From 2011 to 2012, forestry jobs increased from 53,400 to 56,400 - a six per cent increase and more than triple the increase for all other sectors.
Lumber prices for the past two months are at their highest levels since fall 2005, and analysts predict we're heading into a supercycle. In 2012, the total volume of B.C.'s lumber exports worldwide was 5.9 per cent higher than in 2011, and the total value of those exports was up 9.7 per cent. In the same year, the volume of B.C.'s lumber exports to the U.S. was up 11.3 per cent from 2011 and the value up by 25.2 per cent.
In 2003, softwood lumber exports to China totalled $69 million, grew 1,500 per cent to almost $1.1 billion in 2011, and held steady in 2012. In 2012 B.C.'s production of wood pellets increased to about 1.95 million tonnes, almost double the volume produced in 2010.
B.C. has more than 52 million hectares certified to one of three internationally recognized sustainable forest management certification standards, more than any other region in the world. The province plants an average of 200 million trees each year, and is anticipated to plant more than 225 million in 2013.
Since 2005, the provincial government's Forests for Tomorrow program has invested $269 million, surveyed 1.3 million hectares and planted more than 80 million seedlings over 61,000 hectares. The Province recently released a 10-year Strategic Forest Inventory Plan, supported with $8 million annual funding for the life of the plan. Through this plan, 35 million hectares will be inventoried in mountain pine beetle affected and other priority areas.
Since 2002, the Province has signed forestry agreements with 175 First Nations, providing more than $324 million in revenue-sharing and access to over 63.2 million cubic metres of timber.
Connect with the Province of B.C. at www.gov.bc.ca/connect.