Senior forest sector representatives on the Forestry Asia Trade Mission took part in events that demonstrated British Columbia’s commitment to increasing wood construction in South Korea.
On Friday, Dec. 7, 2018, they witnessed the signing of a technical co-operation agreement between Canada Wood Korea and the Korean Institute of Architects, and attended a seismic design symposium. On Saturday (Dec. 8), they toured the Gapyeong Canada Village Project, which showcases wood products from B.C. and elsewhere in Canada.
“South Koreans’ interest in wood construction is growing because they recognize that wood construction fares better than other materials in the event of earthquakes,” said Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. “By promoting the benefits of wood and sharing technical expertise, we can open up new opportunities in Korea for our province’s high-quality wood products. This, in turn, supports forestry jobs in B.C.”
The memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Canada Wood Korea and the Korean Institute of Architects will help raise skill and knowledge levels of architects and designers in Korea, so they are better equipped to work with wood. The institute intends to benchmark Canadian best practices for technologies, such as wood-frame residential housing, wood interior walls and Super-E/Net-Zero housing design.
Korea’s efforts to increase the seismic safety of its buildings (through changes to building codes) have generated interest in the seismic design properties of wood. About 150 Korean wood construction and building experts attended the seismic design symposium organized by Canada Wood Korea, with the support of key institutional partners in Korea.
The 154 housing units in the Gapyeong Canada Village Project demonstrate the benefits of wood products and wood-frame construction, including healthy building and energy efficiency. The village is the result of a memorandum of understanding signed in 2013 by Canada Wood Korea, the Gyeonggi Urban Innovation Corporation and Dreamsite Korea.
The 2018 Forestry Asia Trade Mission to South Korea, China and Japan – from Dec. 5-14 – is B.C.’s largest ever, with more than 40 delegates from First Nations, industry, research, labour and government.
- South Korea is B.C.’s fifth-largest market for wood products. B.C.'s softwood lumber exports to the country totalled over $73 million in 2017.
- Since Canada Wood opened an office in South Korea in 2006, the value of B.C.’s softwood lumber exports to the country have doubled.
- Super-E is a building standard designed by Natural Resources Canada that is being used by countries around the world. A Super-E net-zero home produces all the energy it requires from renewable sources. It releases no carbon from the burning of fossil fuels.
Photos from the mission are available here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bcgovphotos/32362614058/