. 4.

Motor vehicle accidents Loading and unloading activities Maintenance Work MSI shoulder injuries Proper use and installation of Binders

1.

• • •

Cable Yarding Operations

typically fall into the four areas of timber harvesting as follows: • Manual Tree Falling • Mechanized Harvesting • Cable Yarding • Log Transportation Within these four areas, Forestry High Risk Strategy inspections will focus on the 11 classification units that have the highest rates of injury and serious injury. Primary Focus: • Cable or Hi-Lead Logging (703003) • Ground Skidding, Horse Logging, or Log Loading (703006) • Integrated Forest Management (703008) • Log Processing (703011) • Manual Tree Falling and Bucking (703013)

• • • • •

2. 3.

4. 5.

16 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

Clearing the turn Yarding angles Landing the log Site planning and layout Driving and Road Assessment Loading, off-loading and securing of load Best practices for maintenance work (lock out, access and egress) Cab Guards Binder use and installation

• Mechanized Tree Falling (703014) • Helicopter Logging (703019) • Log Hauling (732044) Secondary Focus (seasonal/ geographic considerations): • Brushing and Weeding or Tree Thinning or Spacing (703002) • Forest Fire Fighting (703005) • Tree Planting or Cone Picking (703016) The table below left, under Inspection Focus, indicates the harvesting activities, as part of the 2016 FHRS, the prevention officer must inspect and evaluate to meet the requirements of the Workers Compensation Act and the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation. Although silviculture operations are not identified as one of the four main areas of the Forestry High Risk Strategy, this segment of the industry does generate a high number of serious injuries. As a result, it’s included as a secondary (and seasonal) focus of the Forestry High Risk Strategy. Another focus, over and above the four main areas, is Emergency Response Planning (ERP). It was identified as a critical target area for the FHRS because of a number of serious ERP failures documented at forestry workplaces through incident investigations. WorkSafeBC has developed a Forestry Emergency Response Plan video for employers to use when developing and evaluating Emergency Response PlanFormatted Table ning (ERP). It’s called “Every Minute Counts: Emergency Response Planning in Forestry” and is available on our YouTube channel. Prevention officers are also expected to conduct a review of workplace accountabilities to ensure that all employers, prime contractors and owners are meeting their workplace responsibilities under Workers Compensation Act and Occupational Health and Safety Regulation. In addition, supervisors and workers responsibilities are also reviewed during inspections.


Prevention officers are also expected to conduct a review of workplace accountabilities to ensure that all employers, prime contractors and owners are meeting their workplace responsibilities under Workers Compensation Act and Occupational Health and Safety Regulation. In addition supervisors and workers responsibilities are also reviewed during inspections. Other Phase Silviculture

All Phases Emergency Response Plan

Integrated Responsibilities

Mech. Injury/Area of Risk

Motor Vehicle accidents Lack of adequate MSI risk assessment/Management Program Areas of Unmitigated High Risk • Lack of ERP or inadequate ERP/potential for delayed medical treatment with potential catastrophic consequences for the worker • Areas of High Risk Violations • Site Congestion • Planning/inadequate • Communication/inadequate • Management of Change/failure to consider • •

Inspection Focus

1. Planning and conducting operations 2. Driver training/policies 3. MSI Risk Inspection Focus 1. First aid assessment 2. Lack of ERP practice and testing 3. Helicopter access only daily plan 1. All levels of Management are accountable and responsibilities reviewed

This is just a brief overview of the 2016 Forestry High Risk Strategy. If you would like more information, please contact your local Prevention Officer for more information. Prevention Officers are also available to attend employer’s workplace andFormatted educateTable and consult further with regards to the 2016 Forestry High Risk Strategy. For additional information employers and workers can also access the WorkSafeBC website www. worksafebc.com and the Prevention Formatted: Indent: Left: 0.01 cm Information phone: 1-604-276-3100 or toll-free 1-888-621-7233.

Bjarne Nielsen is a Senior Regional Officer who focuses on the forest industry and works out of WorkSafeBC’s Courtenay office. He can be reached at 250-334-8733 or bjarne.nielsen@worksafebc.com. This is just a brief overview of the 2016 Forestry High Risk Strategy. If you would like more information, please contact your local Prevention Officer for more information. Prevention Officers are also available to attend employer’s workplace and educate and consult further with regards to the 2016 Forestry High Risk Strategy. For additional information employers and workers can also access the WorkSafeBC website www.worksafebc and the Prevention Information phone: 1-604-276-3100 or toll-free 1-888621-7233.

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 17


Steve Ross

Legal REPORT

BILL 13: What It Is & Why It Matters

Y

ou have all heard of Bill 13 and replaceable logging contracts. As our industry evolves, timber tenure consolidates into the hands of fewer licence holders, and the push for global competitiveness remains paramount, it is clear that Bill 13 contracts remain a cornerstone to viability in the contract logging community today. The Timber Harvesting Contract and Subcontract Regulation was introduced as “Bill 13” in 1991. When he introduced the bill that amended the Forest Act to create contract replaceability on June 21, 1991, the then Minister of Forests stated (Hansard): “The second purpose of this bill is to address logging contractors’ security in British Columbia. Independent contractors and subcontractors who harvest timber for larger forest companies are extremely important to British Columbia’s forest sector. The stability of many families and, indeed, many communities are dependent on contractors maintaining secure and fair contracts with the holders of timber rights in their vicinity. This amendment will enable us to improve the balance in these contractual relationships. It will also provide a quick and inexpensive system for resolving contract disputes. This will ensure security and fairness for all parties involved in timber harvesting in British Columbia.” It was clear that the intent of Bill 13 was to “level the playing field” between licence holders who have the exclusive right to harvest and contractors who actually do the work. Before 1991, many logging contracts were not even in writing and the security of work was minimal. To resolve these deficiencies, Bill 13 requires logging contracts to be in writing, to detail the amount of work they represent, and to provide a dispute resolution process of mediation and arbitration and a rate dispute procedure. Most significantly, Bill 13 introduced the concept of replaceability to contracts in order to make them comparable to the “evergreen” nature of forest tenure.

18 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

Subject to satisfactory performance by the contractor, the licence holder must offer a replacement contract on substantially the same terms and conditions prior to the expiry of the term of the contract. This key concept then provided contractors with some security that they had future work, subject to satisfactory performance, and as a result they could risk investing in equipment and training a secure workforce. Another key aspect of the 1991 Bill 13 was the provision of a rate test requiring that rates paid were competitive by industry standards and would permit a contractor operating in a reasonably efficient manner to earn a reasonable profit. This was important since the licence holders had the opportunity to profit through the market cycles, without having to pass profits along to the contract workforce. In 1996, Bill 13 made replaceable contracts more sustainable by requiring them to specify the amount of work to be performed in each year as a percentage of the work required to facilitate the operations of the licence holder over the cut control period. Both license holders and contractors have obligations under replaceable contracts. Licence holders must allocate work to their replaceable contractors and the contractors must have the equipment and manpower available, when required, to perform that work. Contractors cannot stop work if they end up in a rate dispute, but rather must continue to work under provisional rates equal to the rates in effect for prior services unless those provisional rates are varied by an arbitrator. Licence holders must also allocate work to their replaceable contractors and negotiate rates for that work in good faith. They cannot require their contractors to bid or submit rates for work, then reject those rates and allocate the work to other contractors who offer lower rates. In 2004, Bill 13 changed its rate test to require “fair market rates”, which do not allow for consideration of a contractor’s efficiency or costs and therefore make

their operations less financially stable and secure. Since the change, rates have deteriorated across BC and many contractors have sought insolvency protection or have simply left the industry as a result of an inability to secure sustainable rates. Given that over a decade has passed since implementation of the fair market rate test, perhaps it is time to review the effectiveness of the Regulation. In order to provide harvesting services, contractors must make significant personal investments in equipment, safety training and infrastructure, as well as making commitments to people in communities through the provision of employment. With so few opportunities to market their services as a result of the licence holder tenure consolidation however, Bill 13 provides an important measure of security that allows the contractor to maintain its local workforce and pay for equipment purchased. From a community perspective, the original intent of Bill 13 was to balance the interests of rural community independent contractors and the major licence holders who singularly control the right to harvest and when. In an environment where demand for wood products is growing, but at the same time the industry is generally struggling to attract workers and reinvest to remain competitive, it makes sense that tenure holders who employ Bill 13 contractors would see the obvious benefits of a secure, stable and safety trained contractor workforce and equipment complement to support their supply chain. And for communities, the knowledge that local logging contractors who support the community and employ local people have security of work allows for a stable rural economy. Seems like a win-win for everyone. Stephen Ross is a Partner at Miller Thomson LLP and practises in the areas of commercial litigation, forestry law, and insolvency law. He can be reached at 604.643.1205 or sross@millerthomson.com.


WE BUILD RELIABILITY

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WILLIAMs LAkE 4700 Collier Place Williams Lake, B.C. V2G 5E9

VErnon 1600 Kosmina Road Vernon, B.C. V1T 8T2

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PrInCE GEorGE 4759 Continental Way Prince George, B.C. V2N 5S5

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tErrACE 3830 Sharples Road Terrace, B.C. V8G 5P8

CrAnBrook 2401 Cranbrook Street, North Cranbrook, B.C. V1C 3T3

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 19


Chris Duncan

Business MATTERS

Incentive Programs: Innovation May Not Be as Costly as You Think

H

ow much time have you spent in the shop, trying to build the next best thing to harvest or haul logs cheaper or faster? How many times have you come up with an innovative concept, but did not implement it because of development costs or fears that innovations would negatively impact your rates? In an industry focused on managing costs to improve profitability, many companies have learned to just stick to the tried and tested ways. However, there are financial incentive programs to help offset the costs of innovation you may be unaware of.

Scientific Research & Experimental Development (SR&ED) Every year the federal government awards approximately $4 billion to Ca-

nadian companies making Scientific Research & Experimental Development (SR&ED) claims. The SR&ED program (“shred”) is a great tax credit incentive for businesses that are actively working on innovations within Canada. Even a minimal improvement to an existing product or process can qualify for the credit, however the SR&ED program can also be complicated and confusing. As a result, many potential refunds and tax credits for qualifying innovations have gone unclaimed simply due to low levels of awareness of the program, or potential claimants being unsure of what qualifies or how to properly submit a claim. To be eligible for a SR&ED claim, your innovation must meet the following five criteria:

1. Was there a scientific or a technological uncertainty—an uncertainty that could not be removed by standard practice? 2. Did the effort involve formulating hypotheses specifically aimed at reducing or eliminating that uncertainty? 3. Was the adopted procedure consistent with the total discipline of the scientific method, including formulating, testing, and modify ing the hypotheses? 4. Did the process result in a scientific or a technological advancement? 5. Was a record of the hypotheses tested and the results kept as the work progressed? Questions 2 and 3 are probably the most intimidating since most industrial R&D does not formally structure their experimental development with the formulation of a hypothesis. Such formalization exists primarily in research laboratories and academic research environments. Canadian controlled private corporations can receive a federal refundable credit of 35 per cent of the qualifying

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SR&ED expenses, up to a maximum of $3 million in costs. For costs in excess of $3 million there are also non-refundable credits available. Capital costs are no longer eligible for SR&ED claims. In addition to the federal refundable credits, BC offers a provincial refundable credit of 35 per cent of the qualifying SR&ED expenses, up to a maximum of $3 million in costs. A SR&ED claim involves filing a number of information forms with Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) within 18 months of your fiscal year end and then going through a one-hour interview for first-time claimants.

Grants / Partnerships

There are a variety of grants available to companies with new innovative ideas. Grants are available for most stages of the design process through various government agencies and the private sector. These grants can cover a range of costs associated with research into innovation including consulting expenses, trial testing, wages and other costs. One such federal program is the Industrial Research Assistance Program

which is designed to help companies develop, adopt and adapt technology into competitive products or services for the market place. The program provides advisory services and funding to companies working on innovative projects. Another way to share the risks and costs of innovating is by finding a partner to collaborate with. Post-secondary institutes are a great place to find partners of innovation. Many research interns are looking for new exciting ideas to work on while fulfilling their education requirements. Partnering with an educational institute can also open the innovation up to additional sources of funding only available to research projects such as the Collaborative Research and Development grants offered by the National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).

Export Development Canada (EDC)

EDC works with Canadian companies and their banks to help reduce financial risk associated with selling goods or services outside of Canada. They provide insurance and financial services, bonding products and small

business solutions to Canadian exporters. Many of EDC’s small business solutions are designed to help free up working capital so Canadian companies can grow their businesses.

What Other Incentives Does our Existing Tax System Offer to Promote Innovation?

Besides the SR&ED programs mentioned earlier in the article, most costs related to the development and implementation of new innovations are deductible for tax purposes in the year they incur. Innovation is something every industry needs to be able to maintain profitability in a global market. Businesses should focus on the benefits of implementing their innovations with the added knowledge that there are programs and incentives to help them in their endeavors to innovate. Chris Duncan, CPA, CA is a Forestry Services Business Advisor for MNP LLP. He can be reached at 250.748.3761 or chris.duncan@mnp.ca.

Emergency response plans save lives Practice your ERP today. Every minute counts.

Don’t wait for a real emergency to find out if your response plan works. View the emergency response plan video at worksafebc.com/forestry. Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 21


22 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016


ILA 58th Annual Conference and Trade Show: Be the Change for Forest Safety By Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations

I

n advance of this year’s ILA conference, I’m excited to provide you an update on the Ministry’s activities, especially in light of the 2016 Budget—the fourth balanced budget in a row. As part of Balanced Budget 2016, government is committing $75 million over the next three years for the Rural Dividend. The allocation for 2016/17 is $25 million. Funds will be directed to assist communities with populations of 25,000 or fewer, to assist in reinvigorating and diversifying their economies. As many ILA, TLA, and NWLA member companies are key economic contributors to rural communities, I hope the associations help us spread the word about this program and how to apply. Details are online at www.gov.bc.ca/ruraldividend. Another key initiative announced as part of Balanced Budget 2016, is the formation of the new Forest Enhancement Society of BC. Backed by $85 million, the new society will focus on wildfire fire risk reduction to complement the ministry’s existing forest stewardship programs and world-class wildfire suppression activities. The Forest Enhancement Society of BC will help meet the goal of a sustainable and reliable timber supply under the Forest Sector Competitiveness Strategy, and align with the ministry’s other programs designed to enhance BC’s forests, most notably the Strategic Wildfire Prevention Initiative, Forests for Tomorrow, Land Based Investment Strategy and integrated silviculture strategies. Including the $10 million announced as part of Budget 2016, this government has now committed $78 million to the Strategic Wildfire Prevention Initiative since 2004. As of December 2015, over 288 community wildfire protection plans have been completed and almost 80,000 hectares of land in and around communities that face a significant wildfire risk have been treated. Budget 2016 also saw an uplift of $12

million to the Ministry’s land-based investment strategy, with the majority of the funding targeted to Forests for Tomorrow. Since 2005, we’ve invested over $400 million in Forests for Tomorrow, and have surveyed approximately 1.5 million hectares in mountain pine beetle affected areas and planted more than 175 million seedlings on over 128,000 hectares. The new Forest Enhancement Society will concentrate its activities in four areas: • Wildfire risk reduction: including fuel management activities such as thinning, pruning and removing woody debris from forests (especially those impacted by the mountain pine beetle infestation). The recently updated Provincial Strategic Threat Analyis will provide guidance for potential treatments. • Forest rehabilitation: clearing stands damaged by wildfire (or at high risk from wildfire) and reforesting them. • Wildlife habitat restoration: designing fuel management and forest rehabilitation activities to promote desired wildlife habitat attributes. • FireSmart program: raising awareness among local governments and rural property owners about steps they can take to protect their homes and properties from wildfire. A benefit of the Society’s activities will be that local forest product businesses— mills, wood bioenergy, and value-added manufacturing facilities—will have opportunities to purchase the resulting timber, roadside debris and other forest fibre at market prices. This will help maintain and support jobs in rural areas, including logging jobs. The society’s inaugural board of directors consists of five people with ex-

tensive experience in BC’s forest sector, and includes: Wayne Clogg, retired vice-president, West Fraser; Chief Derek Orr, McLeod Lake Indian Band; Jim Snetsinger, retired BC chief forester; and Dave Peterson and Robert Turner, both Assistant Deputy Ministers with the Ministry. The society will develop work plans, and consult with communities, stakeholders and industry, on using allocated resources in the most efficient way possible to meet the overall objectives of healthy, resilient forests for future generations to enjoy. Given the theme of your convention is “Be the Change for Forest Safety,” and the partnership this year with the BC Forest Safety Council and concurrent Interior Safety Conference, I’d be remiss if I didn’t remind you to be safe in the woods. The Interior Logging Association has always played an important role in trying to recruit for the next generation of loggers. In attracting young people to forestry, we all need to do our part to ensure that we’re creating a safe work environment. Best wishes for a successful convention!

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 23


2016 CO-SPONSORS Axis Insurance Managers BC Forest Safety Council Brutus Truck Bodies Canadian Western Bank Capri Insurance Services Checkmate Fire Prevention Inc. Cookson Motors Ltd. Cummins Western Canada Dynamic Capital Finning (Canada) Fountain Tire Gorman Bros. Lumber Ltd. Great West Equipment Gudeit Bros. Contracting Ltd. Inland Kenworth IRL International Truck Centres Ltd. Johnstone's Benefits Kineshanko Logging Ltd. Logging & Sawmilling Journal Morfco Supplies Ltd. Nor-Mar Industries Ltd. Parker Pacific Profab Manufacturing Ltd. Quadco Equipment Inc. R.J. Schunter Contracting Ltd. R. James Western Star Freightliner Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers SMS Equipment Inc. Southstar Equipment Ltd. Sovereign General Insurance Company Stamer Logging Ltd. Supply Post Newspaper Tolko Industries Ltd. Wajax Equipment Waratah Forestry Canada Western Financial Group Weyerhaeuser Woodland Equipment Inc. WorkSafeBC

24 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

Interior Logging Association 58th Annual Conference & Trade Show combined with The 2nd Annual Interior Safety Conference “Be the Change for Forestry Safety”

May 5th, 6th & 7th, 2016 Vernon, BC HOST HOTEL:

Vernon Atrium Hotel & Conference Centre 3914 - 32nd Street Vernon, BC, V1T 1P1 Tel: 250-545-3385 E-mail: atrium@rpbhotels.com

EVENTS:

May 6th & 7th: Inside & Outside Displays Kal Tire Place

May 5th: Thursday Evening, Meet & Greet May 6th: Friday Luncheon, Dinner & Dance May 7th: Interior Safety Conference Vernon Atrium Hotel & Conference Centre

For registration and further information, contact the ILA office. Tel: 1-250-503-2199 E-mail: info@interiorlogging.org For the Interior Safety Conference, contact Gerard Messier Tel: 1-877-741-1060 E-mail: messier@bcforestsafe.org


AGENDA & EVENTS PRICING

TICKET & DISPLAY REGISTRATION

THURSDAY, MAY 5, 2016

Description

TRUCK LOGGERS ASSOCIATION DIRECTOR’S MEETING 9:00 am – 3:00 pm Vernon Atrium Hotel (Ballroom III, Mezzanine Floor) ILA DIRECTOR’S MEETING 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm Vernon Atrium Hotel (Room #130) MEET & GREET $50.00 6:00 pm - 10:00 pm Vernon Atrium Hotel

Price Subtotal

MEET & GREET

X $50.00

BREAKFAST

X $25.00

ILA AGM (MEMBERS ONLY)

N/C

FRIDAY LUNCHEON

X $50.00

WESTERN NIGHT DINNER & DANCE

X $55.00

N/C

Display Space Requested & Costs:

FRIDAY, MAY 6, 2016

10’ X 10’ INSIDE DISPLAY

X $800.00 = $

15’ X 30’ OUTSIDE DISPLAY

X $500.00 = $ Order Sub-total:

BREAKFAST $25.00 7:30 am – 9:30 am Vernon Atrium Hotel INSIDE & OUTSIDE DISPLAYS 9:30 am – 4:30 pm Kal Tire Place

Qty.

(Tax #107510125) 5% GST: Total: N/C

ILA ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING N/C 8:30 – 10:00 am (ILA Members Only) Vernon Atrium Hotel ASSOCIATION’S MEETING 10:30 -11:30 am Vernon Atrium Hotel ILA, TLA and NWLA meet with Honourable Steve Thomson, Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations FRIDAY LUNCHEON $50.00 11:30 am -1:30 pm Vernon Atrium Hotel Guest Speaker: HONOURABLE STEVE THOMSON, Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations WESTERN NIGHT DINNER & DANCE $55.00 FEATURING LEE DINWOODIE & BAND 6:00 pm to 12:00 am Vernon Atrium Hotel

PAYMENT MAY BE PAID BY VISA, MASTERCARD, AMERICAN EXPRESS OR CHEQUE Credit Card No: Expiry Date: E-mail address for receipt:

Exhibitors must be Registered by April 29th. Company Name Contact Address City

Province

Postal Code

Phone

Name Tags: (please print neatly)

SATURDAY MAY 7, 2016 INSIDE & OUTSIDE DISPLAYS 9:30 am – 4:30 pm Kal Tire Place

N/C

INTERIOR SAFETY CONFERENCE FREE 8:00 am – 4:30 pm Vernon Atrium Hotel & Conference Centre Pre-Registration Online Required (see page 49 for agenda details)

FOR FREE REGISTRATION AND FURTHER INFORMATION ON THE SAFETY CONFERENCE: http://www.bcforestsafe.org/ISC2016

REGISTRATION INFORMATION MAIL/FAX OR EMAIL TO:

INTERIOR LOGGING ASSOCIATION Attention: Nancy Hesketh 3204 – 39th Ave., Vernon, BC, V1T 3C8 Phone: 250-503-2199 Fax: 250-503-2250 Email: nancy@interiorlogging.org

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 25


Photo: Nanaimo Community Archives

History and Vision: A Historical Presidency for Jacqui Beban

By Hans Peter Meyer

Francis “Frank” Beban, Jacqui Beban’s great grandfather, started as a “mule doctor” in the early 1900s in Nanaimo and built a forestry legacy that continues today.

J

acqui Beban is the TLA’s first female president. She’s had various roles and responsibilities in the 22 years that she has been in the industry. She’s passionate about BC’s coastal forest industry. She’s proud of how the industry has changed and grown. And she’s confident that by “doing the right thing” this industry can meet the needs of a wide range of interests. For Beban, doing the right thing means listening, learning and building relationships. That means better returns for contractors, licensees and First Nations communities. It also means better returns for those who don’t—yet— know the value this industry continues to bring to their communities and to BC in general.

Deep Roots

Family is one of the first things that comes up when talking about Jacqui Beban. On the one side, the Beban family is a four generation dynasty of loggers, all with larger-than-life personalities. Francis “Frank” Beban started as a “mule doctor” in the early 1900s. By 1926, he’d turned a sideline of supplying mines with timber into a major part of Nanaimo’s industrial development.

26 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

The house and ranch he built stands as a lasting legacy to the City of Nanaimo, providing the grounds for a host of civic facilities that are active 60 years after his death. His son, John “Jack” Beban, had logging operations stretching from Buckley Bay to the mid-coast in the 1950s. Jack’s son, the younger Frank Beban, was by the 1980s operating five camps between Vancouver Island, the mid-coast, and what was then the Queen Charlotte Islands, employing over 250 people. As TLA Immediate Past President Don Banasky says, “As a kid in Nanaimo, everyone’s dad or grandpa worked for the Beban family.” On the other side of the family tree are the Fedjes. Olaf Fedje arrived on the coast from the Prairies during the depression in the 1930s and “didn’t even know what a tree looked like,” says his wife Bea. That didn’t stop him from mastering the crosscut saw, then operating—and selling and servicing—a new piece of forestry technology, the chainsaw. In time, the Fedje & Gundarsen outfit became the largest falling contractor on the BC coast. When Frank Beban and Dolores Fedje tied the knot, they brought these logging families together

and produced a family of four girls, Jacqui Beban being the youngest.

Big Boots

Family history can be an inspiration. It can also cast a long shadow. Jacqui is not a larger-than-life character like either of the Franks or Jack before her. Few saw the Fedje or Beban drive for success in the younger Jacqui Beban. Her mother tells a story from when Jacqui was 12 years old. It was a time of uncertainty about the future of Frank Beban Logging, shortly after Frank’s untimely death. Dolores wondered aloud to a friend, “Which of my girls is going to run the company?” Her friend had no doubts. “Jacqui,” she replied, with emphasis. “That comment stuck in the back of my mind,” says Dolores Beban. It wasn’t a surprise to her when, at age 24, Jacqui got serious about the family business. Seeing her daughter now step into the TLA presidency, Dolores says, “You know, my friend was right.”

Willingness to Learn to Change

Jacqui says her decision to get serious was her “opportunity to grow up.” It wasn’t easy. Learning how to succeed in


All photos submitted by the Beban family

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Frank Beban, Jacqui Beban’s father, brought his children to his logging camps in the summers. That’s where Jacqui first learned about the forest industry. logging was a challenge. Jacqui praises the teams of support at Frank Beban Logging, Nootka Sound Timber and in the TLA who have helped her learn how to become a leader. Those who’ve worked with her over the years turn the credit back to her. “She brings something new to the TLA leadership,” says Matt Wealick, a TLA Director. “It’s not just a different perspective; it’s a willingness to look for guidance, even if it’s outside her comfort zone.” Wealick says Jacqui’s determination to learn is what makes her an important leader for the TLA and the industry today. She and her family have experienced significant personal and business impacts from changes to the industry in the past 30 years. Yet her response is to be open—to ask ques-

tions, to learn, to put the hurt of the past behind her. To build relationships that look to the future. “We need to find our common interest in this resource,” she says. “That’s bigger than our differences. Standing together, we can protect the forest, the working forest, and the communities who depend on forest industry jobs.” “She’s always asking questions,” Wealick says, “And she’s got the knowledge, experience, and willingness to share her perspective.” As Don Banasky puts it, “We’re an industry that’s going through change. We need to change our thinking. We’re doing that, and Jacqui is a big part of that. It’s exciting!” David Elstone, Executive Director of the TLA, adds that while Jacqui may “walk quietly, when she says something, you want to listen.”

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As President, Jacqui Beban has two years to make a mark on the TLA and on BC’s coastal forest industry. Her priorities start with working on behalf of TLA members, particularly with the Forest Service Providers Protection Act and Fund. “The TLA has done a lot of work on this,” she says. “We need to ensure there is an ongoing funding mechanism in place to protect contractors.” She’s also determined that the TLA continue to push for contractor sustainability. “People need to be able to make a living. Contractors need to be getting paid a fair rate so they can pay good wages, pay their bills, invest in the future of their companies, and continue to support the communities that rely on them.” Moving ahead, Beban notes that improving relationships between contractors and licensees is critical. She’s also cognizant of the impact on contactors of the softwood lumber agreement, the health of the global economy and, particularly, the challenge of protecting the working forest. “This is what makes our industry sustainable,” she says, “but no one wants logging in their backyard. That’s an issue in which the TLA can play a strong role and in which we all have to play a role.” In the past the industry has too easily buckled when faced with threats, Beban says. Her response: build the relationships, find the common ground. She recognizes that the forest resource is big enough to serve many interests, if we work together and stand as one. Elstone agrees. “We can’t operate in isolation. Building relationships now will help when we come to those times when we need to be in collaboration.” “We can’t afford to be divided,” Beban agrees. “If it’s happening to someone else somewhere else, it’s coming to me at some point. Let’s all work together and stand up for ourselves.”

Passion For Place, Passion For The Industry

Jacqui Beban’s roots are deep on Vancouver Island and she’s a champion for protecting its natural beauty. As an active logger she’s also a champion for an industry that’s matured, one that practices the most sustainable forestry on the planet. “I don’t want to see the Island or our coastal beauty destroyed. I think

we can have everything: parks, protected areas for people to enjoy, and also a healthy working forest.” Getting this message out and making it real will test Beban’s strengths. David Elstone says one of those strengths is her passion for this industry and doing what is necessary to make it sustainable. Don Banasky lauds the unique perspective she brings to the issues. Matt Wealick praises her willingness to learn. In sum, Jacqui Beban, the child of historic Island logging families and attitudes, brings a

All photos submitted by the Beban family

Priorities and Challenges

Jacqui at a logging camp on Lyell island in 1982.

Jacqui with her maternal grandfather, Olaf Fedje who co-owned Fedje & Gundarsen, the largest falling contractor on the coast at one time.

Indiana, Jacqui’s dog that recently passed away, had taken more helicopter rides than most people! fresh approach to the complexity of today’s BC coastal forest resource. Characteristically, Beban downplays the novelty of her approach. “It’s really just about opening up communications,” she says. Even where it’s difficult—and she acknowledges that she’s stumped

at times—it begins with dialogue and “treating each other with respect. We have a lot of common ground. Where we’re not aligned, we need to find a way to work together in a respectful way, so we can all benefit from our industry.”

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All photos in this article are by Brian Dennehy Photography.

Round-Up: The 73rd Annual Truck Loggers Association Convention & Trade Show TLA Editorial

Premier Christy Clark, a stalwart supporter of the forest industry, gave an energizing speech where she thanked the forest industry for both its major role in the building of BC and its continued, meaningful contribution today.

T

he TLA’s 73rd Annual Convention and Trade Show started with a bang this year with our best-ever attendance for our skill development sessions on the first day. Our theme, “Adapting to Steep Change” was addressed from the technical perspective with three informative sessions from people working on-the-ground in forestry. Industry suppliers talked about innovation, licensees and consultants talked about the challenges of operating on steep slopes and equipment operators rounded out the day talking about the machines they use on steep slopes. The audience was rapt and people were clearly taking notes to bring back to their businesses. Some of the key messages we heard included: • Winch assist technology in itself is not a safety device. • The rest of the world is not as heavily regulated as we are here.

• Safety regulations must align with steep slope practices. • Triggers to invest include improved relationships with major customers and sharing of the risk to become more familiar with the technology. • The coastal forestry “pie” must be shared and collaboration is a must in order to embrace technology. • The steep slope technology is not for any operator and it takes many hours in the seat to learn to run it safely and efficiently. • The BC coast operating conditions are different from New Zealand. At lunch on Wednesday, the keynote speaker, Wiremu Edmonds, gave a brilliant and inspiring presentation about “standing in the gap” when it comes to safety. Whether it is something as innate as machismo or “that is always the way it was done” type thinking, it takes cour-

age to stand up and say, “No, that is not safe.” Unfortunately that did not happen in the story Wiremu told of how his eldest son died at a logging operation in New Zealand. Since that day, Wiremu and his wife have dedicated themselves to telling their heartfelt story and changing the minds of forest workers across the globe. It was something to see even the biggest, toughest logger in the room, red-eyed with emotion from Wiremu’s powerful story. In the final session on Wednesday, we were honoured to co-host the “Embracing Change in First Nations Relationships,” panel with the BC First Nations Forestry Council. The four panel speakers were knowledgeable in different aspects of Aboriginal control of and involvement in the forest industry and provided insight into relationship building and partnership development.

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 31


The session was well received on the day and we have an article on page 50 of this issue that talks to each speaker and goes a bit more in-depth on what they said at the convention. First thing Thursday morning, a landmark moment occurred for the TLA. The membership elected their first female president, Jacqui Beban, during the TLA’s annual general meeting. Beban, who has sat on the TLA board since 2006 and spent the last two years serving as Vice President, was honoured and said as much at the AGM when she thanked the membership for their support and trust. There is a wonderful article on page 26 of this issue that profiles Beban—reflecting on her family’s history in the industry and what she hopes to achieve during her presidency.

Another influential woman presided over luncheon on Thursday. Premier Christy Clark honoured the long-standing tradition of hosting the Premier’s Luncheon at the TLA convention. Clark, a stalwart supporter of the forest industry, gave an energizing speech where she thanked the forest industry for both its major role in the building of BC and its continued, meaningful contribution today—both in GDP contributions and job creation—and announced $250,000 worth of funding for coastal timber harvesting contractors to assist in training

Premier Christy Clark welcomed Jacqui Beban as a fellow leader during the Leaders’ Luncheon. 32 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

needs and a further funding commitment with the same objective through BC – Canada Job Grant program for the fiscal year ahead. Clark also congratulated the TLA on electing their first female president and welcomed Jacqui Beban as a fellow leader. This year, the Minister of Forest Breakfast was reinvigorated with a new structure and new technology. Tracey Russell of Inland Group had a ‘fireside chat’ with Minister Thomson on stage. Russell asked the Minister questions submitted by TLA members about topics critical to logging contractors such as, “In what ways can your Ministry help to promote a more positive and collaborative relationship between contractors and the major licence holders both on the BC coast and in the Interior?” During this time with Minister Thomson, Russell also polled the audience so Minister Thomson could hear from contractors in real-time and he heard loud and clear from contractors on several fronts. See the polling results incorporated into “A Path to Mutual Successful Change: Contractor Sustainability & Industry Competitiveness” on page 44. Minister Thomson also congratulated the 19 recipients of TLA forestry and heavy duty equipment operator scholarships. This year $37,500 was


awarded to students from BCIT, UBC and VIU. These students are the forestry workers of tomorrow and each year the thank-you letters we receive let us know what a big difference this funding makes in these students lives. As

always, our thanks goes out to the TLA members who donate generously to the live and silent auctions and bring their cheque books to both auctions during Suppliers’ Night! The informational sessions on Thursday

Wiremu Edmond’s “Stand In The Gap” presentation moved many in the room to tears.

and Friday took a different angle on the “Adapting to Steep Change” theme by addressing the steep change that contractors, and the forest industry as a whole, are experiencing in BC. The first session discussed the BC government’s competitiveness strategy which dovetailed nicely with the afternoon session’s focus on the hurdles industry needs to clear to achieve global competitiveness from an industry standpoint. In the first Friday sesssion, FPInnovations listed the top ten issues/concerns identified by contractors and licensees

David Elstone asked some hard questions over the course of the convention. Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 33


34 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016


Minister Thomson once again congratulated and posed for photos with the 19 TLA scholarship recipients. This year the TLA dispersed $37,500 to forestry and heavy equipment operator students. that could improve contractor sustainability and company competitiveness if addressed. This list came out of a workshop run as part of the TLA/CFPA Innovation Initiative Project. (See this top ten list bottom right.) The following presentation, in that same session, PNL Consulting brought critical information to the table regarding technical innovation and coastal contractor

sustainability. As per the TimberTracks preliminary data, profitability trendlines indicate margins are decreasing for contractors while major tenure holders have seen their profitability rise. (See the graph below.) Overall, we learned that change will be expensive and contractors need to know they will earn a fair return on their investment before they take the plunge.

Sustainable EBITA Trendlines

The final Friday session saw contractors and licensees sit down together in a panel session to provide insight and feedback on how contractor sustainability and industry competitiveness interact. Read the article, “A Path to Mutual Successful Change: Contractor Sustainability & Industry Competitiveness� on page 44 for a summary of what both contractors and licensees

Top Ten Issues Facing Contractors and Licensees

Graph: TimberTracks, PNL Consulting Ltd.

1. Recruitment and training of forestry workers 2. Strengthen relationships between contractors and forest companies 3. Sharing the risks, costs and benefits of innovation 4. More collaborative approaches to planning 5. Mechanized operation on steep slopes 6. Improved transportation systems 7. Better communication of research results to contractors 8. Sustainable supply and access to economic fibre 9. Improve operational efficiency 10. Keep focused on improving safety

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 35


The TLA board is made up of 17 directors, most of who run small to mid-sized companies based in BC’s rural, coastal communities. They create jobs and give communities long-term security. TLA Board for 2016: (left to right, back row) Tim Lloyd, Brian Mulvihill, Ted Beutler, George Lambert, Clint Parcher, Howie McKamey, Dave McNaught, Carl Sweet, Mark Ponting, Adam Wunderlich, Matt Wealick (front row) Barry Simpson, Doug Sladey, Don Banasky (Immediate Past President), Jacqui Beban (President), Mike Richardson (Vice President), David Elstone (Executive Director), Adam Pruss had to say about “A Path to Mutual Successful Change” in light of concerns regarding contractor sustainability and industry competitiveness. Looking back at the more social aspects of the convention, the Ladies Luncheon this year hosted Nicole Oliver—a successful, Vancouver-based voice actor who works in cartoons, movies and video games. This year, the participants raised over $8,000 for the BC Children’s Hospital Foundation. That is a record high since 2008! Thank you to all the women who participated in this long-standing tradition.

Big crowds danced the night away at The Loggers Banquet & Ball on Thursday night and the It’s a Wrap! After Party on Friday night. March Hare, the live band performing at the The Loggers Banquet & Ball did a fantastic job of covering every hit from 1960 onwards! And the It’s a Wrap! After Party offered multicolored hula-hoops and a David Bowie tribute at the end of the night. This year’s trade show was a success once again! We had the bigger show that the extra space at the Westin Bayshore permits and strong attendance on both days. Suppliers’ Night on Friday was

Mayor of Campbell River, Andy Adams (far left) realizes the importance of forestry in his community. Campbell River is home to more that 75 TLA member companies. 36 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

packed as people networked, did business and caught up with old friends. This year we raised at total of $74,315 for the TLA Forestry Education Fund which will go toward student scholarships and forestry education programs. Once again, we earned excellent media coverage during the convention. Jacqui Beban’s becoming the first female president caught the media’s imagination and Beban spoke on several radio news programs including CBC Radio One, 2DayFM Radio in Campbell River and C-FAX 1070. She was also profiled in Nanaimo Daily News, Business Examiner - Vancouver Island and The Toronto Star. Business in Vancouver covered the contractor sustainability angle of steep slope logging in their article, “Timber supply crunch drives loggers to more dangerous terrain.” Finally, one of our scholarship winners, Linden Feniak, was featured in The Coast Reporter. The convention is always a great opportunity to get our message out and this year was no exception. Next year the convention will be in Vancouver again at the Westin Bayshore on January 18-20, 2017. We hope to see you there! See more of this year’s convention images on page 62.


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First Nations & Forestry: Working in Industry Today By Ian MacNeill

O

ver the past 30 years Gerry Merkel has put a lot of effort into encouraging young Canadians from First Nations to look to the woods as a career option—it’s good for the land and it’s good for the people. “I believe the standard and care of the land has improved significantly now that so many Aboriginals are involved in the process,” says Merkel, president and CEO of the Tahltan Nation Development Corporation and one of Canada’s first aboriginal registered forest professionals. Today, an increasing number of young people from First Nations are finding that working in the forest not only provides them with good incomes, but reconnects them with their cultural heritage and values. For thousands of years the forest was not only home to Canada’s Aboriginal peoples, but a hunting ground and place of immense spiritual

and ceremonial value. Its importance in sustaining communities helped develop an approach to land use that was thousands of years ahead of its time. As an editorial about the values Canada’s Aboriginal people bring to forestry in the online publication Cultural Survival put it, “practices emanating from this belief embody respect for the elders and embrace freedom of choice and strong relationships within the family and community.” Aboriginals who work in the forest today, whether it be as loggers, foresters or policy makers, are bringing this ancient cultural land-use ethic to work with them every day and making a difference—a difference their communities are recognizing and acknowledging. “It is really great when the elders look at you and say ‘good work,’” says Merkel. In this issue of Truck LoggerBC we would like to acknowledge a few of them

as well. They represent a cross-section of ages and occupations, but all are part of the future of Aboriginal forestry in British Columbia, and they hope others will join them as well.

Julius Leo, 21, Lil’Wat First Nation, Mt. Currie

Julius Leo wanted to be a welder but fate intervened when the welding course was full. Instead he attended a 15-day basic logging skills boot camp run by the College of the Rockies. “I always liked the idea of working outdoors and that’s what logging is all about,” says Leo, a member of the Lil’Wat Nation in the Mt. Currie area. It was hard at first, he admits, but like most things it got easier as time went by and he honed his skills. Upon graduating from the course he immediately got a job with Lil’Wat Forestry

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Ventures. “I love it,” he says. “I love working outside, getting to know what’s around me in the environment, learning to read and understand it, all the people I meet. It keeps me in shape and I get to stand on the top of mountains and look across the world.” A couple of other bonuses include “getting away from technology” and “better pay than a fast-food restaurant!” He says he has no idea where the business will take him in the long run, but intends to stick with it—opportunities are already on the horizon. He’s scheduled to take an assistant silviculture supervisor course this year which will teach him about surveying and give him a better understanding of the land and how it’s used. If anything, he says, he’d like to have some more company in the woods and says he’s always trying to convince oth-

ers to take the course. “There are lots of opportunities to work, here and other places,” he says.

Marina Rayner, 33, Huu-ay-aht First Nation, Parksville

Taking up a career in forestry didn’t just allow Marina Rayner, 33, of Parksville to achieve her goals of getting out from behind the desk and working with nature, it allowed her to reconnect with her people, the Huu-ay-aht First Nation. “I grew up in places like Parksville, which are the opposite side of the island from our traditional territory at Bamfield,” she explains. “Now I’m working for Meridian Forest Services, a TLA member company, which contracts with HFN Forestry, the forestry arm of the Huu-ay-aht group of businesses. I feel I am more connected to my heritage because I’m more involved in the Nation

and have a higher investment in how the land is treated.” It almost didn’t happen. Rayner originally attended the University of Vancouver Island in Nanaimo in pursuit of a business degree, but a chance elective changed the course of her life. “I convinced the forestry department to let me take botany and my love of forestry just grew from there,” she says. Her subsequent experiences disproved the notion that forestry is just for men. “During the summer I worked for both Island Timberlands and Western Forest Products, and in both cases the number of females outnumbered the males,” she reports. “I think more young women are branching out and trying new things, and I can’t think of any job in forestry that women can’t do. I mean I’ve never heard of a woman faller, but that doesn’t mean it hasn’t happened, or

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to operate an excavator and he’s never looked back. Although there’s a learning curve when it comes to operating a big machine—and there was plenty of pressure because he learned on the job—eventually you get so comfortable with it all that the machine starts to feel like an extension of your own body. “You have to be able to envision what you’re doing, what you want to happen,” he says. And what’s a typical day like? “Well, I guess I’m doing a major in road maintenance and minor in road building,” he says laughing. It’s work he loves, partly because he just plain likes to work, partly because it provides the money he needs to support his young family, but also because he feels there’s a future in it. “Through treaty we got tenure and it’s a renewable resource so I can see working for years to come and I’m only half way through my working life,” he says. He thinks it’s a good idea for First Nations’ workers to be working the land, especially when those lands are part of their traditional territories. “Sure the law says you’re not supposed to damage streams, but you’re not careful because of the law, you’re careful because those streams are important to your people.”

Tyler Ferguson, 37, Métis, Campbell River

Marina Rayner and her daughters Sydney (L) and Taylor the day she graduated from Vancouver Island University with her newly minted Forest Resources Technology diploma. The robe is a family heirloom; her grandmother Dolly McRae wore it when she graduated from UBC with a degree in anthropology in 1988, and it is adorned with fireweed from McRae’s Gitxsan clan near Kitwanga. that it won’t in the future.” One of the perks of her job—her official title is Assistant Forester/HFN Liaison—is that no two days are ever the same. “It really varies,” she says. “I could be out doing safety or production inspections; seeing what’s going on in the tenure. I’m also taking care of the planting contracts, so I’m also dealing with silviculture surveys nowadays.” She believes there’s immense value in more young First Nations men and women following her example. “It’s good that First Nations are becoming increasingly involved in what is going on with their lands,” she says. “I’ve also

40 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

found that when a First Nation’s person gets more educated they talk about going back and helping out their communities. That’s how I felt, that was my goal, and that’s what I’ve done.”

Andy Clappis, 37, Huu-ay-aht First Nation, Port Alberni

After a decade working for the Huuay-aht Nation examining trees and logs for signs of cultural modification by the ancestors, Andy Clappis got sideswiped by the recession in 2008 and started thinking about what to do next. With some encouragement from a band mentor he settled on learning

When asked how it is he ended being a logger Tyler Ferguson can only laugh, saying it probably has as much to do with his Métis heritage as his personal family history. “I think it’s in the blood,” he says. “My great-grandfather was a logger, my grandfather was a logger, and so was my dad, although I don’t know if we became loggers because we’re native or we’re native because we’re loggers.” He started early; summers and holidays when he was a boy and full time since the age of 17. “I was bucking on the landing to start and then moved on to running equipment pretty early, things like log loaders and skidders, some Cat work. I guess I’ve done a little bit of everything.” He’s currently working for Homalco Forestry, a TLA member company, in Campbell River. His day starts with a pleasant boat ride from Menzies Bay to Sonora Island. “I like the traveling around part of it,” says Ferguson whose working life has almost been split in


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half between the Interior where he grew up and the coast where he lives now. “I like all the different things there are to do—working the float camps, barging in equipment—you never get bored.” It’s an occupation that suits both his temperament and his inherited strongman physique. “I like the hard work and the pay is decent,” he says. “Loggers are good, hard workers and I relate well to people like that. I don’t want it easy. Nothing’s ever been given to me. I’ve worked for everything I have and I wouldn’t want it any other way.”

Matt Wealick, 41, Sto:lo First Nation, Chilliwack

When you’re raised on beautiful northeast coast of Vancouver Island it’s pretty much a slam dunk that you go into the logging business. “If you grew up in Sayward like I did that’s what everybody did,” says Matt Wealick, a Sto:lo from the Ts’elxwéyeqw tribe and a member of the Tzeachten band. “I dreamed of being a logger like my dad; it looked like a good career and a good way to make money.” He did three years setting chokers

and learning about the business from the sharp end as it were before enrolling in forestry at the University of British Columbia. Today he’s a registered professional forester, currently working for Probyn Log, a TLA member company, as First Nations Strategic Advisor and sits on the TLA Board of Directors as Chair of the Aboriginal Affairs Committee. “I like it because of the planning aspect,” he says. “It’s like a big jigsaw puzzle and I get to put the pieces together.” He’s glad he started out on the logging end though. “I have a good understanding of how what I do affects the guys who actually have to do the work.” He thinks it crucial for First Nations people as a whole to become more engaged in forestry at all levels. Proper forest management is linked to the preservation of First Nations culture, he says. It’s important for BC’s Aboriginal peoples to understand how government manages resources like forestry and then be a part of the process for finding ways to create a win-win-win situation between government, industry and First Nations. “You can’t just throw stones at something you just don’t understand.

Once you understand it you may still have to throw stones, but at least you then know the spot you want to hit,” he says smiling. There is not enough space here to list the wide range of jobs currently available in forestry, but they range from logging to road building, first aid to forestry, and a whole host of other things in between. And it’s no longer just a man’s world; an increasing number of young women like Marina Rayner and others are finding a place for themselves. Resources are available to assist young people in finding the job that’s right for them, and obtaining the training that will help them get it. A list of these resources is available on the Truck Logger website at www.tla.ca/training. Logging may not be for everybody, but there’s no denying that for those who feel the lure of the woods there really is no life like it—important work, good pay, and a working environment that includes some of the grandest scenery the world has to offer.

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The Path to Mutual Successful Change: Contractor Sustainability & Industry Competitiveness

TLA Editorial

C

ontractor sustainability has been a focal point of the TLA advocacy effort over the past few years and the “Path to Mutual Successful Change” panel at the recent TLA convention brought together representatives from both the contractor community and the major tenure holders to discuss the issue. In his introduction to the panel, moderator David Elstone noted the need to change the focus to a value driven supply chain in the BC forest industry, as opposed to the traditional cost driven approach that has been at the heart of contractor rate disputes for decades. He also noted that this type of venue, where participants in the supply chain get together and discuss their mutual needs is often time the best way to find mutual benefit. Representing the contractors were Don Banasky of Western Canadian Timber Products, Mike Richardson of Tsibass Construction and Justin Rigsby of Holbrook Dyson Logging. The ma-

44 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

jors were represented by Ian Fillinger of Interfor, Mike Ward from Western Forest Products (WFP) and Brian Baarda of TimberWest. The first question put to the panel was: What does contractor sustainability mean to you? On the licensee side, Baarda commented that the key attributes of a good (sustainable) contractor included the fact that they run a safe operation, have a cost focus that challenges their company to eliminate waste in the supply chain and that they have an innovation focus. Words of advice for all contractors. Ward noted that WFP harvests approximately 70 per cent of its volume using contractors today. Based on a poll they did of their contractor workforce two years ago, they define “good or healthy contractors” as having an ability to work safely, a strong management team, a strong balance sheet, a commitment to the long-term and a diverse customer base. Ward admitted WFP is not there yet with all of their contractors

and there are opportunities to reconfigure contractors to meet these objectives. WFP’s goal is to be a sustainable business through market cycles and Ward believes that contractors have to be able to do the same. Fillinger noted that he is asked all the time about the sustainability of their business by customers and that the sustainability of their contractor base contributes to their overall sustainability. He believes that if Interfor can provide sufficient standing timber inventory ready to harvest, it can provide contractors with security as they know the work is ahead. He admitted, however, that there was more work to be done by Interfor here. For the contractors, Rigsby defined sustainability as leading to a healthy retirement and he hoped, for his own sake, that his company is sustainable. However, he pointed to the fact that in a recent survey of the most profitable companies in BC, West Fraser was #12, Canfor #13, WFP #25 and Interfor was #37. As an


industry, this is good because there is money in the business. However, at the same time, news reported six contractors as leaving the business due to financial difficulty and challenging relationships. Licensee rates of return are going up while contractors are going down. It is scary and clearly not sustainable. This disparity in the allocation of pie today has to change.

Audience Polling

Do you believe that the logging contractor base is sustainable?

• No: 66%

Is your forestry industry related business sustainable over the next five years?

• Yes 39% • At risk 36% • Don’t know 25%

On the topic of what are the key things that need to change in order to support a reduction in delivered log cost, Banasky spoke to the fact that bid rates are only sustainable if the conditions don’t change. The “ripples in the water” cost everybody money and they have to be

a focus of the majors. Things included after the fact such as added safety requirements or more sorts are the types of changes in conditions that should support changes in agreed upon rates. Ward noted that reductions in log costs could come with further optimization of contractors, matching of equipment complements to the harvest profile and WFP’s new lean log handling process. Another key is to reduce the industry regulatory burden, fundamentally a government initiative. Justin Rigsby and Fillinger spoke to a common issue of logging development planning. For contractors, falling, bucking and loading on the same block happens way too often and is not always safe, noted Rigsby. For Interfor, it takes up to a year to move a log to the customer as a finished product and this can tie up some $100 million annually, capital that could be used for other investments if the planning process could be sped up and optimized. With a focus on new steep slope technology being developed globally at the convention, when asked if conditions on the coast are right to support innovation and investment, answers were mixed.

Baarda believes that there is a contractor base willing to support innovation and with manufacturers like T-Mar Industries Ltd. taking up the challenge and improving safety and productivity, he believes we are on the right track. Is the regulatory environment right? Perhaps not as WorkSafeBC is catching up and right now regulation remains a challenge on steep slopes. Ward noted on the other hand that WFP is making investments of strategic capital in manufacturing, investments that will give higher return to logs which will lead to higher free cash flow and eventually more capital for woodlands. Speaking for his company (and contractors in general), Banasky noted that it was difficult to invest heavily as a result of trust issues with customers. Without improved trust, they cannot risk the viability of the company on erratic work programs and schedules. Fillinger commented that there is extreme competition for capital within the company and Interfor makes investments where they see the greatest return for their shareholders. Of note, Interfor has invested in 13 mills in the United States.

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 45


Audience Polling

Are you investing in your business?

• Yes 68% • No 24% • Downsizing 8%

Are you planning to invest in new or rebuilt equipment in the next few years?

• Yes 69% • No 22% • Maybe 9%

On the topic of First Nations involvement in the industry and how First Nations fit into their corporate position, responses were focused on raw material access. Ward noted WFP engages with 45 First Nations in their operations. They have joint ventures, limited partnerships, contract logging and other types of arrangements given the exponential growth in First Nation engagement over the past 15 years. This growth is fundamentally driven by a need to access fibre which is key to WFP. Fillinger notes that Interfor has good relationships with customers, but admitted they have more work to do to

fully engage with First Nations on the fibre (raw material) side. For Interfor this is an evolving process.

Audience Polling

Have you engaged with First Nations businesses or capacity building?

• Yes 79% • No 11% • I plan to 10%

The panel participants were united on the issue of recruitment and training in their companies fundamentally driven by the “grey wave”. Ward noted that WFP has 500 employee loggers with 52 per cent older than 55. For hand fallers, the average age is more like 59, noted Richardson. It suggests the need for up to about 25 replacements annually in WFP company operations on average with an additional 75 contract employees in woodlands. WFP ran a logging fundamentals training program, but discontinued it because their graduates did not all choose to work for WFP—a challenge echoed by others.

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Both Banasky and Richardson acknowledged challenges in retaining employees once an investment in their training has been made. As Richardson noted, it takes a long time to teach skills and trades people especially don’t have loyalty—they tend to chase the bigger dollars in other industries. Everyone agreed that recruitment and retention is an area where a collaborative approach is needed.

Audience Polling

Are you concerned about future employee recruitment?

• Yes 80%

With a focus on improved safety of the industry since 2003, when asked; within your company have you invested in safety and has it paid off, again, the answers were mixed. Ward said WFP has a dedicated safety support team and noted that their MIR has gone from 3.5 to less than 1.0, a clear improvement. At the corporate weekly which includes the CEO, every single safety incident is reviewed. WFP is planning more investments in the area of risk acceptance internally first and then expanding to contractors. Fillinger, however, was more philosophical and wondered why some people don’t want to talk about safety. If it is a production and quality issue, they are typically dealt with immediately. But not always with a safety issue. From his perspective, the conversation about safety is not changing quickly enough. Fillinger went on to talk about the growing need for drug and alcohol testing in the industry as a whole. It’s coming to our industry because it is an issue, he noted. Other improvements in overall safety performance were highlighted by Rigsby who noted they have invested heavily in a viable return to work program. While it is available in his company, he noted we now need the medical practitioners to buy into these types of programs to keep people working. For Banasky, investments in a fatigue management system (changing work hours for example) in order to better address fatigue is currently being implemented. They are looking for significant results as it rolls out.


Photo: Brian Dennehy Photography

Licensees and contractors dug into the concepts on contractor sustainability and industry competitiveness—and the audience chimed in too! Audience Polling

Have your investments in safety help to change the culture in your business for the better?

• Yes 95%

The hot button topic of rates was left to the end as Elstone asked the panel: What is the best way to ensure sustainable rates for contract work? Rigsby said that both parties need a model or guide as an aid to negotiation. But what the industry needs is a guideline for hourly equipment rates like the Blue Book Equipment Rental Rate Guide. It is an independent guide, developed by a third party that is used in other industries extensively. He also noted that there is a need for collaboration with changing labour agreements. Currently, there are a lot of labour agreement costs being passed down to contractors with the recent pattern of agreements. Ward countered that WFP uses rate models and benchmarks them to their own operations. He agreed, however, that what is needed is data that can be agreed to. He went on to say that log,

equipment and lumber prices are all market driven so we can’t have a fixed rate model. That said, we can’t rely on a model alone to ensure a sustainable contractor base. It was his view that the market swings both ways and that while rates were low during the recession, today that is not the case—rates have come back. Baarda believes that rate models based on productivity are where the discussions have to start, but then market conditions have to be considered. We also need longer-term contracts in order to

allow contractors the security to invest. Both Rigsby and Banasky agreed that the market for contractors’ services is very small (due to licensee consolidation) and that this must be addressed in order to ensure contractors sustainability. As Rigsby noted, if the market rates suggest you cannot meet a minimum EBITDA, it is not sustainable. In summary, Fillinger noted that the coastal industry is doing reasonably today given exchang e rates and lack of duties. However, he cautioned that changes in exchange rates and the potential for

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a new Softwood Lumber Agreement (SLA) is a huge risk to the coast with its higher value products. When considering rates, the transactional point in time has to be considered. As a place to start the discussion, it was agreed that the panel provided points of view that both sides of the discussion could take away and consider. However, the fact that in an audience poll conducted during the Forest Minister’s presentation earlier clearly pointed to ongoing angst between contractors and the majors.

Audience Polling

Describe the nature of your relationship with your employee licensees.

• Very good 10% • Good with some, weak with others 50% • Troubled 40% It is clear that these types of discussions need to continue and both sides need to consider the needs of the overall supply chain if we are to be mutually successful.

(Continued from page 15) will be much different than processing smaller second-growth logs. What is ultimately important is sawmill margins, but higher cost sawmills have a history of disappearing on the BC coast. To maintain competitiveness or to implement innovation, capital investments are required to reduce operating costs, increase flexibility, or to consider new products or markets. No matter what the rankings are, the real question is: who is prepared to invest in the BC coast sawmills? There are always opportunities, but there is always risk, as evidenced by the steady erosion in the number of operating sawmills on the BC coast and the increase in log exports. There is no simple answer, especially when Crown timber is the base of timber supplies and government policies (both provincial and federal) are in effect and can change, not to mention the unknown details of the new Softwood Lumber Agreement that will emerge later this year. Many of these elements, markets and competitive factors will be discussed at WOOD MARKETS’ 6th Annual Global Softwood Log & Lumber Conference May 5-6, 2016 in Vancouver, including in-depth discussions on the new dynamics in China and Russia. By Russ Taylor, President, International WOOD MARKETS Group, Vancouver BC Canada www.woodmarket s.com

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Photo: Brian Dennehy Photography

Embracing Change in First Nations Relationships

By Robin Brunet

I

f getting the message across means anything, then the “Embracing Change in First Nations Relationships” panel at January’s TLA convention, cohosted by the BC First Nations Forestry Council and featuring four speakers familiar to the logging community, was an unqualified success. The panel was of particular interest to those concerned about what direction forestry will take in the future, given the number of outstanding land claims as well as legal challenges stemming from the Supreme Court of Canada decision in 2014 declaring Aboriginal title to 1,700-square-kilometres of traditional land outside of the Tsilhqot’in Nation reserve. And yet, some of the speakers couldn’t shake the suspicion that their opinions, while embraced by the audience, are still considered idealistic in a province focused on global trade and in an industry focused on economic revival.

50 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

Douglas White, Director, Centre for Pre-Confederation Treaties and Reconciliation at Vancouver Island University, explains, “Shortly after the convention, I was negotiating with a provincial forestry bureaucrat , who told me the province disagreed with my opinions expressed at the convention that the Tsilhqot’in decision will fundamentally change the way business is conducted in BC—which was my main point as a panel speaker.” White adds, “If Victoria continues to fail to recognize the impact of the Aboriginal title decision, and begins to engage with First Nations and industry in a meaningful way to find solutions, we will inevitably find ourselves in patterns of deepening conflict and uncertainty.” Matt Wealick, a forester for Probyn Log, a TLA member, and a TLA Director who chairs the Aboriginal Affairs Committee, agrees that delegates who attend the “Embracing Change” panel were very supportive of the message to

work together; but the fear associated with losing control of authority is still present amongst decison-makers. Robert Phillips, task group member for the First Nations Summit, agrees that fear is the biggest hurdle in transitioning from traditional tenure parameters to an industry where First Nations play a decision-making role. “I’ve been confronted with the emotion many times and have heard all the remarks about why the status quo will never change. Fortunately, I didn’t experience this at the TLA convention, but that’s an exception to the rule.” If there was an element of frustration to ‘Embracing Change’, it was that the speakers, including British Columbia First Nations Forestry Council CEO Keith Atkinson, were in some ways preaching to the converted. Compared to other industries, forestry has distinguished itself with sustained efforts made to employ and train Aboriginal


Photo: Brian Dennehy Photography

people, partner in developing harvestable lands and push the boundaries of the existing forestry model in preparation for a possible recognition of Aboriginal title. Indeed, real-time online polling conducted during the TLA convention showed that of 136 delegates polled, 107 (79 per cent) had engaged with First Nations businesses or in First Nations capacity building over the past few years, and 13 (10 per cent) planned to. Atkinson remarks, “We enjoy a great partnership with the Truck Loggers and its members, and what I get from the logging community overall—from the boots on the ground, so to speak—is people want to see us gain true equal footing in all matters. “So the situation is good on a grass roots level, which is where the TLA presides. But the grass root level tends to get overlooked by government and corporations that are taking more and more of our resources away from us.” Anyone fearing the prospect of First Nations authority in land matters might have been surprised by the upbeat tone expressed by Atkinson, Wealick, Phillips, and White during “Embracing

Several delegates asked questions to learn more about First Nations relations.

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The speakers (left to right) Douglas White, Matt Wealick, Robert Phillips and Keith Atkinson each gave their own perspective on what direction forestry will take in the future, given the number of outstanding land claims as well as legal challenges stemming from the Supreme Court of Canada decision in 2014. Change.” Their core message was threefold. One, shared decision-making is the key to industry recovery and economic prosperity. Two, the first step in achieving this outcome is talking candidly with First Nations groups. Three, forging productive relationships might be easier

than expected, considering Aboriginals and non-Aboriginals both want to generate revenue, develop capacity and access more forest tenure. None of the speakers pretended that policy or mindset changes would happen overnight. “We’ve had commit-

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tion has spent the last 10 years acting as a First Nations advisory to government, struggling to turn aboriginal values into best practices. “The input has not transformed the sector in a way that supports or acknowledges aboriginal governance or the basics that need to be acknowledged for a healthy relationship.” Wealick addressed the problem of JB BenProg Ad Nov2012-OUTLINED.pdf Aboriginal communities and industry

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members not knowing what each other wants by telling delegates his committee’s newly-completed “Working Guidelines for Contractors To Use In Developing First Nations Relationships” could be an important guide to establishing bonds between the two parties. (Amongst many other things, the document urges for common interests to be a 12-11-08 2:48 PM key part of any relationship.)

Phillips expressed hope that the new federal government will be more proactive in recognizing aboriginal authority than its predecessor. However, he stressed that individuals can best enact change and he urged delegates to “spread this message to schools and to newcomers to the province. It starts with us.” Presumably, the speech that would have come closest to panicking defenders

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of the status quo was delivered by White. After regaling the audience with an account of his youthful clumsiness working in the woods, he went on to state that despite what critics and even some of his colleagues believe, the Tsilhqot’in decision will lead to Aboriginal title being recognized by all levels of government. He said, “What was once Crown timber will no longer be Crown timber when Aboriginal title is declared over major parts of BC…projects must get Aboriginal consent once title is declared, and therefore we must rethink our entire forestry regime.” Although White noted that Aboriginal people “won’t settle for anything less than this” (a view shared by Atkinson, who told delegates that “we have to acknowledge title if we’re going to have relationships”), he later told Truck LoggerBC that he is pressing for collaboration, not confrontation. “We don’t want blockades or lawsuits. We simply want economic prosperity and the mechanisms to control our own destiny. Frankly, I see tremendous opportunities arising from collaboration. Our industry is already very attuned to local realities and this is a big benefit moving forward.” It may seem simplistic. Could talking candidly to one another be the trigger for equality between all parties? But Wealick points to evidence of it already happening. “The company I work for, Probyn Log Ltd., earned its trustworthy reputation about 10 years ago when it acknowledged the concerns of Aboriginals concerns and gave back a timber sale located in one of our spiritual areas near Chilliwack,” he says. “Since then, there has been a great relationship between the company and First Nations, and a true sense that one is looking out for the other.” Wealick adds, “A lot of people tell me they’ve communicated with First Nations groups until they’re blue in the face, only to work together on one project and then nothing after that. But that’s because these people bring to the talks an agenda they don’t deviate from.” As feel-good as these sentiments may be, an air of intangibility underscores any discussion about First Nations authority over land matters, with more questions than answers coming to mind. How would government be restructured to accommodate Aboriginal author-

ity? How would First Nations reconcile preserving the land base with the realities of international competition? What would the decision-making processes consist of? White replies, “These are all hugely important questions. This is precisely why we have to get talking, and now.” Pressed to predict what will happen in the coming years, White remarked that “in the short term, I think natives and non-natives are going to have to work around the province in order to make headway. But that still leaves Crown issues to be sorted out.” For his part, Phillips thinks the first tangible indicator of moving forward will be Victoria and industry adopting a working plan currently being fine-tuned by the First Nations Forestry Council, in conjunction with the province. “This joint review of existing policy, shared decision-making, revenue-sharing, and other matters may be adopted as early as this fall,” he says. “This would be a huge step forward, and perhaps it could be used in some way to kick start discussions on the larger Crown issues.” Last fall, a BC forest policy analyst requesting anonymity told Truck LoggerBC that while the Tsilhqot’in decision isn’t a clear win for Aboriginals because they still have to demonstrate use of land and prove exclusive use of land in order to gain title, which “will be very hard to do,” the decision has opened the door to a lot of potential give and take: “Frankly, I believe Aboriginal peoples want to give resource investors certainty just as much as we do, simply because as land owners they’ll be beneficiaries to any business activity.” The desire for certainty strikes a deep chord with Phillips. In summarizing the “Embracing Change” panel and looking to the future, he says, “Maybe fear of losing control isn’t the right phrase to describe the resistance to what we want. It’s really fear of uncertainty, which all of us understand.” He continues, “Uncertainty and the unknown are difficult fears to surmount. We get that. But we also can’t stop the future from happening. By developing timely and respectful collaboration, we’ll end the acrimony of the past and get on with making this industry the best it can be.”


The Ever Changing GoalPosts of the Environmental Movement

By Jim Girvan

I

n 1997, a large area of the central BC coast was circled and named “The Great Bear Rainforest” by ENGOs (environmental non-governmental organizations) hoping to draw attention and funding to their campaign to stop logging in the area. They pioneered a strategy of organizing consumer market boycotts to pressure forest companies to stop logging old-growth trees. The catchy new name for the area generally covered by the North and Mid-Coast TSA (timber supply area) along with the mystical image of the “spirit bear” was

sure to draw global attention to their campaign (and it did). For years following, stakeholders tried to find a way to balance the needs of all parties. It was with significant media fanfare then that the signing of the Great Bear Rainforest Agreement was announced in early February 2016. After almost two decades, stakeholders and First Nations ultimately found resolution to the conflicts between the environmental groups, government, First Nations and the forest industry in the area.

As reported in Victoria’s Times Colonist, the agreement was actually developed over a decade ago, but took ten years to get the final signature of stakeholders and First Nations. It’s an overwhelming victory for preservationists that dramatically hikes the amount of wilderness protected from logging. The final plan puts 70 per cent of the land base area (and 85 per cent of the actual forested land base) off-limits to logging. Despite all the lost opportunity, the forest industry (i.e. major tenure holders) is still counting the deal as

Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 55


Map courtesy of Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations.

Great Bear Rainforest Landuse Zones Legend Con serva ncie s Pa rks an d Pr otecte d A re as Bio dive rsty, Min ing an d Tou rism A re as Sp ecia l For est M an ag eme nt A re as Gre at B ea r Rain for est B o un da ry

0

15

30

60

90

120

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a win as it takes the heat off them from international customers worried about environmental practices and sustainability of the resources. Ironically, over the decade it took to finalize the deal, forest certification systems, such as SFI (Sustainable Forestry Initiative) and FSC (Forest Stewardship Council), became common place. As noted by Coast Forest Conservation Initiative (CFCI)—a collaboration between industry and the environmental groups advocating for protec-

56 Truck LoggerBC Spring 2016

tion—the joint recommendations from industry and environmentalists formed the basis for one of the world’s highest profile conservation and logging agreements. It will conserve significant areas of temperate rainforests while supporting logging of old and second-growth in 15 per cent of the forest. All logging will also be according to new rules— ecosystem-based management—which was designed specifically for the Great Bear Rainforest. “It is collaboration, not conflict that

ultimately drove this unique solution designed specifically for the Great Bear Rainforest,” notes Rick Jeffery of the Coast Forest Conservation Initiative and President and CEO of the Coast Forest Products Association. “It will deliver certainty for coastal forests, local communities and jobs for years to come. For the BC coast, including the Great Bear Rainforest agreement, some 4.5 million hectares (of the temperate rainforest) are now protected or about 55 per cent.” And, commented Jeffery, “the areas that have been designated as working forest that will support the reduced AAC of 2.5 million cubic metres will be subject to world leading forest practices based upon ecosystem management together with continuous improvement and research into best practices.” Another area that contributes to the 4.5 million hectares of protected temperate rainforest on the BC coast is the Carmanah Walbran. The Carmanah Walbran Provincial Park is a remote wilderness park located inside traditional Ditidaht First Nation ancestral territory. The park covers a land area of 16,365 hectare immediately adjacent to Pacific Rim National Park Reserve’s West Coast Trail along the west coast of Vancouver Island. The park comprises the entire drainage of Carmanah Creek and a good portion of the lower Walbran River drainage. In an area that was once all considered part of the working forest land base, protests to protect this area began in 1988. The protesters worked to garner public support and fought to gain provincial funding that would enable the area to become a park. It was the start of the “War in the Woods.” In early 1990, the province conceded and bought the TFLs (tree farm licenses) covering the area from MacMillan Bloedel and created Carmanah Pacific Provincial Park. The remainder of the Carmanah Valley and the lower part of the area drained by Walbran River were added in 1995 to form the current park area. However, not all of Carmanah and Walbran drainages were included in the park as some of the area was left in the working forest as the provincial government balanced the interests of the industry and the environmental groups. This balancing act is much the


same as we are seeing in the Great Bear Rainforest today. A decade later, Teal Jones, who’s TFL 46 includes a small portion of the Upper Walbran area referred to by environmentalists as “the Bite”, made plans to log on their tenure adjacent to the protected park.

sure practices are consistent with maintaining the intent of the zone. In this case, the designation calls for specific protection of old-growth areas, wildlife habitat areas and recreation features including trails and riparian zones. Despite the restrictions and fundamentally different approach to logging

How can this small area of working forest, adjacent to a protected area of over 16,000 hectares that is adjacent the Pacific Rim National Park be “the last of the remaining old growth”? For its part Teal Jones is obligated to conduct forest and logging operations in “the Bite” consistent with the Special Management Zone (SMZ) in accordance to the area’s designation in the Vancouver Island Land Use Plan (VILUP). The VILUP has been in place since 1994 and the SMZ designation in the area proposed for logging provides that timber harvest is a “conditional opportunity.” What this means is that while logging is acceptable within the zone, special operational conditions are imposed to en-

dictated by the VILUP, the ENGO reaction to halt logging operations was swift despite being outside the protected area. “Plan to log centuries-old cedar trees in southern Vancouver Island’s Walbran Valley cuts into the heart of one of Canada’s most ecologically sensitive forests,” read one headline. “Globally important old-growth rainforest in the Walbran Valley is at risk, and we need urgent action to protect it,” noted another. The Globe and Mail reported in June of last year the re-engagement of the en-

vironmentalists attack. Torrence Coste of the Western Wilderness Committee, an ENGO noted for their environmental activity but general reluctance to negotiate in any meaningful stakeholder engagement, said that in a compromise that environmentalists have long regretted, a piece of the old-growth forest was left out of the protected area. “If TealJones tries to log there, environmentalists will flood into the area”. In The Tyee in November, Coste was further quoted as saying. “There’s a role for forestry in the economy, but not cutting the last remaining old growth,” he said. “Any way you slice it, that’s coming to an end on Vancouver Island.” This comes on the heels of the announcement that we had just protected a sensitive old growth area covering 85 per cent of the central coast and a total of 55 per cent of the entire coastal temperate rainforest. How can this small area of working forest that is located adjacent to a protected area of over 16,000 hectares that is adjacent to the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve’s West Coast Trail be “the last remaining old-growth?” It is simply not true and

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this type of misinformation is at the heart of the credibility of the ongoing ENGO campaigns. So what can we read into this? It is simple. When compromise is sought and agreements result in protected areas and working forest being created that notionally provide a balance between stakeholders in BC that rely on our natural resources, the implication is these agreements are temporary and subject to change. It is this moving of the goalposts within ENGO campaigns over time that leads to cynicism in some and fear in others. No better example of this was Ian McAllister of the conservation group Pacific Wild, who acknowledged “the [Great Bear Rainforest] deal’s positive aspects”, in The Vancouver Sun on February 3, but then went on to say, “he found it hard to describe the destruction of 2.5 million cubic metres per year of coastal forests a conservation success,” in reference to the AAC of the remaining 15 per cent. It is this perspective that will continue to undermine business certainty in BC brought about by land use agreements reached by virtually all other interests including industry, First Nations, government and a cross-section of engaged environmentalists in BC. For its part, the forest industry will continue to find a balance between resource focused stakeholders. When given the social licence to operate on that part of the forest dedicated to their industry, they will continue to evolve practices to meet the expectations of the public. How long will it take to once again see protests in the Great Bear Rainforest when harvesting operations start in the 15 per cent set aside as a working forest land base? It took a decade in the Carmanah Walbran until once again the industry is being forced to defend its sustainability and world class practices. Only time will tell in the Great Bear Rainforest.

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Spring 2016 Truck LoggerBC 59


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Truck LoggerBC, Spring 2016 - Volume 39, Number 1  

The voice of British Columbia's forest industry - forest policy, new technology and challenges facing the industry.

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