Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: July 24, 2014

Business & Politics

Domtar Corporation reports preliminary second quarter 2014 financial results

Canada Newswire press release
July 24, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

MONTREAL – Domtar Corporation  today reported net earnings of $40 million ($0.61 per share) for the second quarter of 2014 compared to net earnings of $39 million ($0.60 per share) for the first quarter of 2014 and net loss of $46 million ($0.69 per share) for the second quarter of 2013. Sales for the second quarter of 2014 were $1,385 million.

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Canfor Pulp Products Inc. Announces Second Quarter 2014 Results and Quarterly Dividend

Market Wired
July 23, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA– – Canfor Pulp Products Inc. today reported net income of $18.8 million, or $0.27 per share, for the second quarter of 2014, compared to $25.7 million, or $0.36 per share, for the first quarter of 2014 and $7.6 million, or $0.11 per share, for the second quarter of 2013. For the six months ended June 30, 2014, the Company’s net income was $44.5 million, or $0.63 per share, compared to $18.5 million, or $0.26 per share, for the six months ended June 30, 2013.

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Province offers pulp mills $100 million for energy conservation

Measures calculated to reduce power demand and save money over the long term, minister says
Vancouver Sun
July 23, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA — B.C.’s Energy Minister is throwing a lifeline to the province’s pulp mills, with up to $100 million for energy conservation projects to help offset rising industrial electricity rates. Bill Bennett will make the announcement in Surrey Thursday, flanked by four mill companies that had publicly warned they could be driven to economic hardship by his ministry’s 10-year plan to raise BC Hydro rates. The companies — Canfor, Catalyst Paper, Paper Excellence and West Fraser — operate thermo-mechanical pulp mills and are among B.C.’s biggest industrial power users.

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Latest protest of Northern Pulp mill sets sail

Chronicle Herald
July 24, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

PICTOU LANDING – The smell of the smoke spewing from the Northern Pulp mill in nearby Abercrombie Point hung in the air, tainting an otherwise spectacular Wednesday evening at the Pictou Landing wharf. The smell of gunpowder was not as evident, at least not on this night. …“We’ll probably run into the plume,” he said before the three-masted schooner slipped away from the wharf. “We’ll wait until the sun goes down and then we’ll fire off the cannon.” The cannon consists of a pair of swivel guns mounted on the boat.

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SFPA: Southern pine lumber exports up 16% in May 2014

Lesprom
July 23, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

The surge in exports of Southern Pine lumber continues. USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service recently reported exports of Southern Pine to be approximately 51.1 million board feet (MMbf) during May 2014. This volume represents an increase of 16% above the same month last year, and a solid year-to-date increase of 36% when compared with the first five months of 2013, as the Southern Forest Products Association said in the press release received by Lesprom Network.

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Timbercorp investors dig in on loan repayments

The Sydney Morning Herald
July 24, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Investors in Timbercorp say they will fight ”increasingly unreasonable” legal attempts to force them to repay money they borrowed to put into the failed forestry company. A first batch of 16 investors in managed investment schemes run by Timbercorp is expected to appear before the Victorian Supreme Court on August 15, and more are expected to be hauled before the courts in coming months. Timbercorp liquidator KordaMentha is seeking orders that they repay loans they took out to finance their investment. 

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Triabunna woodchip mill: Government probe to call 20-plus witnesses

ABC News, Australia
July 24, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

The State Parliamentary probe into the sale of the Triabunna woodchip mill is planning to call more than 20 witnesses, including former Gunns chief Greg L’Estrange. The Tasmanian Government claims Labor and the Greens hid important details of the sale of Gunns’ Triabunna woodchip mill to environmentalists Graeme Wood and Jan Cameron, and directed the Lower House’s Liberal-dominated Community Development Committee to investigate.  The inquiry was prompted by an essay in The Monthly magazine
written by its editor John van Tiggelen, which described the covert
wrecking of the mill so it could not be forcibly reacquired by the State
Government.

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Forestry

New genomic tools hold promise for economic boon in forest industry

iPolitics.ca
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

Just over half the trees in Canada’s 348 million hectares of forest are spruce, offering the spruce budworm immense opportunity to turn lush green conifer stands from coast to coast into scorched-looking landscapes… The announcement in 2013 that Canadian scientists had sequenced the entire genome of the white spruce, accelerating future applications for the discovery of a gene with natural resistance to the spruce budworm was, therefore, welcome news. Given that the white spruce genome is six times larger than a human’s, the Genome Canada-funded research, co-led by Drs. John MacKay of Université Laval and Jörg Bohlmann of the University of British Columbia, faced formidable challenges.

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More wildfire crews arrive as B.C. braces for another round of fires

The Canadian Press
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER – Another 153 firefighters from across Canada have arrived in British Columbia as the province braces for more hot, dry weather that could send the wildfire danger soaring. The Ministry of Forests says 100 sustained-action firefighters and additional single specialists from Ontario, Manitoba and New Brunswick have been briefed in Kamloops, B.C., and assigned to fires throughout the province. The new teams will spell-off crews that have been working on roughly 15 large or potentially threatening blazes, including the 15-square-kilometre Botanie (bo-TAN’-ee) Road fire just outside Lytton, 260 kilometres northeast of Vancouver, where more than 100 residents remain out of their homes.

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Conservationists give province’s land-use plan a failing grade

Province says plan aims for balance between conservation, industry and recreation
Calgary Herald
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A long awaited land-use plan that will guide future decisions on development, recreation and conservation in southern Alberta fails to protect critical headwaters and misses the mark when it comes to preserving the Castle wilderness area, according to several conservation groups. Robin Campbell, Minister of Environment and Sustainable Resource Development, released the South Saskatchewan Regional Plan on Wednesday in Calgary. …But conservationists say they’re disappointed the plan only protects half of the critical Castle area landscape, which spans 1,020 square kilometres, and argue the area being protected is mainly rock and ice.

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Mars bomber petition will now be brought to Premier

Petition now has 17,500 names
Alberni Valley Times
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

As a petition to put the Hawaii Mars water bomber back in the air fighting forest fires rapidly grows, a Port Alberni resident is planning to take the list of names to Premier Christy Clark’s constituency office in West Kelowna. By Tuesday afternoon the online petition had gathered over 17,000 names from communities across western Canada in favour of the province signing up the local air tanker for another five years. After 50 hours of airborne firefighting last year the provincial government opted to not renew a contract with the water bomber’s owning company Coulson Flying Tankers, instead opting for the air tanker services of Abbotsford-based Conair.

“Mighty Mars’ should be on duty in BC from the Alberni Valley Times
Mars Water bomber should be on contract from the Alberni Valley Times
Water bomber needs to in the air, on duty from the Alberni Valley Times

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Province defends shift from Martin Mars water bombers

BC Local News
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The provincial government is defending its unpopular decision to halt B.C.’s use of the veteran Martin Mars water bombers in favour of newer aircraft to fight wildfires. . …The much smaller aircraft are more flexible because they can operate from more than 1,700 lakes compared to just 113 with the Mars….The branch said in statement the new Fire Bosses delivered fire suppressant twice as fast during the recent West Kelowna fire – 586,000 litres in 11.3 hours – as the Martin Mars dropped during the 2003 Kelowna fire. “Over the past six weeks, the new Fire Boss aircraft have actioned more fires than the Martin Mars did in six years.”

Province douses petition supporting Martin Mars water bomber from the Victoria Times Colonist/Alberni Valley Times

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Conservationists hopeful with pending release of southern Alberta land-use plan

Calgary Herald
July 22, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

As the province gets set to release a land-use plan for southern Alberta, conservationists say they are hoping to see better watershed and habitat protection along the eastern slopes of the Rockies — including the creation of a park in the Castle wilderness area. The South Saskatchewan Regional Plan, which was approved by provincial cabinet on Tuesday, will guide future decisions on development, recreation and the environment in the southern part of Alberta. It covers 84,000 square kilometres from Calgary to the Canada-United States border and the Rocky Mountains to the Alberta-Saskatchewan boundary.

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Bat research blitz planned for southeast B.C. river valley

Calgary Herald
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Not much is known about bats in the Flathead River Valley. On Thursday, Cori Lausen and a bat team will head to southeastern British Columbia for a four-day BioBlitz in attempt to find out more information. “It’s really the only place left in southern British Columbia that has not been inventoried for bats,” said Lausen, a research biologist and bat specialist with the Wildlife Conservation Society Canada. …Conservation groups such as Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative and Wildsight are trying to get it protected from industrial uses such as logging.

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Clear message on resources

The Star Phoenix
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Western Canadians appreciate the vital economic and social benefits that flow from natural resource development, but as a recent poll conducted for the Canada West Foundation shows, their expectations in such areas as environmental sustainability, public safety and social responsibility carry a strong message to industry and governments. …As Canada West points out, “(westerners) want to feel better about the industries’ environmental performance. The future of public support is anchored in resource industries developing sustainable approaches to address these factors that are in line with the priorities of Western Canadians.”

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Island set ablaze to help rare pitch pine trees flourish (with video)

Parks Canada managing controlled burn in Thousand Islands
CBC News
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada


Parks Canada has set fire to the shores of an island in Thousand Islands in the St. Lawrence River to help save a rare type of pine tree. It’s an effort to restore the natural landscape on Camelot Island after years of fire suppression, which has upset the processes needed to support healthy forests. To watch video shot on the island of the controlled burn, watch CBC reporter Steve Fischer’s story by clicking here.

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Firefighting costs soar as warming worsens wildfires

USA Today
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

The costs of fighting wildfires are rising dramatically, and could keep climbing in the face of climate change that’s contributing to longer fire seasons out West and the spread of housing developments near forests, a science group warned Wednesday. “The annual suppression cost has exceeded $1 billion in each year since 2000,” said Rachel Cleetus, senior climate economist with the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) during a phone conference with reporters Wednesday. 

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Oregon firefighters chase new lightning fires

Associated Press
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

GRANTS PASS, Ore.— Lightning rolled through much of eastern Oregon on Tuesday, leaving in its wake several dozen reports of new wildfire starts, fire officials said. That news came as firefighters made progress in their battle against 11 major wildfires already burning across the state. Many of the new fire reports came from the same areas around Prineville and in the Ochoco National Forest that were hard hit in the last lightning storm, said the Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch Center.

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Federal government effectively limits Oregon’s rebounding timber industry

The Roseburg News-Review
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The Oregon Department of Forestry’s annual report on timber production shows the need to increase logging on federal lands. The report contains good news and restates a troubling trend. On the plus side, timber harvests in 2013 topped 4 billion board feet for the first time since 2006. Oregon produced enough timber to build 419,920 houses. Recovery from the Great Recession continued, and demand for timber has room to grow. Housing starts nationally were still only about two-thirds the historical average. 

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A State Forest In Oregon Could Be Sold To Timber Companies

Oregon Public Broadcasting
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The Elliott State Forest has been a losing proposition for the state of Oregon. Annual management costs are about $3 million dollars more than what it brings in by selling timber for logging companies to cut. One option being considered to make money off the Elliott is to sell all 93,000 acres of the forest — including old-growth tracts — on the south Oregon coast to private timber companies. The proceeds of such a sale would go into the state’s Common School Fund, which supports public education. Three parcels were recently sold for logging.

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Wildfire fight helped by cool, wet weather

Statesman Journal
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Firefighters made progress Tuesday on a dozen large wildfires burning across Oregon as wet, cooler weather moved in. Air quality across the state also has improved, with only Madras showing a reading of moderate. The 452-acre Bingham Complex fire, east of Salem in the Mount Jefferson Wilderness, is now 30 percent contained. Some trails, including a portion of the Pacific Crest Trail, remain closed. The big worry now is lightning, forecast across much of Oregon and southeast Washington Tuesday and Wednesday. “Already yesterday we received 2,900 lightning strikes in the southeast portion of the state,” said Carol Connelly, public information officer for the Northwest Interagency Coordination Center, said Tuesday.

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Fire season in West expected to get more intense

Associated Press
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Despite widespread drought in the West and expectations of an above-average wildfire season, wildfires have burned less than half the 10-year average area so far this summer. U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell said Wednesday that largely has been a matter of luck, with the hot windy weather known as “red flag” days not lining up with the lighting strikes that start most fires, particularly in California. But that is changing, he said from Washington, D.C. Eighteen large fires were burning in the Northwest with intensities not normally seen until August.

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Oregon Army National Guard soldiers, helicopters help fight Logging Unit wildfire near Madras

The Oregonian
July 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

About 40 soldiers, two Blackhawk helicopters and two Chinook helicopters from the Oregon Army National Guard have joined the effort to fight the Logging Unit complex of wildfires west of Madras. The complex is made up of five fires that began on July 16. The recent cooler weather and Guard help have allowed crews to make progress building firelines over the last couple of days, according to the National Interagency Fire Center.

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Lumberjack World Championships start today in Hayward

Associated Press
July 24, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Hayward – International competition begins in Hayward where the very best lumberjacks are gathering.  The U.S. Lumberjack World Championships get underway Thursday with log rolling, pole climbing and chopping events. The championships started in 1960. Organizers say it’s a way to acknowledge the rich history of the logging industry across the United States.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Burning wood for power can be low carbon, UK government finds

Report by energy department’s chief scientist unlikely to result in new restrictions on biomass power stations
The Guardian
July 23, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Burning wood to produce electricity can produce lower carbon emissions than other fuels, but only under tightly controlled conditions, a report for the UK’s Department of Energy and Climate Change has found. The report, due to be published on Thursday, is unlikely to result in any new restrictions on the burning of biomass in power stations or in homes for heating, but will fuel debate over how the technology can be used in the future. Biomass – which includes wood, other plants and waste products such as straw – has been used as an alternative to burning coal to produce energy, but carries with it potential problems, for instance if the wood used to fuel the power plants is taken from forests that would otherwise act as a long-term store for carbon.

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General

Dirt, Fire and Road: My First Season as a Wildland Firefighter

USDA Blog
July 23, 2014
Category: Uncategorised

For the second time, I spilled burn mix on my clothing as I reached to replace a drip torch, a wildland firefighting tool used to ignite fires for controlled burns. After three days of working with the Davidson River Initial Attack Crew, I was getting used to how things worked – except for the drip torch. I’d spent the first seven years of my career buried behind papers and computers in the U.S. Forest Service Headquarters in Washington, D.C. When I heard of a job to improve firefighting training skills for Job Corps students, I jumped on it.

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