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Management Side
The Final Word by Chuck Swann
Influenced by such forces as Greenpeace, some writers and editors in the public media tend toward adversarial positions regarding the forests products industry. Not so the Vancouver Sun. It has taken a position of trumpeting the importance and benefits of forest products in British Columbia. The Sun proclaimed in a recent editorial that forestry is the backbone industry of the province. It says that 150,000 B.C. people owe at least part of their livings to forestry and 58,000 of them are directly employed in forestry. Five of the world's top 100 forestry companies are headquartered in Vancouver, where lawyers, accountants, bankers, insurers, trucking and rail companies realize much of their income from forestry industries activities.

The Sun boasts that B.C. has more forest land covered by third-party certification than any other country in the world. At local levels, 40% of B.C. communities are dependent on forestry jobs.

But in the time-honored public address formula of "point with pride and view with alarm," the newspaper goes on to report that the industry faces some considerable challenges. Among them were the Mountain Pine Beetle infestation in the interior, which resulted in the largest timber salvage in the province's history. This means that annual allowable cuts will decline. Timber supply will be affected for many years and this may have deleterious effects on local jobs and family incomes.

We wish that all public media would recognize and tell of the benefits that are daily being derived from forestry.

Chuck Swann is the senior editor of Paperitalo Publications. He can be reached by email at chuck.swann@taii.com.

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