Politics, Policy, and Government in British Columbia by R. Kenneth Carty

By R. Kenneth Carty

Politics, coverage, and govt in British Columbia examines the political lifetime of Canada's dynamic Pacific province. all the seventeen chapters, written by way of famous specialists, presents an updated portrait and research of 1 of the various faces of B.C. politics. Taken jointly they supply a transparent and accomplished evaluation of the dominant issues and matters which have been the distinguishing beneficial properties of the province's political existence.

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Even during the first major forest sector boom after 1911, primary sector employment declined as the expansion of the forestry industry resulted not so much in additional employment in logging and other primary industries but rather in an increase in secondary manufacturing in the sawmill and pulp and paper industries. 4 The political impact of the early dependence on resource-based economic activity was felt in a number of ways. Since these activities tended to take place in specific geographic locations determined by resource availability, they accentuated the regional structure of a province whose mountainous topography rendered communications and transportation expensive and difficult.

As long as salmon was abundant, there was relative peace among the stakeholders. The first great threat to the resource came in the early 1900s with the building of a railway through the Fraser River canyon. A blasting accident changed the course of the river at Hell's Gate. The result of changed water flows decimated the Fraser salmon stocks to the point that the fishery dependant on the Fraser run for its livelihood was almost wiped out. An agreement between the US and Canada provided for remedial work, financed jointly by both governments, that eventually restored the stocks.

This is not to say that resource-based economic activity is not important to specific aspects of the provincial economy. The fact that EC's economy is neither large enough nor diversified enough to produce all that the province needs, nor to consume all that it produces, for example, has led to a tendency toward specialization in production for external markets. Much of this trade has always been, and remains today, resource related. 2 British Columbia GDP, 1994 ($ millions) Economic activity GDP Agriculture and related Fishing and trapping Forestry and related manufacturing Mining and related manufacturing Other manufacturing Construction Utilities Transportation, storage, and communication Retail and wholesale trade Finance, insurance, real estate Education Health services Other services Public administration and defence 2,158 361 7,364 3,108 3,292 6,509 2,213 7,793 11,246 18,527 4,204 5,255 10,373 4,795 GDP at factor cost 87,198 Source: BC Stats, Industry Accounts: Special Aggregations (Victoria, 1996).

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