Historic and Resourceful!
Mineral exploration is an indication of corporate and provincial interest in developing the mining sector. It also provides an economic return for the regions in which exploration is taking place, with accommodations and lodging being products that surveyors will use in communities close to where exploration is occurring, thus supporting the local economy.
Forestry is one of the oldest industries in Fort St. James. It remains one of the foundations of the community. There are two active sawmills in Fort St. James: Conifex Timber and Apollo Forest Products. Conifex has an annual allowable cut of 440,000 m3 and Apollo has an annual allowable cut of 216,746 m3.
Fort St. James has had a community forest since 2004. The community forest has created additional revenue that has benefited the community with increased services and infrastructure. The Community Forest is 3,582 hectares and has an annual allowable cut of 100,000 cubic meters. There are three harvest areas for the Community Forest, the Marie Lake, Murray Ridge and Witch Lake. The Community Forest is managed by a local private contractor.
The Fort Green Energy Project is a 40MW biomass energy production project with a 30 year energy purchasing agreement with BC Hydro. This project offers 23 operational positions for the facility, not including spin-off employment. Construction in 2013-2017 had up to 250 people working on the project. The company will need 200,000 tonnes/year of fibre supply, and will help to reduce the amount of wood waste currently burned in slash piles and beehive burners in the area.
Over the past few years construction was focused on industrial and commercial projects with only a couple residential developments taking place. Previous years have seen an increase in residential development permits, while industrial permits have held steady.
Fort St. James is the ideal location for new and existing businesses to grow and flourish. With a balance of industrial development and small town charm near a large centre Fort St. James is the perfect location for your next business venture.
To learn more about community growth and economic development indicators read the Economic Development Report 2011 or contact the Economic Development Officer.