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Using innovation to drive commercialization in B.C.’s forest sector
March 02, 2017
VICTORIA – The challenge is clear. While British Columbia’s forest sector has a distinct advantage in market development, there are untapped opportunities related to innovation.
The Province is announcing today the launch of the Clean-Tech Innovation Strategy for the B.C. Forest Sector. The strategy, done in partnership with FPInnovations, will help maximize the value of B.C.’s forest resources while identifying innovative solutions to maintain and strengthen the sector.
The Clean-Tech Innovation Strategy for the B.C. Forest Sector builds on three themes: enhanced economic viability, environmental sustainability and Aboriginal and community technical support. The 20-page document outlines goals and outcomes that will further support the needs of B.C.’s rural communities and grow local economies. The strategy’s ultimate goal is to use innovation to drive commercialization and enhance the forest resource and product value.
A recent example of innovation is the development of cross-laminated timber that is used to construct tall-wood buildings. The Brock Commons Student Residence at the University of British Columbia is an 18-storey wood building, which highlights the benefits of building with wood. By using wood, the impact is a reduction of 2,432 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide, compared to other construction materials, the equivalent of taking approximately 500 cars off the road for a year.
The forest sector is a key driver of B.C.’s economy. It provides direct jobs for tens of thousands of British Columbians and supports more than 140 rural communities throughout the province.
FPInnovations provides cutting-edge research from locations across Canada, including a laboratory in Vancouver. The not-for-profit organizations specializes in the creation of scientific solutions in support of the Canadian forest sector’s global competitiveness and responds to the priority needs of its industry members and government partners.
Today’s launch of the strategy builds on one of the 49 actions committed in the Strong Past, Bright Future: A Competitiveness Agenda for British Columbia’s Forest Sector. Innovation is one of the key ways the B.C. government is taking action to strengthen and grow rural communities.
The Clean-Tech Innovation Strategy is one of the key ways the B.C. government is taking action to strengthen and grow rural communities. To further support the needs of rural communities and grow local economies, the Province will be releasing a Rural Economic Development Strategy in the near future.
Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations –
“The B.C. government is committed to innovation as we know the traditional advantages we have enjoyed in the past will not ensure the B.C. forest sector’s long-term success. The Clean-Tech Innovation Strategy for the B.C. Forest Sector provides a much-needed roadmap for a strong future.”
Donna Barnett, Minister of State for Rural Economic Development –
“Our province’s natural resource industries are the backbone of our rural communities. The B.C. government will continue the strong support of our province’s small towns and I look forward to releasing a Rural Economic Development Strategy in the near future.”
Pierre Lapointe, president and CEO, FPInnovations –
“The greatest innovations are often the result of strong collaborations as highlighted in the Innovation Agenda presented today and the Government’s Competitiveness Agenda. Bringing together researchers, colleges, universities, governments, industry, communities and Aboriginal partners within a framework of sustainability and economic growth will ensure the forest sector continues to thrive across British Columbia and provide benefits well into the future.”
The Clean-Tech Innovation Strategy for the B.C. Forest Sector, and Strong Past, Bright Future: A Competitiveness Agenda for British Columbia’s forest sector, along with the Value Added Sector Action Plan, British Columbia Pulp and Paper Sustainability: Sector Challenges and Future Opportunities, and other supporting documents, can be found at: www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/industry/forestry/competitive-forest-industry
Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations
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