A nearly $2 million contribution from the Forest Enhancement Society of BC will see the Osoyoos Indian Band send low-value logs to the Celgar pulp mill in Castlegar.
Society senior manager Gord Pratt explained that the under the program, Nk’Mip Forestry LLP will be able to send wood to the mill or one if its three satellite yards that is ordinarily considered too far from the mill to be economically viable.
“Any produced lumber or pulp facility has an economic radius, the value they can pay for that fibre versus the cost,” he said. “If it gets outside that, they will just not take it.”
He said the funding from the society will allow Celgar to expand that radius “rather than see the fibre go up in smoke and burned.”
He added that is is more than a one-time opportunity.
“We’ve seen a change in practices to allow companies like Celgar to go after more of this fibre and get their operators to change their practices on how they do the work in the bush to get it on truck. It’s a bit of a long-term investment.”
In addition, the society is funding two wildfire risk reduction projects in the West Kootenay. The Kaslo and District Community Forest Society will receive $127,000 toward the Mount Buchanan fire access trail project to manually thin forest adjacent to the village.
The Harrop Procter Community Co-op will also get $461,000 to thin forests adjacent to roads, to pile the post-harvest debris and send low value fibre to Castlegar.