The Vavenby sawmill is closing for good in July, wiping out 180 direct jobs in a community of just 3,500 people. In August, the Tolko sawmill in Quesnel will be the next to go down. Across British Columbia’s Interior, forestry-dependent communities are waiting to see whose mill will be next.
Analysts predict – and nobody is arguing – that between seven and 12 sawmills are going to fold as the amount of trees available for logging plummets in the wake of the pine-beetle infestation, massive forest fires and other climate calamities. Change is coming. The question is how these communities will adapt.