In an interview with NL Newsday, British Columbia’s Forests Minister, Doug Donaldson, discussed the more than two dozen sawmills in B.C. that have had to curtail or shut down operations as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Donaldson said, “We have somewhere in the neighborhood of 45 curtailed or closed mills at this point. Certainly that number wasn’t that high until we saw COVID-19 impacts, so I think you can draw a pretty straight line between many of those curtailments that we saw in March and in early April and the lack of housing starts in the United States. I mean I think we were around 24 mills that had been curtailed and now we are at 45, and that’s just been in the last six weeks. So yes, COVID has had its impact.” Donaldson says a decrease in global lumber prices because of COVID-19 is also to blame for the mill curtailments in the province.
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B.C. Forest Minister indicates COVID-19 has led to nearly two-dozen mill curtailments