Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: December 3, 2012

Business & Politics

Wood products sector to see profits soar

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

The Canadian wood products industry is expected to quadruple its profits this year as a result of a slowly strengthening U.S. housing market, according to the Conference Board of Canada. In a glowing report on the outlook for lumber and panel-board, the Conference Board says that profits will double again in 2013 and continue to rise for the entire five-year period of the forecast. More than half of Canada’s softwood lumber production comes from British Columbia….The recovery comes after five bleak years of losses or slim profit margins.

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Steelworkers: Crown Prosecutors Must Act Decisively in Response to Sawmill Tragedies

Canada Newswire press release
November 30, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

BURNABY – The United Steelworkers (USW) is urging Crown prosecutors to expedite the decision-making process and exercise their full authority in assessing WorkSafeBC’s investigation reports into tragic sawmill explosions in northern B.C. “Now that WorkSafeBC has completed its investigation, it is incumbent that Crown counsel use its full authority to prosecute any violations of workplace health and safety laws that contributed to these tragedies,” said USW Western Canada Director Stephen Hunt.

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Mill fire probe referred to prosecutors

by Tom Fletcher
BC Local News
November 30, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

WorkSafeBC officials have completed their investigation into two fatal dust explosions and fires in northern B.C. sawmills earlier this year, and referred the cases to Crown prosecutors for possible charges. WorksafeBC vice-president Roberta Ellis said Crown lawyers will consider whether to proceed with charges under the Workers Compensation Act, which could be laid against individuals as well as the companies involved. Criminal charges were ruled out earlier in the investigation.

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Lumber production down, but set for growth in 2013

Vancouver Sun
December 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Lumber production at B.C. sawmills dipped in September as soft global demand continued to hamper a rebound in the province’s forestry sector. Total softwood lumber production fell 3.9 per cent to a seasonally adjusted 2.38 million cubic metres from August, continuing a pattern from the end of the first quarter. Despite the weakening trend, lumber production this year has still outpaced the same period in 2011 by 2.6 per cent. Weaker lumber exports to Asia-Pacific markets, particularly China, Japan and Taiwan, have contributed to recent production declines.

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Fire at Tembec

CottageCountryNow.ca
December 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

HUNTSVILLE – At approx. 7:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 1, fire station 1 crews were dispatched to a fire call at Tembec’s sawmill. According to the Huntsville Fire Department, when the crews arrived they observed smoke throughout the old mill. Fire was located in the wall behind the electrical panel.

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Building fire near Missoula blamed on sawdust

KPAX-TV
December 1, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

MISSOULA – After a smoky day Friday , Missoulians spotted another thick black plume on the northwest side of town Saturday, but this one was unintentional. The Missoula City Fire Department and the Missoula Rural Fire District responded to a fire in a bag house at the Roseburg Forest Products site around 12:30 p.m. Roseburg manufactures eco-friendly wood building supplies and wood chips. MRFD Battalion Chief Dan Merritt says its unclear how the fire started, but it appeared to be an accidental sawdust fire in the building’s belt system.

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Longevity sustains Sierra Forest Products

Recorder on Line
November 27, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

When Sierra Forest Products was honored in November as the Porterville Chamber of Commerce’s Large Business of the Year, a large contingent of employees were on hand to share in the honor. It is those longtime employees that stand out at the lumber mill headquartered in Terra Bella. That fact was not lost on SFP general manager Kent Duysen, his father Glen or brother Larry who have run the mill.

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Lincoln shavings mill to get $200,000 grant for air cleanup

Bangor Daily News
November 29, 2012
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

LINCOLN, Maine — One of the town’s oldest businesses will get a $200,000 federal grant by January to help it diversify its manufacturing base and end a smoke problem that has bedeviled neighbors. Haskell Lumber Inc. and its manufacturing arm, LMJ Enterprises LLC, qualified for the federal Community Development Block Grant and learned in late October that it would get it, said Ruth Birtz, the town’s economic development coordinator. The grant will pay half of the estimated $300,000 to $500,000 cost of installing a filtration unit that will clean the air coming from LMJ’s wood-shavings mill, co-owner Mike McFalls has said.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Provinces call proposed fire prevention building code changes unenforceable

Canadian Press
December 3, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada

A federal commission has rejected proposals to change Canada’s national construction codes to better protect communities from destructive wildfires. The changes would have required builders in areas prone to forest fires to use less flammable building materials, to space buildings farther apart and to keep them clear of trees and vegetation. “There was no consensus to go forward and put this in the codes. The majority of the provinces said, ‘No, you can’t put this in the building codes because we couldn’t enforce it,'” Philip Rizcallah, acting manager of the Canadian Commission on Building and Fire Codes, said from Ottawa.

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Halifax should build with wood to save money, environment, says staff report

Chronicle Herald
December 2, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

City hall’s environment committee should recommend Halifax council consider “wood first” guidelines for municipal structures being built or renovated, city staff say. There are economic and environmental benefits to using wood, provided it’s feasible for such projects, says a recent report to the environment and sustainability standing committee. “Wood building materials have lower energy, water and air quality impacts than alternatives,” the staff report says. “Wood has a low carbon footprint (and) it is a renewable product.”

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Sustainability practices producing results for Buckeye

Tallahassee.com
December 3, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

Buckeye Technologies Inc. proudly reports record sales and financial performance in the fiscal year that ended June 30, but in another set of important measures the company keeps, less is more.  Taylor County’s largest private employer, is preparing to expand output of its high-end cellulose fiber product at its Foley plant near Perry while at the same time reducing it groundwater consumption, use of fossil fuels and the amount of electric power it buys from outside sources.

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Furniture makers left out of forest deal

ABC News, Australia
December 1, 2012
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

A Launceston furniture maker claims the specialty timber industry has been ignored under the forest peace deal. The Tasmanian Liberals said the specialty timber harvest area would be reduced by 60 per cent to 38,000 hectares if the enabling legislation passed the Upper House. Craftsman Peter Collenette said that would make it harder and more expensive to source high-quality timber.

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Forestry

Huge infestation threatens southwest neighbourhood trees

Destructive borer outbreak puts 1,700 ashes at risk
Edmonton Journal
November 29, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

EDMONTON – Southwest Edmonton neighbourhoods are suffering a serious infestation of lilac ash borers that’s putting the future of 1,700 boulevard and park trees at risk. Although the moth larva is widely distributed in Edmonton, large numbers of the destructive insect have turned up in ash around Terwillegar Towne and Terwillegar South, city principal of forestry Jeannette Wheeler says. “Some of these areas have high water tables. Combined with … just being newly planted, the trees are under a lot of stress,” she said Thursday, adding this is the city’s largest borer outbreak.

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BCTS program in the Cranbrook to Invermere area gets good audit

BC Forest Practices Board
November 30, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA – An audit of BC Timber Sales’ (BCTS) operations in the Rocky Mountain District found that forest planning, silviculture, fire protection, harvesting and road activities complied with provincial forestry legislation, according to a report released today. “In particular, the BCTS and its Timber Sale Licence holders’ activities in the Mark Creek Community Watershed were well done,” said board chair, Al Gorley.

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Responsible forestry

Letter by Seth Kursman, VP, Resolute Forest Products
Chronicle Journal
November 30, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

I would like to offer some context in response to the editorial Forestry In Transition (Nov. 26) following the announcement of Resolute’s plans to build a wood pellet plant in Thunder Bay.
The editorial states that “switching Atikokan to biomass still produces greenhouse gases, though not as many.” I think it is important for your readers to know that the carbon dioxide emitted from producing biomass energy is considered to be carbon neutral.

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New data shows rise in Quesnel mid-term timber supply

Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations
BC Government
November 30, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

QUESNEL – As part of the Mid-Term Timber Supply Action Plan, a new silvicultural strategy analysis has been completed that identifies a 600,000 cubic metre increase in mid-term timber supply over previous projections in the Quesnel timber supply area. As part of the type 4 silviculture strategy for the Quesnel timber supply area, new inventory data has been used which identifies opportunities for harvesting, reforestation, planting and fertilization that can have the greatest effect on timber and other forest values.

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A Supremely Important Decision About America’s Logging Industry

Forbes
November 29, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

On December 3, the U.S. Supreme Court will consider who is best suited to set national environmental policy – the experienced scientists and regulators at the Environmental Protection Agency or activist trial lawyers. …Under the Ninth Circuit ruling, a permit could be demanded for every drain and ditch that directs water from a logging road to a fish-bearing stream. The U.S. Forest Service estimates that getting all its roads fully certified could take as much as a decade.

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HAMPTON: Millions of jobs at stake in logging case

Supreme Court ruling poised to impact economy
Washington Times
November 26, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

On Dec. 3, the Supreme Court will hear a case determining the future of more than 2 million jobs and tens of thousands of landowners. Georgia-Pacific West v. Northwest Environmental Defense Center concerns a technical issue of law with enormous economic implications. The question to be answered is whether logging roads should be regulated under the Clean Water Act’s permit-granting procedures or, as they currently are, under federal “best management practices” (BMP) rules. Either way, they will be regulated by state agencies with federal oversight.

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High Court to decide how logging roads regulated

Associated Press
December 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

GRANTS PASS, Ore.— The U.S. Supreme Court will decide whether to switch gears on more than 30 years of regulating the muddy water running off logging roads into rivers. At issue: Should the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency keep considering it the same as water running off a farm field, or start looking at it like a pipe coming out of a factory? The case being heard Monday in Washington, D.C., was originated by a small environmental group in Portland, the Northwest Environmental Defense Center.

Oregon logging road pollution case head to US Supreme Court from The Oregonian

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U.S. Forest Chief Says Wildfires to Get More Destructive

U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell said Friday blazes will only get bigger and that the cost of fighting them could nearly double.
Firehouse.com
December 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Dec. 01–If you think fires have gotten big in the past few years, hold on. U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell said Friday that the blazes will only get bigger and that the cost of fighting them could nearly double. But the agency that manages 193 million acres of national forest — including 20 million in Idaho — plans to increase timber sales by 20 percent in the next two years as part of a restoration effort to make communities safer and watersheds more resilient. …Federal budget cuts will make money more scarce, but communities are
increasingly taking responsibility, he said.

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Giant sequoia takes over as world’s second biggest tree – U.S. News

Associated Press
December 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

FRESNO, Calif. — Deep in the Sierra Nevada, the famous General Grant giant sequoia tree is suffering its loss of stature in silence. What once was the world’s No. 2 biggest tree has been supplanted thanks to the most comprehensive measurements taken of the largest living things on Earth. The new No. 2 is The President, a 54,000-cubic-foot gargantuan not far from the Grant in Sequoia National Park. After 3,240 years, the giant sequoia still is growing wider at a consistent rate, which may be what most surprised the scientists examining how the sequoias and coastal redwoods will be affected by climate change and whether these trees have a role to play in combatting it.

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Federal official encourages more collaboration in forest restoration, wildfire protection

The Republic
December 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

PARADISE VALLEY, Arizona — As the western U.S. comes off a tough wildfire season, more collaboration is needed to guard against catastrophic fires and to restore charred forests and rangeland, a senior federal official said at a Western Governors’ Association meeting Saturday. The federal government is accelerating its forest restoration projects and wants communities, utilities and others involved in similar efforts, said Harris Sherman, an undersecretary of the U.S Department of Agriculture who oversees the U.S. Forest Service.

Western Governors Discuss Wildfire Risks, Prevention from Oregon Public Broadcasting

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State investigating SEACC complaints against USFS

KRBD.org
November 29, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The State Department of Environmental Conservation is investigating allegations by the Southeast Alaska Conservation Council that the U.S. Forest Service misrepresented or left out information from an application to store logs from the Tonka Timber Sale in Alexander Bay, located in Wrangell Narrows. … The letter claims that the Forest Service misrepresented the cost of barging logs rather than storing them.

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Forester documents decline in Lexington’s trees, offers solutions

The Bluegrass and Beyond
December 1, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Lexington’s urban forest is in serious decline, forester Tom Kimmerer says. Culprits include insects, disease and climate change. But, mostly, we are to blame. “Our basic philosophy has been plant ‘em and kill ‘em,” he said. “We spend a lot of money planting trees, then we kill them through neglect and abuse.” Kimmerer has a doctorate in forestry and biology.. …The report notes that 85 percent of the trees planted in Lexington parks and along roads have been heavily damaged by poor planting or maintenance.

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Drought-stressed trees face race to adapt

CNN International
November 30, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

However, new research is showing that a large majority of tree species around the world are operating on the brink of collapse. If the predicted pace of climate change continues, many may not be able to adapt in time and large numbers could die-off. …They found that 70% of the trees studied adapt closely to the local environment, whether arid or tropical, absorbing just enough water in order to survive, but leaving them highly vulnerable to minor shifts in rainfall and drought stress.

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Last forestry peace deal party signs on

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

Timber Communities Australia has backed the historic Tasmanian forest peace agreement. The TCA’s chairman Trevor Richardson says a majority of the board voted to support the deal to cut the native forestry industry and to protect another half a million hectares of trees from logging. That is despite a secret ballot of the membership voting to walk away from it. Only 10 per cent of members voted in the weekend ballot.

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Timber industry: A ‘perfect storm’ brewing

Daily Maverick
November 28, 2012
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Warning bells are ringing for the forestry industry,with labour experts and forestry insiders saying that this could be the next local sector to suffer protests and strikes, if not violence and asset destruction, unless the worker issues are addressed. Forestry researcher and social assessment specialist Jeanette Clarke recently warned the timber industry that events at Marikana illustrated the potentially disastrous consequences of ignoring ongoing violations of workers’ basic needs and rights.

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