Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: March 27, 2012

Froggy Foibles

Domination of male trees creates sick urban society

Calgary Herald
March 26, 2012
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: Canada

EDMONTON — As people with pollen allergies (sniff) already know, botanical sexism is alive and growing. Most North American cities plant more male bushes, trees and plants than their female counterparts. They do this because pollen-producing male trees don’t bear fruit or make seeds that drop on the ground the way female trees do. The mess the females create can clog drains and create sewage problems, cause people to slip and fall — the city would be liable for injuries — and attract wildlife and wasps.

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Living a fairytale?

Luxury treehouses fast becoming the ultimate hideaway for adults
Daily Mail
March 24, 2012
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: United States

Fall City, Washington – You might think treehouses are just for kids – but it seems you are never too old for a tree top cabin. Looking like it is straight out of a fairy tale such as Hansel and Gretel – the snug wooden house is purpose built, for the perfect hideaway at the bottom of the garden. 

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Business & Politics

Here’s Why Universal Forest Products’ Earnings Are Worse Than They Look

Daily Finance
March 26, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

It takes money to make money… When judging a company’s prospects, how quickly it turns cash outflows into cash inflows can be just as important as how much profit it’s booking in the accounting fantasy world we call “earnings.”… Today, we’ll see how it applies to Universal Forest Products. On a 12-month basis, the trend at Universal Forest Products looks less than great. At 57.9 days, it is 7.9 days worse than the five-year average of 49.9 days.

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Analyst reports: Western Forest

By Fiona Anderson
Vancouver Sun (blog)
March 26, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Lots of B.C. companies were included in analysts’ reports this morning… CIBC analyst Mark Kennedy is starting coverage of Western Forest Products (WEF-TSX) with a sector outperformer rating and a 12- to 18- month target price of $1.55. “Western is the largest tenure holder on the B.C. Coast providing a unique and high-value fibre base for its diversified lumber products,” Kennedy wrote.

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CIBC Starts Conifex Timber AsSector Outperformer $12.25 PT

iStock Analyst
March 26, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

CIBC World Markets Inc. analyst Mark Kennedy initiated coverage of Conifex Timber Inc. with a “Sector Outperformer” rating and $12.25 price target… Conifex has a strategy to maximize returns on all the fibre contained in each log it processes. To that end, it is developing a 36MW bioenergy project that will utilize the majority of its bark waste and provide renewable power to the B.C. grid under a 20-year EPA, said Kennedy.

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COFI Welcomes Prime Minister’s Commitment to Free Trade With Japan

Council of Forest Industries
press release
March 26, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER — The Council of Forest Industries (COFI) today welcomed the announcement by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and International Trade Minister Ed Fast that Canada will be pursuing a free trade agreement with Japan. “Japan has been a major customer for our lumber and panel manufacturers for several decades,” stated John Allan, COFI President and CEO. “The partnership forged with Japanese clients is founded on mutual respect and recognition by both sides that the products Canada produces and systems Japan builds are ideal combinations. A free trade agreement can only strengthen and further solidify this relationship.”

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Fibrek sale reviewed in courts

National Post
March 26, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

The list of regulators and/or courts involved in the battle for ownership of Fibrek Inc., — a Quebec-based pulp producer that has received two offers, one hostile and one friendly — continues to grow. Shareholders may be forced to accept a lower offer, not the greatest argument for the wellbeing of the capital markets.

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Mill retirees discuss pension shortfall

CBC News
March 26, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Corner Brook Pulp and Paper pensioners met on Monday to discuss the shortfall in their retirement fund. Kruger — which operates the privately owned mill — met with the pensioners’ association last week telling, them it wants to extend repaying the $19-million it owes the pension fund, but workers will have the final say. Two-thirds of current workers and pensioners would need to agree for the proposal to be adopted.

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3 die, 3 injured in crash that closes U.S. 60 in Powhatan

Richmond Times Dispatch
March 27, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

POWHATAN — Three people were killed and three injured Monday in a head-on crash on U.S. 60 in Powhatan County that created a swath of destruction several hundred yards long and closed a narrow stretch of the road for much of the day. The wreck, involving two westbound trucks carrying treated sludge and three eastbound tractor-trailers hauling pine logs and cut lumber, left one vehicle in flames, logs piled 5 feet deep on one part of the road, and a crash scene so devastating that it took rescuers nearly five hours to remove the last of the bodies.

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Softwood imports defy housing slump

WA Today
March 25, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

DESPITE the fall in the Australian housing market, softwood imports continue to rise, if only marginally, with Europe now the biggest source of imported timber, says consultant URS.
New dwelling approvals in Australia fell 12.8 per cent in the December quarter to 33,500, but, over the same period, softwood timber imports rose by 1.1 per cent to 158,000 cubic metres, according to the URS Timber Market Survey for the December quarter… The poor outlook for housing was underlined this month when the Australian Bureau of Statistics reported that the number of home loan approvals dipped 1.2 per cent in January, the first fall in 10 months.

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Timber Investing – March 2012

FT Adviser
March 26, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

With only 13 per cent of the world’s surfaces covered with forests and growing concerns over deforestation and illegal logging, combined with the spectre of global warming, supply is severely restricted. One of the wood types most readily associated with deforestation in recent years has been teak. With a high natural oil content, the wood is renowned for its strength and durability, and not only provides investors with a commodity that is growing in demand, but one which can help to protect the environment.

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‘Last throw of the dice’ for Gunns after Chandler pulls out

New Zealand Herald
March 27, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Woodchipper Gunns may seek to raise about A$400 million ($512 million) to cut debt and support the development of its A$2.5 billion pulp mill project, in what one analyst describes as its “last throw of the dice”. The amount of the proposed new capital raising is much larger than the A$280 million capital raising previously proposed by Gunns, which was derailed when New Zealand billionaire Richard Chandler pulled out. 

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

The Rise of Wooden Skyscrapers

Ambitious, eco-conscious architects are turning to wood to build the next generation of green high-rises
Construction Digital
March 26, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, United States

For the last century or more, the marriage of steel and the building sector has transformed skylines the world over as high-rises grew in both size and ambitiousness of design. The strength of both steel and concrete, as well as their advantages in fire safety, helped to quickly usurp the role of structural wood in the construction industry, save for small-scale residential and business projects. As global warming starts to make an impact on policy and the collective consciousness, though, forward thinking architects and builders are looking for ways to combat the massive carbon emissions produced in the manufacturing of both steel and concrete. For some, the reversion to wood-based structures – coupled with 21st century advancements – is gaining appeal, fast.

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Forest Certification Gaining Traction in Green Building

By Jason Metnick
Green Lodging News
March 26, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, United States

Third-party forest certification has long been an excellent—and simple—way for the hospitality industry to show it is buying wood, paper and print products from responsible sources. And a growing awareness of the benefits of independent certification is making it even more accessible. Green building is a good example. Green rating tools that value wood as a critical component of environmentally progressive architectural design have been offering credits for certified wood for some time now; and most recognize all credible forest certification standards in their programs and policies.

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Construction site covered walkways made from old shipping containers

Structures safer, more attractive than scaffolding
Vancouver Sun
March 26, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

.. Currently, the city requires developers to construct wood hoarding to protect pedestrians. After construction is complete, it all goes into the garbage, Lubarski said. “These units here are designed for green buildings, for new buildings that are being designed,” he said. “They’re reusable, there’s no waste, and there’s no three-week sidewalk closures. And, of course, safety is a big piece of the puzzle.”

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Post-Frame Fire Walls: The Economical Alternative?

Buildings
March 26, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

The National Frame Building Association has successfully tested a post-frame 3-hour fire wall system that can now be incorporated into a post-frame building without having to seek out expensive traditional non-wood framing systems. Full-scale testing of a 3-hour post-frame fire wall in December 2011 by Underwriters Laboratories, Northbrook, IL, showed for the first time that a wood-constructed assembly is a viable alternative to a traditional block wall system. The post-frame building system is categorized as a Type 5 structure under the International Building Code.

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Quake-friendly wood firm gets first orders in Christchurch

National Business Review
March 27, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Structural Timber Innovation Co, which makes engineered construction lumber able to stand up to earthquakes, has won its first two orders for buildings in Christchurch.The company… is marketing its Expan product made from multiple layers of thin laminated veneer timber. The Christchurch projects add to seven existing buildings using the engineered wood in New Zealand and Structural Timber says sales are set to grow as more than 260 companies across Australasia have signed up licences to use the Expan technology. Using Expan wood costs about the same as building in steel or concrete for an open plan low-medium rise building, the company says… “Seismic qualities are what everyone is looking for in this part of the world,” said Structural Timber chief executive Robert Finch.

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Timber paves way for quake-safe country

Timber paves way for quake-safe country
Scoop Independent News
March 26, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Two buildings soon to be constructed in Christchurch could lead the way for a seismically safer New Zealand. The Garden City will soon be home to two commercial buildings built of EXPAN, a revolutionary post-tensioned laminated veneer lumber (LVL) building system that makes lightweight, seismically safe multi- story timber buildings commercially viable… The Christchurch timber buildings will be hugely significant examples of cutting-edge seismic design, and damage avoidance technology, Dr Finch says.

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Forestry

Norm Miller on Far North Act

Net Newsledger
March 25, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

It’s easy for Mr. McGuinty to draw a line and say, “Forget about that place,” but what about the people that live in the north?… Imagine if you tried to do that in southern Ontario: declare half of southern Ontario off limits—no agriculture, no housing, no industry. There would be a revolt here… This province was built on a legacy of mining and forestry, and it could do so again, responsibly. There are tens of thousands of jobs that could be realized in the north, but not if Mr. McGuinty continues to sever off huge tracts of Ontario and then subject them to economic ruin. What is the logic for arbitrarily deciding that 50% of the north is off limits to forestry, mining and other activities?

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Keep Ontario forestry competitive, says industry group

Northern Ontario Business
March 26, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East

It’s spring and signs of recovery in the forestry sector are everywhere. With the province possibly entering an age of fiscal austerity, the Ontario Forest Industries Association (OFIA) is sending a message to Queen’s Park not to reverse policy and download costs onto industry. The association said the changes in policy since 2005 have made Ontario a much better place to do business…

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Forests of the United States: Understanding Trends and Challenges

Dovetail Partners Inc.
March 27, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Is the forest area of the U.S. shrinking or expanding? Does annual tree growth exceed harvest? Is the amount of wood in our forests increasing or decreasing? Are our forests sustainable? The answers to these and related questions contain “good news” as well as some “not so good news.” In part, the answers depend on your perspective (local vs. national), timeframe (decades or centuries vs. a few years) and definitions (e.g., What is a forest? What is sustainability?). This report is a brief overview of the status of U.S. forests and an update to an earlier Dovetail report. This report is predominantly based on two recent publications from the U.S. Forest Service – The National Report on Sustainable Forests-2010 (published in 2011) and Forest Resources of the United States-2007 (published in 2009).

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Sequoia Forest plan ready for updating

Work will begin on 24-year-old plan within 6 months
Porterville Recorder
March 26, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

With Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announcing Friday the USDA’s final Planning Rule for America’s 193-million acre National Forest System, Sequoia National Forest officials can now go to work. … Sequoia National Forest Supervisor Kevin Elliott said work on updating its plan will begin late this summer or early fall, once the Sequoia National Monument plan is finalized. That plan has been in the works since President Bill Clinton designated a third of the Sequoia National Forest a national monument in 2000.

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1 person found dead in Colorado wildfire

Associated Press
March 27, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

CONIFER, Colo. — One person has been found dead in a Colorado wildfire that burned more than 4½ square miles and destroyed at least five homes in the mountains southwest of Denver, authorities said Monday. …Up to a dozen smaller fires were reported from the northeast Colorado plains to the southern part of the state. There were no immediate reports of injuries or structures destroyed in any of the other fires.  The largest fire was burning about 25 miles southwest of Denver in a rugged, largely rural area where the altitude ranges from 7,000 to 8,200 feet.

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Bitterroot National Forest: Logging for stewardship project nears end

The Missoulian
March 26, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

DARBY – Logging trucks are busy this spring hauling out the last loads from the Bitterroot National Forest’s largest timber stewardship project to date. When completed sometime next year, the Trapper Bunkhouse project will have accomplished a variety of vegetation management on 5,800 acres of national forest lands just west of Darby. Most of the commercial logging on the project should wrap up sometime this spring, said Andrew Tasler, a vegetative management officer with the Bitterroot National Forest.

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Logging work helps habitat, slows bugs in northcentral Montana

Great Falls Tribune
March 26, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS — A 66,000-pound mechanical tree harvester grabbed bug-killed trees as if they were toothpicks. Then, in a blink of an eye, the trees are sawed and lying on the floor of the Lewis and Clark National Forest. Using logging, fire and road obliteration, the U.S. Forest Service is attempting to improve wildlife habitat, reduce wildfire intensity and soil erosion, and slow the spread of mountain pine beetle on 17,600 acres 10 miles north of here. The project is called Mass Geis, after two tributaries of the Smith River.

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Gazelle beetles are latest European import to Oregon — a worrisome, adaptable, fast-moving insect

The Oregonian
March 26, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

As far as anyone knows, the U.S. had zero European gazelle beetles before 2007… Now they’re staging a full-on invasion. The exotic newcomers have spread across 10 Oregon counties and into Southwest Washington. At several sites, overwhelming numbers appear to be displacing native ground beetles. The gazelle beetles adapt to a variety of landscapes: from heavily disturbed industrial sites in Portland and Willamette Valley farm fields to wild mountain meadows and old-growth forests in the Coast Range. 

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Minn. timber harvest falls as logging industry follows industry decline from housing crash

Associated Press
March 26, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

VIRGINIA, Minn. – Northern Minnesota’s logging industry is suffering along with the rest of the national wood products industry, but leaders of trade groups say loggers who’ve held on so far are likely to survive. Since the downward trend started in 2006, the timber harvest volume in Minnesota has dropped by between 25 percent and 30 percent because of closures or cutbacks at several board plants, paper mills and numerous smaller sawmills, said Scott Dane, executive director of the Associated Contract Loggers and Truckers of Minnesota… Wayne Brandt, executive vice president of Minnesota Forestry Industries, said the drop was driven largely by the crash of new home construction. 

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Opinions mixed on new US Forest Service planning rule

The Missoulian
March 26, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

The U.S. Forest Service’s recently released planning rule could turn the agency into a more efficient decisionmaker or create a department of perpetual planning, depending on who you listen to. “We are ready to start a new era of planning that takes less time, costs less money and provides stronger protections for our lands and water,” Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell said in an email announcing the final version of the rule. “This new rule will bring 21st century thinking to a process that is sorely needed to protect and preserve our 193 million acres of amazing forests and grasslands.” Critics have been equally expansive. Andy Stahl of the Forest Service Employees for Environmental Ethics predicted the process “would die of its own weight.”

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Opposition wants peace deal ditched

ABC News Australia
March 26, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The Tasmanian Opposition has described the forest peace deal as a disaster for jobs in the state. Spokeswoman Elise Archer said the long-awaited West Report, compiled by academic Professor Jonathon West, was proof the federally-funded peace deal would kill jobs. The report released on Friday found 572,000 hectares of native forest had conservation value.

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Leadbeater’s possum faces ‘managed extinction’ without action

Sydney Morning Herald
March 27, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Australia will witness the ”managed extinction” of one of its rarest mammals, Leadbeater’s possum, unless the federal government intervenes to save its old growth mountain ash habitat, a leading scientist says… ”Unless we move quickly, we’ll see this animal go extinct within 25 years”.

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Govt keeps forestry report under wraps

The State Government is keeping secret a key review of Tasmania’s forestry industry.
ABC News Australia
March 27, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Professor Jonathan West was appointed by the State and Federal Governments to head a comprehensive independent review to guide the forest peace deal. But the long-awaited release of the 2,000-page report last Friday came without Professor West’s final summary of the findings… The State Government is not saying why it has withheld the information.

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Tasmanian logging double the sustainable rate: report

Sydney Morning Herald
March 27, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A report key to settling Tasmania’s forests conflict has found the government agency, Forestry Tasmania, is overseeing the logging of public native forests at double the sustainable rate. An independent verification group commissioned by state and federal government governments said the agency was far exceeding sustainable quotas for the main forest products – sawlogs and veneer peeler logs.

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Task Force boost to sustainable forestry

UK Forestry Commission
March 27, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The Government has announced it will implement a host of the forestry sector’s own recommendations to boost sustainable forestry and the green economy in its response to the Forestry Regulatory Task Force published today, 27 March 2012. The Task Force identified more than 40 ways to make it easier for those who want to create, and sustainably manage, woods and forests in England. The Government endorsed the Task Force’s view on forestry’s significant value and the opportunity to realise more of its potential, committing to continued close working with the sector.

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The corporate assassin

Sydney Morning Herald
March 26, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Geoff Cousins is a ferocious consumer of words and in June 2007 he was tucked up in the loft of his Sydney house reading a long, angry article by the author Richard Flanagan in The Monthly. It was about the destruction of Tasmania’s native forests and the takeover of the state by the timber company Gunns. At the time, Gunns was a darling of the share market and by far the largest company in Tasmania… Its chairman, John Gay, was the most powerful man on the island and enjoyed a cosy relationship with the premier, Paul Lennon – so cosy that a building company owned by Gunns was renovating Lennon’s historic house. It appeared inevitable that Gunns would get the approvals and finance to build the controversial billion-dollar pulp mill in the Tamar Valley in the state’s north. For those who opposed the development, it seemed all hope was lost.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Study: Protecting old-growth can stave off global warming

Mail Tribune
March 26, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

If global warming occurs in the coming years as many scientists predict, the stands of big mature trees on local public forestlands could help save our bacon. That’s the upshot of a recently released peer-reviewed study of the Klamath-Siskiyou region in southwest Oregon and northwestern California by a University of Central Florida scientist and the Ashland-based Geos Institute.

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Where did the US forest biomass/carbon go?

By Christopher Woodall
Journal of Forestry
March 26, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

In Apr. 2012, with the submission of the 1990 –2010 US Greenhouse Gas Inventory to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the of?cial estimates of aboveground live tree carbon stocks within managed forests of the United States will drop by approximately 14%, compared with last year’s inventory. It does not stop there, dead wood carbon stocks will drop by 16%. While our estimates of stocks will decrease, the annual sequestration rate (1990 –2010) will show a slight increase, similar to previous submissions. 

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Inventory examines energy potential of Neb. trees

Appleton Post Crescent
March 26, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

LINCOLN, Neb. — Nebraska officials are taking inventory of forest resources to assess the state’s trees’ potential for providing fuel for biomass energy projects… Adam Smith with the Nebraska Forest Service tells the Lincoln Journal Star that woody biomass is an underutilized resource that can be used to heat buildings. And using wood chips as a source of heat or to generate electricity can be significantly cheaper than other options. “Nebraska-grown wood is an underutilized, plentiful, economic energy resource that can stimulate and revitalize our rural economies,” Smith said.

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Madison’s Virent produces jet fuel from pine tree waste

Wisconsin State Journal
March 27, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

Virent is flying high after earning praise from an arm of the Air Force for a bio jet fuel made from pine tree wood chips. But it could be years before the biofuel might be used by commercial airlines, an expert said. Virent, of Madison, and Virdia, based in California, Virginia and Israel, have been working together since January 2011. Virdia’s CASE, or cold acid solvent extraction, process transformed pine tree wood chips into sugars, then Virent’s BioForming process turned the sugars into jet fuel.

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MoU between Forest department and Merlyn Woods rejected

Business Recorder
March 27, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Sarhad Awami Forestry Ittehad (SAFI), an alliance of private forests’ stakeholders of Malakand and Hazara divisions, has unanimously rejected the signing of the memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Forest Department of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Merlyn Woods, London and called for the immediate cancellation of the agreement. … The Department of Forest, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has signed an MoU with Merlyn Woods Company Pvt (London UK) for leasing out in excess of 300,000 hectares for 40 years with grant in aid of Pound Sterling 12 million at a ratio of 20:80 of Pakistan’s most important tracts of forests for carbon credit sales/purchase under the Reducing Emission from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) Programme.

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General

Redstone Report: Controlled forest burns

WAFF
March 26, 2012
Category: Uncategorised
Region: US East, United States

Huntsvile, AL – In an effort to manage the thousands of acres of unimproved land on Redstone Arsenal, forestry officials set prescribed, controlled burns each year. Crews have just wrapped up the 2012 burn season. Redstone Arsenal Forester Greg Hicks said it is something they have to do manage the acreage under their domain. “It’s great for wildlife. It’s great for the mission out here because it reduces the hazard,” said Hicks. Animals are attracted to the new green plant growth that appears soon after a tract is burned.

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