Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: April 10, 2015

Special Feature

COFI 2015 – A photo overview of the conference

Tree Frog News
April 10, 2015
Category: Special Feature
Region: Canada, Canada West


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Froggy Foibles

Britain’s oldest historical landmarks are its TREES

The Express
April 10, 2015
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: International

Standing tall is a stout yew which 800 years ago this June was witness to one of the most important moments in British history. It is one of 10,700 ancient trees that grace our land – more than in any other country in northern Europe. The Ankerwycke Yew in Middlesex is a real oldie. It was already about 1,700 years old when rebellious barons forced bad King John to sign Magna Carta nearby on the banks of the Thames. This tree has withstood rebellions, civil war, plague and famine and still inscrutably guards its secrets.

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Business & Politics

Inventory glut turns lumber stocks wooden

Financial Post
April 9, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

Canadian lumber stocks have been in a major tailspin since mid-February, but it may be a while longer until they bottom, says Martin Roberge, portfolio strategist at Canaccord Genuity. “Do not chase down broken lumber stocks,” he said in a note to clients Thursday. “While we have a positive view on the U.S. housing market, U.S. imports of Canadian wood products continue slowing down due to a glut in U.S. wholesale lumber inventories.” The S&P/TSX forest products index has fallen 23% since peaking on Feb. 12 and it now trades below its 40-week average on both absolute and relative terms to the broader TSX composite.

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Erickson shores up business with three contracts

Mail Tribune
April 10, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

Aviation services firm Erickson has found a new client in Asia and renewed old alliances in North America. The now Portland-based company, whose roots and employee base remain in the Rogue Valley, announced a new contract Thursday following renewals with the U.S. Forest Service and a Canadian firm earlier this week… The timber harvest work with Helifor Canada continues a 25-year relationship for year-round activity in British Columbia. Erickson keeps an S64-E, its pilots, crews, field maintenance support parts, and components inventory on hand.

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Lumber Price Roots Reveal Green Opportunities

Wall Street Daily
April 10, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

The lumber market has been more unsteady than oil-reliant economies in the Middle East recently. That’s because the industry has been forced to react to a number of factors largely outside of its control lately. Like changing consumer interests, shifts in manufacturing operations, housing downturns, and, of course, a little toxic PR. But it you have the cojones for short-term trends and volatility trades, the lumber industry is looking particularly enticing. …The expiration of the Softwood Lumber Agreement is still over six months away, but the two governments are already discussing a new agreement. The Canadians are in favor of resigning the current agreement with few, if any, alterations.

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GOOD NEWS FOR FOREST CONTRACTORS!

Government supports forest contractors and rural communities with a $1 million replenishment to the Forestry Service Providers Compensation Fund 
Truck Loggers Association
April 10, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

Vancouver – Today Premier Christy Clark and Minister Steve Thomson, Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, stood up for forest contractors and the communities they live in when they announced a $1,000,000 top up to the Forestry Service Providers Compensation Fund. “This is another step towards fortifying conditions for contractor sustainability,” said Don Banasky, TLA President. Forest contractors run small, locally owned businesses that create jobs throughout BC’s rural communities. When these companies are left in the lurch by a tenure holder that becomes insolvent, the whole community suffers. “We’ve seen this happen more than once,” said Banasky. “And we know that the ripples are felt throughout our communities.”

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Forestry officials share knowledge of diversification through economic downturn

660 News
April 9, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

The forestry industry has been credited as one of the bright spots during this financial downturn, especially in Alberta and economic developers want to know how. The Alberta Association of Economic Developers is holding its 2015 AGM in Kananaskis this week and one of the presentations is from the Forest Products Association of Canada. There are currently 20,000 forestry workers in Alberta among the 230,000 across Canada and there has been year-over-year growth in the province of 7.5 per cent for the past few years. But FPAC President David Lindsay said the success didn’t happen overnight and followed about a decade of struggle when over 100,000 jobs were lost.

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First Nations to sign tentative treaty deal but future of process in doubt

Globe and Mail
April 9, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

A group of five First Nations on southern Vancouver Island is expected to sign a tentative treaty settlement on Thursday – even as some of the key participants reconsider the slow and costly process of settling modern-day treaties. The agreement-in-principle between the Te’Mexw Treaty Association, Ottawa and Victoria is being inked in the B.C. capital with all the ceremony that is expected after almost 21 years of negotiations. But the talks are not over – the parties will now move to the “final agreement” stage. Meanwhile, the future for other First Nations that are further behind in the treaty process is in question.

Five Vancouver Island First Nations reach lands and cash deal from The Canadian Press

Press release form the Government of Canada

Press release form the Government of British Columbia

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Chilling Message At COFI Convention

CKPG
April 9, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

A call for change was the message at the Council of Forest Industries convention this morning. The relationship between sawmill operations and the newest addition to forestry: bioenergy, was the focus of this morning’s panel at the convention. Everyone agrees, there will be a reduction in the Annual Allowable Cut is on the horizon now that the Mountain Pine Beetle wood has been harvested. BC will eventually have to cut between two and three million cubic metres from the supply and Murray Hall with Murray Hall Consulting says two regions will be hit.

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Why Now Is the Right Time to Buy Western Forest Products Inc.

The Motley Fool
April 10, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Looking at Western Forest Products financials over the last five years, we can see a picture of a company that has grown its revenue, improved margins, and generated strong cash flows, even though all the while the lumber market has been tough, to say the least. And now the company is faced with an improving outlook, a cheap stock, and a business that has been effectively managed and is very well set up to benefit from this. And, as icing on the cake, the 4.4% dividend yield will also appeal to investors.

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Still Smoldering

A former assistant U.S. Attorney adds fuel to claims that federal prosecutors engaged in a fraud on the court to win fire-recovery damages.
California Lawyer
April 9, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

The mammoth 2007 Moonlight fire in remote Plumas County grabbed the attention of Assistant U.S. Attorney E. Robert Wright from the moment he was tapped to head the Eastern District’s fire litigation cost-recovery team. The blaze began on a hot September day near Moonlight Peak, roughly 85 miles east of Red Bluff. Over the next three weeks the fire blackened 65,000 acres and consumed valuable stands of old-growth Douglas fir before fire crews were able to extinguish it, at a cost of $20 million.  ecause 70 percent of the charred acreage was in the Plumas and Lassen
national forests, recovering money for lost timber and fire suppression
also became a federal problem-and thus the responsibility of the U.S.
Attorney for the Eastern District of California.

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Man, 22, dies in accident at lumber mill in the Adirondacks

Associated Press
April 9, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

JAY, N.Y. – State police say a 22-year-old man has died in an accident at an Adirondack lumber mill where he worked. Troopers say Lance A. Sawyer II of AuSable Forks was fatally injured late Wednesday morning while working at the Ward Lumber Mill in the northern Essex County town of Jay, 120 miles north of Albany. Police say Sawyer had been operating a board edger in the mill when he was struck across his chest with a board that had apparently kicked back. He was taken to the University of Vermont Health Network in Plattsburgh, where he was pronounced dead around 12:15 p.m.

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Catalyst Paper to move U.S. headquarters into prominent Washington Township office

Dayton Business Journal
April 9, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

A company connected to the NewPage paper manufacturer is moving its U.S. headquarters into a Washington Township office. Catalyst Paper Corp., a Canadian-based competitor of Verso Corp., which bought out Miamisburg-based NewPage at the beginning of this year, is leasing 11,000 square feet at 7777 Washington Village Drive in Washington Township. Nearly all of the company’s 40 employees are former NewPage employees, who moved over to Catalyst as part of a settlement between Verso and the U.S. Department of Justice that involved Verso selling two of its paper mills to Catalyst.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Forests Minister Markets BC Wood

CKPG
April 9, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

BC’s Forests Minister was on hand at the Council of Forest Industries convention this afternoon to paint a picture of the future, as far as government is concerned. Steve Thomson outlined five priorities, which include forest policy and legislative changes, greater certainty around the land base, a diversification and the growth of new markets. To that end, he announced $6.2 million to help market BC wood overseas. That comes after $8.9 million announced federally yesterday.

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Harper Government Announces Investment in First-in-Canada Forestry Technology

Canada Newswire press release
April 10, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

TÉMISCOUATA-SUR-LE-LAC, QC, – Jacques Gourde, Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister, for Official Languages and for the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec and Member of Parliament for Lotbinière–Chutes-de-la-Chaudière, on behalf of the Honourable Greg Rickford, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources, today announced an investment of $10 million in an innovative project with Cascades Inc.’s Norampac-Cabano mill in the Lower St. Lawrence region. Funded under Natural Resources Canada’s Investments in Forest Industry Transformation (IFIT) program, the project will enable the mill to commercialize a first-in-Canada technology to extract hemicellulose from hardwood chips. Hemicelluloses are used in a variety of applications, including biofuel.

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Adhesives and insulating foams from softwood bark tannins

Friday Offcuts
April 10, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

In collaboration with its partners, VTT developed tannin extraction from softwood bark as part of an ERA-NET project. At least 130 kg of crude tannin powder can be produced from one tonne of dry wood bark, still leaving 87% of the original bark mass available for incineration. In Finland, tannin could replace, in particular, fossil-based phenols in adhesives used in the wood products industry. Hundreds of tonnes of tannin is produced from wood materials and wood bark for the needs of leather, beverage and animal feed industry in South America and South Africa in particular. However, the supply of the main sources of tannin, acacia and quebracho trees, is not sufficient to satisfy the increasing industrial demand for tannin.

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Forestry

Tree planting not logging, says Surespan

Coast Reporter
April 9, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Surespan, the company that holds AJB Investments, assures it will not log in the watershed on the east side of Chapman Creek this spring and will only plant trees in cut block CH1 on the west side. Sunshine Coast Regional District (SCRD) board chair Garry Nohr told Coast Reporter of the development after a Tuesday morning meeting with representatives from Surespan. The SCRD had been waiting to hear of the company’s logging plans for several months. While the assurance calms fears raised by local environmentalist group Elphinstone Logging Focus (ELF) over the impacts of immediate logging in the watershed, representatives of ELF say they want more done to protect the drinking water resource.

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Prescribed burn project scheduled near Kaslo

Castlegar Source
April 9, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Wildfire Management Branch and BC Timber Sales personnel are planning to conduct a prescribed burn at 12 Mile Creek, about 17 kilometres northwest of Kaslo next to Highway 31A. The burn project will take place between Thursday (April 9) and April 30, weather conditions permitting. This controlled burn will cover about 5.5 hectares and smoke will be visible from Kaslo, Highway 31A and surrounding areas. Smoke may be present for several days, as fires within the burn control lines are extinguished.

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The beetles are back

Whitecourt Star
April 9, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Mountain pine beetles could be making a strong comeback this season after a relatively mild winter. Tracey O’Donnell, parks and open spaces coordinator, is responsible for the Town of Whitecourt’s mountain pine beetle remediation efforts. “We are expecting to see an increase in the pine beetle population this spring,” she said. Duncan MacDonnell, public affairs officers for Environment and Sustainable Resource development (ESRD), said typically sustained temperatures of minus 40 degrees Celsius or colder is needed to kill off beetle eggs.

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NASA and U.S. Forest Service maps used to help recovery from California Megafires

Clarksville Online
April 10, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Washington, D.C. – New maps of two recent California megafires that combine unique data sets from the U.S. Forest Service and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, are answering some of the urgent questions that follow a huge wildfire: In all the acres of blackened landscape, where are the live trees to provide seed and regrow the forest? Which dead trees could endanger workers rebuilding roads and trails? What habitats have been created for fire-dependent wildlife species? The maps, so detailed that they show individual trees, cover the areas of two California megafires… before, during and after the active burns.

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Alaska’s yellow cedar considered for endangered protection

Associated Press
April 9, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — An iconic Alaska tree may warrant protection as a threatened or endangered species due to climate warming, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced Thursday. The agency will begin a status review of yellow cedar, a tree revered and used by Native Alaska cultures and valued as of high value to the timber industry. The decision is great news for the Tongass National Forest and for yellow cedar, said Rebecca Noblin, an attorney in Anchorage for the Center for Biological Diversity, one of the groups that petitioned to list the tree. “We’re losing yellow cedar rapidly to climate change, and if we don’t start addressing our greenhouse gas emissions, we’re going to lose yellow cedars,” she said.

Endangered species protections may be warranted for struggling Alska tree, federal agency finds from The Alaska Dispatch News

Press release form the Center for Biological Diversity

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Scientist enlists forest fungi to save their own habitat

Rather than using synthetic insecticides to save forests from bark beetles, entomologist Rich Hofstetter is recruiting native fungi that are more selective and can adapt over time to become more effective.
Mother Nature Network
April 9, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Since bark beetles are natural pests running amok with human help, what if we could balance things out just by helping other members of their ecosystem catch up? That’s what Richard Hofstetter wants to do. An entomologist at Northern Arizona University, he has spent 17 years trying to protect American forests from bark beetles. He’s made news in recent years with some creative strategies, like blasting the bugs with Rush Limbaugh, Guns N’ Roses, Queen and even their own calls. But now Hofstetter is working on a better idea: He has identified a strain of forest fungus that naturally battles pine beetles from within. Certain fungi have evolved to prey on specific beetle species, and Hofstetter hopes to coax them to not only do our dirty work for us, but to make it less dirty.

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Rattlesnake logging: Express outrage to Ranger District

Letter to the Editor
The Missoulian
April 10, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Missoula District Ranger Jennifer Hensiek was quoted in the April 3 Missoulian article, “Forest Service extends comment period”: “We want to remind people that we have never had a ‘preferred alternative’… I am terminally ill and will never again be able to walk in one of the most beautiful places in the world, but I want my granddaughter to experience the joy and sacredness of our Rattlesnake. Leave it alone!

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Woodlot owners/operators association to gather for meeting

Cape Breton Post
April 9, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

GREAT VILLAGE – The annual meeting of the Nova Scotia Woodlot Owners and Operators Association will be held at Great Village.The meeting will be held April 25 at the Masonic Hall. The agenda is packed with interesting and helpful presentations for small woodlot owners. Will Martin, president of the association, will discuss a proposal for an 18-month “Forestry Lab,” identifying major problems facing the sector, explore possible solutions, and talk about the NSWOOA’s Forestry Summit.

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Two tales of timber

North Carolina Sportsman
April 9, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Throughout the year, hunters and land managers are always looking for ways to boost the quality and quantity of game on their properties. While managing wildlife is important, managing habitat will make the greatest impact, and forest manipulation is the best way to influence habitat without having to make a withdrawal from the bank. Forest manipulation can be achieved in several ways, but the best and most economical is strategic timber harvest, which can also be one of the most-economical methods to improve wildlife habitat diversity and hold wildlife year-round.

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Walnut Twig Beetle Detected In Indiana

WBIW 1340AM
April 10, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

The Walnut Twig Beetle (WTB), Pityophthorus juglandis, the insect involved in Thousand Cankers Disease of Black Walnut (TCD), has been detected in Indiana for the first time at a Franklin County sawmill. The beetle was detected in a trap placed at the sawmill for a 2014 statewide survey for WTB. Additional WTBs were found during an inspection of walnut logs and lumber at the sawmill. TCD is caused by the fungus Geosmithia morbida that is transmitted by WTB. …Tests for the fungus from the collected beetles and walnut samples in Franklin County are ongoing. So far, the fungus has not been detected.

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Mechanical removal of trees to reduce bushfire risk; could America’s $400 million program work in Australia?

ABC News Australia
April 10, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A Californian Fire Science Professor says America’s $400 million bushfire prevention program, which combines mechanical removal of trees with planned burning, would be applicable in Australia, but could take decades to reduce risk. The Australian Government has dedicated $1.5 million to trials, where machinery will be used to remove bushfire fuel in public bushland, like undergrowth and small trees, which will then be turned into useful products. …The Australian Forestry Products Association is behind the push for government-funded trials and hopes to see further investment in the future. Chief executive Ross Hampton said the forest industry invested heavily in fire services, but they are no match for the raging blazes, that often start in public bushland.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Could Biomass Electricity Become Carbon-Negative?

Gostar Solar.com
April 10, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

A new study completed at UC Berkeley suggests that if biomass electricity production is combined with carbon capture and sequestration, it could lead to a carbon-negative energy source. But what exactly would that mean for the environment and the future of clean energy? Currently, generating electricity from biomass (urban waste and sustainably sourced forest and crop residues, for instance) is carbon-neutral—it produces only as much carbon as plants remove from the atmosphere. In other words, it doesn’t add to our problems with carbon emissions. However, if the UC Berkeley study is correct, it could mean that the biomass creation process could generate energy and actually sequester and contain all carbon associated with the process, giving us extra energy.

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Mum’s the word on climate change

Lacrosse Tribune
April 10, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

MADISON — A Wisconsin state board made up of elected officials has voted to ban staff members of a small agency from on-the-job discussion or work related to climate change. Staffers for the Board of Commissioners of Public Lands had already removed a reference to climate change from its website in response to previous complaints by one board member, state Treasurer Matt Adamczyk… La Follette said the agency should have at least some concern about climate change because foresters are worried about how it is influencing tree growth and other conditions affecting the logging industry. The board owns about 77,000 acres of land, including timber acreage it manages for income that can be used for public projects.

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Biochar Reality Check

Duke University
April 10, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

Biochar (formerly known as charcoal) has attracted a lot of recent attention, owing to increasing interest in carbon sequestration in soils for greenhouse gas mitigation. With the use of biomass fuels, the production and burial of biochar could store significant amounts of carbon that might otherwise be emitted to the atmosphere as carbon dioxide. This sink for carbon is potentially highly resistant to decomposition. Large accumulations of ancient charcoal persist in the Brazilian Amazon, forming terra preta or black earth soils of exceptional fertility. Hardy New Englanders knew that charring the base of a wooden fence post would prolong its longevity in soil. And creosote, a distillate from partially burned wood, was historically used as a wood preservative… Rather than using biomass to produce biochar, perhaps we should encourage more immediate opportunities to use biomass to mitigate carbon emissions.

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Woodlands revival adds new piece to carbon cycle puzzle

Eco-Business
April 10, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

…new research shows that the world’s forests have stored away an extra 4 billion tonnes of carbon in the last dozen years and the total amount of woodland has increased worldwide since 2003. The encouraging news comes from Australian scientists, who report in Nature Climate Change that they used a new technique to analyse 20 years of satellite data, to estimate the overall pattern of growth in global vegetation. The fate of the forests could hardly be more important. The world’s greenery is part of the natural atmospheric cycle, and the notorious greenhouse effect – the steady rise in carbon dioxide levels in the Earth’s atmosphere since the start of the Industrial Revolution and the use of fossil fuels to power economic growth – is in part also a response to land-use change and forest loss.

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Biomass Boiler A ‘Shore’ Thing At Seaweed Plant

Green Building Press
April 10, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Hitched to a drying mill at the state of the art Uist Asco production facility on North Uist Island, the fully automatic boiler from Wood Energy uses timber from Asco’s own renewable supply to process Knotted Wrack (Ascophyllum nodosum) seaweed, freshly harvested from the shores of the island, into feedstuffs and organic fertilizer for the agricultural sector. It is estimated that around six million tonnes of wood is wasted by being sent to landfill in the UK each year and that the forestry industry wastes enough biomass annually to heat 1,500,000 homes. But the highly efficient and robust Binder unit – which has a low ash residue and the capability to burn fuel with moisture content of up to 55% (the same as a freshly felled tree) – will allow the company to make full use of even the very low grade brash and branch wood material recovered from its sustainable forestry operations. 

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Growth in German pellet exports

EUWID Pulp and Paper
April 10, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

German pellet exports rose by 13% in the second half of 2014 to 352,936 t after a reduction of a roughly a third had been recorded at the middle of the year. Provisional figures from the federal statistics office Destatis show that exports to Italy were raised sharply by roughly 80% to 96,635 t whereas deliveries to Austria as the principal recipient fell by 14% to 94,532 t. In the second half of the year, German pellets imports fell 40% short of the previous year’s level at 211,883 t; the shortfall was still around 32% in the first half-year until the end of June. 

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