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Coastal Log Scaling course trains next generation

MASSET With the steady rebirth of BCs forestry and logging industries comes a renewed demand for skilled forestry workers, and Northwest Community College (NWCC) continues to lead the way in providing industry-specific training and certifications to meet these growing demands. Thanks to an investment in workforce training by Taan Forest Ltd. and support from other local logging companies, NWCC is offering a Coastal Log Scaling course on Haida Gwaii for the first time in its history. Eight students are enrolled in the course, which is running in Masset on weekends from May to October. The Coastal Log Scaling course prepares students for the Coastal Log Scaling exam which will be administered by the BC Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations in October 2011. This is the first time that the Log Exam has been offered on the coast since 2006. The economy has had dramatic effects on the coastal logging industry in recent years. Locally, there are signs of improvement in the economy with the increase in logging activity, says instructor Lawrence Musgrave. Presently, there is a demand for Coastal Log Scalers, and especially as much of the work force moves towards retirement. Log Scaling plays an important role for government, industry, and other parties. It determines the volume of timber harvested and the quality of that timber. Scaling data is used to invoice the forest industry for stumpage and to administer the annual allowable cut. The Coastal Log Scaler is the key to providing a meaningful and accurate scale for these purposes. The forestry industry on Haida Gwaii is in a process of renewal, as it seeks to operate in an environmentally sustainable way while still competing in a global market place. NWCC is committed to supporting this renewal, and part of that process involves training the next generation of skilled forestry workers here on-island, states Ken Leslie, NWCC Director of Education - Haida Gwaii. A strong partnership with local industry has afforded us this opportunity to offer the Coastal Log Scaling course in Masset, and we are grateful for that support. Taan Forest Ltd., a Haida-owned business of the Haida Enterprise Company, has the responsibility of overall management of a substantial holding of the future forest harvesting on Haida Gwaii with the core objectives of sound sustainable forest management and improving the overall employment opportunities and benefits from the forest sector to the Haida people and all communities on Haida Gwaii.

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