Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: September 3, 2014

Business & Politics

Boost in business confidence kindles hopes for wood product sector

Economic momentum building, uncertainty dissipating, RBC report suggests
Vancouver Sun
September 2, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Business conditions for manufacturers in British Columbia and Alberta improved the most among Canadian regions in August, according to a new RBC report, which is a hopeful harbinger for some of this province’s traditional sectors including wood-products manufacturing. “We’re seeing a bit of momentum building in the economy, uncertainty is dissipating and that’s contributing to a strengthening of growth (in manufacturing) nationally,” said Paul Fenley, assistant chief economist with RBC economics.

Read More

Forest industry prospects brighten, but not much

By Don Cayo
Vancouver Sun
September 2, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Paper-making companies and wood products manufacturers, both mainstays of the B.C. economy, have faced some gloomy times in recent years, but both can look forward to brighter, though only slightly brighter, futures.  This is the nub of two new analyses released Tuesday by the Conference Board of Canada. By most measures, including profits — the all-important bottom line — the wood products manufacturing industry has been slowly extracting itself from a very bad place since the recession of 2008. …The picture for paper producers is quite different. …There is still international demand for wood fibre — annual pulp exports from Canada have hovered at or near the $6-billion mark for the last decade — but paper exports have nosedived from about $15 billion in 2003 to less than $9 billion in 2013.

Read More

Former Sino-Forest execs should be judged by Canadian standards: OSC

OSC hearing into Sino-Forest begins
The Canadian Press
September 2, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

TORONTO – Five former top executives at Sino-Forest Corp., who accused of perpetuating a massive fraud, should be judged by Canadian standards even though the company’s main operations were based in China, a long-awaited securities tribunal was told Tuesday. Ontario Securities Commission lawyer Hugh Craig told the opening of the OSC hearing that the allegations against ex-Sino-Forest chief executive Allen Chan and four others involved Canadian investors, which should make them accountable under Canadian regulations. Established in 1994, Sino-Forest was the first and biggest foreign-owned forestry company in China and did most of its business there even though it was based in Ontario.

Read More

Maibec invests $20 million in upgrade of its lumber mill in St-Pamphile de l’Islet, Québec

Lesprom
September 3, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Maibec has invested more than $20 million in the upgrade of its lumber mill in St-Pamphile de l’Islet, Québec, Canada. The upgrade included the acquisition of high-tech, high-performance equipment that will enable to optimize the use of resources while increasing agility in manufacturing value-added products for customers and improving overall productivity in a sustainable manner. The new equipment will be operational in early 2015, as the company said in the press release received by Lesprom Network.

Read More

Gov’t has the power to correct wrongdoings at the pulp mill

Letter to the Editor
The Pictou Advocate
September 3, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

I’ve been sitting in my room here at the Shiretown Home debating whether to write this letter, and I said, Why not? This is how I feel over this pulp mill issue. I remember living on Coleraine Street in the house called the Canard House today, my old home where I grew up. Well, when that pulp mill stench came across our beautiful harbour, we, in the neighbourhood, had all we could to breathe, and often wondered why the government let the mill be built in our location in the late 60s and the rules have been broken ever since their doors opened. Why, I ask, did they not listen to our medical staff here at the time? This mill should not, and I repeat, should not, be allowed to stay open untiI next May.

Read More

Resolute Forest Products closing Laurentide paper mill in Shawinigan, Que.

Resolute closing Laurentide paper mill
The Canadian Press
September 2, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

MONTREAL – Resolute Forest Products says competition from a government-subsidized mill in Nova Scotia, higher operating costs and falling demand have forced the closure of its Laurentide paper mill in Shawinigan, Que., affecting 275 workers. The Montreal-based pulp, paper and lumber producer told workers Tuesday that the facility that makes commercial paper will close about mid-October. “We made every effort to find a way to improve the Laurentide mill’s performance. Unfortunately, due to its cost structure and challenging market conditions, there is no economically viable option for the mill,” stated CEO Richard Garneau.

Read More

Erin Brockovich speaks out against Northern Pulp mill

Facebook post from consumer advocate calls on Canadians to call Premier Stephen McNeil
CBC News
September 2, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

A powerhouse consumer advocate from the United States is throwing her support behind Pictou County’s clean air movement. Erin Brockovich wrote on her Facebook page Tuesday evening that she stands with her friends in the north. Part of the posting reads: “Everyday counts. Demand Action. “The massive international polluter, Northern Pulp … [is] number six on the list of all of Canada’s top polluters, destroying the community’s quality of life significantly.

Erin Brockovich pipes up on Northern Pulp from Nova News Now

Read More

Labour charges drive up project costs for Tembec cogen

Pulp and Paper Canada
September 2, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Tembec’s cogeneration project at the Temiscaming, Que., site is running behind schedule and will cost more than expected, the company reported at the end of July. The press release for Tembec’s Q3 results contained an update on the $235-million cogeneration project, which is now forecast to cost about $255 million. The overrun is largely due to higher labour costs, the company says. The initial estimate was for total labour man-hours of 810,000. The current projection is for a total of 927,000 man-hours. “As a significant portion of the additional man-hours relate to higher cost, specialized trades, the fully-loaded cost per man-hour is forecasted to be 7% higher than originally planned,” the release states.

Read More

Global wood pellet demand to reach 50 million tonnes by 2024

Rapid demand growth largely driven by European industrial and heat markets, and Asian industrial markets
PR Newswire
September 3, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

BOSTON — Global wood pellet demand is rapidly expanding as consumers, businesses and regulators look for alternatives to fossil fuels. Globally, wood pellet demand is projected to grow from an estimated 23 million tonnes in 2014 to 50 million tonnes in 2024. These and other key findings were released today in a new study by RISI, the leading information provider for the global forest products industry… We’re seeing strong demand in the European heating sector as high energy prices drive consumers to look for fuel alternatives. Also, policies that promote the generation of renewable energy are spurring the use of pellets as a substitution for coal in power plants,” said Seth Walker, Author and Bioenergy Economist at RISI.

Read More

Walnut Prices Soaring Amid Record Export Demand

Woodworking Network
September 2, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

Kiln-dried walnut prices — averaged across all grades, thicknesses and regions — increased 26% during the last 12 months, including gains of more than $900 per thousand board feet on some items. Many are now wondering if walnut will price itself out of certain markets, or if combined domestic and international demand is high enough to keep buyers interested at current or even higher prices. Given that some buyers are willingly paying prices well above current published levels to secure future shipments, and walnut exports set new records in each of the five months ending in June, we foresee no slowdown in the near-term.

Read More

Forestry safety must be taken seriously

The Daily Blog New Zealand
September 3, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

News that Police have arrested and charged a man with manslaughter over the death of 20-year old Lincoln Kidd shows that forestry safety must be taken seriously, according to FIRST Union. “Lincoln’s tragic death was one of ten lives claimed by this industry last year, four of which were under the age of 30. If we don’t take the dangers and hazards of the forestry industry seriously then we could stand to lose more workers,” said FIRST Union General Secretary Robert Reid. “We’re pleased that 2014 has been a year of progress with forestry safety,” said Robert Reid.

Read More

Wood, Paper & Green Building

Structurlam glued to international scene

Penticton Western News
September 3, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

Wood buyers from Japan and Korea toured the Structurlam plant in Okanagan Falls looking for an innovative solution for construction projections in their respective countries. Bill Downing, president of Structurlam Products in Penticton, said there has been a growing interest in constructing larger buildings fashioned from wood. “Structurlam is at the forefront of that,” he said. “We’ve already built some of the largest buildings in the world and now we’re currently building the seven-storey, Wood Innovation and Design Centre in Prince George — so that one will be the tallest in western North America, I believe.”

Read More

CAC and RESCON resume wood frame debate

Daily Commercial News
September 3, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

The residential construction industry is refuting claims by the Cement Association of Canada (CAC) that a proposal to modify the building code and allow taller wood frame structures will create a public safety hazard. …[Richard lyall, president of the Residential Construction Council of Ontario] “The problem with the cement industry’s criticism is it is obvious why they don’t like it, but their technical stuff is baseless. They rely on fear mongering, which is back firing on them. This is a meritless attack on timber frame buildings, in this jurisdiction, when it’s being done just about everywhere else in the world.”

Read More

Forestry

Florence: Plotting strategy while fighting forest fires

The Star Phoenix
September 2, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Ira Elderkin has a work schedule. Normal it’s not. As the supervisor of a fire base in northeast Saskatchewan, his days are fluid. He watches the sky. He reads the weather. When lightning strikes and a fire starts in the forest, his work day can stretch into a week in a flash. “We had 119 fires three years ago, 97 at once,” Elderkin said from his station in Southend on Reindeer Lake. “When that happens we go in every direction.” Fire crews attack. Fire crews defend. Elderkin sets a plan backed by his 32 years of firefighting experience. Keeping the crew safe is the priority.

Read More

Saskatoon landmark little known part of province’s history (& video)

Global News
September 1, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

SASKATOON – It’s a little-known part of Saskatchewan’s history – a local Saskatoon park is responsible for millions of trees that now grow across Western Canada.  The Forestry Farm Park was first set up by the Canadian government as the Dominion Forest Nursery Station in 1913 and for more than 50 years helped thousands of settlers make the Prairies their home. …The new settlers needed seedlings and cuttings to grow trees. Between 1913 and 1965, the nursery filled that need, planting and shipping 147 million trees to farmers across Western Canada.

Read More

Burnaby tells Kinder Morgan conservation area is off limits

Company says it has legal right to cut trees for geotechnical studies on proposed pipeline route
Vancouver Sun
September 2, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The City of Burnaby has told Kinder Morgan to stop doing work in the Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area after staff discovered the transmission company’s crews with chainsaws and other tree-cutting equipment Tuesday. However, Kinder Morgan …said that they are legally within their rights after being granted a permit under Section 73 of the National Energy Board Act to conduct engineering and environmental studies for the proposed pipeline route in Burnaby …“This is an area protected by city bylaws and nobody is above the law,” said Dhaliwal. “They say they have a right to do that, but we say they don’t.”

Read More

Rich diversity of life drives push for national park protection in B.C.’s Flathead valley

Calgary Herald
September 1, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

FLATHEAD RIVER VALLEY, B.C. — From the summit of Akamina Ridge, there’s a bird’s-eye view of the Flathead — a lush, green river valley in the southeastern corner of British Columbia that’s surrounded by mountains, dotted with old-growth forests and filled with grizzly bears and wolves. It’s being called the “missing piece” in the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park. The area is easy enough to show on a map, but it’s even more clear at an elevation of around 2,600 metres.

Read More

In Pennsylvania, environmental groups pounce on logging

Harbinger for Wisconsin? Groups say taking even a few bats should be prohibited
The Lakeland Times
September 2, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

The United States Fish & Wildlife Service will make a final decision by next April about whether the northern long-eared bat deserves to be listed as an endangered species – it has already said it believes it does – and some environmentalists appear ready to use the designation to shut down the timber industry. In at least one case, they haven’t even bothered to wait until the designation is official. In Pennsylvania, where two state agencies want an incidental taking permit to allow timber harvesting on 3.9 million acres, environmental groups have urged the USFWS to deny the application, saying the taking of any bats would violate the federal Endangered Species Act.

Read More

Asia Pulp and Paper has sufficient plantation for its Zero Deforestation commitment

Herald Online
September 3, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

JAKARTA — An independent study has today confirmed that Asia Pulp and Paper Group has sufficient plantation resource to meet the pulp requirements of its existing mills as well as its future mill in OKI, South Sumatra. The launch of the Forest Conservation Policy in February 2013, saw the company commit to producing pulp and paper that is free from fibre or activity linked to deforestation. In order to ensure existing supplier plantations have sufficient capacity to meet this commitment, The Forest Trust and Ata Marie were asked to conduct an independent “Growth and Yield” study to assess existing plantation areas.

Read More

Sawmiller predicts timber industry to rebuild slowly following scrapping of forest peace deal

ABC News
September 2, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A sawmiller has ruled out any quick fix for the timber industry following the tearing-up of Tasmania’s forest peace deal. After nearly five years of negotiations by industry and green groups to reach a compromise peace deal, Parliament has voted to scrap the legislation that protected up to 1.5 million hectares of native forest. The repeal bill removes 400,000 hectares from protection, but the area will not be able to be logged for six years. Sawmiller and chair of the Forest Industries Association of Tasmania, Glenn Britton, told 936 ABC Hobart he did not expect jobs to flow quickly.

Read More

Ebola and forestry — an urgent scientific challenge

CIFOR Forest News
September 3, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

As a forestry research organization, we are also looking at the renewed and reinforced call for research on the links between Ebola and forest-related activities. …It is well established that the Ebola virus has a connection to forest and tree systems in West and Central Africa. Further, it appears that we have a fairly good scientific understanding of the medical and clinical issues …From a forestry and landscape management perspective however, we have surprisingly little to go on as to how and where the virus appears, nor on the risks connected to agricultural practices or bushmeat value chains. 

Read More

Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Partnership fuels expansion of University of Northern B.C.’s bioenergy system

The Boundary Sentinel
September 2, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada, Canada West

Students, communities and the environment will benefit from the expansion of the University of Northern British Columbia’s award-winning bioenergy heating system, thanks to a $1.1-million contribution from the Government of B.C. The funding partnership was announced by Advanced Education Minister Amrik Virk at UNBC’s 25th-anniversary kickoff celebration held today in Prince George. “UNBC is seen as an innovative leader in the clean energy field and as a driver of economic development to create jobs and opportunities for British Columbians,” Advanced Education Minister Amrik Virk sdaid.

Read More

Climate Change Creates Challenges For A Wilderness Pine Tree

Jefferson Public Radio
September 3, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

COTTAGE GROVE, Ore. — If you want to see a whitebark pine up close, be prepared for a hike. These trees thrive at high elevation, where the terrain is often too high up and the climate too extreme for most plant species. That’s why scientists consider the whitebark pine to be a keystone species… As average temperatures elevate in alpine zones, pests and diseases are taking hold and wildfires are a growing threat… The Forest Service has determined the Wilderness Act doesn’t allow for the planting of these disease-resistant whitebark pines in wilderness areas.

Read More

Good Things in Store for Pellets

September 3, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

When asked this winter about ongoing incentive funding for pellet boiler installations, Efficiency Maine CEO Mike Stoddard challenged, “If the program is a success, ongoing funding will be there.” When asked to define success, Stoddard replied, “If by the end of June you guys have done 50 installations, we’ll be disappointed. If you’ve done 100 installs with us, we’ll consider that a real success.” Efficiency Maine recently announced that as of June 30, it had completed financing for 214 pellet boiler installations. Stoddard also announced that his agency’s budget for the program that finances these rebates will continue at the present level.

Read More

Public Opposition Spurs County to Delay New Biomass Facility

Renewable Energy Magazine
September 2, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

Transylvania County in North Carolina is currently engaged in intensive internal debate about the role of biomass in their future. The current state of affairs began last year when Renewable Developers, a New York based LLC, proposed the construction of a biomass waste to energy conversion plant in the town of Penrose. The new facility would utilize the pyrolysis method of conversion to turn wood chips and municipal solid waste into approximately four megawatts of renewably sourced electricity. Unfortunately, staunch public opposition lead by the NIMBY group People for Clean Mountains (PCM) immediately began to oppose the facility after it was announced.

Read More

Good Things in Store for Pellets

September 3, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

When asked this winter about ongoing incentive funding for pellet boiler installations, Efficiency Maine CEO Mike Stoddard challenged, “If the program is a success, ongoing funding will be there.” When asked to define success, Stoddard replied, “If by the end of June you guys have done 50 installations, we’ll be disappointed. If you’ve done 100 installs with us, we’ll consider that a real success.” Efficiency Maine recently announced that as of June 30, it had completed financing for 214 pellet boiler installations. Stoddard also announced that his agency’s budget for the program that finances these rebates will continue at the present level.

Read More