Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: April 3, 2012

Froggy Foibles

Best pictures from the past 24 hours

Man reads the news in a wood chair in Stanley Park
Globe and Mail
April 3, 2012
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: Canada

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Business & Politics

Most North American timber companies show decline in Q4

EUWID Wood Products and Panels
April 3, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

The majority of the large Canadian and US timber companies had to put up with a fall in turnover and financial results in the fourth quarter of 2011 as well. The weak business trend shown by the timber operations as early as the first three quarters of last year has continued towards the end of the year, even though residential building was stable in Canada and improved a little in the US. In the USA, the comparatively mild weather coupled with a slight overall economic improvement led to a rise in building starts by 8% in the fourth quarter. 

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Sino-Forest is up for sale, but will there be buyers?

Toronto Star
April 2, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

The For Sale sign has gone up on the embattled timber company Sino-Forest Corp., but finding the right buyer won’t be easy. And its biggest shareholder the Richard Chandler Corp., which owns nearly 20 per cent of the company, has signalled it believes restructuring is the way to go. Chandler has assembled its own team, led by forestry expert David Walker, to propose a restructuring plan for Sino-Forest.

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Pensions for up to 1,200 at risk if Catalyst restructuring bid derails

By GORDON HAMILTON
Vancouver Sun
March 31, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

For 1,200 pensioners and employees of pulp and paper giant Catalyst Paper, the battle underway in B.C. Supreme Court to restructure the company’s overwhelming debt load is not just about how much of a haircut Catalyst’s New York bondholders will take. It’s about their own retirement and the money they’ve paid into a pension plan that could become a casualty of a bitter restructuring fight. The pensioners were salaried employees. And a $73.5-million liability in their pension plan may not be honoured, according to documents filed in court. Catalyst is attempting to restructure a debt of more than $800 million under the federal Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act.

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$25 billion over 8 years to improve BC overseas trade

CBC.ca
April 2, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

B.C. Premier Christy Clark released details of $25 billion public and private sector plan to expand trade with Asia by improving the province’s transportation network. Clark said that the spending is needed to increase trucking capacity on highways, rail capacity along existing rail corridors, air cargo movement, and both bulk and container terminal capacity at marine ports in Vancouver and Prince Rupert.

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BC sawmills say log exports hurt business at home

Story includes CTV Video report
CTV.ca
April 3, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Sawmill operators in B.C. are asking for the province’s help to bring in more logs instead of sending the wood away as exports. Teal-Jones sawmill manager Randy Jackson told CTV News that his business is now slower than it’s ever been before. “Year to date, we’ve been down 33-and-a-half shifts, to where the guys have been out of work due to lack of logs coming in to keep the mill going,” Jackson said. The Surrey mill gets a certain amount of wood from its own tree farms, but the rest is purchased on the open market. According to B.C. policy, any wood deemed surplus can be sent overseas, a procedure that Jackson believes is hurting businesses at home.

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Mangakahia Forest may be sold as SinoForest restructures

By Paul McBeth
Scoop Independent News
April 2, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

About 11,000 hectares of Northland forestry may be end up on the block as Sino-Forest, which owns the block through a Hong Kong investment vehicle, seeks a buyer for its assets after filing for bankruptcy protection last week. The Toronto Stock Exchange-listed company is seeking to sell its assets, which include the Mangakahia Forest through its majority stake in Hong Kong Exchange-listed Greenheart Group, after reaching a deal with about 40 percent of its noteholders. Sino Forest’s creditors stand to acquire the assets if a buyer can’t be found.

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Company confirms layoff plans to state

Dayton Daily News
April 2, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

Paper producer Appleton has given Ohio government notice of its layoff plans in West Carrollton. Appleton said 330 workers will begin to be permanently laid off … In late February, Appleton said it will expand a base paper-supply agreement with Canadian firm Domtar, already a longtime supplier of uncoated paper to Wisconsin-based Appleton. That agreement eliminated the need to make paper at Appleton’s West Alex Bell Road plant — and the need for 330 employees.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Fixing The Cutting-Edge: Innovation Meets Table Saw

NPR
April 2, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

When you think of cutting-edge technology, power tools don’t generally come to mind. Take the table saw: Many woodworkers are using 30-year-old saws in their wood shops and, among the major tool companies, there hasn’t been much innovation since those decades-old tools came out. But more and more inventors are trying to make these saws safer — and David Butler is one of them… Butler calls his system the Whirlwind. It uses a blade guard cover and a vacuum that sucks away sawdust while you cut wood. If you touch the blade guard while the saw is running, it sets off a sensor that triggers the safety brake.

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Forestry Group Cites ‘Artificial Barriers’ In Green Building LEED Ratings

Mortgage Orb
April 2, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

The U.S. Green Building Council has come under criticism from the Sustainable Forestry Initiative, which claims that latest draft of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design ratings tool creates “artificial barriers” that exclude “75 percent of North America’s certified forests from the LEED credits that deal with ‘responsible extraction of raw materials”… The SFI argues that having its certified forests excluded from the LEED ratings tool does not benefit the green building movement.

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Forest products industry workers applaud Senator Hatfield for protecting rural jobs and renewable energy

American Recycler Newspaper
April 2, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

Washington State Governor Chris Gregoire has signed SB 5575, sponsored by Senator Hatfield, which helps preserve the jobs offered by the forest products industry. Organic by-products of the pulping process now qualify as renewable energy. In addition, the legislation changes the law to provide adequate recognition for biomass energy facilities as renewable, regardless of the date they were first constructed… The initiative language also excluded certain renewable resources, such as spent pulping liquors.

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Quality drive set to benefit wood reprocessors

edie.net
April 2, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Wood recyclers have received a boost with the launch of a new standard that guarantees the quality of recovered wood products. The PAS 111 specification, launched by WRAP today (April 2), sets reprocessing requirements for wood recyclers and will increase customer confidence in the quality of those products that comply with the standard.  There are already strong markets for higher grade recycled wood – in applications including panel board, landscaping and animal bedding – and PAS 111 will help to expand these. 

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Wood Construction Roadshow creates buzz in Finland

Invest in EU
April 2, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

New apartment blocks, façade repairs and additional storeys in existing concrete apartment buildings offer good opportunities for wood construction. The recent Wood Construction Roadshow in Finland attracted almost 2400 construction industry professionals to a series of 13 seminars around the country, demonstrating the growing interest in wood construction among municipal decision-makers, planners, developers, architects and construction companies. “The main theme of Finnish wood construction can be defined as the combination of high quality architecture and design with modern, environmentally aware and energy efficient construction,” said Jyri Häkämies, Minister for Economic Affairs, at the closing seminar of the roadshow in Vantaa.

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Booming bamboo: The next super-material?

BBC News
April 3, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Bamboo is being hailed as a new super material, with uses ranging from textiles to construction. It also has the potential to absorb large amounts of carbon dioxide, the biggest greenhouse gas, and provide some of the world’s poorest people with cash. Bamboo’s image is undergoing a transformation. Some now call it “the timber of the 21st Century”. Today you can buy a pair of bamboo socks or use it as a fully load-bearing structural beam in your house – and it is said that there are some 1,500 uses for it in between.

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The (re-)discovery of a versatile, multifunctional material: Wood research at Empa

Materials Views (blog)
April 3, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

For 75 years Empa has been conducting research on all aspects relating to wood. Beginning with an investigation into the properties of various types of indigenous woods, today this has grown into a research area with many branches – from fundamental research on the structure of wood to chemically or biologically modified woods, novel wood fiber products and surface technologies. Empa scientists examine each of the material’s properties in minute detail and use these results to develop next-generation techniques of utilizing wood such as in the areas of acoustic insulation and structural engineering.

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METSÄ WOOD KERTO IS FIT TO CREATE UNDULATING ROOF

Specification Online
April 3, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Metsä Wood (formerly Finnforest) Kerto, a laminated veneer lumber (LVL), has been utilised at the newly transformed sports centre at St Mary’s University College, Twickenham. Part of the transformation included a new fitness suite with an undulating roof. For this, Kerto engineered timber provided the ideal solution thanks to its strength to weight ratio and remarkable versatility along with its visual appeal.

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Walk on wood

Express and Star
April 3, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Wooden floors are practical, look fantastic and help to sell homes because they have universal appeal. If you’re lucky enough to have period floorboards in your home, you’ve got a head start, but if not, installing a wooden floor is easier than ever. Laminate flooring, which has a picture of wood printed on to the boards, used to be the easiest way to get the look, but laminate isn’t as fashionable as it once was. If you want the real deal, the good news is that other types of wooden flooring are now as easy to install as laminate.

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Dubai International Wood & Machinery Show 2012 opens

Emirates 24/7
April 3, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Abdul Rahman Saif Al Ghurair, Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI), opened today the 7th edition of “Dubai International Wood & Wood Machinery Show 2012″ – the leading event in the region of the timber trade and machinery, in the “Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre” on an area of ??9000 square meters and will run until April 5th. This year edition is the largest since its first edition in 2005 as this year show will include more than 420 exhibitors from 34 countries around the world which will strengthen its position as the leading specialized exhibition timber in the region through the creation of investment opportunities appropriate and business potential for the participants.

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M&S set to launch flagship eco-store

edie.net
April 2, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Marks & Spencer has unveiled plans for its largest sustainable store yet as part of its Plan A commitment in Cheshire Oaks near Ellesmere Port.  The design uses a range of sustainable technologies and practices, such as low carbon and carbon absorbing products, including; 100% FSC-certified engineered softwood timber and hemp and lime external wall panels.  In addition, M&S claims the store is on track to achieve, and in some cases exceed, a number of other sustainable and environmental standards, including; sourcing all timber from sustainable sources, achieving a BREEAM excellent rating and for 70% of the store’s heating to come from heat reclamation and a biomass boiler. 

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‘Excellent’ rated care home is a UK first

Green Building Press
April 2, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

The UK’s first care home for older people to be rated BREEAM Excellent is … in East Sussex. …Throughout the development process, an ecologist was employed to ensure the new care home enhances the ecological value of the site… Materials with higher sustainability credentials and increased recycled content were specified. Sustainably-sourced timber from certified, well-managed forests was used throughout the building, as well as insulation with lower environmental impacts.

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Forestry

Resource industry ripe for innovation, report says

Globe and Mail
April 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

It’s the classic dig about Canadians — that far too much of what we do is focused on low-value extraction and export of natural resources. To an extent, it’s true. Resources account for 11 per cent of the country’s GDP, half of exports, 37 per cent of foreign investment and a quarter of capital investment. Nearly 800,000 Canadians work directly in the sector. But a new report by the Ottawa-based Public Policy Forum tries to debunk the myth that relying on resources for our wealth is “like feasting on empty calories.” Instead, the report makes the case that there’s more potential for innovation in the natural resources sector than in any other industry, and ultimately, a lot more on the line for society.

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President’s Perspective

Coast Clarion, By Rick Jeffery, RPF
Coast Forest Products Association
April 3, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The facts about log exports are mired in exaggerated political rhetoric that confuses British Columbians and creates sides at a time when we should be working together to sustain jobs and successfully compete in a fiercely competitive global marketplace. The truth is if people want to keep working in the coastal forest industry and have companies continue to re-invest and retool mills and operations across the coast, so our products meet customer demand in over two dozen countries around the world, then log exports are an integral part of our mix of forest products.

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Raising the Stakes: Pat Bell

BC Business
April 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

As B.C.’s Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation, Pat Bell puts all his chips on the table. Pat Bell is perhaps the busiest cabinet minister in the B.C. government: as if jobs, tourism and innovation aren’t enough to fill his plate, his formal title also includes “minister responsible for multiculturalism.” But if anyone has the range of experience – and the guts – to take on the portfolio, it’s the veteran entrepreneur who doesn’t believe in doing things by half measure.

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SHERBININ, GEORGE FRANK:1932-2012

Kelowna Daily Courier
April 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of George Sherbinin, beloved husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather. …George was involved in the lumber industry, following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather. As a young man, he took over the operations of Boundary Sawmills as vice president, and then later as president (in 1966). After selling the mill to Pope & Talbot in 1969, he stayed on as president for five additional years. He created George Sherbinin Lumber Ltd., a successful wholesale lumber company, and later purchased a small mill operation in Westbridge, BC with Jim Olsen that they named S & O Sawmill.  

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Lamphier: Resource sector’s bright ideas power Canada’s economy

Edmonton Journal
April 3, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

EDMONTON – High-tech is hip. Energy, mining, farming, forestry and fishing? Not so much. …By routinely glorifying the role of the tech sector while ignoring the innovation that goes on every day in the resource industries, critics have done Canada’s energy, agriculture, mining, fishing and forestry sectors a disservice. …The report — Toward a More Innovative Future, Insights from Canada’s Natural Resources Sector — follows a national conference and a series of six roundtable discussions involving leaders of Canada’s resource industries as well as scientists, bureaucrats, regulators and policy wonks.

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Forest companies offer economic hope

Re: “Political failure, medical woes,” March 29.
Victoria Times Colonist
April 3, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Port Alberni’s problems reflect political failure, and that failure is about to be compounded as the city’s largest employer, almost the last remnant of the forestry complex that once supported one of the most prosperous cities in Canada, moves closer to the abyss. Catalyst Paper, which contributes $2 billion a year to the B.C. economy, is operating under creditor protection and scrambling to restructure and lower costs. If restructuring fails, its assets will be sold to the highest bidder. The likely scenario is a fire sale to short-term investors who would skim the most viable parts of the company and shut down the rest.

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Working to Reduce the US Forest Service Carbon Footprint

Blog
USDA.gov
April 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

The U.S. Forest Service is making strides in monitoring energy and water consumption at several of the Agency’s facilities by installing software called the Advanced Metering Program, which accurately reports water and energy consumption. The project is being lead by the U.S. Forest Service’s National Sustainable Operations Team. In the near future, monitoring devises will be installed at most Forest Service facilities that are larger than 10,000 square feet, or have electrical energy costs that exceed $40,000 per year. Software will collect the data and make it available for viewing online.

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Gov. Names Leader Of Prescribed Fire Review Team

KRDO
April 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

DENVER, Colo. — Gov. John Hickenlooper has named William Bass, a 35-year veteran of the U.S. Forest Service, to lead a four-person team to review the prescribed burn that preceded the Lower North Fork fire last month in Jefferson County. The governor and Colorado State University, which oversees the Colorado State Forest Service, called for the independent review last week. Bass, currently the forest supervisor of the Bighorn National Forest in Wyoming, will lead a fact-finding team that will assess the planning, protocols and execution of the prescribed burn.

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Study shows deer population reducing valuable North Shore trees

Minnesota Public Radio
April 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

DULUTH, Minn… along the shore of Lake Superior, north of Two Harbors, forest ecologist Mark White strides through an old growth forest.Giant white pines soar 150 feet, and stands of mature cedar trees dot the forest floor. But it’s not nearly as healthy a view closer to the forest floor. White notices a tiny white pine sapling that’s been munched by hungry deer. “This guy’s been nipped off on the top there a couple times,” said White, who works for the nonprofit Nature Conservancy… The white-tailed deer is one of Minnesota’s most iconic and abundant wild creatures. 

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McKenzie Bridge residents oppose logging plan

Herald Times Reporter
April 3, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

MCKENZIE BRIDGE, Ore. — A U.S. Forest Service plan to reduce wildfire danger in McKenzie Bridge has angered the people it aims to protect. …110 residents from the community in the Cascade Range signed an online petition to stop the logging of more than 2,000 acres. …The Goose Project, as it called by the Forest Service, would lessen wildfire danger by creating a buffer around McKenzie Bridge over the next three to seven years, said Terry Baker, ranger for the McKenzie River District. According to Forest Service documents, the trees to be thinned will be 25 to 100 years old and are big enough to be run through a sawmill.

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Coastal land trust teams with chestnut tree organization

Bangor Daily News
April 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

CAMDEN, Maine — The prospects for the return of American chestnuts to the forests of Maine will be given a big boost this spring with the start of a new partnership between the Maine Chapter of the American Chestnut Foundation and Coastal Mountains Land Trust. The collaboration will further the land trust’s efforts to develop and restore blight-resistant American chestnuts to Maine’s forests. 

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Pennsylvania Forests Certified As Well-Managed

StateImpact Pennsylvania
April 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Envi­ron­men­tal advo­cates have wor­ried nat­ural gas drilling in Pennsylvania’s state forests could harm their sta­tus as “well-managed,” but as the Post-Gazette reports, the for­est have been cer­ti­fied for the fourteenth-straight year.

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USFS moves forward with Lee timber sale despite opposition

Kingsport Times News
April 3, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

WISE — U.S. Forest Service officials decided last week to move forward with a plan to harvest timber in an area of the Jefferson National Forest in Lee County despite objections from a number of environmental groups. The project, which is now in a 45-day appeal period following Friday’s announcement, will allow commercial logging activities on 398 acres in the Wells Branch section of the Jefferson National Forest near Lake Keokee. Three separate timber sales, a 1.1-mile-long roadway and a controlled burn of 2,900 acres of forest land are part of the approved plan.

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Trees Tell Their Own Story to Satellites

eNews Park Forest
April 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

EU–Communications via satellite are changing the way the forest industry harvests trees. A new approach being tested by ESA combines satcoms and cellular services to relay important information almost immediately so that fewer trees are used to produce more timber. Irish company Treemetrics, in cooperation with ESA, is developing Satmodo, a new system that provides realtime communications with the harvesting machines and their drivers.

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National forest strategy offers local oppportunity

The Daily Post, New Zealand
April 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A new national forestry strategy is expected to provide opportunities and benefits for the local industry. The national action plan aims to more than double the sector’s export earnings to $12 billion within the next 10 years through increasing the range of innovative wood products available, better use of waste products, focusing on exporting processed products rather than raw logs and building a collaborative industry.

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Multinationals vow to boycott APP after outcry over illegal logging

The Guardian
April 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Several multinational companies have vowed to boycott the huge forestry conglomerate, Asia Pulp and Paper, after a public outcry after evidence emerged of illegal logging by APP in Indonesia, that is damaging the habitat of rare animals such as the Sumatran tiger. Pressure has been growing on APP, its suppliers and customers, since the Guardian revealed last month evidence of illegal logging that had resulted in the chopping down of large numbers of a protected tree species, known as ramin, which grows in some of the last remaining bastions of the critically endangered tiger in south-east Asia.

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More jobs go at Ta Ann

ABC Online
April 3, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The forestry union has confirmed 50 employees have lost their jobs at Tasmanian timber company Ta Ann, 10 more than expected. The company announced last month that 40 staff would go, blaming an international green groups’ campaign against the sector. However, the union says 10 more workers than expected lost their jobs. The head of Tasmania’s Forest Industries Association, Terry Edwards, says the jobs were slashed because of the international campaigns.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

International Paper earns climate award

American Recycler Newspaper
April 2, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Association of Climate Change Officers, the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, and The Climate Registry named International Paper among the winners of the inaugural Climate Leadership Awards. International Paper was recognized for aggressively managing and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. During the past decade, International Paper has reduced its greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels by 40 percent and has committed to reducing another 20 percent by 2020. 

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Fertilizer use responsible for increase in nitrous oxide in atmosphere

UC Berkeley
April 3, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

BERKELEY — University of California, Berkeley, chemists have found a smoking gun proving that increased fertilizer use over the past 50 years is responsible for a dramatic rise in atmospheric nitrous oxide, which is a major greenhouse gas contributing to global climate change. The Cape Grim Baseline Air Pollution Station in Tasmania, where air samples have been collected since 1978. These samples show a long-term trend in isotopic composition that confirms that nitrogen-based fertilizer is largely responsible for the 20 percent increase in atmospheric nitrous oxide since the Industrial Revolution. 

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Artist colors trees blue to draw attention to deforestation problem

The Seattle Times
April 3, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

…one man plans on helping several trees turn heads. Australian artist Konstantin Dimopoulos will color some of the Seattle area’s trees a vibrant, ultramarine blue in the next week as part of his international art installation The Blue Trees. The project, at Westlake Park and the Burke-Gilman Trail in Kenmore, is meant to draw attention to deforestation. …”I realized that forests are the lungs of the world,” Dimopoulos said, emphasizing that society could not survive without trees.

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