Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: October 20, 2014

Froggy Foibles

NASA and Tree Rings Confirm 1934 Drought Worst in Last 1000 Years

SavingAdvice.com
October 19, 2014
Category: Froggy Foibles

As the state of California deals with its ongoing drought issues, predicted to continue well into 2015, NASA released a new study stating that the droughts we are experiencing are comparatively mild… NASA teamed up with Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory to adjust the history of the United States in relation to droughts. They used contemporary practices and tree-ring records from 1000 to 2005. The study found that the drought in 1934 covered more than 71 percent of western North America and was 30 percent more severe than any drought in the last 1000 years. The only drought coming close was in 1580.

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Business & Politics

WorkSafeBC needs more clout when it comes to the forest industry

Globe and Mail
October 20, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

The B.C. government was preparing to release a progress report on worker safety in forest-product mills earlier this month when an explosion ripped through a wood-pellet plant in Burns Lake, injuring three workers. The update would have trumpeted how the government is making progress on a series of recommendations to improve workplace safety – changes designed to make sure the circumstances that led to two deadly sawmill explosions two years ago would never be repeated. Ms. Bond vowed to make forest-sector workers safer after the explosions in 2012, including one in her hometown of Prince George. Shirley Bond, the minister responsible for WorkSafeBC, found herself on Oct. 9 answering questions about how a third incident could happen.exposed a widespread hazard of combustible sawdust.

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Asia trade mission wraps up with busy day in South Korea

BC Government
October 18, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

SEOUL – B.C. wood-frame construction took centre stage in South Korea today, with the official opening of the GICO Community Centre. Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Minister Steve Thomson cut the ribbon for the project, which is the centrepiece of a 141-unit wood-frame housing complex in Daljeon-Ri, a community 65 kilometres east of Seoul. The GICO community centre demonstrates to South Korean political and business leaders the many benefits of building with wood, including sustainability, environmentally friendly building practices and energy efficiency.

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Paul Sobey speaks out against Northern Pulp mill emissions (& video)

CTV News
October 17, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

One of Canada’s most prominent businessmen is speaking out about the environmental problems at the Northern Pulp mill in Nova Scotia’s Pictou County. Paul Sobey says he is fed up with the emissions and effluent from the mill and isn’t satisfied with the Nova Scotia government’s response. Sobey says he and others from the Clean the Mill group took their environmental and health concerns directly to Premier Stephen McNeil and Environment Minister Randy Delorey in December 2013, and even brought one of their own soil test results. “We asked the government if they had any results and they indicated that they were going to review it,” says Sobey.

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BRIGHTON: Mill should shoulder power costs

Port Hawkesbury Paper enjoying less competition and will increase prices
Chronicle Herald
October 17, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Port Hawkesbury Paper LP is benefiting from the demise of paper mills in Canada and the United States, two of which have attributed their fate to public subsidies for the Nova Scotia mill. A sharp contraction in mill capacity is reducing paper supply in North America and triggering price increases for high-end paper products. It has also wiped out hundreds of jobs in communities that — like Port Hawkesbury — depend on paper mills.

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Global trade web is rich with Tacoma-Seattle interests

The News Tribune
October 19, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

We’ve been so immersed in the business of wondering how we’re going to run the ports of Tacoma and Seattle that we’ve paid scant attention to what’s happening with the economies of the countries that are supposed to be sending (and to a lesser extent receiving) all the stuff those ports are supposed to be handling… But those heady growth rates mask some problems. Housing prices in China are falling, and weak housing demand is already having an effect here. The Port of Tacoma reported that through August log exports were down 16 percent from the same period a year ago “as demand in China lagged due to weak housing sales.”

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Montana celebrates Forest Products Week

The Western News
October 17, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

his week marks the fourth-annual Montana “Forest Products Week.”  In 2011, the Legislature set aside a week, every October, to recognize the importance of the state’s forest products industry, their contribution to the management of our forest lands, to Montana’s economy and to the stability of our timber-dependent communities. …Montana’s Forest Products Week is a wonderful opportunity for the public to learn more about an industry that has been instrumental in the growth of the state’s economy since the F.H. Stoltze Land and Lumber Company established at its current site just northwest of Columbia Falls in 1912.

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Weyerhaeuser’s new house

Forty years ago, the timber giant’s Federal Way headquarters defined the suburban corporate campus. Its new Pioneer Square building promises to set the standard for urban sustainability.
CrossCut
October 20, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

Several weeks ago I wrote an article about the significance of Weyerhaeuser moving out of and selling its iconic, 40-year-old home in Federal Way. So what can we expect at the company’s new site in the heart of Pioneer Square? Another visually dramatic building? A state-of- the-art symbol of new corporate America? A structure that nestles into the neighborhood’s collection of late 19th Century Romanesque architecture? The answer is to each question is yes, no and perhaps.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Builder does his green experiments in-house

Philly.com
October 20, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

If you work as a builder, what better way to experiment with new environmentally friendly techniques and materials than on your own house. That’s what Matthew Seip and his wife, Sue, did at their Perkiomenville home, nestled on an acre or so of quiet land close to Green Lane Park and the Perkiomen Trail… Sue Seip, a professor at Philadelphia University, specializes in interior design, and Matt Seip has an architecture degree, so “we are very green-conscious, so to speak, and are both LEED-certified professionals,” she said… 

The couple also installed floors made of eucalyptus, a fast-growth renewable wood; used non-volatile-organic-compound paints and adhesives, and set out a rain barrel to collect water for the lawn.

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How a little library in rural China won a $100,000 Canadian architecture prize

Globe and Mail
October 17, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Li has designed a lovely building, the Liyuan Library, that hits all the right notes; it was built on a shoestring, in the obscure village of Jiaojiehe, to serve the local community. …The library itself reflects this view. It is a long, sleek box that unfolds as a line of interconnected spaces, with wooden floors and seating platforms that connect with the hefty pine grid that supports the walls and ceiling. That timber matrix is wrapped in a skin of glass, and on the outside by a tough cloak of branches retrieved from the ground nearby – making the building blend quite literally into the landscape.

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Forestry

B.C. BigTree Registry wants your nominations

‘Tree enthusiast’ behind the project hopes online format will bring new life to the old registry
CBC News
October 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Have you ever stumbled upon a giant tree in B.C.? The new online BC BigTree Registry wants to know about it. Unlike its paper predecessor, anyone can now nominate a tree from anywhere in the province. The original registry was created in 1986, when environmentalist Randy Stoltmann started compiling a box of papers and photos with a simple list of big trees around B.C. When Stoltmann died in an avalanche in 1994, the registry was moved around, with only sporadic contributions.

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Harris hails falling forest fatalities

Vernon Morning Star
October 19, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Roger Harris knows from personal experience the importance of safety in the forest industry. He has witnessed the impact that injuries and fatalities can have on workers and their families, starting with his own. In 1986, while working as a falling contractor, his right hand was nearly severed when his chain saw kicked back. His brother-in-law was killed in a forestry accident at age 18. Those experiences, combined with his varied career in the forest industry – he has been everything from a logging camp dishwasher to a phase logging contractor – and position as a former MLA (Skeena Riding), make Harris an ideal fit as the B.C. Forest Safety Ombudsman.

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Group slams lack of Mersey progress

Chronicle Herald
October 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

For one brief, shining moment, members of the St. Margaret’s Bay Stewardship Association believed they had made a difference. It’s been two years since the provincial government bought back lands once owned by Bowater Mersey Paper Co. Ltd., the former Queens County paper mill. Members of the group are not feeling that shining moment any more. “We led the movement called Buy Back the Mersey because we wanted those assets returned to the community and this was a widespread movement,” Geoff LeBoutillier, a group member, said.

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Healthy N.S. beech trees spell hope

Genetic twist saved a few N.S. trees from disease; more rescues may be possible
Chronicle Herald
October 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

While walking in the Lambs Lake Nature Reserve, near Annapolis Royal, I spied a large, old-growth beech tree. Its massive girth caught my eye first (I could reach only about halfway around it), but its smooth bark is what made me look twice. In that tree’s genetic makeup, I knew, there lay a rare and special genetic trait. Beech trees were once more common throughout the Maritimes. In the early 1800s, beech were noted to cover roughly half of Prince Edward Island, for example. Aside from land clearing for agriculture and timber, beech were hit by a disease accidentally introduced to Halifax from Europe in 1890.

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Simpson makes another run at Central Idaho wilderness

The Idaho congressman wants time to pass his bill for the Boulder-White Clouds instead of relying on Obama to make it a national monument.
Idaho Statesman
October 19, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Rep. Mike Simpson is asking President Barack Obama to give him six to eight months to push for wilderness protection for the Boulder and White Cloud mountains in Central Idaho. “They’re ready to move sooner than later on this,” Simpson said in an interview with the Statesman on Friday. “What I’ve asked them to do is give me the opportunity to pass this in Congress.” Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, who visited Idaho earlier in the week, supports Simpson’s legislative efforts. She said it would be the best solution to the complex Boulder-White Clouds question.

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Oregon biologists are cutting down trees to save rivers

Can felling trees into the Sandy River restore the waterway’s ecology and bring back endangered species of salmon and trout?
The Verge
October 15, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Located 60 minutes east of Portland, Sandy River has supported thousands of residents and local businesses for generations. Tributaries of the river, Still Creek and Salmon River, were once popular fly-fishing destinations. But in the second half of the 20th century, all that changed: once abundant salmon and steelhead trout populations collapsed. By the late ’90s, both species of fish were listed under the Endangered Species Act. The decline can be traced back to a 1964 flood, the most destructive weather event recorded in the region.

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Managing balance in the forest

Aspen Daily News
October 19, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The Aspen-Sopris Ranger District is one of the most beloved districts in the White River National Forest which hosts more visitors annually than any other within the national forest system. Unfortunately, in the view of new Aspen-Sopris District Ranger Karen Schroyer, the most beloved parts of the district, such as the Maroon Bells, Four-Pass Loop and Conundrum Hot Springs, are being loved to death. But Schroyer also is taking a long-range view, and says that through better management practices by her office, these areas can be loved back to life.

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Protect, preserve Elliott Forest

Letter by Barbara Shamet
The World
October 18, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Ten points regarding options for conservation of the Elliott State Forest: 1. The Elliott is presently the largest carbon sink on the planet. While young trees sequester more carbon, the old forests store it, maintaining a delicate balance in today’s climate crisis. 2. Our salmon struggle to return after decades of inadequate stream protection and loss of spawning habitat due to clear-cutting induced washouts in heavy winter rains. 3. The Elliott is home to several endangered species and falls under the protection of the Federal Endangered Species Act.

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OSU Forestry Dean Salwasser Dies

Oregon Public Broadcasting
October 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A longtime leader of Oregon’s premiere forestry school died Wednesday of natural causes. Hal Salwasser was the former Dean of Oregon State’s College of Forestry. OSU officials praised Salwasser for helping transition forestry programs from a logging focus to include more environmental concerns. Salwasser found himself embroiled in controversy in 2006, when he questioned an OSU graduate student’s published research, which criticized logging after wildfires. Salwasser lamented in a 2009 conversation with OPB that federal forest policy seemed adrift.

Former OSU forestry dean Hal Salwasser dies at 69

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Senators say slow thinning is damaging forest industry

The Arizona Republic
October 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Bureaucratic delays and a slow start to the nation’s largest forest-thinning project could drive the forestry industry out of Arizona when the state really needs it, U.S. Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake said Friday. Arizona’s overgrown forests — unnaturally dense after a century of fire suppression — are unsustainable, said speakers at a public- and private-sector conference on forestry organized by the Salt River Project as part of the power and water utility’s environmental-stewardship efforts. Overgrowth makes the forests more susceptible to devastating wildfires of the sort the state has seen in recent years.

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Logging between Lake Como and Lost Horse

Letter by Floyd Wood
Ravalli Republic
October 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The USFS is planning to log 5,711 acres between Como and Lost Horse. This area was logged about 40 years ago and the young trees will just now be starting to put on some serious growth. I suspect many of the trees won’t be over 14 inches in diameter, breast height. If you wish to appeal, which is easy, you must send in or go to the Forest Service and put in your comments as to why you don’t want them to cut in this area. Otherwise, when the appeal time comes, they won’t acknowledge your appeal.

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USFS Northern Region Reaches Timber Harvest Goal

Montana Public Radio
October 16, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The U.S. Forest Service’s Northern Region met its timber harvest goal last year. That’s the first time that has happened in over 14 years. Regional Forester Faye Krueger says Region One, which includes Montana, harvested about 280 million board feet of timber. Krueger says a major factor in the agency reaching its goal is that it’s overhauled its litigation strategy.  “The main emphasis is on threatened and endangered species,” said
Krueger. “That is always being challenged in the court and that’s usually what the courts send us back to do additional analysis on. We’ve worked on how do we handle each species for analysis.”

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New report synthesizes best available science, fills knowledge gaps on management of moist mixed-conifer forests

USDA Forest Service
October 15, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

PORTLAND, Ore. Oregon and Washington land managers have a new synthesis of recent research findings to inform their management of eastside moist mixed-conifer (MMC) forests in the two states.  The Ecology and Management of Moist Mixed-Conifer Forests in Eastern Oregon and Washington: A Synthesis of the Relevant Biophysical Science and Implications for Future Land Management, a general technical report published by the U.S. Forest Service’s Pacific Northwest Research Station, is a direct response to a request from managers for a synthesis of the large body of scientific information on MMC forests.

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GEORGE OCHENSKI: Myth of roadblocks to timber supply debunked

The Missoulian
October 19, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

One might think, by listening to the endless whining of politicians like U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont.; Rep. Steve Daines, R-Mont., Gov. Steve Bullock; D-Mont., timber industry officials and a handful of conservation collaborators that there’s some kind of terrible roadblock to timber harvests in Montana that requires drastic congressional action to resolve. Nothing could be further from the truth, as evidenced by the announcement last week that the U.S. Forest Service’s Northern Region has already met its timber harvest goal of 280 million board feet during the past year.

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University of Arizona aiding in prevention of mega forest fires

The Daily Courier
October 19, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

As Arizona’s 2014 wildfire season draws to a close, let’s assess the costs – millions of dollars and nearly 200,000 acres of grassland and forest burned. On the plus side, roughly 120,000 acres of prescribed fires, managed by the U.S. Forest Service, occurred to remove excess fuels such as dead wood, dry brush and grasses, which fuel wildfires. ..The University of Arizona is doing its part, too. ….Ten years later, 70,000 acres of previously dense degraded forest is now on the road to healthy diversity and will help mitigate low-intensity, ground wildfire.

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Report blasts Elliott State Forest misuse

Oregon Cascade Policy Institute
October 15, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

With Oregon’s schools constantly facing budget crises, why are our lawmakers missing out on the opportunity to give more money to our kids? As part of the Common School Trust Lands, the Elliott State Forest has the constitutional obligation to generate money for Oregon’s schools. In the last few years, however, environmental interests have carefully manipulated the Endangered Species Act so that the Forest costs taxpayers money instead of providing funds for Oregon’s children. Lately, harvest levels and revenues have been a fraction of their former levels.

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Study: Climate change not responsible for altering forest tree composition

The Bradford Era
October 19, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

STATE COLLEGE — Change in disturbance regimes — rather than a change in climate — is largely responsible for altering the composition of Eastern forests, according to a researcher in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences. Forests in the Eastern United States remain in a state of “disequilibrium” stemming from the clear-cutting and large-scale burning that occurred in the late 1800s and early 1900s, contends Marc Abrams, professor of forest ecology and physiology. Moreover, Abrams noted, since about 1930 — during the Smokey Bear era — aggressive forest-fire suppression has had a far greater influence on shifts in dominant tree species than minor differences in temperature.

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If you plant different trees in the forest, is it still the same forest?

October 20, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

In northern Minnesota, there’s a near-mythic expanse of lakes and boreal forests known as the North Woods, packed with spruces, firs, red and bur oaks, and other trees. It’s in danger of vanishing forever. The North Woods joins the ever-lengthening list of regions threatened by climate change. Temperatures in Minnesota have increased by more than 1.5F since record keeping began, according to a 2013 report by the state’s interagency climate adaptation team. Temperatures have risen even more in the northern portion of the state, and the growth is picking up speed, with more than 80% of the recorded increase happening since 1980.

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US Forest Service Entomologist Takes on Pesky Insects to Make a Difference in the Northeast

USDA Blog
October 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Ryan Hanavan is a multi-faceted individual who enjoys his work on the front lines of forest health as an entomologist for the Northeastern Area State and Private Forestry. “I have always been fascinated by insects and this career has essentially allowed me to explore a lifelong curiosity,” Hanavan said. “I have also always been interested in using new technology to improve methods and techniques and the Forest Service has been extremely supportive in developing faster, better, and cheaper tools for detecting and monitoring forest pests.”

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Going Undercover to Fight Illegal Logging

October 20, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Going undercover to plant GPS trackers on truck shipments sounds like a plotline from the TV drama 24, or a James Bond movie. But that’s just what Greenpeace did to track shipments of illegally-logged timber from the Amazon rainforest in Brazil to sawmills and eventually overseas, including the United States and European Union. This important investigation shows that U.S. companies should be careful when importing wood from Brazil.  In a new report, The Amazon’s Silent Crisis: Night Terrors,
Greenpeace details how sawmills in Brazil use falsified paperwork to
launder timber that has been harvested illegally in the remote state of
Pará.

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Sarawak CM furious over logging in national parks

The Star
October 20, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Illegal logging had been detected inside two national parks in Sarawak, one of which is the largest totally-protected peat-swamp forest in this state. Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem today expressed his outrage over these blatant and continuous illegal loggings, especially in these protected forests, and he said that “enough is enough”. He told a press conference on Monday after chairing a meeting with enforcement agencies in Miri that he wants to see these illegal loggers nailed.

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Amazon deforestation picking up pace, satellite data reveals

The Guardian
October 19, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The deforestation of the Brazilian Amazon has accelerated rapidly in the past two months, underscoring the shortcomings of the government’s environmental policies. Satellite data indicates a 190% surge in land clearance in August and September compared with the same period last year as loggers and farmers exploit loopholes in regulations that are designed to protect the world’s largest forest. Figures released by Imazon, a Brazilian nonprofit research organisation, show that 402 square kilometres – more than six times the area of the island of Manhattan – was cleared in September.

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China tests outright logging ban in state forests

China has halted commercial logging by state firms in forests in Heilongjiang, a move experts see as a significant step to curb over-exploitation of timber, reports chinadialogue
The Guardian
October 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

China has launched a trial ban on commercial logging in state-owned forests in the vast north-eastern province of Heilongjiang bordering Russia, home to much of the country’s timber industry. Forestry experts have hailed the ban as a major step forward, predicting it will enable timber supplies to recover and shift the industry’s focus towards improved forestry management. To make the ban stick, the central government has allocated 2.35bn yuan a year to cover forestry workers’ living costs between 2014 and 2020, chinadialogue has learned from the State Forestry Administration (SFA).

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Brazil must target smallholders to curb rising deforestation

While the largest landowners have cut their contribution to deforestation by two-thirds, that of smallholders has increased
The Guardian
October 20, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Farmers with smallholdings are not responsible for most of the destruction of Brazil’s Amazon rainforest, but their contribution to deforestation is rising and must be addressed if the country is to hold on to recent gains, according to an environmental research group. Government efforts led to a 77% fall in deforestation in the Amazon between 2004 and 2011, but progress has slowed and deforestation is rising, the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) said in a report.

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10 deadliest jobs in Australia

Sydney Morning Herald
October 20, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Truckies, posties and warehouse workers top the list of Australia’s deadliest jobs, according to new research… Agriculture, forestry and fishing is Australia’s second-most dangerous line of work, with 53 deaths in 2012. Workers in this industry are more likely to die from being hit by an animal, drowning and heat exposure than any other industry on the top 10 list, the research found.

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Government pledges to reduce deforestation

The Jakarta Post
October 18, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The government has pledged to reduce deforestation, following a report showing that Indonesia has a higher deforestation rate than that of Brazil. Forestry Ministry secretary-general Hadi Daryanto said on Thursday that the ministry had taken several actions to reduce deforestation rates in Indonesia, especially in deforestation-prone areas such as Riau and Kalimantan. Hadi said the measures included the extension of a moratorium on the conversion of natural forests and peat land, the provision of degraded-forest areas for economic activity, a compliance audit on several companies in Riau and the eradication of illegal logging, which can trigger forest fires.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Prince George college plans to power resort with biofuel

Business in Vancouver
October 17, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada, Canada West

The College of New Caledonia is collaborating with Purden Lake and Ski Resorts Ltd. to find ways to reduce the resort’s dependence on diesel fuel to generate its power needs. Inspiration for the project grew out of instructor Byron Poppleton’s longtime interest in exploring alternative energy sources. …The goal will be to find an efficient means of using wood and other dry organic materials like corn cobs, nut shells, willow branches, wood chips and sawdust to generate a gas mixture which can be combusted in an internal combustion engine to generate power.

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Brown: Is biomass all its cut up to be?

Summit Daily\
October 17, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

One possible reason for sticking to the ill-advised Ophir Mountain and other clear-cutting plans is that the clear-cut trees would go to the biomass power plant in Gypsum. Biomass power is renewable energy. It wouldn’t justify destroying Summit County’s wonderful forests and trails, but biomass is green energy right? Maybe not. Is biomass power a good renewable energy source that we should promote here in Colorado?

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General

If you plant different trees in the forest, is it still the same forest?

October 20, 2014
Category: Uncategorized

In northern Minnesota, there’s a near-mythic expanse of lakes and boreal forests known as the North Woods, packed with spruces, firs, red and bur oaks, and other trees. It’s in danger of vanishing forever. The North Woods joins the ever-lengthening list of regions threatened by climate change. Temperatures in Minnesota have increased by more than 1.5F since record keeping began, according to a 2013 report by the state’s interagency climate adaptation team. Temperatures have risen even more in the northern portion of the state, and the growth is picking up speed, with more than 80% of the recorded increase happening since 1980.

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Erecting 40-story highrises out of wood?

Portland Tribune
October 16, 2014
Category: Uncategorized

It’s rare to see Oregon environmentalists and the timber industry on the same page. But both camps are high on cross-laminated timber, an engineered wood product that visionaries say can be used to erect highrises up to 40 stories. If this “plywood on steroids” supplants concrete and steel in larger buildings, it could lower carbon emissions and construction costs while creating new jobs in rural Oregon. “Wood is inherently one of the best building products ever,” says Scot Horst, a senior vice president for LEED, the green building certification system run by the U.S. Green Building Council in Washington D.C.

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