British Columbia to provide new wildfire mitigation training for silviculture sector

BC wildfires. Image credit: X/@BCGovFireInfo

#BritishColumbia; #WildfireMitigationTraining; #Wildfire; #SilvicultureSector

Vancouver/CMEDIA: British Columbia’s silviculture sector workers will reportedly get new training to better prepare them to prevent and mitigate wildfires.

Also included in silviculture sector workers would be forestry workers, tree planters and staff at nurseries, 

“The forestry sector is a cornerstone of B.C.’s opportunities that come from this new partnership will give forestry workers the skills they need to stay safe while protecting the vitality of our forests in the face of wildfires.” Bruce Ralston, B.C.’s Minister of Forests reported saying.

To ensure workers around the province are trained to understand risks, mitigations and have the skills required for best fire safety practices in B.C. ‘s forests, a two-year pilot project is being undertaken In partnership with the Western Forestry Contractors’ Association.

“Climate change is real, and every Canadian has felt the effect of it last…This is why the Government of Canada is working in partnership with the Government of British Columbia to improve the training, recruitment, and protection of silviculture workers…important for the safety of Canadians and the future of our forest sector,” Randy Boissonnault, federal Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Official Languages reportedly said in a news release.

New training in climate change awareness, fire prevention, and hands-on training with forestry tools will be provided through $900,000 from the 2022-23 Canada-British Columbia Workforce Development Agreement (WDA). 

The WDA would also open opportunities for workers and helps employers find the people they need to drive B.C.’s economy forward

A new training course for silviculture workers and managers to increase Indigenous cultural knowledge would also be provided by this project which will contribute to a more diverse and inclusive silviculture workforce in B.C.

Development of new career-path material for job seekers, recruitment and retention materials to support small and medium-sized employers  would also be included in this project as well as a sector job board hosted by the Western Forestry Contractors’ Association website.

More than $450 million for training and employment support to British Columbians and supporting approximately 70,000 British Columbians annually, is being provided each year, by the Government of Canada through the Canada-British Columbia Labour Market Development Agreement and the Canada-British Columbia WDA.

“We are increasingly working in conditions affected by climate change, including wildfire on the land…risks of wildfire and how to manage them as forestry workers is critical to keeping ourselves and our forests safe from fire.” Jordan Tesluk, B.C. forestry safety advocate said.