The Forest Enhancement Society of BC has provided $3 million in grants to support forest jobs throughout the province and to increase the use of wood fibre.
"This new funding is part of the governments $1.5-billion economic recovery plan, which reflects our ongoing commitment to help British Columbians deal with challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic," says Katrine Conroy, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. "The grants will support local jobs and help make better use of wood debris left behind after timber harvesting.”
This funding will support 15 projects in different areas of B.C., with individual grants ranging from $6,000 to $663,748. This will allow approximately 250,000 cubic metres of ‘post-harvest’ waste wood to be put towards pulp production, wood pellets, electricity and compost. This will reduce greenhouse gases in addition to other environmental, economic and social benefits.
"One of the aims of our StrongerBC economic recovery plan is to build stronger, more resilient communities in every corner of the province," says Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Jobs, Economic Recovery and Innovation. "This program does just that, while also advancing the forest sector's transition to high-value production, which is essential for B.C.'s long-term economic well-being.”
Eight of the approved applications came from new proponents that are going to receive FESBC funding for the first time.
"We were very pleased to receive this additional funding to support incremental fibre use and forest rehabilitation projects," said Jim Snetsinger, board chair, FESBC. "Upon receiving word of the $3 million allocation, our team moved quickly to prepare and announce its seventh intake for funding applications.
"We were delighted with the quality and innovation shown in the proposals that we received. This work will help support families and communities in a time of need. It demonstrates the significant role that the forestry sector plays in our province's broader economic recovery, while at the same time helping to achieve B.C.'s and Canada's climate change targets."