B.C. looks to mass timber to drive economic growth and advance CleanBC
By PJ Boyd
B.C. premier John Horgan announced today that the B.C. government is taking further steps to implement mass timber into the construction of buildings across the province to help lower the amount of carbon pollution and create jobs across the province. Ravi Kahlon, parliamentary secretary for forests, lands, natural resource operations and rural development, has been appointed to oversee this new provincial goal.
This announcement follows 13 B.C. communities committing last year to develop innovative mass timber technology for taller wood buildings. Most recently, Vancouver approved the construction of 12-storey mass timber buildings and Vancouver Island began construction on Canada’s first mass timber warehouse.
“As our economy bounces back from the COVID-19 crisis, we want to do everything we can to support forest workers,” Horgan said in a statement. “By focusing on mass timber, we have an opportunity to transition the forestry sector to high-value over high-volume production. This will mean opportunities for local workers, strong partnerships with First Nations and greater economic opportunity while making a significant contribution to advancing CleanBC.”
Kahlon will be working with local governments as well as industry and construction professionals to help the province meet its goal. He will also work with Selina Robinson, minister of municipal affairs and housing, in his efforts to develop new markets for mass timber.
“Mass timber is key to diversifying and creating a more resilient forest sector,” said Kahlon. “I look forward to working with my government colleagues, COFI and the forest industry, construction sector and local governments to promote made-in-B.C. wood products and their use in our public and private sector buildings.”