Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: March 14, 2012

Froggy Foibles

2012 Mariners Commercial: Timber

You Tube Video
YouTube
March 14, 2012
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: United States

A look at where big Justin Smoak (Seattle Mariners first baseman) gets his “lumber”

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Dragon’s blood tree (Dracaena cinnabari)

March 14, 2012
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: International

Arguably the most famous and distinctive plant of the island of Socotra, the evocatively named dragon’s blood tree has a unique and bizarre appearance, its upturned, densely-packed crown having the shape of an upside-down umbrella. The bizarre shape of the dragon’s blood tree helps it to survive in often arid conditions and on mountaintops with little soil… The main threat to the dragon’s blood tree is thought to come from the gradual drying out of the Socotra Archipelago, a process that has been ongoing for the last few hundred years, but which may be exacerbated by global climate change.

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Business & Politics

Hampton Affiliates preparing plans for rebuild of mill

Burns Lake Lakes District News
March 14, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

A decision on fibre supply issues in the Lakes District needs to be made sooner, rather than later. This is the message Forest Lands and Natural Resources Operations Minister Steve Thomson brought with him to Burns Lake last week on his first visit to the community since the Babine Forest Products explosion and fire. Minister Thomson said to Lakes District News that the government is hoping to come to a decision about the fibre supply issues surrounding the possible rebuilding of the Babine Forest Products sawmill by the end of March or beginning of April.

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MacBlo retirees win court case against Weyerhaeuser, which must pay for health benefits

Vancouver Sun
March 13, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER – Retired MacMillan Bloedel employees have won their court battle against the new company owner, Weyerhaeuser Co. Ltd., which has been ordered to pay the full cost of retiree extended health and medical benefits. The plaintiffs – Lorne K. Lacey, Kenneth James Miller, Raymond Morris, George E. Plant, and Mary Jane Walker – were salaried employees of MacBlo who retired between 1991 and 2000. Back then, the employer’s benefits package for retiring employees included continuing payment of B.C. Medical Services Plan premiums and extended health insurance benefits – solely to be paid by the company.

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NewPage, union talks on hold

Chronicle Herald
March 13, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Talks between the union representing idled NewPage Port Hawkesbury workers and the mill’s top bidder are on hold. After three days of negotiations, Pacific West Commercial Corp., an affiliate of Stern Partners Inc., temporarily called off talks. “We met with them over the weekend and we broke off talks only because Stern Partners had other obligations that they had to meet this week,” Steve MacDougall, recording secretary for Local 972 of the Communication, Energy and Paperworkers Union, said Tuesday.

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Minn. Sappi mill to add textiles to papermaking

Bangor Daily News
March 13, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

The Sappi Fine Paper mill in Cloquet is flipping its page.  The northern Minnesota mill has produced pulp for its own line of high-gloss paper used in brochures and annual reports and has supplied pulp to other paper producers. Now as the digital age and the recession have cut demand from those customers, the 113-year-old facility will shift its attention to a new market: textiles. …“It’s definitely a growth business,” said Wayne Brandt, executive vice president of Minnesota Forest Industries, referring to the chemical cellulose market. The product can be used to satisfy the demand for rayon, now used as a low-cost substitute for cotton in apparel and home goods.

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Analysts expect Gunns slump

ABC News Australia
March 14, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Financial analysts are expecting a negative sharemarket response to Tasmanian timber company Gunns’ new capital raising plans. It’s preparing a plan to issue new shares to existing shareholders. The company says it is also in negotiations with investment banks and a new institutional investor.

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Labor, Greens blamed for Gunns deal collapse

ABC News, Australia (Radio)
March 14, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Tasmania’s State Opposition has blamed the Labor-Green minority government for the collapse of Gunns’ $150 million dollar deal with billionaire Richard Chandler.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Using Software to Make Printing More Efficient

HR.BLR
March 12, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

This week, Adobe Systems brought its new LeanPrint Software to market. The company claims that it can cut a typical office’s paper and toner consumption and related costs by approximately 40 percent… The software reformats documents to print more efficiently, lays out text in newspaper-style columns to save space on a page, removes display ads from printed webpages, reformats Excel charts, and, if possible, converts color charts and graphs to readable black and white… According to the American Forest and Paper Association, Americans discard 4 million tons of paper every year. 96 million trees and 310.59 billion gallons of water are used to produce that amount of paper. It’s obvious that cutting down on paper use results in real savings both economically and environmentally.

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Industry Responds to New LEED Draft; Wood Certification and PVC …

Door & Window Manufacturer Magazine
March 13, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) has released its latest draft of its LEED Rating System and a few points are drawing criticism from some in the industry. First, in the section, Responsible Sourcing of Raw Material, new wood products must be certified by Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) “or better.” Organizations, including the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), have long tried to convince the USGBC to recognize other certification programs.

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Splinters

Huffington Post (blog)
March 13, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

The boardwalk then was a world of wood: wooden buildings with wooden, hand-painted signs of cotton candy and hot dogs, wooden benches and wooden planks, bleached by the sun and beaten by the hurricanes that hit the island repeatedly in the 1950s. Here, there, and everywhere, nails popped up out of the wood. The boardwalk I knew and loved was not one of concrete; nor was it one of plastic-laminated wood. So, imagine my tears and my despair when I learned today that the New York City Public Design Commission voted to replace a stretch of the Coney Island Boardwalk with recycled plastic lumber and a concrete lane… What the Coney Island Boardwalk needs — to save it from a concrete destiny — is to be landmarked, like the buildings in the Coney Island Historic District — like The Cyclone and The Parachute Jump. The wooden planks of the boardwalk are just as historic as Nathan’s Famous and the Shore Theater. 

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Canterbury rebuild boost for Hastings

Star Canterbury
March 14, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Hastings company Kanuka Engineered Wood Products is set to have a major part in the Canterbury rebuild, with the University of Canterbury opting for engineered timber for its new Students Association Events Centre. The 60m x 20m multi-purpose building uses laminated wood. All components were manufactured at Kanuka Engineered Wood Products in Irongate Rd in Hastings and prefabricated at Timbercore’s premises in Christchurch.

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Fine wine and fine living in the South Downs

[The pictures in this story are beautiful]
World Architecture News
March 14, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Downley House is a new country house built in National Park in the South Downs, in Hampshire. …The clients are wine connoisseurs and the dining hall echoes the form of elliptical wine barrels. Innovation to ensure quick construction the house structure is constructed of cross laminated timber (CLT) panels, pre-fabricated in Switzerland and craned into place on site. The guest and family wings are constructed of flatpack CLT panels which are then clad with insulation and finished with stone, oak cladding or render. The barrel vault is constructed of laminated timber ribs over which curved CLT panels are fixed to create a structural shell. This is covered with insulation and clad with a beautiful with standing seams that spiral around the elliptical form. Sustainability – The CLT structure is an inherently sustainable low carbon product and much of the materials are sourced locally,

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Forestry

Canada poised to roll back fish protection laws, biologist claims

Move would make it easier for projects like Calgary-based Enbridge Inc.’s Northern Gateway pipeline to B.C. to clear federal hurdles
Vancouver Sun
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

OTTAWA – The Harper government is planning to gut the powers in federal legislation intended to protect fish habitat, making it easier for projects such as Calgary-based Enbridge Inc.’s Northern Gateway pipeline to B.C. to clear federal hurdles, according to a retired fisheries biologist who obtained the information from a government source. …A senior official with the Council of Forest Industries, one of the industry associations which has lobbied on the Fisheries Act, refused to say whether the current wording is an irritant. “There’s no question in our mind that many pieces of legislation, including the fisheries legislation, could be made more efficient from an administrative point of view, and therefore lower our operating costs and improve our competitiveness without compromising the conservation goals and objectives of the legislation,” said Doug Routledge, COFI’s vice-president of forestry.

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The good, bad and the ugly in regards to log exports

Courier Islander
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The good part is that Campbell River is a great place to live with great people and many natural resources to utilize. The bad started over 100 years ago when the government decided to give a coal mining company about 25% of the land on Vancouver Island to build a railroad from Victoria to Cape Scott to open up transportation. The coal company built the railroad to Courtenay – they kept the land and now they want the taxpayers to maintain the railroad. The ugly is that the provincial government set up tree farm licenses to log the most beautiful high quality timber in the world. This was only half ugly because in order to keep the TFLs the companies had to build sawmills to cut this timber, creating jobs etc.

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Liberals ignoring committee on raw log exports: Dix

NDP leader demands explanation for decision by minister of forests, lands and natural resource operations
Vancouver Sun
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA — The B.C. Liberal government has, since December, been exporting raw logs that its own advisory committee has been saying should be going to producers in B.C. On Tuesday, New Democratic Party leader Adrian Dix said the Timber Export Advisory Committee (TEAC) determined last December that logs from Quatsino Sound on Vancouver Island should be sold to Teal-Jones of Surrey instead of being shipped overseas. But Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Steve Thomson overruled that recommendation, Dix said, allowing the logs to be sold into foreign markets. “The minister owes people an explanation for his decision,” Dix said during question period Tuesday.

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West Kelowna land swap proposal is rejected

Kelowna Capital News
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The provincial government has backed out of a controversial land exchange agreement with the Westbank First Nation involving land in the Rose Valley watershed. Steve Thomson, the B.C. Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, said today the government has concluded that transfer of the reservoir, watershed, park lands, and some of the other Crown lands identified in the Rose Valley area would not be in the public interest. In making his decision under the auspices of the Land Act, Thomson said he gave careful consideration to land transfer suitability, assessments and recommendations by ministry staff, and the direct feedback from many area residents and other stakeholders pertaining to the protection of the community watershed and Rose Valley Regional Park.

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Minister costing logging jobs, critics say

Globe and Mail
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

B.C. Forests Minister Steve Thomson has overruled recommendations from his own advisory board on log exports dozens of times in the past three months, electing to send millions of dollars worth of raw logs to Asia rather than local mills. The minister’s decisions effectively put logging profits ahead of jobs in B.C. mills, says a forestry executive whose bid for coastal logs was approved by the minister’s Timber Export Advisory Committee but quashed by the minister. Mr. Thomson said he has rejected his committee’s advice, citing an arcane policy debate about freight costs. But the result is that workers at a Teal-Jones Group sawmill in Surrey are facing down time this week because of a shortage of fibre, while buyers in China, Japan and South Korea are purchasing B.C. logs in record volumes at premium prices that B.C. mills can’t afford.

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Westbank First Nation disappointed by land swap decision

Kelowna Capital News
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Westbank First Nation is disappointed with the B.C. Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations decision to sever a majority of the land at Rose Valley from a controversial land exchange proposal. The government announced earlier today that more than 85 per cent of the 698 acres of land proposed for exchange with WFN under discussion are not in the public interest to transfer and will remain Crown lands.

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Decision reached on Rose Valley lands

by BC Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations
Press Release
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

WEST KELOWNA – Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Steve Thomson concluded that transfer of the reservoir, watershed, park lands, and some of the other Crown lands identified in the Rose Valley area would not be in the public interest, and these lands would remain Crown land.

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Balanced approach necessary

Government hears from public on forest management strategy
The Telegram
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

There are two sides to forests, according to Nature Newfoundland and Labrador president John Jacobs. On one end, forests protect biodiversity, yet they are also an important part of the province’s renewable resource-based economy, particularly in rural regions. “The challenge is to realize the economic benefits without compromising the ecosystems in which they are based,” he said in front of more than 20 attendees during a public consultation session held Tuesday night in St. John’s on the development of a new provincial sustainable forest management strategy… Talk of striking a balance between ecological and economic concerns was brought up by multiple presenters Tuesday. Ian Goudie of the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society said governments for too long have believed clear cutting mimics natural events such as insect infestations and forest fires.

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Consequences of alternative tree-level biomass estimation procedures on U.S. forest carbon stock estimates

USDA Forest Service
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Forest ecosystems are the largest terrestrial carbon sink on earth and their management has been recognized as a relatively cost-effective strategy for offsetting greenhouse gas emissions. Forest carbon stocks in the U.S. are estimated using data from the USDA Forest Service, Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program… The component ratio method decreased estimates of national carbon stocks by an average of 16% for the species in the study. The observed reductions in carbon estimates can be attributed to incorporation of tree height as a predictor variable into species-specific volume models used to estimate tree biomass and carbon stocks. 

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Why USGBC Should Recognize SFI – “No Certification Program Can Credibly Claim to be ‘Best’ “

Good for Forests (SFI) Blog
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

State Foresters have long been advocates of policies encouraging the use of domestic wood products for green building – from both economic and environmental perspectives. State foresters have a unique public trust responsibility for America’s forests, and we have been active leaders in the growth and evolution of third-party forest certification as an important tool that is making a positive contribution in our public and private forests. We welcomed a report last year from the U.S. Department of Agriculture showing that wood is superior to other construction materials in terms of environmental benefits, and applauded USDA’s statement that “Sustainability of forest products can be verified using any credible third-party rating system, such as Sustainable Forestry Initiative, Forest Stewardship Council or American Tree Farm System.”

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Logging traffic to increase on Bitterroot National Forest near Conner

The Missoulian
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

CONNER – The Bitterroot National Forest is advising travelers that there will be logging traffic west of Conner beginning this week and lasting through April. Travelers are advised to drive with extra caution as there will be log trucks traveling the roads during the weekdays.

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Critical fire conditions expected today

Rapid City Journal
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

With the promise of 70-degree temperatures, gusty winds and low humidity today, it is shaping up to be a dangerous week, fire officials said Monday after a weekend of fires in the area. “There’s so much dried grass out there,” said Beth Hermanson, a spokesperson for the South Dakota Division of Wildland Fire Suppression.After a winter of “literally no snow,” unusually warm temperatures and low humidity, it appears the fire season is off to an early start, Hermanson said. 

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We can’t afford China trade war

The Oregonian
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Declaring that every $1 billion in new exports creates 5,400 jobs, …John Kitzhaber recently led a trade delegation to Asia. As these efforts underscore, Oregon’s economy depends on exports, from high-tech and clean energy to farm and forestry products, especially to the Pacific Rim. In spite of a lagging economy, Oregon companies’ sales abroad increased by 18.5 percent during 2010 and 4.5 percent during the first 10 months of 2011. …  Clearly, the last thing Oregon needs is a trade war with China, particularly in renewable energy. Unfortunately, that’s just what will happen if a German-owned company with a facility here in Oregon has its way. SolarWorld has filed a petition with the U.S. Department of Commerce requesting tariffs of as much as 250 percent on some solar cells and modules imported from China. 

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Controlled Burns Planned For Daniel Boone Nat’l. Forest

LEX18 Lexington KY News
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Over the next six weeks, Daniel Boone National Forest officials plan on using fire to achieve land management goals and objectives. Controlled burns will be conducted to restore forest health, improve wildlife habitat and reduce woodland ground fuels. “The overall goal is to create a healthy forest that can regenerate naturally and withstand or recover from invasive insect attacks and disease,” said Staff Officer Paul Finke.

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EU needs no common forest policy to define forestry

Finnish Forest Assocation
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The news came in February that Finland’s proposed subsidy for energy wood is in trouble in the EU. This is one example of the power of the EU over practical forestry. The European Union has neither a common forest policy nor the mandate to create one. Still, the EU Commission has considerable influence over what happens in the Finnish forest sector. One good example of this is that the EU will not approve the energy wood subsidy Finland has been planning in the original form, as was heard in February.

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Legal setback for environment group

ABC News, Australia
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

An environment group has lost its court fight to stop logging in areas of the Toolangi State Forest. The community group, My Environment, argued VicForests was breaching conservation laws designed to protect the endangered Leadbeater’s possum. It took the state-owned timber company to court, but today Supreme Court Judge Robert Osborn ruled there was no breach within the three logging coupes. Outside court, Nathan Trushell, from VicForests, welcomed the decision.

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Palm oil: the hidden ingredient causing an ecological disaster

The Ecologist
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Palm oil is in our food, cleaning products and fuel. But it’s destroying rainforest and contributing to climate change. Sustainable certification schemes have been set up, but campaigners increasingly question whether they work. It’s impossible to get away from palm oil. Over the last few days you have eaten it, rubbed it into your skin, put it in your car or fed it to your pets… Yet palm oil is also responsible for some of the most destructive deforestation of current times, and its production is contributing to climate change.  

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Forestry groups wary of Australian legislation

Radio New Zealand
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The forestry sector fears proposed legislation in Australia blocking illegally harvested timber could have an impact in New Zealand. The Illegal Logging Prohibition Bill is intended to block timber imports from operations like clear felling tropical rain forests. The bill is currently before the Australian House of Representatives.  New Zealand’s Wood Processors Association and Timber Industry Federation say the language is so vague it risks catching in its net sustainable operations, such the radiata pine industry.

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Logging opens up trails

Manawatu Standard
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Largely off limits to the public during logging, Arapuke Forest is undergoing a transformation. JANINE RANKIN looks at the progress. Perched at the southern end of Palmerston North, about 330 metres above sea level, Arapuke Forest has a feeling of remote wilderness, while still in the city. Skirted by the Sledge Track and Back Track, enjoyed by trampers and mountainbikers, with the environmentally significant Kahuterawa Stream defining its southern edge, it offers fine views of the city, sea and mountains.

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Local communities in Ghana to produce legal lumber

GhanaWeb
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Local communities in the country would soon be producing lumber to shore up the volume of legal lumber supply for the domestic market. This would be achieved through the implementation of a project by Tropenbos International (TBI) Ghana, that seeks to link local communities to forest concession holders to produce legal lumber under the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), African Caribbean and Pacific Countries (ACP) and the European Union (EU) Forest Law Enforcement Governance Trade (FLEGT) support program.

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Loggers demand greens agree to forest peace terms

The Australian
March 15, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

THE timber industry has “parked” the Tasmanian forest peace talks until green groups accept conditions that would see the creation of forest reserves in stages and linked to the abandonment of anti-industry campaigns. Industry groups including the Australian Forest Products Association and Timber Communities Australia, as well as the CFMEU forestry union, fear that a final deal to end 30 years of conflict will not be supported by the Greens and “radical” groups. They are concerned that Markets for Change will continue to campaign against veneer maker Ta Ann in key Japanese markets, while the Greens will continue to fight the Gunns pulp mill.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Paying Too Much for Carbon Offsets?

Enviro minister says BC’s deciding what to do about excess cash collected from schools, hospitals.
TheTyee.ca
March 13, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada, Canada West

The government will look at how much public bodies pay for carbon offsets compared to what they actually cost as part of its review of the Pacific Carbon Trust, Environment Minister Terry Lake said in a recent interview. “Over time, we want to make sure that whatever the public service is paying into it is kind of in balance with what they’re buying those offsets for,” said Lake. Schools, health authorities and other public bodies are required by law to become carbon neutral by paying the Pacific Carbon Trust $25 for each tonne of greenhouse gasses they emit, regardless of what it costs the PCT to offset those emissions.

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Biomass – is it Southeast Alaska’s Energy Solution?

Juneau Empire
March 14, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

In recent month we have heard a lot about biomass being the next big economic driver for Southeast Alaska energy and perhaps new life for the timber industry. It’s a favorite among politicians, bureaucrats, environmentalists and the Sealaska Corporation. ….  So with all of this support it is not surprising that biomass dominates the Alaska Energy Authority (AEA) recent draft “Southeast Integrated Resource Plan.” Unfortunately this plan does not adequately address the real economic feasibility of biomass. In fact, the plan only takes a 30,000 foot view of the issue. Recommendations for biomass are simply based on possible cost savings between imported pellets and fuel oil. Other proven options such as new hydro projects are generally dismissed as too expensive. Likewise, alternate energies such as heat pumps are not given fair and equal treatment.

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Port of Eastport nets contract to ship wood chips

Mainebiz Daily
March 13, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

The Port of Eastport is close to finalizing a deal with a new Maine company looking to ship wood chips from the port to overseas markets. … If its contract is approved, Timber Biofuel Venture could begin trucking wood chips to the port as early as April 1, and a first overseas shipment could happen as early as eight weeks later, according to the Quoddy Tides. Larry Carrier, a partner in Timber Biofuel Venture, said he and the other partners have years of experience in the wood products industry. The company could ship as much as 200,000 tons of wood chips a year to European customers looking to use them for biomass fuel. He said the company is negotiating with nine potential customers.

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Mangroves being destroyed at “an alarming rate” yet not mentioned in Rio+20’s zero draft

Center for International Forestry Research
CIFOR Blog
March 14, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

BOGOR, Indonesia – “Oceans” will be one of the key issues under discussion at Rio+20 with the aim to ensure sustainable ocean development and the protection of marine resources, yet mangroves – whose carbon sequestering ability and raft of ocean ecosystem services are being lost at an “alarming rate” – are not mentioned at all in the summit’s zero draft agenda.

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New Bristol biomass plant to benefit local community

Environmental Expert (press release)
March 12, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Permission was granted today for a new 150MW dedicated biomass power station at Royal Portbury Dock in the Port of Bristol, North Somerset. The consent allows E.ON Climate and Renewables to construct a plant which could provide enough electricity to power up to 160,000 homes. The new plant will create up to 325 temporary jobs during construction, 35 full-time jobs during operation and a further 20 contract personnel during routine and annual maintenance.

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General

Dragon’s blood tree (Dracaena cinnabari)

March 14, 2012
Category: Uncategorized

Arguably the most famous and distinctive plant of the island of Socotra, the evocatively named dragon’s blood tree has a unique and bizarre appearance, its upturned, densely-packed crown having the shape of an upside-down umbrella. The bizarre shape of the dragon’s blood tree helps it to survive in often arid conditions and on mountaintops with little soil… The main threat to the dragon’s blood tree is thought to come from the gradual drying out of the Socotra Archipelago, a process that has been ongoing for the last few hundred years, but which may be exacerbated by global climate change.

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