Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: March 14, 2012

Business & Politics

NewPage reports $524M 2011 loss

Dayton Daily News
March 13, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

Bankrupt NewPage Corp. narrowed its net loss to $524 million last year, compared to a net loss of $693 million in 2010, the company said in its debtor-in-possession report. The Miami Twp.-based paper producer filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in September. The privately held company said at the time it had obtained up to $600 million in financing led by J.P. Morgan Chase. Net sales for 2011 were reported at just over $3.5 billion, compared to nearly $3.6 billion for 2010. The company said the $94 million decrease in net sales were affected primarily by higher paper prices.

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Latest NewPage talks wrap up

Cape Breton Post
March 13, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

PORT HAWKESBURY — The first round of talks between the union representing NewPage workers and the prospective buyer for the paper mill has wrapped up, but union officials are being tight-lipped about their progress. Pacific West Commercial Corp., which is associated with Stern Partners, is negotiating to buy the shutter Point Tupper mill.  Talks between the parties began Friday. Steve MacDougall, recording secretary for the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Local 972, said Tuesday, the day after the talks concluded, that the sides have agreed to a strict media blackout while negotiations are ongoing.

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Strait pressure

CBC News
March 13, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

While Metro Transit drivers and Dal profs spent the weekend hammering out the differences with their employers, another weekend bargaining session barely caught anyone’s eye. But it’s one that will impact hundreds of families in the Strait region. The union representing the more than 500 workers at the now closed NewPage paper mill gathered at a hotel in New Glasgow to meet with Ron Stern. Stern is the man behind, Pacific West Commercial Corp, the company chosen by the court-appointed monitor as the final bidder for the Port Hawkesbury operation. When this process started, Stern told the union his first priority was to negotiate cheaper electricity rates with Nova Scotia Power. Meeting with the union now, suggests he either has that deal or is very close to finalizing one.

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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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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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Wood, Paper & Green Building

The Dream Home R-House designed to bring green design to the masses

Toronto Star
March 14, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

The Dream Home R-House featured at this year’s National Home Show is part of an effort by its developer to “bring contemporary green design to the mass market.” …Just because R-House is modern and eco-friendly doesn’t mean it has to be a sterile-looking structure, he stresses. While R-House will incorporate contemporary materials such as glass, concrete and metal, the home’s partition walls are made of cross-laminated timber, which has the appearance of solid wood. And stone is used in the design, as well. “The house is going to have a warm look and feel to it,” Upshall says.

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Survey: Green Usage to Grow in Wood Building Projects

Woodworking Network
March 12, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

Regardless of the current tough economic conditions, both consumers and professionals continue to seek environmentally responsible materials for their building and design choices. So says an informal survey of approximately 3,300 customers, conducted by Krantz Select Woods, an online wood purveyor. Findings from Krantz’s Green Survey, conducted in November, 2011, include: Consumers and businesses still consider green building materials an important component of new build or remodel projects. 

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‘Timbercity’ looks at rising use of wood

AIA Seattle
March 14, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

TimberCity is dedicated to innovative multi-story wood architecture. The exhibit documents recent developments in England, Norway, Sweden, Germany, Austria and Canada, offering an insight not only into wood construction and design, but also regional variations in the culture of wood, both historic and contemporary. In these countries, architects, engineers and designers are challenging conventional notions with novel approaches to age-old problems including durability, stability and fire-safety. 

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Case for wood rebuild is compelling

Timber should be the material of choice for rebuilding after the Canterbury earthquakes, argues Jane Arnott.
Stuff.co.nz
March 14, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

…A new QuakeStar initiative offers fresh hope and relevance throughout the Pacific Rim. It has the potential to unite property developers, building owners, insurers and engineering faculties and companies, as well as the green and sustainability movements….As the operational arm of the Wood Council of New Zealand, NZ Wood is committed to ensuring commercial and residential property developers, investors and homeowners are kept fully informed about the significant advantages of wood as the Canterbury rebuild material of choice. We see the QuakeStar rating as being part of this equation. And we believe safety and wood go hand in hand.

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Eco-architecture arrives in bamboo form

World Architecture News
March 14, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Bamboo is the green material of the 21st century due to its excellent CO2 absorbability and higher rebirth ability of bamboo forest in comparison with other tropical forests. It not only is a decorative material but also plays an important role as main structure. Bamboo material has its own attributes such as: small and uneven dimension, high durability to bend. Due to those special characteristics, Vo Trong Nghia Co. Ltd use bamboo in the curving structure to maximize its potential and cultivate its grace of curvature, which is totally different from other wood materials. With the limitation of length and dimensions of the material, bamboo structure becomes the composition of small pieces. 

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Forestry

Private land may be removed from woodlot licences

Williams Lake Tribune
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The fact that woodlot owners now have the option to remove private land from a woodlot is significant says BC Woodlot Association general manager Brian McNaughton. Responding to the announcement made March 10 by Steve Thomson, minister of forests, lands and natural resource operations, McNaughton, also a woodlot owner in the Cariboo, says he’s happy because the change addresses the federation’s main concern. “We have an aging demographic of woodlot licensee owners that need to plan their estates and plan for the inevitable,” says McNaughton, adding the ability to keep private land in or move it out allows them to better estate plan for their families.

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Work Continues on Community Forest Expansion

HQ Prince George
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

An expansion to the Prince George Community Forest may still be a long ways off, but the three parties involved in discussions have agreed to continue pressing forward. The idea is to expand the Community Forest Agreement to mitigate wildfire risks to help better protect the city by adding 38,000 hectares to the current 4800 hectare forest. Community Forest Manager Dan Adamson says the major stumbling block right now is finding common ground with the local agriculture community.

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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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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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Wolf Lake old growth forest will remain a protected area, government says

The Canadian Press
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

TORONTO – Wolf Lake old growth forest near Sudbury, Ont., will remain a protected area. The Ontario government announced Tuesday that the forest will retain its reserve status, which prohibits the commercial harvesting of old growth red pine. However,exploration and development of existing mining claims and leases are still allowed. The government says it made the decision based on the feedback it received during its consultation about the forest’s future use.

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Ontario scraps plans to expand mining in an old-growth area near Temagami

Toronto Star
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Ontario has scrapped plans to expand mining in an ecological gem that is home to North America’s largest stand of old-growth red pine trees near Temagami. A Star story in December detailed the Ministry of Natural Resources’ proposal to change the “forest reserve” designation for 340 hectares around Wolf Lake — 50 kilometres from Temagami — to “general use,” which would have put a greater focus on mining instead of forests and recreation. The ministry now says it won’t tamper with the government protections around Wolf Lake.

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Wolf Lake supporters claim partial victory

The Sudbury Star
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Those who want to protect Wolf Lake from mining and logging development are claiming a partial victory. The Friends of Temagami announced Tuesday the Ontario government has cancelled a plan to reduce protection at Wolf Lake. However, the group also said that the lake – located in an old-growth red pine forest – is still open to mine exploration

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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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Timber, Water Important Issues For NW GOP Voters

Oregon Public Broadcasting News
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

GOP presidential candidates aren’t talking much about the environment — unless the debate is about energy independence and opening more oil and gas fields. But as GOP hopefuls turn their attention to Oregon, they may find that Republican voters want to hear about other natural resources, too, like timber and water. …Republicans in the Pacific Northwest say they want more control of the region’s natural bounty.  Greg Leo, the chief of staff for Oregon’s Republican Party talked about the environment recently during the Republicans’ Dorchester Conference.  “If we have abundant resources like water and the renewable resource of forests, why aren’t we using them to better economic advantage. I think Republicans have rallied around these issues and we’re looking for ways to put rural Oregon back to work.”

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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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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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More tests done on why trees dying

Jacksonville Daily News
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Scientists returned to Jacksonville last week to follow up on a study last year into why trees are dying at the city’s wastewater treatment facility. Their findings and recommendations will be presented to the city council next month, City Manager Richard Woodruff said Friday. “The city is addressing the issues in a professional and organized manner and the steps taken over the last year have been productive,” Woodruff said. In 2007, city employees began to notice loblolly pine trees in the city’s spray fields were dying.

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Massachusetts fire officials concerned by large amount of debris left in woods …

MassLive.com
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Ravaged last year by a tropical storm, a tornado and a devastating Halloween eve snowstorm, Western Massachusetts forests are littered with fallen trees and branches. Logging companies are urging the state to lift regulations that prevent them from harvesting the downed timber on certain state-owned lands, but an environmental group is fighting the request, saying it would open the door to harmful logging practices in state forests. 

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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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Brazil Slowing Forest Destruction Cuts Greenhouse Gas Burden

Bloomberg BusinessWeek
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry, Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

As world political and business leaders ready for the Rio+20 U.N. sustainability conference in June, Brazil’s leaders are debating policy changes that could jeopardize the leadership it has earned from reducing Amazon deforestation and greenhouse gas emissions. Since hosting the 1992 “Earth Summit,” which produced the first international agreement on forest protection, Brazil has risen from the ninth- to sixth-largest economy, ahead of the U.K. and just behind France. Deforestation in the Amazon last year fell to the lowest rate since government began monitoring the world’s biggest rainforest in 1988. The rate is down almost 80 percent in six years.

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Nat Geo Dissociates From Asian Pulp And Paper Due To Logging Concerns

Asian Scientist Magazine
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

National Geographic Society (NGS) has publicly broken ties with Asian Pulp and Paper (APP) after a Greenpeace report revealed that the company was using endangered Indonesian ramin trees in its production line.  APP, a goliath in the paper industry, has been targeted by numerous environmental groups over the years for relying on rainforest and peat land destruction for its paper products. This practice likely endangers wildlife such as tigers and orangutans and emits significant amounts of carbon into the environment.  Evidence of such activities is slowly surfacing – WWF recently revealed that APP claims that its operations were independently certified as sustainable were not backed up by any of the standard setting or certifying companies it mentioned.

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Surging demand for vegetable oil drives rainforest destruction

Mongabay.com
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Surging demand for vegetable oil has emerged as an important driver of tropical deforestation over the past two decades and is threatening biodiversity, carbon stocks, and other ecosystem functions in some of the world’s most critical forest areas, warns a report published last week by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS). But the report, titled Recipes for Success: Solutions for Deforestation-Free Vegetable Oils, sees some reason for optimism, including emerging leadership from some producers, rising demand for “greener” products from buyers, new government policies to monitor deforestation and shift cropland expansion to non-forest area, and partnerships between civil society and key private sector players to improve the sustainability of vegetable oil production.

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Logging to resume in Vic possum habitat

Ninemsn
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Logging is set to resume in the Victorian habitat of an endangered possum species severely depleted by the Black Saturday bushfires. Environmentalists claimed the logging of forest near Toolangi, northeast of Melbourne, posed a serious threat to the Leadbeater’s possum, whose numbers halved to 2000 in the 2009 bushfires. Logging at one of three proposed sites began last year but was stopped following a legal challenge from the MyEnvironment group, which wanted state-owned timber company VicForests to permanently halt logging in the forest.

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DENR 7 Bares Full Implementation Of NAILTF’s No-Logging Resolution

Manila Bulletin
March 14, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

MANDAUE CITY, Cebu – Department of Environment and Natural Resources 7 Regional Executive Director Maximo O. Dichoso bared the full implementation of Resolution No. 6 by the National Anti-Illegal Logging Task Force which started last March 1. Said resolution provides that logs and lumber derived from the country’s natural and residual forests and which have been confiscated shall be considered state property. The same resolution states that no DENR official or employee is authorized to issue any processing, milling, and transport permit for logs and lumber derived from said natural or residual forests except those duly exempt under Executive Order (EO) No. 23, dated February 1, 2011.

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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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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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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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Wash. biomass study: ample supply for existing, new users

Biomass Power and Thermal
March 13, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

Washington State Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark has unveiled the results of a comprehensive state forest biomass study, findings of which indicate that only about one-third of the state’s commercially available biomass is currently utilized. Goldmark began a March 13 press conference by explaining what the study considered to be biomass—a byproduct of routine timber harvests, largely composed of tree limbs, tops and other wood waste created during the processing of trees prior to hauling the logs off site. “Until recently, biomass was piled in slash piles adjacent to roads where logs were hauled off site, and then burned on the spot,” he said, emphasizing that biomass is not saw logs.

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State would increase harvest of logging leftovers for fuel

MyNorthwest.com
March 13, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

The state of Washington thinks tens of millions of dollars might be going up in smoke each year on state-managed timber lands.  Forest biomass is the stuff left behind after logging operations and is usally burned as slash. Olympic Peninsula logger Bill Herman says there’s value in turning tree limbs and other wood waste into fuel for nearby mills and other local businesses. …State Lands Commissioner Peter Goldmark released a study Tuesday revealing that just a small percentage of available forest biomass is commercially harvested.

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State DNR biomass report says slash extraction won’t hurt forests

Peninsula Daily
March 13, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

A state Department of Natural Resources study has concluded that 3 million tons of bone-dry wood slash and other wood waste — double the existing amount that’s extracted — can be removed from Washington forests for biomass fuel production without harming forest health. Released Tuesday, the Washington Forest Biomass Supply Assessment was prepared by the University of Washington, College of the Environment, School of Environmental and Forest Sciences and TSS Consultants of Rancho Cordova, Calif., with financial support from the U.S. Forest Service….Hermann said at the video conference that his company’s biomass-related activities have created 25 to 30 new jobs, about one-quarter of his workforce. “During the past few years, it’s been a stabilization function of our business,” Hermann said in a later interview.

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An under-used resource in Washington: forest biomass | KPLU …

KPLU.org
March 13, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

Renewable energy is growing on trees in Washington – and right now, much of it is going up in smoke. That’s the word from Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark, who has just released the results of a study on forest biomass. Goldmark says industry is currently using only about a third of the woody biomass that could be sustainably harvested and then converted into liquid fuel or heat for electricity generation.

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SRS officials celebrate biomass facility opening

Aiken Standard
March 13, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

Officials at the Savannah River Site celebrated the operational startup of the Biomass Cogeneration Facility on Monday, a project completed through a private-public partnership expected to result in $944 million in cost-savings to the site over 19 years. Contractor Ameresco’s biomass facility, a 34-acre operation that uses woodchips and tires from the areas surrounding the site to put through a process to create steam, was constructed through a 19-year, $795-million energy-savings performance contract to replace a 1950s-era coal-burning powerhouse that was due for replacement.

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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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Brazil Slowing Forest Destruction Cuts Greenhouse Gas Burden

Bloomberg BusinessWeek
March 13, 2012
Category: Forestry, Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

As world political and business leaders ready for the Rio+20 U.N. sustainability conference in June, Brazil’s leaders are debating policy changes that could jeopardize the leadership it has earned from reducing Amazon deforestation and greenhouse gas emissions. Since hosting the 1992 “Earth Summit,” which produced the first international agreement on forest protection, Brazil has risen from the ninth- to sixth-largest economy, ahead of the U.K. and just behind France. Deforestation in the Amazon last year fell to the lowest rate since government began monitoring the world’s biggest rainforest in 1988. The rate is down almost 80 percent in six years.

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EU brings farms and forests into low-carbon plans

BBC News
March 13, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

The EU has called on European governments to include data on CO2 emissions from farming and forestry in their efforts to tackle climate change. The draft law on accounting rules is in line with what was agreed at the Durban climate change conference in December. But the EU does not yet plan to include farming and forestry in its CO2 Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).

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Commission proposal to improve greenhouse-gas rules for forestry and agriculture

New Europe
March 13, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

The European Commission has adopted a new proposal on accounting for greenhouse-gas emissions in a step towards incorporating removals and emissions from forests and agriculture into the EU’s climate policy. …  Forests and agricultural lands cover over 75% of EU territory, trapping large stocks of carbon from escaping into the atmosphere. Increasing the amount of carbon trapped by a mere .1% through such measures as an improved forest or grassland management would remove the annual emissions of 100 million cars from the atmosphere.

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