Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: August 21, 2013

Business & Politics

Investors bet a billion on Brookfield’s timber fund

Globe and Mail
August 20, 2013
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

Brookfield Asset Management Inc. has another $1-billion (U.S.) under management, after wrapping up fundraising for a timber fund that met hotter-than-expected demand. Brookfield set out to raise $750-million to invest in timberland and said commitments exceeded the target. Toronto-based Brookfield also put in $250-million of its own money. The cash will be used to buy timber in the U.S., Brazil and Australia, for starters, with other countries such as Canada perhaps getting a look down the road.

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Are Homebuilder Stocks Ready for Take Off?

NASDAC
August 20, 2013
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

This week saw some mixed data come out concerning housing in America. First, on Monday, August 19 courtesy of Investor’s Business Daily, the headline read “Single-Family Starts Hit 8-Month Low as Interest Rates Jump”, an apparently bearish housing development…. We feel that the stock market is indeed the one true leading indicator and that market prices matter more than opinions of experts. Experts can talk all they want about the bullish housing recovery, but the markets themselves are now warning us with bearish undertones. One of these warnings is the lumber market.

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Weyerhaeuser Announces Changes to its Senior Management Team

PR Newswire
August 21, 2013
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

FEDERAL WAY, Wash., — Weyerhaeuser Company (WY) today announced a number of changes to its senior management team. Larry Burrows, senior vice president, Wood Products, will retire on Oct. 31, 2013.  Cathy Slater has been named senior vice president, Oriented Strand Board, Engineered Lumber Products and Distribution, effective immediately. …Adrian Blocker has been named senior vice president, Lumber, effective immediately.

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Govt Assists Forest Owners with Sawmilling Machinery

By the Solomon Islands Government
Scoop Independent News
August 21, 2013
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

The Government yesterday handed over eleven sawmilling machines to rural recipients during a ceremony at the Ministry of Forestry and Research Headquarters in Honiara.  Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Forestry and Research, Jeffery Wickham handed over the brand new machines and urged the recipients to use the machines for sustainable harvesting of their forest resources.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Towering ambitions for timber

Move over steel and concrete. Could timber be the radical new material for the tall buildings of the future?
The Consturction Index
August 19, 2013
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, International

…But here’s a thought: did you also know that in future that steel beam could be replaced by one made of wood? Architectural practice Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) understands life at high altitude. It is best known for designing some of the world’s most famous skyscrapers, including the recently completed Cayan Tower in Dubai (the world’s tallest twisted tower) and the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest tower. And now SOM is pushing the boundaries with a study, just published, entitled the Timber Tower Research Project. This describes a study that has developed a structural system for a 42-storey prototype building using mass timber.

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Wood Science 101: Where Does Lumber Come From?

Woodworking Network
August 20, 2013
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

One of the more interesting phenomena of today’s world is the insulation we have from the source of our sustenance, or raw materials. Many modern folk would have a hard time explaining where the natural gas in their home comes from, or how bread is made, or even what the very walls around them are made of. So when Mike Wolcott sent me some nice photos of what I call a “lumber log,” that is a re-constructed log made of the lumber and bark sawn from it, I thought it a good opportunity to share just a little bit of the story of lumber.

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Expand certification in the timber industry

Bemidji Pioneer
August 20, 2013
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

A key component of long-term forest health is forest certification. …A growing number of diverse organizations have called for equal treatment of certified timber. …The challenge for Minnesota’s forest industry is that only one of these certification programs is acceptable as the “green” standard by many cities and states that adhere to the U.S. Green Building Council’s “LEED” building guidelines. The USGBC, a nonprofit private organization, only allows timber receiving FSC certification to receive its LEED sourcing credit for sustainable wood. 

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Tree-Free Paper Coming to Convenience Stores

Sugarmade partners with AATAC retailers
CSPnet.com
August 20, 2013
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. — Sugarmade Inc., a marketer and distributor of sustainable tree-free products, has entered into a distribution relationship with the Asian American Trade Associations Council (AATAC). The AATAC is the largest multi-ethnic consortium of smaller subgroups, business chain owners and other organizations that make up almost 65% market share in the convenience store industry. “In our continued efforts to bring sustainable and socially responsible tree-free paper to more consumers, we have entered into a relationship with the AATAC to provide its customers direct access to Sugarmade’s copy paper,” said Clifton Leung, Sugarmade’s CEO.

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Forestry

Re-evaluation of forestry audits legislation pushed

Provincial forestry watchdog says system of professional reliance needs review
Business in Vancouver
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

In 2009, fishing and hunting guides near Vanderhoof had to stop using an area of Nechako Lake after the lakeshore was logged. In 2010, a horse ranch owner in the Chilcotin lost 60% of the trails she once used for guided tours. …Episodes like this show the need to take a second look at B.C.’s decade-old overhaul of forestry legislation, which, among other things, switched to a system of “professional reliance” to approve forestry plans, says B.C.’s independent forestry watchdog.

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Pine beetle epidemic may be to blame for drop in moose numbers

Report suggests moose declines could be tied to salvage logging, which eliminates cover and increases road access
Vancouver Sun
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The “most-plausible” explanation for a serious decline in moose populations in the Cariboo is the mountain pine beetle epidemic, especially the large-scale salvage logging that followed, a report for the B.C. government finds. The consultant’s report said the “vulnerability of moose could have increased due either to the change in habitat (dead trees) or to increased salvage logging removal of cover) or to the change in access associated with salvage logging (more roads).” In other words, vast clearcuts left moose exposed on the landscape — to human and wild predators — and a proliferation of logging roads made it easier for hunters on motorized vehicles to get at them.

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North Shore neighbours unite against logging activity in their watershed

Nelson Star
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Residents of Six-Mile concerned with logging activity underway in their watershed are gathering for a meeting Thursday to rally in opposition… In light of flooding and landslides in Laird, Alaska and Shroeder Creeks occurring in the Kootenays this spring, residents have expressed concerns over logging in the Lower Duhamel watershed.

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We shouldn’t pay for industry mess

Letter from Klaus Kuhn
Cowichan Valley Citizen
August 21, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The CVRD is now asking for public input with regard to the proposed partnering agreement with Timberwest. Five thousands dollars of the Area I Nature and Habitat Fund are to be used to assist Timberwest in the installation of a truck wash. …The mess in Youbou was caused by the forest industry, and the forest industry should be cleaning it up. The Youbou residents have been given the short end of the stick by the forest industry. We should not now also be forced to help pay for cleaning up their mess.

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Science does not seem to support what is being said about owls in province

Alberni Valley Times
August 21, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

My article last week regarding the cull of barred owls to save the spotted owls certainly got a few people’s attention. Although the cull was an American project, B.C. has also considered such a ploy. …B.C. biologists agree that decisions on the program to “save” spotted owls are a result of social and political pressures, and government biologists are being asked to provide some biological basis for the program. They admitted that they are struggling with this. I suggest that it’s worse than this, that good science may be being subverted for a political cause.

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Forest fire, landfill blaze keep firefighters busy in B.C. Interior

Vancouver Sun
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

OSOYOOS – Two fires that had threatened homes in British Columbia’s Interior, both caused by people, continued to burn Tuesday, but officials believed the flames were no longer an immediate threat to residents. A wildfire near Spotted Lake, about 10 kilometres west of Osoyoos in the southern Interior, was discovered a day earlier and by Tuesday was 15 hectares in size, according to a news release from the province’s wildfire management branch… “This wildfire is burning close to homes in the area; however, there is currently no immediate threat to structures in the area,” said a notice posted to the website of the province’s wildfire management branch.

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Readers offer insights on Clayoquot protests

By Stephen Hume
Vancouver Sun
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Two Vancouver Sun readers amplify my column about the lasting impact of the Clayoquot Sound protest and the mass trial that followed. Sandy McRuer writes to say he was a professional forester working in the Port Alberni Forest District during the 14 years from 1985 to 1999 that spanned the Clayoquot protests… McRuer says one of the immediate consequences of the 1993 Clayoquot protest was a major transformation for the better in the way the forest industry conducts itself. “A virtual sea-change occurred when the Forest Practices Code was enacted by the NDP in 1995,” he writes.

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Why does logging trump tourism in the Discovery Islands and Desolation Sound?

Vancouver Observer
August 19, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

…Sixteen provincial marine parks invite exploration of the waters between central Vancouver Island and the B.C. mainland. …According to the Discovery Islands Marine Tourism Group, tourists generate over $45 million each year and employ 1,200 people in the Discovery Islands alone. But logging by TimberWest on Sonora Island threatens to bring clear cut scars close to the water’s edge. Close by, on the west side of Maurelle Island at a site directly opposite the Octopus Islands Marine Park, B.C. Timber Sales has punched through a road and placed a log dump. Logging will commence in the fall.

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Balanced reporting tells tale of cutting in woods

Letter by Bruce E. Hornidge
Alberni Valley Times
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

AV Times reporter Julie Bertrand gave a balanced report on a German tourist photographer’s comments about B.C. old-growth logging practices. Mr. Gottfried Esch’s comments are similar to a myriad of interviews reported in environmental media stories during the 1980s and 90s. Present day codes and regulation had responded to those stories. …The forest grows back in time. … I doubt most people driving the road to the West Coast would recognize where the site of the 1993 Protest Camp of the Clayoquot Sound Peace Camp was situated.

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Scientists call for ban on outdated herbicide spraying

‘We are really trying to fight nature, and it’s ludicrous,’ says DNR biologist
CBC News
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

A growing number of scientists are calling for an end to weed spraying in provincial forests. Rodney Savidge, a biologist at UNB Fredericton, said using chemicals to control undergrowth for the benefit of the forestry industry is ludicrous. The spraying is designed to protect desirable softwood stands from encroaching hardwood saplings, allowing the softwood trees to grow faster. The problem is that young hardwoods are an important food supply for deer.

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Forest-interior birds may be benefiting from harvested clearings

Phys.org
August 21, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Efforts to conserve declining populations of forest-interior birds have largely focused on preserving the mature forests where birds breed, but a U.S. Forest Service study suggests that in the weeks leading up to migration, younger forest habitat may be just as important. In an article published recently in the American Ornithologist Union’s publication “The Auk,” research wildlife biologist Scott Stoleson of the U.S. Forest Service’s Northern Research Station suggests that forest regrowth in clearcuts may be vital to birds as they prepare for fall migration.

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Wildfire near Yosemite National Park expands, causing evacuations and road closure

Associated Press
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, Calif. – A destructive wildfire on the outskirts of Yosemite National Park on Tuesday threatened more than 2,000 structures, forced the evacuation of camps and remote rural homes, and brought the shutdown of a main highway into the park. In three days, the fire has destroyed two residences and five outbuildings, but some 2,500 houses, hotels and camp buildings were under threat, U.S. Forest Service spokesman Jerry Snyder said.

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Bill allowing more logging on Oregon public lands advances

KVAL.com
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

ROSEBURG, Ore. – A Congress not known for reaching agreement is set to vote on a possible solution to the budget problems plaguing Oregon’s timber counties. Oregon counties that contain large tracts of public land managed by the federal government traditionally shared in the revenues from timber sales… But as timber sales dwindled, so have county budgets for roads, schools and law enforcement.  The so-called Secure Rural Schools and Communities Act – initially known as the Craig-Wyden Bill after its sponors, Senators Larry Craig of Idaho and Ron Wyden of Oregon – helped fill the gap with direct payments from the federal treasury in lieu of timber revenues.

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Crews Battling Fire And Weather

Oregon Public Broadcasting
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

With hot, dry weather expected to persist this week, crews are pushing hard to contain the 9-acre Hand Lake Fire in the Mount Washington Wilderness, the Willamette National Forest said Tuesday. Further, the National Weather Service is predicting thunderstorms for much of the Cascades Range this week, including for the Willamette forest’s portion of the range from tonight through Thursday night. The Hand Lake Fire grew to 9 acres on Sunday and crews have held it to that size ever since, forest officials said.

Government Flats Fire Flares from Hood River News

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Do Oregon’s clear-cut and pesticide buffers protect drinking water from creeks, rivers?

The Oregonian
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

ROCKAWAY BEACH — From her front porch, Nancy Webster has a clear view of the hills just east of the coast highway, a western hemlock forest that’s home to Rockaway Beach’s water supply. The retired social worker, who grew up in a Northwest logging family, worried when she saw patchwork clear-cuts expanding in 2011. Last summer, she and a friend hiked into the watershed during a storm and saw the creek that feeds Rockaway Beach’s water treatment plant “running chocolate brown.” In September, she spotted helicopters spraying herbicides, catching distinct whiffs at her house a half-mile away.

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UM professor should spend time learning logging ‘on the ground’

Guest column by Tzom Horelick,North Fork Forestry in Libby
Missoulian
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

On my long drive home from work a few weeks ago, I was listening to the 6 o’clock commentary on NPR from Dr. Tom Powers, economics chair at the University of Montana…  In his diatribe about logging, fuel reduction projects, and the greedy timber industry in general, I shook my head in disbelief at what he was spewing, especially for a man of his education and position… His comments made about as much sense to me as generalizing that all college professors in Missoula are over-educated, left-wing communists, making their living by brainwashing the students of today.

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Dozens of blazes across the West push firefighting costs past $1 billion so far this year

Associated Press
August 21, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

GRANTS PASS, Ore. – More than 40 uncontained, active and large wildfires dot the western U.S. from Arizona to Washington state and Alaska, taxing national firefighting resources and helping to push spending past $1 billion for the year. The National Interagency Fire Center in Boise has raised the national wildfire preparedness level to the highest tier for the first time in five years.  …Steve Gage, assistant director of operations for the fire centre, said
officials can’t fill all the requests they receive for crews and
equipment.

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Forest Advocates Sound The Alarm

Officials worry about economics of thinning contract process
Payson Roundup
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Wood pellets. Power plants. Plywood. Particle board. Lots of companies have proven they can make money producing those items from wood scraps and tree branches, given a cheap, stable supply of the raw material. But jet fuel? Diesel gasoline? Finger-jointed furniture? Not so much. In fact, despite the enormous promise, a handful of companies trying to turn wood chips into diesel and jet fuel have so far lost money, abandoned the effort or produced mostly demonstration projects.

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Christie conditionally vetoes contentious forestry bill

Phillyburbs.com
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

TRENTON — Gov. Chris Christie has conditionally vetoed a controversial forestry bill that divided New Jersey environmental groups over whether the measure would have helped or hurt the state’s green open spaces. .. Christie, a Republican governor who has occasionally butted heads with environmentalists, took issue with a key provision in the bill that would have required the nonprofit Forest Stewardship Council to sign off on all stewardship plans developed by the DEP.

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Forest peace deal money guaranteed regardless of Upper House decision on forest protection

ABC News
August 21, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Tasmania will still get $100 million to diversify its ailing economy, even if the Upper House kills off the state’s forest peace deal. The Federal Government is planning to sever the link between the cash, and crucial enabling legislation held up in the Legislative Council. The move hinges on Labor being re-elected next month.

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Norfolk experts’ ash dieback ‘citizen science’ project

BBC News
August 20, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Norfolk researchers hope a “citizen science” project will help identify trees resistant to ash dieback. Last year, the team at the University of East Anglia (UEA), Norwich launched a smartphone “AshTag” app to allow people to report the disease. More than 12,000 people have downloaded the app since its launch in October. Now the scientists are asking people to physically tag ash trees and submit images using an updated app so they can monitor the trees’ long-term health.

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Companies exploit loophole in PNG logging ban

ABC News, Australia
August 21, 2013
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Logging companies are exploiting a loophole in Papua New Guinea’s ban on exporting natural timber logs, according to a new report. The Oil Palm and Deforestation in PNG report, co-written by Australian and PNG researchers, has found some companies using Special Agricultural and Business Leases (SABL) as a cover for logging operations.  Under the SABL’s land can be cleared, and the logs exported, if the purpose of the clearing is to plant Palm Oil plants.

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