Morice Land and Resource Management Plan

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Morice Land & Resource Management Plan

Morice Land and Resource Management Plan

Economic Development Action Plan (EDAP)

Prepared with assistance from:

Westcoast CED Consulting Ltd.

Prepared by:

Ministry of Sustainable Resource Management, Skeena Region
Date: October 15, 2003

Executive Summary

The Economic Development Action Plan (EDAP) is intended to provide the Morice LRMP Table with direction on how to manage the land and resource base when considering economic development opportunities. As part of the LRMP process an Economic Development Action Plan Working Group was formed to identify economic development opportunities such that the LRMP Table, through their decision-making deliberations, could create conditions suitable for the development and promotion of these opportunities. The steps followed in creating this EDAP were as follows:

  • Develop a vision with clearly defined goals for economic development;

  • Through a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT) Analysis, understand the social and economic base and existing relationships between different resource sectors;

  • Develop criteria for ranking opportunities with specific linkage to outlined goals;

  • Identify opportunities for a broad range of economic sectors;

  • Prioritize opportunities;

  • Provide an Opportunity Analysis for the high priority opportunities; and,

  • Provide recommendations to the LRMP Table on factors to consider when making land and resource management decisions.

Members of the Working Group felt that economic diversification as well as the maintenance and enhancement of the current way of life enjoyed by all residents in the Morice were essential factors when considering the range of opportunities to pursue. An assessment of each economic sector’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats assisted in the development of sector specific strategies for economic development in the Morice EDAP. The general economic development strategy, based on the SWOT profile, is to pursue opportunities that are a good fit with the core strengths of the region.

Members of the Working Group categorized opportunities into seven economic sectors. These included; agriculture, commercial fisheries, forestry, land development and infrastructure, non-timber forest products, tourism, and minerals, oil, gas and energy. Within each sector the Working Group identified a number of economic development opportunities.
The following paragraphs provide a summary of the sector strategies considered in the EDAP. Individuals are strongly encouraged to read the complete document in order to develop a better context for this analysis.
The general forest sector strategy for economic development is to strengthen existing forest companies and promote the development of new products and markets. The opportunities selected for further technical analysis were: development of a cogeneration wood facility, production of engineered wood products, and development of a medium density fibre board mill. The technical analyses for these opportunities indicate that all three are viable operations to pursue in the Morice LRMP area.
The strategy for the mineral, oil and gas, and energy sector is to develop productive and profitable, world-class mine sites that respect social and environmental needs. Ensuring land-use certainty and collaboration with other land and resource users is a key consideration. Four opportunities were selected for further analysis. Those opportunities were; exploration and development of medium to large scale open pit mines, exploration and development of small to medium underground mining operations, construction of a copper smelter and opportunities associated with oil and gas exploration and extraction. With the exception of developing a copper smelter the remaining opportunities are worth pursuing in the Morice according to the analysis conducted for the EDAP.
The economic development strategy for tourism is focused on maintaining natural wilderness experiences and promoting the region as a wilderness attraction. Five opportunities were selected for further analysis. Those opportunities included; house boating, snowmobile tours / destination snowmobiling, commercial recreation site development, First Nations cultural heritage site development, and guided tours of historic mines / prospecting tours. A large number of opportunities were identified for this sector. This is a reflection of the interest local communities have in developing this sector of the economy. This was also evident in the outcome of the SWOT analysis.
Priorities for establishing an organized non-timber forest products sector were; to collect information on the many uses of local flora and fauna, undertake an inventory of these species, and carry out research on the harvestability and sustainability of economic activities involving these species. Three priority opportunities were selected for analysis in the non-timber forest products sector; cultural and traditional use products, manage species for pharmaceutical development, and production of willow furniture. All three opportunities were deemed viable in the Morice area.
The general strategy for the agriculture sector is focused on strengthening existing agriculture production while exploring alternative species and crop production. Those opportunities selected for further analysis were; malting or feed barley production, market gardening, and agricultural tours. Of these three opportunities only agricultural tours was found to be appropriate for consideration in the Morice. Livestock production was not analyzed as he group felt that opportunities in this industry were already well known and would be considered at the LRMP Table.
The strategy for the land development / infrastructure sector is to identify and designate properties deemed suitable for supplying specific market demands; such as recreational lot development.
Within the commercial fishery sector, the strategy is to explore economic opportunities, protect spawning grounds, and undertake salmon enhancement programs that would ensure the sustainability and long term economic viability of the resource. In addition to operating a salmon processing operation, opportunities associated with inland aquaculture sites were explored. Only the salmon processing operation was found to have potential viability in the Morice.
It should be noted that this report is only one of many pieces of information intended to assist the LRMP Table in the decision-making process. For additional information on the current state of the economy in the Morice and information on the opportunities analyzed in this report, interested individuals should refer to the Morice Land and Resource Management Plan: Socio-economic Analysis and the Ministry of Sustainable Resource Management Building Blocks.

Table of Contents

Morice Land and Resource Management Plan 1

Executive Summary 2

Introduction 10

Purpose 10

Plan Location 10

District of Houston 11

Village of Granisle 11

Unincorporated Communities 12

What is Economic Development? 13

First Nations Involvement in Economic Development 13

EDAP Process Description 14

Process Overview 14

Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT) Analysis 15

Opportunity Ranking Criteria 16

Opportunity Identification 19

Ranking of Sector Opportunities 19

Technical Analysis 20

Building Blocks 20

Socio-Economic Analysis 21

Forestry 22

Introduction 22

Sector Development Strategy 22

Identified Opportunities 23

Development of Cogeneration Wood Facility 24

Overview 24

Opportunity Analysis 24

Location Analysis 27

Market Analysis 28

Current Production Trends 29

Market Demand and Price Trend 29

Conclusion 30

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 30

Establishment of a Medium Density Fibreboard Operation 31

Overview 31

Opportunity Analysis 31

Market Analysis 31

Historical Market Trends 31

Current Trends 32

Market Demand and Price Trend 33

Future Market Trends 34

Location Analysis 34

Conclusion 35

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 36

Engineered Wood Products 37

Overview 37

Opportunity Analysis 37

Competitive Analysis 38

Supply Analysis 40

Location Analysis 41

Market Analysis 42

Production 43

Market Outlook 44

Conclusion 45

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 45

Minerals, Oil, Gas and Energy 46

Introduction 46

Sector Development Strategy 46

A Two-Zone System for Mineral Exploration and Mining in BC 47

Identified Opportunities 48

Development of Open Pit Mines 49

Overview 49

Opportunity Analysis 50

Location Analysis 50

Environmental Issues 51

Market Analysis 52

Current Production Trends 52

Market Demand and Price Trend 54

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 55

Development of Small to Medium Underground Mining Operations 56

Overview 56

Opportunity Analysis 57

Location Analysis 58

Market Analysis 58

Current Production Trends 58

Market Demand and Price Trend 60

Conclusion 61

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 61

Development of a Copper Smelter 62

Overview 62

Opportunity Analysis 63

Location Analysis 63

Market Analysis 64

Current Market Trends 64

Market Demand and Price Trend 65

Conclusion 66

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 66

Development of Oil and Gas 66

Overview 66

Opportunity Analysis 67

Location Analysis 69

Market Analysis 70

Current Production Trends 70

Market Demand and Price Trend 73

Conclusion 74

Recommendations to LRMP Table 74

Tourism and Recreation 74

Introduction 74

Sector Development Strategy 75

Identified Opportunities 75

Hiking Trails 77

Overview 77

Opportunity Analysis 77

Vehicle Camping Combined with Short Walks and Water Activities 78

Chain Lake Canoeing 78

Hiking – all day and overnights 78

Location Analysis 79

Vehicle Camping Combined with Short Walks and Water Activities 79

Chain Lake Canoeing 79

Hiking – all day and overnights 81

Market Analysis 81

Vehicle Camping Combined with Short Walks and Water Activities 81

Chain Lake Canoeing 81

Hiking – all day and overnights 82

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 82

House Boating 83

Overview 83

Opportunity Analysis 84

Location Analysis 85

Market Analysis 85

Recommendations to the LRMP table 86

Snowmobile Tours and Destination Snowmobiling 86

Overview 86

Opportunity Analysis 88

Location Analysis 89

Market Analysis 89

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 91

Commercial Recreation Site Development (includes Forest Service Recreation Sites) 91

Overview: 91

Methodology 92

Opportunity Analysis 92

Forestry Sites 92

Market Analysis 93

New Facilities 94

Conclusion 95

Recommendations to LRMP Table 96

First Nations Cultural Heritage Site Development 96

Overview 96

Opportunity Analysis 97

Location Analysis 97

Market Analysis 98

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 98

Guided Tours of Historic Mines and Prospecting Tours 98

Overview 98

Opportunity Analysis 100

Location Analysis 101

Market Analysis 103

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 104

Tour Package Marketer 104

Overview 104

Opportunity Analysis 105

Location Analysis 106

Market Analysis 106

Consumer Attitude Shifts 107

Recommendations for the LRMP 108

Non-Timber Forest Products 108

Introduction 108

Sector Development Strategy 109

Identified Opportunities 109

Development of a Wild Berry Business (Cultural and Traditional Use Non-Timber Forest Products) 110

Overview 110

Opportunity Analysis 110

Location Analysis 111

Production/Management Constraints 111

Shipping Analysis 112

Market Analysis 113

Market Segments 113

Demand 113

Prices 114

Competition 115

Market Opportunities 115

Sales Channels 116

Conclusion 116

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 116

Botanical Forest Products for the Nutraceutical and Medicinal Herb Market 118

Overview 118

Industry Position: 121

A provincial context: 122

Location Analysis 123

Market Analysis 128

Market Opportunities: Product Selection 129

Sales Channels 130

Production Facilities and Location 131

Employment 131

Conclusion 132

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 132

Development of Willow Furniture Businesses 133

Overview 133

Opportunity Analysis 133

Location Analysis 133

Supply of Raw Material 133

Shipping 134

Production Analysis 134

Market Analysis 135

Demand and Pricing 135

Sales Channels 136

Competition 136

Market Gaps 138

Market Opportunities 138

Marketing Channels 138

Conclusion 139

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 139

Agriculture 139

Introduction 139

Sector Development Strategy 140

Identified Opportunities 141

Malting and Feed Barley Production 142

Overview 142

Opportunity Analysis 142

Location Analysis 143

Market Analysis 143

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 143

Market Gardening 144

Overview 144

Opportunity Analysis 144

Location Analysis 144

Market Analysis 144

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 145


Overview 145

Opportunity Analysis 146

Location Analysis 148

Market Analysis 148

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 149

Land Development / Infrastructure 149

Introduction 149

Sector Development Strategy 150

Identified Opportunities 150

Recreational Lot Development 150

Overview 150

Opportunity Analysis 151

Location Analysis 151

Market Analysis 151

Conclusion 153

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 154

Commercial Fishery 154

Introduction 154

Sector Development Strategy 155

Identified Opportunities 155

Fish and Roe Processing Plant 156

Overview 156

Lake Babine Sockeye Run 157

Fish Processing - Viability 158

Markets – River Fish Sockeye and Roe 158

Opportunity Analysis 160

Location Analysis 161

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 161


Overview 161

Opportunity Analysis 163

Location Analysis 164

Quality Water Requirement 164

Market Analysis 165

Recommendations to the LRMP Table 165

Summary Matrix of Opportunities 166

References 167

APPENDIX 1: Summary of Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) Analysis 172

APPENDIX 2: Northwest Real Estate View 184


Table 1. Goal Categories 17

Table 2. Ranking Criteria 18

Table 3. Rating system for number of employees by sector 20

Table 4. Identified Forest Opportunities and rankings 23

Table 5. Cogeneration Projects in BC 25

Table 6. BC Hydro’s Customer-Based Generation Projects 26

Table 7. Summary of Canadian Cogeneration Projects by Sector, 2001 26

Table 8. North American MDF Activity Measures – 1997-2003, million square feet* 33

Table 9: Number of Secondary Manufacturers in the North 38

Table 10: Wood Costs Benchmarked Against BC Interior (BC Interior = 100) 39

Table 11: Interior Value-added Wood Association 2002 Competitiveness Rankings 39

Table 12: US Share of Value of Shipments Accounted for By the Largest Firms in Specific Value-added Wood Sectors (1997) 40

Table 13: Establishment Count and Value of Shipments of Value-added Wood Manufacturing Firms in Washington, Oregon, and California (1997) 40

Table 14: Factor Cost Significance – Percentage of Manufacturing Costs (Prior to 27% Tariff) 40

Table 15: Top Species Utilization by Business Type in the BC Value-added Sector 41

Table 16. Identified Mineral, Oil and Gas, and Energy Opportunities and rankings 48

Table 17. Mineral Prices for Key Mineral Commodities (1995 to 2004) 54

Table 18. Commodity Prices for Gold and Silver 61

Table 19. Commodity Prices for Oil and Gas 73

Table 20. Identified Tourism Opportunities and rankings 76

Table 21. Identified Non-Timber Forest Products Opportunities and Rankings 109

Table 22. Price Comparison of Wild Huckleberry and Wild Saskatoons 114

Table 23. Percent of Growers by Employment Class 122

Table 24. Percent of Growers by Sales Revenue Category 122

Table 25. Percent of Growers by Business Class 123

Table 26. Identified Agriculture Opportunities and Rankings 141

Table 27. Identified Land Development / Infrastructure Opportunities and Rankings 150

Table 28. Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako Building Permit Data 153

Table 29. Identified Commercial Fishery Opportunities and Rankings 155

Table 30. BC Freshwater Trout Aquaculture Harvest and Landed Value 1994 – 2001 162

Table 31. BC Freshwater Trout Aquaculture Average Prices 1994 - 2001 163

Table 32. Summary Matrix of Opportunities 166


Figure 1: Wood Waste Energy Consumption in the US – 1975 to 2002 29

Figure 2: Average Retail Prices for Electricity in the US – 1975 to 2002 30

Figure 3: North American MDF Capacity and Capacity Utilization – 1978 to 1998 32

Figure 4: MDF Prices, $US/Msf – 2000 to 2004* 33

Figure 5: US Consumption of Lumber and Direct Substitutes 44

Figure 6. World Share of Copper Production and Production Trend 53

Figure 7. Molybdenum Producing Countries and World Mine Production 53

Figure 8. Leading Zinc Producing Countries and World Mine Production 54

Figure 9. Leading Gold Producing Countries and World Gold Production 59

Figure 10. Leading Silver Producing Countries and World Mine Production 60

Figure 11. World Primary and Secondary Copper Refinery Production – 1996 to 2002 64

Figure 12. Change in Copper Smelting Production among Key Copper Smelting Nations. 65

Figure 13. Copper Prices by US Cents per Pound of Copper – 1996 to 2004 66

Figure 14. BC Hydrocarbon Resources and Production 68

Figure 15. World Oil Proven Reserves (1982 to 2002) 70

Figure 16. World Gas Proven Reserves (1982 to 2002) 71

Figure 17. World Oil Production (1992 to 2002) 72

Figure 18. World Natural Gas Production (1992 to 2002) 72

Figure 19. Interest Rates for the Last 20 Years 152

Figure 20. Total Pieces of Catch by Species 156

Figure 21. Total Value of Catch by Species 157

Figure 22. Babine Adult Weir: Accumulated Large Sockeye Counts (1990- 2002) 158

Figure 23. Average Fish Price by Species over Time 159

Figure 24. Canadian Aquaculture Production Statistics (tonnes) 1997 - 2001 164


Map 1. Morice LRMP Plan Area 12

The completion of this Economic Development Action Plan has been made possible by the dedication and collaboration of the Morice LMRP, Economic Development Action Plan Working Group members; Bob Henderson, Jim McCormack, Jaret van der Giessen, Peter O’Gryzlo, Ray Williams, Crissy Isabelle, Mike Hill, Elmar Plate, Rob Payne, Caroll Morey, Trevor Sowers, Zarna Dilley, Terri Stewart, Andrew George Jr., Keith Black, Megan Wood, Gary Thompson, John Groot, and Al Madigan.
Westcoast CED Consulting Ltd. (Vernon, BC) prepared the opportunity analyses. The Westcoast team was made up of Victor Cumming (Regional Economist – Project Manager), Larrie McDonald (Economist), Karol Hansma (Researcher) and Barb Levesque (Researcher) in conjunction with Randy Sunderman (Economist, Peak Solutions Consulting Ltd.), Steve Nicol (Economist, Lions Gate Consulting Inc.), John Lerner (Economist), Don Elzer (Tourism Specialist), Ramona Faust (Botanicals Specialist), and Graeme Johnstone (Agronomist).
Administrative assistance and technical review from Rahul Ray was greatly appreciated. Members of the Morice LRMP Government Team are also to be thanked for their assistance in the review of the draft plan; Elizabeth Zweck, Geoff Recknell, Anna Regnier, Mary Lou Malott, and Jim Senka
A special thanks is extended to Liz Saunders for her coordination, administrative support, and review during the development of this plan.

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