In 2016, under the Indigenous Forestry Program, FPInnovations developed a business case for Yale First Nations (YFN), which concluded that producing high-quality firewood from residual logs, currently piled at logging sites and burnt, was feasible and may be pursued.
The results and recommendations of this study were utilized by YFN to secure funding to pay YFN members to participate in training delivered by FPInnovations. This year, between July 31 and August 2, FPInnovations delivered the following three training modules: millwork, firewood storage shed construction, and mechanized firewood processing and storage methods.
Despite high temperatures and forest fire smoke brought in by unfavourable winds, five YFN members and two FPInnovations trainers shared their experiences and knowledge about small scale logging; safe chainsaw operation; lumber production and markets; portable sawmill operation; firewood production, seasoning, and storage; shed building; and developing and operating a successful mechanized firewood operation.
Participants were fully engaged in these theoretical and hands-on experiences. Many thanks to John White, Innovation Support Specialist and Peter Hamilton, Researcher, for developing and delivering these high-quality training modules! Participants, trainers, and YFN collaborators hope that they could be replicated in other Indigenous communities across British Columbia and, why not, across the country!