Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: April 19, 2012

Froggy Foibles

Seattle man rescues, relocates unwanted trees

Canton Repository
April 18, 2012
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: United States, US West

SEATTLE – In the past five years, working by himself using mostly a shovel and a pickax, Bernie O’Brien has dug up, loaded onto his 30-year-old Ford pickup and then transplanted some 100 trees that weighed 200 pounds to more than 400 pounds each. He’s also transplanted to acreage he and his wife own on Puget Sound’s Key Peninsula another 400 trees that ranged from seedlings to 6-footers.

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Business & Politics

Supreme Court of Canada refuses leave to appeal

Canada News Wire press release
April 18, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

MONTREAL, April 18, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ – Fibrek Inc. (“Fibrek” or the “Company”) announced today that the Supreme Court of Canada has refused Fibrek’s request for leave to appeal the Québec Court of Appeal’s decision to maintain the cease trade order of the proposed private placement (the “Private Placement”) of 32,320,000 special warrants to purchase common shares of Fibrek to Mercer International Inc. (“Mercer”). As a result, the Private Placement will not occur.

Press Release from Resolute

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Fibrek loses Supreme Court of Canada appeal bid in AbitibiBowater decision

National Post
April 18, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

It’s not over but the fight with AbitibiBowater may be nearer the end for Fibrek Inc. now that the Supreme Court of Canada has decided not to grant it leave to appeal a decision made earlier by the Quebec Court of Appeal. “The applications for leave to appeal are dismissed with costs to the respondents,” said a note on the Supreme Court’s web site Wednesday, providing, as usual, no reasons for its decision.

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WorkSafeBC releases mill site in Burns Lake

WorkSafeBC
April 18, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Richmond, B.C. — WorkSafeBC has concluded the first phase of its investigation into the incident in which two workers died and many others were seriously injured at the Babine Forest Products Mill site in Burns Lake earlier this year. “The first phase of the investigation has concluded and we will be vacating and releasing the site to the employer on Thursday, April 19,” said Jeff Dolan, Director of Investigations for WorkSafeBC. “Our focus now will be on the testing and analysis of the evidence we gathered over the past 12 weeks.”

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Workforce Roundtable To Identify Trades Needs and Shortages

Opinion 250 News
April 18, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Prince George, B.C.- Proponents of a special a trades training centre for the former Rustad sawmill site huddled with members of the Provincial Government late last week to garner support for their project. Minister of Jobs, Trade and Innovation, Pat Bell says the session went well “We agreed to do a workforce roundtable” says Bell “That will give us a detailed analysis of what the needs are going to be , what the short falls are in the trades areas. If the shortfalls are simply in the number of seats, or infrastructure, so do we need more training space, or is it just a question of seats in existing space?” He expects that analysis will be done within a month or 6 weeks.

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Conifex Announces BC Utilities Commission Approval of Power Purchase Agreement With BC Hydro

Marketwire press release
April 18, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA— Conifex Timber Inc. announced today the British Columbia Utilities Commission has approved its Electricity Purchase Agreement (“EPA”) with BC Hydro as an energy supply contract. The Company completed its EPA and related Load Displacement Agreement (“LDA”) with BC Hydro in June 2011. Under the EPA, the Company will supply a minimum of approximately 200GWh of electrical energy annually to BC Hydro over a 20-year term from its bioenergy generation plant (the “Bioenergy Facility”) which is currently in development adjacent to one of its sawmill complexes in Mackenzie B.C.

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Sheraton shipping orders to China

Burns Lake Lakes District News
April 18, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Sheraton Holdings Ltd. manager Henry Wiebe said the mill’s first trial order to a company exporting to China had arrived at the docks in Vancouver ready for shipment.  Wiebe said he is expecting feedback from the customer before the lumber, which had been milled to the purchaser’s unique metric specifications, leaves the Vancouver docks. …The mill is now working on another trial order for a second company that also exports to China.

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Mill pensioners get some guarantees

Western Star
April 18, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

CORNER BROOK Mary Cashin never worked at Corner Brook Pulp and Paper, but the fate of the mill is directly tied to her own and she has a tough decision to make. Trouble is, she has no idea what’s the right choice for her best interests. Cashin’s late husband Michael was a retired millwright and she has been the beneficiary of his company pension since he died four years ago.

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pulp mill escapes toothless watchdog

The Australian
April 19, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

TASMANIA’S anti-corruption watchdog has declared itself a toothless tiger, complaining it lacks “sufficient powers” to properly investigate whether the Lennon government colluded with Gunns to fast-track its pulp mill. The extraordinary comments cast serious doubt on the adequacy of the Integrity Commission, created by former premier David Bartlett in response to the pulp mill and other scandals. In a report leaked yesterday, the commission’s acting chief executive, Russell Pearce, said while in some cases collusion “might constitute misconduct”, in others his team lacked sufficient powers to launch a “productive investigation”.

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Watchdog unable to probe pulp mill claims

ABC News, Australia
April 18, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Tasmania’s Integrity Commission has ruled it does not have the power to investigate misconduct allegations against the former Labor Government and its dealings with Gunns’ proposed Tamar Valley pulp mill. In its report released to complainants and leaked to the online media site the Tasmanian Times, the Commission says it does not have the legislative capacity to investigate whether the Government’s support for the proposed pulp mill was improper.

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Mill closure fears ‘utter garbage’

ABC News, Australia
April 19, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

The operators of the Triabunna woodchip mill have dismissed as ‘utter garbage’ Opposition claims that contractors have moved in to dismantle the facility. The Opposition’s Mark Shelton asked in Parliament whether the mothballed-woodchip mill would ever reopen. “Or isn’t it a fact…that as we speak, contractors are dismantling and removing equipment from the site?” The Resources Minister, Bryan Green, told Parliament that was the first he had heard of it. Mill manager Alec Marr quickly dismissed the speculation, saying the Liberals’ claim was complete and utter garbage.

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Elders targets full forestry asset sell-off

The West Australian
April 19, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Elders boss Malcolm Jackman has promised to make “substantial progress” on divesting the last of its forestry assets by year’s end after finding a buyer for 12,400ha of plantations in a deal that will net the company at least $45 million.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Proposed wooden bridge passes hurdle at Courtenay council meeting

Comox Valley Record
April 17, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

The proposed pedestrian and cyclist bridge over the Courtenay River just took a large step towards becoming reality.  Courtenay council committed $70,000 from the New Works Community Works Fund Reserve Monday towards survey, design, geotechnical, environmental and archaeological work at the proposed location between Sixth Street and Simms Millennium Park.

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Forestry

Environmental group splits in response to ‘crackdown’

Move will allow ForestEthics to continue advocacy
Victoria Times Colonist
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

An environmental group that has come under fire from the energy industry and federal government has split itself in two and given up some of its charitable status so it can continue opposing major projects favoured by the Harper government. ForestEthics, an opponent of the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline and leader of a campaign to get U.S. companies to use less fuel from the Alberta oilsands, has split into ForestEthics Advocacy and ForestEthics Solutions.

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Green group splits to further advocacy goals

ForestEthics aims to end scrutiny from tax authorities over charitable statusBy Gordon Hamilton
Vancouver Sun
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

One of Canada’s leading environmental organizations, ForestEthics has split into two separate groups, one a non-charitable advocacy group that intends to crank up its opposition to key oil-related policies of the Harper government.  The move is in response to increased scrutiny by the Canada Revenue Agency of charities that the government believes have become too political at a time when Ottawa is relaxing environmental regulations. …And last month, Tzeporah Berman left Greenpeace International to become more politically engaged.

Also in (including a video) the Toronto Sun

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Oliver defends limiting participation to environmental review hearings

Vancouver Sun
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

OTTAWA — Environmental groups that don’t have particular expertise to offer, and ordinary citizens concerned about projects like the Northern Gateway oilsands pipeline but who don’t live or work near the project, shouldn’t be able to participate in environmental review hearings, Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver said Wednesday. Oliver was defending his government’s plan unveiled a day earlier to “strengthen environmental protection” by limiting participation only to members of the public who are “directly affected” by major projects. “We don’t see the need” to allow testimony from Canadians outside the project areas, or from environmental groups without specific expertise, Oliver said in an interview.

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Confidential pine beetle report warns of ‘economic and social’ havoc

Timber supplies could plummett up to 67 per cent of pre-mountain beetle levels
Canadian Press
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A confidential report warns the mountain pine beetle epidemic could wreak economic and social havoc on communities in British Columbia’s Interior and cost the region thousands of jobs in the coming years. The report says the Prince George, Quesnel, Williams Lake and Lakes timber-supply areas in north-central B.C., are all expected to have sufficient quantities of timber until 2020. But without a mitigation plan, timber supplies could drop between 32 per cent and 67 per cent in those areas from their pre-beetle levels.

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Forestry training program means jobs for the North

BC Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation
BC Government
April 17, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

PRINCE GEORGE – Thirty people in Northern British Columbia have begun a five-week training program to learn the skills necessary to work as log or chip truck drivers and heavy equipment operators (HEO) in the forestry industry. Aimed at helping participants to secure permanent employment, this program is part of a new Labour Market Sector Solutions project with the Central Interior Logging Association.

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Burns Lake tests B.C. forest policy

by Tom Fletcher
Vanderhoof Omineca Express
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The B.C. government will have a decision this spring on whether the Babine Forest Products mill can be rebuilt after it was destroyed by fire in January, the local MLA says. Nechako Lakes MLA John Rustad says he is confident enough wood can be found to keep the rebuilt mill running, despite widespread pine beetle damage to the surrounding forest and the presence of other high-volume sawmills in the region.

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BC plan would open Interior’s protected woods for logging

by Mark Hume
Globe and Mail
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Old-growth forests, wildlife corridors and other long-protected timber zones in the British Columbia Interior could be opened up to logging in order to keep mills operating, according to a cabinet document detailing a proposal under consideration by the provincial government. The document, stamped “Confidential Advice to Cabinet,” was prepared for Forests Minister Steve Thomson earlier this month. It proposes shifting forest management from a stewardship model to one that puts short-term economic interests first – but warns that such a dramatic policy change could trigger legal challenges and that it might meet with opposition from B.C.’s chief forester.

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One-size logging doesn’t fit Whistler

Letter by Sonya McCarthy
Whistler Question
April 19, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Dear Editor, Holy Avatar!! I’m writing to support the letter written by Pina Belperio (“Must rethink old-growth logging,” April 5). The old argument that Whistler has been logged starting as far back as 1916 is a moot point. Whistler’s landscape has changed significantly in the past 100 years. It’s 2012 and we need to look at the removal of old growth trees through a different lens. The Cheakamus Community Forest (CCF) board is still missing the point. Just because the ownership shifted from private logging firms to a local one, it’s beneficial ONLY if the logging is done better.

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Power Grab Eyed by Clark Gov’t to Set Logging Levels

Internal leaks signal alarm over proposed assault on Chief Forester’s independent authority. By Ben Parfitt
The Tyee
April 19, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A leaked provincial cabinet document indicates that the provincial government is contemplating “suspending” the powers of one of its most powerful public servants in order to expedite a controversial logging program that has raised alarm bells in the professional forestry community. …”This action to enable a higher short-term supply would be a deviation from chief forester policy and practice in timber supply management,” the cabinet submission dated April 7 reads. “There is some risk that the independent chief forester of the day may not agree with this action, or of a legal challenge if he/she does.”

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The future of the forest industry questioned

Williams Lake Tribune
April 19, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Independent MLA Bob Simpson is calling on the provincial government to begin discussing the future of forestry in communities that are dependent on the forest industry. It’s not a new request, he says, but one that’s been intensified after Simpson read a confidential draft of a mid-term timber supply report prepared for the minister and deputy minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, dated Feb. 29, 2012. The report was placed on the ministry’s website and then removed, Simpson says.

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B.C. braces for timber supply slump

by Tom Fletcher
BC Local News
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA – Beetle-killed pine trees across the B.C. Interior will start to become uneconomical to log in the next two to five years, resulting a steep drop in timber supply and employment, according to a technical report prepared for the forests ministry. …Jobs, Tourism and Innovation Minister Pat Bell said there will be consultation, and work is continuing to determine whether the Babine Forest Products mill can be rebuilt and supplied following an explosion and fire that destroyed it in January.

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Huscroft forestry operation near Kootenay Lake passes audit

by BC Forest Practices Board
Press Release
April 17, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA – An audit of J.H. Huscroft Ltd.’s forest operations around Kootenay Lake found they met the requirements of the Forest and Range Practices Act and the Wildfire Act, according to a report released today. “Most of Huscroft’s harvesting was of mixed-species stands containing beetle-infested wood, and was well-managed,” said board chair Al Gorley. “There were three small landslides that occurred at Huscroft’s forestry roads, but they did not have serious environmental impacts. Auditors concluded that Huscroft’s maintenance of its forestry roads could be improved.”

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Logging opponent goes to court to block clear-cutting in Alberta foothills

Canadian Press
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

PINCHER CREEK, Alta. – A man who opposes logging in the Castle River recreation area in southwestern Alberta is turning to the courts to try to prevent clear-cutting in the region. Gordon Petersen of Pincher Creek has asked for a judicial review of the provincial government’s decision to allow logging in the foothills near Waterton National Park. Petersen says the permits were granted without consulting local people and despite scientific recommendations that the region be protected.

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Open to Cutting Old Growth, Says Premier

Leaked cabinet document pushes to lift protections, allow unsustainable cuts.
The Tyee
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A leaked cabinet submission that considers reduced conservation of old growth forest and wildlife habitat is indicative of the discussion the British Columbia government is having about finding timber for a new Babine Forest Products sawmill, said Premier Christy Clark. …”It does bear some resemblance to it,” Clark said, when asked how much the submission reflects cabinet’s discussion.

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Timber supply review raises issues

Burns Lake Lakes District News
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

By the end of April, a provincial task force is expected to answer a big question for the Highway 16 corridor—can the province secure enough timber to justify what will likely be a $100 million rebuild of the Burns Lake sawmill? “We’re not there yet, but I’m optimistic,” said John Rustad, MLA for Nechako Lakes. Speaking recently to the Houston Chamber of Commerce, Rustad said the challenge is how badly the pine beetle has hit the lakes timber supply area.

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Ash tree cull stops — for now

EMERALD ASH BORER: Injections may combat killer bugs
London Free Press
April 17, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

A stay of execution is coming for over 1,000 London ash trees city hall was going to fell this year. It may be a brief one, however, as a city hall committee seeks a report on its tree cull response to the emerald ash borer and tries to understand why Oakville injects 40% of its trees with pesticide to save them but London only injects 4%. The bid for a moratorium was made Monday by a group of Westmount neighbours who warned killing 96% of ash trees will devalue private properties by $20 million across the city, while costing the city hundreds of thousands of unnecessary dollars.

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Forest Service Puts Confusion on the Map

Deschutes-Ochoco Roads Closed, Unless Marked Open
KTVZ
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

BEND, Ore. — Starting this year, driving around the Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests and Crooked River National Grassland will require up to 13 maps. Not only for legal reasons, but the maps are now the only way to know if you’re on a road that’s open, there will be no more signs. Locals who’ve been waiting all winter long for the chance to get out and enjoy their public lands are not looking forward to hauling around all that paper.

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Illegal Logging Takes Its Toll in the Amazon

New study says U.S. firms importing millions of dollars worth of ill-gotten timber
National Geographic
April 18, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The timber industry in Peru is rife with corruption and illegality, and international buyers are complicit in a “well-oiled machine” that is plundering the Peruvian rain forest, endangering its rich biodiversity and undermining the welfare of indigenous communities, according to a major new study by the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA). Despite an ongoing overhaul of institutions charged with managing and protecting Peru’s sprawling forests, the system remains plagued by deception, cronyism, and weak enforcement, says the EIA report, The Laundering Machine: How Fraud and Corruption in Peru’s Concession System are Destroying the Future of Its Forests.

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A study points to the importance of seeking new pine varieties resistant to climate change

EurekAlert press release
April 19, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The radiata pine is the tree species par excellence in the Basque Country’s forests. Like other types of pine, the lack of water is one of the factors having the greatest effect on its survival and productivity. Until now, the Basque Country’s high, steady rainfall has encouraged the cultivation and good productivity of this species. This situation could change over the coming years if, in line with the predictions of climate change, average temperatures rise and droughts become more frequent and intense. So, new varieties of the radiata pine that are more resistant to the effects of climate change will have to be introduced. It is significant that the Basque Country’s radiata pine should have been one of the ecotypes that has suffered most from the lack of water.

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SA’s forestry under pressure

FM.co.za
April 19, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

SA’s forestry industry is under pressure as fears emerge of a timber shortage that may eventually make expensive imports necessary. Pieter van Zyl, CEO of listed company York Timber, says there has been a “significant upswing” in local demand for timber over the past six months. “If that demand continues there will be a shortage ,” says Van Zyl. And though the building & construction industry — the most important buyer of saw timber — is supposed to be “in the doldrums”, Van Zyl says this has not been the company’s experience.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Report: Large-scale forest biomass energy not sustainable

Summit County Citizens Voice
April 19, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

The results show that a significant shift to forest biomass energy production would create a ubstantial risk of sacrificing forest integrity and sustainability with no guarantee that it would mitigate climate change,” according to the researchers. Early assumptions that biomass energy production would be greenhouse-neutral, or even reduce greenhouse emissions “are based on erroneous assumptions,” the researchers said, adding that large-scale biomass energy production would have negative impacts on forest ecosystems, including shorter tree rotations, younger forests, depleted soil nutrients, increased risk of erosion, loss of forest biodiversity and function.

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Forest biomass not a solution for climate change

Researchers say benefits outweighed by loss of forests
Portland Tribune
April 18, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

A team of academic researchers including Oregon State University has concluded that a major shift to using forest biomass to produce energy is unsustainable and will increase rather than decrease greenhouse gas emissions. The study appeared in Global Change Biology/Bioenergy. “The main objective of bioenergy production from forest harvest is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but the strategy is likely to miss the mark,” says Beverly Law, an OSU forest science professor and one of the co-authors.

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