Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: May 2, 2012

Froggy Foibles

Strainer Hemlock estimated to weigh 50,000 pounds, heli-logging option out

CAMPBELL RIVER COURIER-ISLANDER
May 2, 2012
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: Canada, Canada West

It looks like a heli-logging approach isn’t the solution to removing a dangerous tree from the Campbell River. Locally based Helifor  estimated the tree weight at 50,000 pounds – more than their choppers can carry. …”I had an ex-faller stop in here who swam the river as a local boy,” Turko said. “He’s donated his time to climb out there and do some cutting if I need it. So there’s people who are willing to help out and pitch in where needed, but at this point I don’t know how to get a 50,000-pound tree out of the river.”

Read More

Ecological Dynamics Rap

You Tube Video
May 2, 2012
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: United States

We picked up this amusing video from a Twitter post by the Private Forest Landowners Association of BC. Described as “A rap by two Antioch University New England students for a Tom Wessels ecological dynamics of landscapes class.” it is an amusing way of sharing a forestry message with young prospective recruits to our sector.

Read More

This Device Lets You Charge Your iPhone While You Go Off-Grid

InformationWeek
May 2, 2012
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: United States

When you go on camping, is your biggest concern how will you be able to charge your gadgets while you’re out in the middle of nowhere? The BioLite biomass burning CampStove may ease that concern, as it doubles as a stove to cook your dinner as well as an electronic charger for your phone and other gadgets. It works like this. Stick in some wood or pine cones found around the campsite into the biomass stove. The device then uses its thermo-electric generator to turn 5000 watts of thermal energy into electrical energy.

Read More

Business & Politics

Resolute banks on Fibrek mill

Montreal Gazette
May 2, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

Resolute Forest Products Inc. can retain a solid global market niche for pulp, many grades of paper and lumber products despite a tough start to 2012, CEO Richard Garneau said Tuesday. And full integration of Montreal-based pulp producer Fibrek Inc. is part of that strategy, he said. Fibrek’s big St. Félicien softwood pulp mill in the Saguenay sits in the middle of six sawmills and integration will help Resolute to reduce costs.

Read More

Resolute CEO says regional Quebec concern about bid for Fibrek ‘overblown’

By: Ross Marowits
Canadian Press
May 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

MONTREAL – The head of Resolute Forest Products says he can’t understand the nervousness in Quebec’s Lac St. Jean region to its hostile takeover bid for Fibrek, which appears to be nearing success. “It’s overblown in terms of concerns and issues because nothing will change on wood supply, nothing will change on sawmills and we need independents to supply the mill,” CEO Richard Garneau said Tuesday after Resolute reported weaker first-quarter results. The Quebec-based company, formerly called AbitibiBowater, said its profits dropped 23 per cent on challenges to its pulp and coated paper operating segments.

Read More

Resolute Forest Products revenue down 11 per cent for March

Montreal Gazette
May 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

MONTREAL – Resolute Forest Products Inc., formerly AbitibiBowater, took a hit from lower first-quarter world prices for pulp and commercial printing papers, but newsprint is stable with strong export demand and lumber is responding to stronger U.S. housing markets, CEO Richard Garneau said Thursday. …Garneau said Resolute will carefully examine the market for recycled pulp while doing due diligence on the two U.S. pulp mills that will come with the $100 million takeover of Montreal-based Fibrek Inc. Then it will make its decision whether to keep them.

Read More

Stella-Jones Signs Letter of Intent to Acquire Certain Assets of Brisco Wood Preservers Ltd.

Marketwire press release
May 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

MONTRÉAL, QUÉBEC– Stella-Jones Inc. today announced that it has signed a non-binding letter of intent to acquire certain pole treating assets of Brisco Wood Preservers Ltd., a provider of treated wood poles located in British Columbia. The transaction, if finalized, is expected to close in July 2012 and is subject to customary closing conditions, including entry into a definitive purchase agreement and satisfactory due diligence. Stella-Jones plans to finance the transaction through existing credit facilities.

Read More

Mars ready for Mexico whenever call comes in

Coulson Group hopes to head south with Hawaii Mars for a month before provincial contract starts
Alberni Valley Times
May 2, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Coulson Group of Companies has a month until its contract with the Province of B.C. begins and they are hoping to spend that time fighting fires in Mexico. Wayne Coulson, president of Coulson Group, said Mexico has exhausted its in-country resources and it is looking for new ways to battle the wildfires in that country. Coulson said they have a strong relationship with the Mexican government and he is confident they will be called in any day. On Sunday, the Hawaii Mars took its first flight, with no major problems. Coulson said the crew has been preparing for their departure for close to a month, so when the call comes in they will hit the road immediately.

Read More

Mercer International seeks NAFTA ruling on Hydro’s electricity pricing policies

by Gordon Hamilton
Vancouver Sun
May 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Pulp company Mercer International has filed a $250 million claim against Canada under the North American Free Trade Agreement claiming it is being placed at a competitive disadvantage by BC Hydro. Mercer, which owns the Celgar pulp mill at Castlegar, claims that as a result of intervention by Hydro, it is not able to reap the same benefits for producing green energy as its competitors in the B.C. pulp sector. Under NAFTA, Mercer’s Canadian investments are required to be accorded the same treatment as are Canadian investors. Although Mercer’s head office is in Vancouver, the company is listed in the United States, making it eligible to seek damages under NAFTA.

Read More

B.C. sawmill blast went unreported

Five explosions preceded deadly incidents in Burns Lake, Prince George
Vancouver Sun
May 2, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

A wood dust explosion 16 months ago that blew apart a small control room and started a fire at a Williams Lake sawmill went unreported to WorkSafeBC, the chief workplace safety agency in the province. The incident was among five explosions news reports linked to wood dust in north and central B.C. between 2009 and 2011 that took place before two fatal sawmill explosions this year at Babine Forest Products in Burns Lake and Lakeland Mills in Prince George. WorkSafeBC also said it has no record of an explosion in 2011 at a Pinnacle Pellet plant in Armstrong.

Read More

Mill officials say they were not warned of danger before deadly explosion

Globe and Mail
May 2, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

The agency responsible for workplace safety stepped up sawmill inspections and issued warnings about potentially dangerous levels of sawdust following a devastating explosion at the Burns Lake mill in January, but the Prince George mill that suffered a similar deadly blast last month says it was not included in the heightened scrutiny. Margaret MacDiarmid, B.C. Labour Minister, said WorkSafe BC conducted 70 mill inspections and sent specific alerts to all sawmills across the Kootenays and the Okanagan about wood dust, after the Babine Forest Products Mill explosion that killed two and injured 19 workers in northern B.C.

Read More

Troubled forestry industry fuels sell-off

CBC.ca
May 2, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Nova Scotia’s losses in the forestry industry have become someone else’s gain. More than 1,100 pieces of heavy equipment were up for auction Tuesday in what was billed as the biggest sale of its kind in Atlantic Canada. …Forestry companies are facing new provincial regulations designed to reduce clearcutting, on top of low prices and rising costs. Jesse Cantin, with Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers, is reluctant to say much about market conditions in Nova Scotia. …”Australia is a big purchaser, Asia,” Cantin said. “Northern Europe is very popular place right now.”

Read More

Acadian Timber Corp. Reports First Quarter Results

MarketWatch press release
May 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada, Canada West

…Acadian Timber Corp today reported financial and operating results(1) for the three months ended March 31, 2012 (the “first quarter”). Acadian generated net sales of $18.6 million on sales volume of 352 thousand m3, which represents a $3.1 million, or 14%, decrease in net sales compared to the same period in 2011. Results for the first quarter were impacted by Acadian’s
implementation of a short-term vendor managed inventory program
(“VMI”) with one of its larger customers.

Read More

Rockland firefighters rap government inaction on illegal housing alterations

The Journal News
May 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

RAMAPO — Tired of encountering illegally altered housing and being ignored on safety issues, Rockland firefighters are taking the offensive in local courts and government… Firefighters want changes because they fear surprises when they enter burning buildings, such being blocked off by illegally partitioned spaces, locked multiple bedrooms, people living illegally in attics and basements, and explosive chemicals in basements from unknown businesses.

Read More

Stimson Lumber continues to invest in conservative campaign PAC in Oregon

The Oregonian
May 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

Portland-based Stimson Lumber Company has kicked in another $50,000 to the Oregon Transformation Project PAC, the conservative group that is a big player in the Clackamas County Commission races as well as in GOP legislative efforts. Since November, the timber company has put $200,000 into the transformation PAC, which is headed by Rob Kremer, treasurer of the Oregon Republican Party. Stimson has become the group’s major contributor and appears to be turning into the most politically active timber firm in Oregon.

Read More

OSHA cites Jaffrey pellet plant for violations in 2011 fire

Another fire: Firefighters battled a fire Friday at the New England Wood Pellet plant.
Fire Engineering
May 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

JAFFREY – Just hours after firefighters battled a stubborn blaze that started early Friday morning at New England Wood Pellet LLC, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited the wood pellet manufacturing plant for alleged repeat and serious violations of workplace safety standards. OSHA has proposed $147,000 in fines for the violations. The citation stems from an investigation of a major blaze at 141 Old Sharon Road last October when sawdust caught fire and spread to the cooler. More than 100 firefighters from 14 departments fought the blaze, which took about 14 hours to extinguish.

Read More

Russian sawmill fire offers revealing insights

by Gordon Hamilton
Vancouver Sun
May 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

British Columbia isn’t the only place where sawmills have been catching fire. There’s an interesting report out of Russia passed on by Ian Ogilvie, of Pacific Russia News. It’s about a fire at a mill April 20 in the Russian Far East. The mill didn’t explode, as has been the case at two mill fires recently in British Columbia. In this case it was a massive pile of sawdust that appears to have caught fire through spontaneous combustion. It destroyed a good part of the adjacent village, leaving 125 households homeless. Three people lost their lives. The report, from the minutes of an April 26 government presidium meeting chaired by President Vladimir Putin, is revealing for a number of reasons.

Read More

BBC News – Kirkmabreck timber port plans still on table after study

Plans to reopen a disused Galloway harbour are still on the table after the completion of a feasibility study.
BBC News
May 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Several firms have expressed interest in using the quay at Kirkmabreck near Carsluith as a timber-shipping port… It is estimated that between 9,000 and 18,000 tonnes of timber could be shipped from the quayside annually – reducing the number of lorry loads on roads in the area by about 250. Among those to have expressed an interest in the scheme are two sawmill businesses and a paperboard manufacturer.

Read More

Wood, Paper & Green Building

From the home front: Hornby Island Caravans, Tiny House Map, colorful small spaces, buying vs. renting land for tiny home

The Oregonian
May 1, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

Hornby Island Caravans: This British Columbia builder makes tiny portable homes with great eye appeal and fine wood craftsmanship. I like the sensible bed in the Vardo model at left, which has storage underneath but doesn’t require a ladder for access. Loft sleeping areas are delightful, but they’re not practical long term for older people, or those with disabilities, or those who are ill or recuperating from, say, knee or hip surgery.
a

a
a
a

Read More

Baikal Paper Mill Asks Putin for Help in Debt Dispute

RIA Novosti
May 2, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

The employees at Russia’s troubled Baikal Pulp and Paper Mill, located by the world’s largest freshwater lake Baikal, have written to President-elect Vladimir Putin asking him to protect the plant from creditors, a spokesman for the mill told RIA Novosti on Wednesday. The plant’s workers claim in the letter one of the plant’s core creditors, Basic Element (BasEl) holding company owned by tycoon Oleg Deripaska, made the plant unprofitable a year ago by “hiding” part of its output and acquiring a local electricity power plant, the only moorage in the area and a ski resort.

Read More

Forestry

Miscellaneous Statutes Amendment Act introduced

BC Ministry of Justice
May 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA – Bill 41, the Miscellaneous Statutes Amendment Act (No. 2), 2012, was introduced in the legislature today by Minister of Justice and Attorney General Shirley Bond. If passed, the amendments will affect the following provincial statutes:

Forest Act – There are two proposed amendments. The first enables flexibility in the minister’s authority to delegate an authority under the act to officials in the ministry. The amendment was previously approved, but contained a minor typographical error that needs to be corrected. The second re-instates the requirement for a deposit to be made at time of application for forest tenure to prevent speculative bidding.

Read More

Normal fire season expected in western Montana

The Missoulian
May 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Western Montana should expect a normal fire season this summer, but it should also have plenty of water to fight it. That’s the tentative forecast from experts at the 2012 Water Year Outlook conference in Missoula on Tuesday. However, shifting trends in global weather have clouded their crystal balls. “There’s not a real great signal to drive forecasts in the future,” National Weather Service hydrologist Ray Nickless said. After two years of a La Nina weather pattern that brings extra moisture to the Pacific Northwest, the cycle appears halfway shifted to the drier El Nino pattern. But that limbo zone means much of the Northwest has an equal chance of above- or below-average temperatures and rainfall.

Read More

Wearing life jackets should be mandatory for float plane passengers, says coroners’ report

Vancouver Sun
May 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A Coroners Service review of four commercial float-plane crashes in B.C. recommends that Transport Canada make it mandatory for passengers to wear life-jackets at all times during flights. Planes should also have easy-to-access emergency exits to prevent drowning after crashing in water, says the report released Tuesday. …“These recommendations should be considered very seriously by the
agencies to which they’re directed,” said chief coroner Lisa Lapointe.
“They are the result of open and frank discussion and review by a
diverse blue-ribbon panel of experts in the field provincewide.”

Read More

Kwantlen woodlot approved

Maple Ridge News
May 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Another woodlot has been given the go-ahead to start sustainable logging on Blue Mountain. Kwantlen First Nations recently received approval for its woodlot licence and could start logging this year, said band spokesperson Tumia Knott. It will be the third woodlot on the mountain after Blue Mountain Woodlot and BCIT Woodlot and will operate the same way on 800 hectares, north of the BCIT woodlot. The annual allowable cut will be similar to the Blue Mountain Woodlot only over a larger area.

Read More

Grove worth protecting

Victoria Times Colonist
May 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Cathedral Grove is a treasure worth protecting – and that protection should include a buffer zone of forest. Given that such protection is for the good of all, then all should pay for it. Environmental groups are concerned about the logging by Island Timberlands that has begun in old-growth forest next to MacMillan Provincial Park. …But the timber company holds the licence to log that surrounding forest and is within its rights to harvest the wood. If we want to preserve the surrounding forest – and that’s a worthwhile goal – we should be prepared to pay for it by compensating the legal holder of the logging rights.

Read More

Public meetings held on City’s tree bylaw

Mississauga.com
May 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

The City of Mississauga is looking for public input as it considers a change to its bylaw that protects trees. In March, councillors heard about plans to change the bylaw pertaining to trees. Specifically, it was seeking to offer greater protection to mature trees and to ensure trees that are cut down are replaced.  The information gathered at the upcoming public sessions will be used to help shape the final set of recommendations that are expected to come before Council in the fall.

Read More

Robert Barnhart, Lamar Advertising Ex-Employee, Says Former Company Illegally Poisoned Trees

Huffington Post Canada
May 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

A former employee of one of the country’s largest outdoor advertising companies has blown the whistle on his ex-bosses, saying the company routinely and illegally poisoned and chopped down trees that obscured views of their billboards. Robert J. Barnhart, a former crew chief for Lamar Advertising Co. in Tallahassee, Fla., says he used to sneak onto private property early in the morning armed with a machete and a bottle of herbicide. He would chop at the roots or trunks of trees, pour on the herbicide — and run. MSNBC reports that Barnhart’s boss called such an operation “a hit and run.” Barnhart, who is not speaking directly to the press, says he was fired in August 2011 after refusing to continue the tree poisonings.

Read More

Supreme Court won’t hear Norbeck Preserve case

Billings Gazette
May 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

PIERRE, S.D. — South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley says the U.S. Supreme Court will not hear a case dealing with timber-cutting on 28,000 preserve acres in the Black Hills National Forest. The Norbeck Wildlife Preserve project is aimed at improving the habitat on forest land within the preserve, fighting the mountain pine beetle and reducing the risk of wildfires. A federal judge last year dismissed a lawsuit against the U.S. Forest Service claiming that the project violates environmental protection acts.

Read More

County sheriffs back logging plan

The Register-Guard
May 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Their expertise is in law enforcement, not logging. But that hasn’t stopped Oregon sheriffs from endorsing Democratic U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio’s plan to sharply increase timber harvests on some federal forests in Western Oregon.  The Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association recently endorsed the DeFazio plan, called the O&C Trust, Conservation and Jobs Act.  So far this year, 15 Oregon county boards of commissioners have also passed resolutions of support, DeFazio said in a joint news release with GOP Rep. Greg Walden and Democratic Rep. Kurt Schrader, who are co-authors of the plan.

Read More

Wood Industry Can Prevent Catastrophic Fires

Fronteras: The Changing America Desk
May 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

FLAGSTAFF — Forest managers, policy makers and entrepreneurs are meeting this week in Flagstaff to discuss what to do with small trees before they become fuel for catastrophic wildfires or food for beetles. The concept isn’t new. Cut small diameter trees; turn them into building materials; and sell them for a profit. That helps overly dense forests, people who need jobs and the communities vulnerable to fires. What’s new is people are coming up with better ideas.

Read More

Oregon loggers endure, enjoy ‘worst job in America’ (with video)

kgw.com
May 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

VERNONIA, Ore. — Since the days before Oregon was a state, loggers have trudged into the hills to cut trees. “Timber!” shouted a logger as he worked recently in the hills near Vernonia. In the 1950’s, 90,000 Oregonians worked in the logging industry. The industry is still around but it’s a shadow of its old self. Now, the Oregon Department of Forestry reports that 47,000 people make their living in logging and associated jobs.   Forest products generated $12.6 billion in revenue in Oregon during
2,000, which was the last year the number was totaled. Average pay is
nearly $44,000 a year.

Read More

Production forest survey indicates climate change viewed only as small threat

CIFOR Forests Blog
May 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Results from a new CIFOR survey suggest that forest managers and policymakers do not perceive climate change as a major threat to production forests in tropical countries. This perception may be impacting on implementation measures to facilitate the adaptation of tropical production forests to climate change, it says. “The fact that climate change ranked below other threats to forests [in the survey] explains why respondents rarely consider climate change in their long-term forest planning and management,” said CIFOR principle scientist Manuel Guariguata, co-author of Adapting tropical production forests to global climate change: risk perceptions and actions.

Read More

NZ Super Fund mulls Harvard’s stake in Kaingaroa forest

Scoop.co.nz
May 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The New Zealand Superannuation Fund, which was set up to pre-fund the pension liabilities of the baby boomer generation, is in talks with Harvard University’s endowment fund manager to take full ownership of the Kaingaroa forest estate. The so-called ‘Cullen’ Fund, named for its architect Michael Cullen, and global investment firm GMO Renewable Resources are in discussion with Harvard Management Company “over the possible purchase of Harvard’s majority stake” in the forestry assets, the pension fund said in a statement.

Read More

Kirkmabreck timber port plans still on table after study

BBC News
May 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Plans to reopen a disused Galloway harbour are still on the table after the completion of a feasibility study. Several firms have expressed interest in using the quay at Kirkmabreck near Carsluith as a timber-shipping port. The site, next to the A75, is owned by Tarmac and was previously used to process and transport stone from the quarry nearby. It has been mothballed since the 1990s but a survey has looked at the prospect of bringing it back into use.

Read More

Final forestry peace talks yet to start

ABC Online
May 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

It has been revealed negotiations to finalise the boundaries of new native forest reserves under Tasmania’s peace deal have not started yet, despite the June deadline. Forestry and environmental groups met yesterday for the second time since they received a comprehensive review of the forest industry. The West Report outlines the conservation value of 572,000 hectares of forest proposed for protection from logging. The parties say they have only been negotiating measures to ensure any agreement lasts.

Read More

Greens question logging as department makes a loss

ABC News, Australia
May 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Figures show logging in south east New South Wales has made a loss for the state forestry department. Greens MP, David Shoebridge, has questioned the Primary Industries Minister, Katrina Hodgkinson, during parliamentary sittings about the operating costs of logging. The Minister revealed an annual shortfall of $764 600. Mr Shoebridge says it is evidence of poor environmental and economic management.

Read More

Contractors Applaud NZ SuperFund Bid to Buy Kaingaroa Forest

Forest Industry Contractors Association
Scoop Independent News
May 2, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

News that the New Zealand Superannuation Fund is looking to purchase the remaining 60% of Kaingaroa Forest that is owned by Harvard is great news for the forest contracting industry,” says Forest Industry Contractors Association CEO, John Stulen. “Having a New Zealand-owned asset for the jewel in NZ forestry’s crown is a step in the right direction for promoting the clean, green brand of NZWood,” added Mr Stulen.

Read More

New director vows: Stop LNG and coal projects, curb Elliott logging

Coos Bay World
April 29, 2012
Category: Forestry

EUGENE — Cascadia Wildlands, an environmental group previously active in Elliott State Forest management, has a new executive director who plans on staying involved in Coos County environmental issues. …The logging practices on the Elliott, as outlined in the new forest management plan accepted by the State Land Board, are unsustainable, Ferris said. The new plan increases the yearly logging take from 500 acres to 850 acres. “We knew we were cutting unsustainably,” he said. “Looking at (forests) as cash cows seems like a silly concept.”

Read More

Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Pratt & Whitney Power Systems to Deliver Biomass Heat Recovery Power Plant for West Fraser Timber Company

DigitalJournal.com (press release)
May 2, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada, United States

EAST HARTFORD, Conn.  — Pratt & Whitney Power Systems has been awarded a contract to deliver a 13 MW biomass heat recovery power plant for West Fraser Timber Company in British Columbia, Canada. The state-of-the-art power plant will provide clean, carbon-neutral power to the company’s Chetwynd Forest Industries plant utilizing two Turboden 65 HRS Organic Rankine Cycle  turbogenerators. Turboden is a Pratt & Whitney Power Systems company, and Pratt & Whitney is a United Technologies Corp. company.

Read More

Suzano Unit Gets Brazil Approval to Trial GM Forest for Biomass

Bloomberg
May 2, 2012
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

FuturaGene Ltd. U.K., held by Suzano Papel e Celulose SA, said it won approval from Brazil for the world’s most advanced trial of a genetically modified forest as it seeks to boost yields of trees used in biomass power plants. The company will plant modified eucalyptus trees in coming weeks in a fourth trial to test the safety and effectiveness of the technology, Chief Executive Officer Stanley Hirsch said in an interview. Inserting genes into trees allows increased yields for electricity generation or manufacturing of pulp and paper.

Read More