Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: March 23, 2015

Business & Politics

B.C. aboriginal band enacts laws to govern territory after historic court win

Canadian Press
March 20, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

WILLIAMS LAKE, B.C. – A British Columbia aboriginal nation granted rights and title by Canada’s high court has introduced its own laws governing its territory and resources within the area. The Tsilhqot’in National Government has enacted the so-called Nemiah Declaration that prevents mining and commercial logging, stops commercial road building and requires visitors to get permission before entering the land. The Tsilhqot’in Nation, located west of Williams Lake in the B.C. Interior, was granted 1,750 square kilometres of land in a Supreme Court of Canada decision last June. The nation first created the declaration in 1989 in response to the threat of widespread clearcut logging, prompting years of negotiations that culminated in the high court’s ruling.

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Coroner asks Lakeland Mills to divulge contents of its investigation into blast

Prince George Free Press
March 20, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

As a result of evidence uncovered during the coroner’s inquest into the fatal explosion at the Lakeland sawmill in Prince George, the inquest has been adjourned until next week. Presiding coroner Lisa Lapointe has ruled that the evidence – the results of a post-blast investigation undertaken by a forensic engineering firm on behalf of lawyers for Lakeland – is relevant to the inquiry. However, she also ruled that it is protected by privilege recognized under the Coroners Act. Because of the importance of the evidence to the inquest process, she has asked counsel for Lakeland Mills to waive their privilege and allow the evidence to be admitted.

Coroner seeking Lakeland’s own investigation into blast from The Prince George Citizen

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Inquest into B.C. mill explosion adjourned as new evidence uncovered

Canadian Press
March 20, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. – An inquest into a fatal explosion at the Lakeland Mills sawmill in Prince George, B.C., has been adjourned until next week after new evidence was uncovered. Coroner Lisa Lapointe has ruled that results of a post-blast investigation by a forensic engineering firm on behalf of the mill’s lawyers is relevant to the inquiry. A statement released by the coroners service says it became clear that the evidence existed after thorough questioning of witnesses under oath. However, Lapointe says the evidence is protected by privilege under the Coroners Act and she has asked the mill’s lawyers to allow jurors to hear it at the inquiry.

Lakeland Mills explosion inquest adjourned as new evidence uncovered from CBC News

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UCS Forest Group acquires White-Wood Distributors

Lesprom Network
March 22, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

The UCS Forest Group of Companies (UCS) reached an agreement to acquire the assets and ongoing business activities of the British Columbia business unit of White-Wood Distributors Ltd. UCS does business in Canada as Upper Canada Forest Products Ltd. “We are delighted with the opportunity to service the customers and support the suppliers that have been dealing with White-Wood throughout British Columbia”, stated Warren Spitz, President & CEO of UCS. “I would like to offer my thanks to Mark Yusishen for choosing us as White-Wood’s successor in this market. Our corporate strategy to grow in key markets continues across North America and we are very excited about this most recent opportunity.”

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Rentech converts pellets into provincial cash

Northern Ontario Business
March 20, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Wood pellet manufacturer Rentech received $4 million from the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund to help finish plant rebuilds in Wawa and Atikokan. Rentech’s plants use Crown fibre to feed the province’s Atikokan Generating Station with other plans to export product to Europe. A news release from Thunder Bay-Atikokan MPP Bill Mauro said the money is to assist the company with its plant conversation costs. California-based Rentech needs money to finish off the conversations at both mills. Last month, the company said the costs to acquire and convert the plants in Atikokan and Wawa were higher than anticipated and were citing delays in construction and high labour costs to install equipment.

Idled mills get boost to convert into pellet plants from The Chronicle Journal

Press Release from the Ontario government

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U.S. opens probe into Canadian paper mill subsidies

Portland Press Herald
March 20, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

The U.S. Department of Commerce has opened an investigation into Canadian government subsidies of a paper mill that competes with a Maine paper mill. U.S. Sens. Angus King and Susan Collins of Maine and U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin of Maine’s 2nd District announced the investigation Friday. They said subsidies provided to the Port Hawkesbury paper mill in Canada are unfair and harm operations at the Madison Paper Industries mill in Maine. …The U.S. International Trade Commission is scheduled to make a preliminary decision by April 13 on whether the Canadian mill is being unfairly subsidized. If it decides the Canadian actions are harming American workers, it could decide in May whether to impose a duty on paper from the Canadian mill.

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Report: Expanded forestry sector could be boon to Eastern, southern Kentucky

Herald-Leader
March 22, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

Forest industries have the potential to provide thousands more jobs in Eastern and southern Kentucky as leaders in the region search for ways to improve the economy, according to an analysis. Expanding the forestry sector could provide $1.49 billion in new revenue and nearly 7,500 additional jobs in a 54-county region that includes areas hit hard by a sharp decrease in coal jobs, researchers in the Department of Forestry at the University of Kentucky concluded. That growth would drive more jobs in other sectors as well, the study said.

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NZ export log prices record first drop in eight months

Scoop.co.nz
March 23, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

New Zealand export log prices dropped for the first time in eight months as shipments to China, the nation’s largest market, exceed demand, resulting in a build up of inventory on Chinese ports. The average wharf gate price for New Zealand A-grade logs fell to $106 a tonne, from $110 a tonne in February, marking the first decline since July 2014, according to AgriHQ’s monthly survey of exporters, forest owners and sawmillers. The AgriHQ Log Price Indicator, which measures average log prices weighted by grade, also posted its first decline in eight months, falling to 96.58 from 97.95 in February.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Wood expands possibilities

Sustainable, cheaper, creates urban density
Winnipeg Free Press
March 23, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

Prosperous residents make prosperous cities. With housing costs typically constituting the largest portion of personal expenditures, housing affordability has become a principal determinant of the standard of living in urban areas. Access to adequate housing plays an important role in building strong communities and is a vital social indicator of health, equality and inclusion. Consistently rising real estate values during the last decade have made access to affordable housing a difficult challenge for cities across Canada. In Winnipeg, since 2005 the average cost of a home has increased by 100 per cent and rental rates have grown by 70 per cent, while the average annual income has increased by only 34 per cent.

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Dino museum lands another design nod

Grande Prairie Daily Herald-Tribune
March 22, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Philip J. Currie Dinosaur Museum’s use of wood in its construction has led to more accolades for the Wembley structure. On March 17, the museum received three Prairie Wood Design Awards from Wood WORKS! Alberta. Decided by a team of jurors, the awards recognize projects and organizations that advance the use of wood in construction. “The jury instantly recognized that this was a unique method of construction,” George Jacob, president and CEO of the museum. “They also recognized that the aesthetics was akin to the skeletal form of a dinosaur being unearthed and the building actually goes down a level and a half into the ground and that is sort of metaphorical for a dinosaur dig,” said Jacob.

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City first to issue wood-frame building permit in Ontario

The Hamilton Spectator
March 20, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

Hamilton is the first municipality in the province to issue a building permit for a six-storey wood-frame structure under a revised building code. A 208-unit Sandman Hotel will be built at 560 Centennial Pkwy., at the South Service Road, close to a retail power centre. Regulations that took effect Jan. 1 allow wood-frame residential and office buildings up to six storeys. Previously, the limit was four storeys. City officials hope to see more applications for low- to mid-rise developments. “We know out West, it’s been popular for smaller buildings,” said the city’s chief building official Ed VanderWindt.

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Wood ceilings add natural warmth to elementary school

Herald and News
March 22, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

Construction crews are adding a little warmth to Henley Elementary this week. P&C Construction workers installed Douglas fir wood decking to make up the ceiling of one of the common areas between classrooms. In a building of mostly concrete and steel so far, the wood changes the tone of the new $19.4 million school. “It’s going to be very nice. With all this steel and concrete it adds a little warmth to those hallways and stuff, having that wood,” said Thom Darrah, project manager with Bogatay Construction, which is construction manager general contractor on the Henley Elementary project with P&C. This is finished product right here. That’s the finished color. Very nice.”

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Forestry

Ridge road driving ahead

Vernon Morning Star
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Cherryville residents are investigating the possibility of landslides, but that won’t likely stop a logging road. Forests Minister Steve Thomson insists B.C. Timber Sales will not delay construction of a logging road on Cherry Ridge while the community initiates hydrological and slope stability studies. “BCTS has worked closely with all (of its) studies. I am confident the work can proceed safely,” he said during a stop in Vernon Thursday. BCTS, a government agency, began construction of a road on Cherry Ridge last fall. The road will eventually open the area up to commercial logging and some residents have suggested the road and clearcutting could generate landslides that impact properties below.

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Interfor seeks burning permit

Coast Reporter
March 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Interfor plans to burn up to 400 cubic metres of wood waste per month for up to 16 months at its property in the Twin Creeks area of West Howe Sound to rid the site of wood waste. The company is seeking a permit through the Environmental Management Act to burn the debris for up to 12 days each month and Sunshine Coast Regional District (SCRD) directors addressed the issue during their March 12 planning and development committee meeting. “They’ve been attempting to sort it out and send it to appropriate places, but they have more than they can deal with,” said senior planer Andrew Allen, noting Howe Sound Pulp and Paper used to take the debris and burn it as hog fuel, but over the past few years, the mill has been bringing in drier wood from forests devastated by pine beetles.

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Forestry a bright spot for Alberta

by Paul Whittaker, ALBERTA FOREST PRODUCTS ASSOCIATION
Lethbridge Herald
March 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Today is the International Day of Forests – a United Nations-sanctioned celebration of the role that forests play in our lives. Forests are integral to the environment, economy, and culture of Alberta. Roughly 38 million hectares are covered by forest in Alberta – that’s an area slightly larger than Japan. One of the things that we can be very proud of in Alberta, and across Canada, is our rigorous approach to forest management. The regeneration of areas that have been harvested is the law and has been for several decades in our province. Several trees are replanted for each tree that has been harvested. Alberta’s forest industry planted 65 million trees in 2014 – roughly 16 trees for every Albertan.

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Minister Rickford Joins Canadians in Celebrating International Day of Forests

Marketwatch.com
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

OTTAWA — The Honourable Greg Rickford, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources, made the following statement in connection with the celebration today of the United Nations’ International Day of Forests, which promotes the importance of forests and trees in our lives. “Today, I join Canadians across the country in celebrating Canada’s forests? and the vital role they play in our communities. “With over 160 million hectares of sustainably managed forests — more than any other country in the world — Canadians understand the importance of forests to our environment as well as our economy.

Minister recognizes International Day of Forests – BC Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations

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Top weed killer used in B.C. ‘possibly carcinogenic’

by Gordon Hoekstra – World Health Organization puts Roundup on carcinogen list, but Monsanto says finding not supported by science
Vancouver Sun
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER — The World Health Organization has concluded that the herbicide glyphosate, most commonly sold as Roundup, probably causes cancer. …Global giant Monsanto, which produces Roundup, immediately criticized the finding, saying all labelled uses of glyphosate are safe for human health and the safety claims are supported by one of the largest human health databases ever compiled on an agricultural product. …B.C. Ministry of Forests officials said in 2011 about 18,000 hectares of forests were treated with glyphosate but could not immediately provide information on the latest figures.

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Industry invasion: Study suggests cutting up forests creates ‘extinction debt’

Canadian Press
March 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Cutting up forests into ever-smaller bits starts a die-off of species that lasts decades — an “extinction debt” incurred today and paid by future generations, says a study on forest fragmentation. “It’s our grandchildren and maybe more,” said McGill University’s Andrew Gonzalez, one of the co-authors of a paper published Friday in the journal Science. “It’s several generations of human beings down the line.” Biologist Gonzalez and his colleagues have published what they say is the first study that measures the extent to which development has invaded forests around the world and estimates its long-term impacts. They found more than 70 per cent of global forests are within a kilometre of a road, field, town or other human disturbance — easily close enough to degrade forest habitat.

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Finding the right balance

Cape Breton Post
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Has the forestry sector lost its capacity to provide sustained economic benefits to Nova Scotians? Economists and development experts tell us that much of Canada’s future economic growth remains connected to development of natural resources. Missing from this advice seems to be emphasis on how best we utilize the elements of wise management, essential research and new technology to exploit those assets… Forestry should be no less challenging to manage than the food sectors, including the fishery. However, a bizarre set of circumstances appear to stymie economic growth and sustainability in the forestry sector.

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Timmins might join the Fifty Million Trees program

Timmins Times
March 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Millson Forestry wants the City of Timmins to join the Fifty Million Trees program. The locally owned and operated forestry company went to city hall this week to see if Timmins can donate some parcels of land suitable to be planted with new trees. Company co-owner Jenny Millson said the program is part of the Trees Ontario effort to “sequester carbon” which is a seen as a plus for the environment. “Millson Forestry Service has recently partnered with Trees Ontario to deliver the program in the Timmins area. The program is not new. It has been available to southern Ontario for the past 10 years,” Millson told council, adding that this is the first year the program is being offered in the North.

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Disturbances driving caribou decline

Letter by Rachel Plotkin, Ontario Science projects manager, The David Suzuki Foundation
Chronicle Journal
March 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Re Don’t Blame Resolute; A Host of Factors Contribute to Caribou’s Survival — letter, March 7: I have been working on species-at-risk issues for over a decade, and have spent many years reviewing scientific studies and policy on woodland caribou. I agree that woodland caribou face many threats including disease, hunting and climate change, but scientific research shows that disturbances (such as roads, fires and logging) and th accumulation of disturbances are the driving factors of caribou decline The findings of decline in the Brightsand .caribou range, which is mainly managed by Resolute Forest Products, raise legitimate concerns.

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The US Forest Service and International Day of Forests

USDA Blog
March 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Since 2013, the United Nations (UN) has selected March 21 to be the unique day that the world thinks about the importance of trees. The U.S. Forest Service celebrates the International Day of Forests by bringing awareness about our involvement with international partners to continue to protect the health of forest worldwide. For instance in the Middle Eastern and Mediterranean country of Lebanon, the power of one symbolic cedar tree, the image on the country’s flag, captures the promise and strength of an entire nation.

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Forest Service, senators agree on need for more logging

Helena Independent Record
March 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The U.S. Forest Service needs to quadruple forest restoration acres, while logging could reasonably triple over current levels in Montana, Chief Tom Tidwell said under questioning from Montana’s senators. Tidwell was before the Senate Appropriations Interior Subcommittee Wednesday lobbying for a nearly $5 billion budget in fiscal year 2016. Democratic Sen. Jon Tester and Republican Sen. Steve Daines questioned the chief on goals for Montana, pushing for increases in timber production to saw mills and other wood products. “I don’t need to tell you how important saw mills are as a partner to the Forest Service. We don’t need to drive these folks out of business, and it becomes a taxpayer-funded problem as far as forest management,” Tester said.

Forest Service chief says Montana logging could triple and more forest restoration work needed from The Associated Press

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Sierra Nevada pine tree die-off worsens as beetles thrive in drought

The Fresno Bee
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A massive die-off of pine trees in the southern Sierra Nevada caused by beetles attacking drought-stressed trees is turning forests brown and creating a fire tinderbox. From El Portal in Mariposa County to Kernville in Kern County and beyond, stands of dead trees are striking fear in the hearts of mountain residents. “You drive around and it’s all around us,” said Lee Duncan, who lives in Miramonte in Fresno County near Pinehurst. “It’s like a gasoline can everywhere.” About the only hope in halting the die-off is for the drought to end, an unlikely occurrence this year as winter ended with perhaps the lowest Sierra snowpack on record.

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Beetles taking toll on Ashland pines

The Mail Tribune
March 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

It wasn’t a pretty moment for Jeff McFarland, Ashland city forestry and trails supervisor, when he had to oversee the toppling of a “much loved,” 100-foot tall — but beetle-infested — Ponderosa pine at the Oredson-Todd Woods trailhead south of Ashland. Measuring 38.5 inches in diameter at breast height, the once-stately gem of the forest got weakened by drought and was brown from crown to half-way down. With it, in recent weeks, went five pines at Mountain View Cemetery, four at the nearby IOOF Cemetery (both near the new fire station No. 2 on Ashland Street) and 40 above Lithia Park, says Stu Wilkie, city maintenance and safety supervisor for Public Works.

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The Fate of Trees: How Climate Change May Alter Forests Worldwide

By the end of the century, the woodlands of the Southwest will likely be reduced to weeds and shrubs. And scientists worry that the rest of the planet may see similar effects
Rolling Stone
March 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

In May 2011, a postdoctoral student at Los Alamos National Laboratory named Park Williams set out to predict the future of the dominant iconic conifers of the American Southwest — the Douglas fir, the piñon pine and the ponderosa pine. As the planet warms, the Southwest is projected to dry out and heat up unusually fast — few places will be more punishing to trees. Williams couldn’t rely on climate models, whose representations of terrestrial vegetation remain crudely unspecific. He needed a formula that could accurately weigh the variables of heat, aridity and precipitation, and translate atmospheric projections into a unified measure of forest health.

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Big Thorne Tongass timber sale survives environmental challenge

Alaska Dispatch News
March 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

JUNEAU — The U.S. Forest Service’s biggest Tongass National Forest timber sale in years, the Big Thorne sale on Prince of Wales Island, has been approved by a federal judge who Friday rejected challenges from environmental groups. Among the claims of the groups challenging the timber sale were that the Forest Service overestimated the demand for timber from Southeast Alaska and that the Big Thorne sale would harm the Alexander Archipelago wolf and other species that rely on the forest. But U.S. District Judge Ralph Beistline upheld the sale, rejecting the claims of the Southeast Alaska Conservation Council and nine other groups, brought in two lawsuits he merged for his decision.

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Camp Builds Future Natural Resource Leaders

Magic Valley.com
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

TWIN FALLS • Randy Brooks likes to start his first class at Natural Resources Camp by carrying in a roll of toilet paper. It’s a not-so-subtle reminder that Idaho’s forest industry provides many paper products that the campers, between the ages of 12 to 14, can’t imagine living without. “Without harvesting trees, we wouldn’t have this,” he tells them. “Part of forestry is logging and logging is sustainable when it’s done right and done where it does not harm the environment.” Brooks spends the rest of the week helping campers learn about sustainable forests: how trees are harvested and replanted, how to measure trees, about fire management and thinning trees to reduce the threat from mountain pine beetle.

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Federal Land Takeover Bills March On

Magic Valley
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

BOISE | Four bills are making their way through the statehouse to continue efforts to increase state control of Idaho’s federally owned lands. The Republican legislators who support the idea say the state could manage the land better, reducing wildfires and allowing for more logging and other economic activities than the feds. … But the opponents, who include most Democrats and environmental and sportsman’s groups, say the cost will outweigh any economic gains. And they worry that public access would be restricted or some of the lands even sold if the state gets control.

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Low snowpack could mean early Oregon wildfire season

Associated Press
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

BEND, Ore. — A warm winter and lack of snowpack could mean an earlier start to wildfire season in central Oregon. Deschutes County forester Ed Keith tells the Bend Bulletin that timber fires typically don’t occur until August but they may come in June or July this year. Where blazes take hold earlier this year may depend on what happens with the weather this spring. A spokesman for the Oregon Department of Forestry says it doesn’t have immediate plans to start staffing for fire season or issue fire restrictions early. But George Ponte, Central Oregon District forester in Prineville, says that could change with the weather.

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Let’s celebrate the success of public lands forestry, not ruin it

Bangor Daily News
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

The LePage administration’s proposed merger of Maine’s Bureau of Public Lands with the Maine Forest Service, along with its proposal to increase timber harvests on public lands, is a serious threat to the bureau’s long legacy of excellent forestry in Maine. It should die a quick death in the Maine Legislature. The rationale offered to support these misguided proposals is not supported by the facts, and it falsely paints a negative picture of what truly has been a remarkable success story in stewarding Maine’s public forests. I am a 35-year member of the University of Maine’s School of Forest Resources faculty and have served on the Bureau of Public Lands’ Silvicultural Advisory Committee for nearly 30 years. 

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Student research attempts to provide insight on tree growth

Michigan State University
March 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Fear not, tree huggers. The flags tied to the trunks of the white pine trees between Munn Ice Arena and Demonstration Hall do not mean they’re being chopped down. Rather, they are being used to rework a map of which rows the trees were originally planted in 1914. In addition to this, the study is also part of plant biology senior Caleb Adgate’s project involving how climate variables affect a tree’s growth on different areas of campus. Some of the variables the study takes into account include temperature fluctuations, how far the trees are from the water table and storm damage.

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Forests shrink; 70 percent now less than 1/2 mile from edge

Reuters
March 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

OSLO — Farms, roads and towns are fast slicing up the world’s wilderness, leaving 70 percent of the world’s remaining forested land less than half a mile from a forest edge, a U.S.-led study showed on Friday. The report, by two dozen researchers on five continents and using data the covers the past 35 years, said a rising human population was putting more pressure on forest animals and plants, which suffer greater risk of extinction as their habitats become fragmented. “We found the results surprising and frightening,” Nick Haddad, a professor of biological sciences at North Carolina University who led the study, told Reuters. “The signs are all still downwards.”

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Seeing the trees but not the forest (commentary)

Mongabay.com
March 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Understanding forest dynamics is necessary for the sound management of forests, for both production and conservation. This includes an understanding of the extent of forest area, information about what the forest contains and how the forest resource is managed. Forest monitoring provides this information. While the public at large and policymakers alike need transparent technical information to implement effective actions, recent assessments by the scientific community on forest area loss and especially deforestation have instead been contradictory, generating unnecessary confusion.

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World on track to meet ambitious forest restoration goal

Scoop.co.nz
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Bonn, Germany – New restoration initiatives were announced today by Latin America, Southeast Asia and Africa at the second international Bonn Challenge conference on forest landscape restoration taking place in Germany. With these announcements, a total of 61.9 million hectares have now been contributed to the Bonn Challenge – a global movement to restore 150 million hectares of degraded and deforested land by 2020. The conference brought together environment ministers and government representatives from China, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Indonesia, Liberia, Republic of Korea, Sweden and the US, along with representatives from key donor countries, such as Germany and Norway, business leaders and nature conservationorganisations.

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Trees: Not Just for Tree Huggers

WorldBank.org
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Washington, D.C.—Forests and trees provide many economic, social and environmental services and values, from creating jobs to providing housing, food and energy to delivering carbon sequestration and watershed protection. So, in celebration of International Day of Forests, the World Bank would like to shine a spotlight on the importance of forests and sustainable development… International Day of Forests is celebrated on March 21, with the aim of raising awareness of how forests have significant ecological, economic, social and health benefits.The World Bank is engaged in activities that combine conserving and regenerating forests with economic growth for poverty reduction.

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Fire hazard reduction strategy in Tasmania targets private land for first time

ABC News, Australia
March 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Private land has been included in Tasmania’s fuel reduction program for the first time. It is hoped the new collaborative approach between public and private land owners will drive an increase in fuel reduction burns. The Government’s four-year, $28.5 million program will target high-risk areas on the edge of towns and cities, starting this autumn. The fire service will offer assistance to property owners in priority areas, but will not force them to participate. The rethink of burn-off practices was prompted by the devastating south-east bushfires two years ago, which destroyed hundreds of properties, including dozens of Dunalley homes.

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Brazil’s Deforestation Rates Are on the Rise Again

Newsweek.com
March 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

In a world hungry for environmental success stories, Brazil has been the closest thing we have to a golden child. The nation, Latin America’s largest economy, has been growing at an impressive clip, weathering the global financial crisis while cutting deforestation rates in the Amazon to historic lows. Citing its success in protecting the earth’s largest rain forest, President Dilma Rousseff boasted that Brazil is “one of the most advanced countries” for sustainable development, on World Environment Day last June. But it is too soon to declare victory in the Amazon. Corruption, lawlessness and massive land fraud are now threatening those gains, and an aggressive new development push in the region may soon open remote areas of the forest to being cut.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Carbon emissions from forests fall

BusinessWorld online.com
March 22, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

ROME — Yearly carbon emissions from the world’s forests — including those in the Philippines’ — have dropped by more than 25% in the last 15 years, a UN agency said on Friday. The decrease in annual emissions, which cause global warming, is largely due to slowing rates of global deforestation, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) reported. Forests hold about three-quarters as much carbon as the atmosphere and preserving them is crucial for combating climate change. 

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Critics concerned as government invites climate ‘policy sceptic’ Bjorn Lomborg to address aid staff

Sydney Morning Herald
March 22, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

One of the world’s most prominent climate contrarians will address Australian diplomats and aid staff on Monday – an invitation that has rankled the opposition and environmental activists. The Abbott government asked Danish researcher Bjorn Lomborg to help launch the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s development innovation hub, which minister Julie Bishop says will find better ways to help poorer countries… Dr Lomborg is best known for his books The Skeptical Environmentalist and its follow-up volume Cool it, which were criticised by climate scientists for underplaying the rate of global warming. Last month, he accused “climate-change alarmists” of focusing on worst-case scenarios and ignoring more positive data.

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