Troubles in the Rainforest: British Columbia's Forest Economy in Transition


303 pages
Contains Photos, Illustrations, Maps, Bibliography
ISBN 0-919838-23-5
DDC 333.75'09711




Edited by Trevor J. Barnes and Roger Hayter
Reviewed by Richard G. Kuhn

Richard G. Kuhn is an associate professor of geography at the University
of Guelph.


In this collection of 15 papers, the political, economic, and ecological
changes of the forest and forest industry in British Columbia are
addressed. The collection, which is organized around the forest, the
industry, and the community, stems from a conference held at Simon
Fraser University and the University of British Columbia in 1995 to
celebrate the centenary of the birth of Canadian economist Harold Innis,
who is best remembered for his staples theory. Each chapter is situated
within, to a greater or lesser degree, the Innis tradition of Canadian
economic history.

An excellent introductory chapter by the volume’s editors sets the
tone. It provides an overview of the myriad issues facing the forest
sector in British Columbia by highlighting recent trends that, in many
ways, have fundamentally reoriented forestry and its impact on the
economy and peoples of the province. Key changes that have occurred over
the past two decades include environmental protests, First Nations land
claims and assertion of rights, technological change, globalization, and
a decline in the resource base. All of these issues are addressed in
subsequent chapters.

It is a tribute to the editors that all the chapters are relevant and
together provide a useful description and analysis of the changes taking
place in the B.C. forests. Troubles in the Rainforest is recommended.


“Troubles in the Rainforest: British Columbia's Forest Economy in Transition,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed April 23, 2024,