Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: May 20, 2015

Business & Politics

Tolko rolling out plans to fix soot storm

Global News
May 19, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

SPALLUMCHEEN — Residents of Palisades mobile park home in Spallumcheen say on windy days, they feel like prisoners in their homes. The residents live near Tolko mill’s co-generation plant and the business puts its ash pile close to the homes. “I probably wouldn’t be that upset if we moved into the industrial park and that’s the way it always been. But we were here before they built the co-generation plant and started to dump soot 200 feet away from my property,” says resident James Streeter. Residents say whenever the wind picks up, some of this ash gets blown over to the trailer park, blanketing the homes with soot.

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Wood costs push Tembec to suspends sawmill operations in Quebec

Pulp and Paper Canada
May 19, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Tembec is suspending operations at its three sawmills in Quebec due to the high cost of wood supply in the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region. The company says the wood costs make its sawmills uncompetitive given the persistent weak market prices for lumber in North America. The move affects 360 direct jobs at Tembec. “Tembec has already expressed its concerns, on many occasions, to the Québec government regarding wood costs at its sawmills in Abitibi-Témiscamingue,” said James Lopez, president and CEO. “Unfortunately, these costs have increased more than 20%.

Press release from Tembec

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Groups jockeying to shape EPA water rule

The Hill
May 20, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

More than 100 advocates representing dozens of industry groups, companies and environmental organizations are flocking to the White House in a last-ditch effort to influence controversial regulations that would redefine the reach of the federal government’s water pollution enforcement. …The American Forest and Paper Association participated in meetings with other business groups that are worried the EPA’s rule could cover man-made manufacturing ponds at paper mills and elsewhere that are isolated.  “We informed them that water is an important component of our manufacturing process and that mills are very often sighted by water bodies,” Schwartz said.

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Commentary: TPA, TPP good for rural Oregon

By Bruce Daucsavage, president of Ochoco Lumber Co.
Blue Mountain Eagle
May 19, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

Recently there has been much debate about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the free trade agreement that the United States is negotiating with 11 other Pacific Rim nations, and Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), which gives the President authorization to negotiate the TPP and bring it to Congress for an up or down vote. One thing is for sure: TPA and TPP are good for rural Oregon… Most of the TPP countries simply do not have the excellent forest and agricultural resources that we possess in Oregon. That’s why the list of what we produce in rural Oregon looks a lot like the list of Oregon’s top exports, including wheat, fruits and vegetables, processed foods, dairy, beef, and wood products.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

House Works: Pressure-treated wood foundations are long lasting

Ottawa Citizen
May 19, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

…Pressure-treated wood foundations replace poured concrete or blocks with special lumber and plywood, and your question is a reasonable one. The fact is, pressure-treated foundations don’t need any maintenance. The treatment process used on the wood will last a long, long time. No one really knows how long for sure, but some of the oldest wooden sample stakes set into the ground to test the pressure treatment process date to 1927 and are still there today, rot-free. That’s not to say that all pressure treated lumber has been treated to last this long, but the kind used for foundations is the most durable we can create

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Docklands’ wood building proves its green credentials

Sydney Morning Herald
May 19, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

A 10-storey timber apartment block in Docklands has shown the environmental credentials of timber construction, according to an RMIT study. Compared to a similar building constructed from concrete, the Forte had a lower environmental impact in all categories except renewable energy demand. It was more greenhouse friendly, less energy intensive, and its lower water use had fewer impurities in its discharge. The building, the largest timber construction in the world, was completed by Lend Lease two years ago. It is predominantly made from cross-laminated timber.

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Forestry

Northwest Territories residents prepare for 2015 fire season

4 forest fires already burning in the territory on heels of record 2014 season
CBC News
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

With four forest fires already burning in the Northwest Territories, residents are preparing for another big fire season. Last year’s season was the worst on record in the territory, with the government spending more than $56 million to combat fires that burned more than 3 million hectares. Expectations this year are for another hot, dry summer, according to the Canadian Forest Service. Cabin owners such as Russell Chase are preparing for the season by clearing trees, low-lying branches, and brush from around their properties.

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Woodland caribou: Going, going, gone – the way of the buffalo?

Drayton Valley Western Review
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

There once were woodland caribou in Brazeau County, at the foot of Alberta’s Eastern Slopes. There are a few stragglers left to the west in Jasper National Park. The closest herd to the north is the Little Smoky herd, and their few remnant individuals persist because of continual shooting of wolves from helicopters. Beset by predation and habitat loss and continued rapid advancement of oil and gas and forestry disturbances in Alberta’s forested regions, the future of caribou in Alberta looks grim. And the Alberta government has kept issuing industrial tenures in the heart of ranges of herds that are the most threatened in Canada. This is a dire situation for an iconic animal that Canadians consider important enough to put on the face of our Quarter coin.

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Forestry research facility receives $5.6 million in federal funding

Pulp and Paper Canada
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A federal infrastructure funding announcement on May 15 included $5.6 million to upgrade the Pacific Forestry Centre in Victoria, a research facility that supports Canada’s forest sector by advancing forest management policy and conducting important research in fields including forest pests, genomics and bioenergy. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Pacific Forestry Centre.

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Conservationists hope NDP government will protect Castle wilderness area

Calgary Herald
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Conservation groups are anxious to see whether a pledge to protect the Castle wilderness area in southwestern Alberta as a provincial park will translate into action by the NDP government. For decades, they have been lobbying the Alberta government to protect the entire 1,020-square kilometer area. “The protection of the Castle was part of the NDP platform,” said Katie Morrison, conservation director for the southern Alberta chapter of the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society. “We’re really optimistic.” The NDP government hasn’t been sworn in yet, but a spokesperson noted those types of decisions will follow.

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Planting trees for a world record on Wednesday

Parksville Qualicum Beach News
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Participants from Island Timberlands and local high schools will gather in Qualicum Beach tomorrow (May 20) to take part in a North America wide attempt to break the world record for the most trees planted in one hour. More than 30 teams of 25-100 (totalling over 1,400) will simultaneously plant saplings from 10-11 a.m. in an effort organized by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI). Bringing together business, community organizations and youth groups, they expect to plant over a quarter-million new trees.

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Tree planters hope to set world record

Williams Lake Tribune
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A team from West Fraser Timber in Williams Lake is participating in a North American attempt to break the world record for most trees planted in one hour. Initiated by Sustainable Forestry Initiative Inc., 30 teams from the U.S. and Canada will work together on Wednesday, May 20 to try and plant a quarter million trees, said Susan Woermke, a silviculture forester with West Fraser. “We were invited by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative Inc. to participate,” she said, noting all West Fraser divisions are members of SFI. For the record-breaking attempt, Woermke selected a previously logged cut block at Choate Creek near Horsefly that was harvested in 2014.

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Carver Kings’ Ryan Cook makes art with chainsaws, flirts with danger

HGTV’s spinoff of Timber Kings features wood artisans
Postmedia News
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Ryan Cook is one of the professional chainsaw carvers featured on HGTV’s series Carver Kings, a Williams Lake, B.C.-based spinoff of the network’s Timber Kings. Each episode follows the carvers as they complete jobs for high-paying clients across North America in a tight five-day deadline. …Originally an actor, Cook took up with the carving crowd after being cast on OLN’s Saw Dogs, despite not knowing much about the craft. There, he apprenticed under 18 world-class carvers and fell in love with the process of turning raw wood into works of wonder. When Saw Dogs was cancelled after one season, Cook found himself at a crossroads.

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Growing northern B.C. wildfire believed to be man-made

May 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The RCMP has joined an investigation into a wildfire in northern B.C. over the possibility arson was involved. The police want the public’s help in the investigation of the Little Bobtail Lake fire southwest of Prince George that has already burned an area nearly 60 times the size of Stanley Park. Prince George RCMP Cpl. Craig Douglass said police and forestry investigators believe the fire — 24,000 hectares in size and only 15 per cent contained on Monday — was man-made. Whether the fire was accidental or set intentionally has not been determined, but an active investigation is underway, he said.

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Species catalogued in special Lantzville forest

Nanaimo Daily News
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Red- legged tree frogs and wandering salamanders, species that are considered “special concerns” in the province, were among the many varieties of frogs, toads, newts and other species being catalogued in an area known as the Lantzville forest. Nanaimo amphibian biologist Elke Wind conducted the two-day study of the 244-hectare largely forested area in Upper Lantzville last week, on behalf of a group of concerned neighbours who want to save the area from logging.

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Little Bobtail Lake Fire Reaches 25,000 Hectares

250 News
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Prince George, B.C. – The Little Bobtail Lake fire, 50 km southwest of Prince George and within 500 metres of Norman Lake, has grown slightly to 25,000 hectares. The Wildfire Management Branch says it was spurred on by wind gusts of up to 40km/h and lightning and thunder activity yesterday. Precipitation was also reported, mainly “in the middle region of the fire perimeter,” though “it isn’t clear whether the northern or southern portions received any of that precipitation.” And “though we are seeing a downward trend in weather conditions,” they warn “there is the potential that a warm and drying trend will continue past the next couple days.”

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Charlottetown launching tree inventory

The Guardian
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

They can’t prevent disease from coming but they can certainly be more prepared if it comes. The City of Charlottetown’s urban forest was devastated this year. Dutch elm disease affected more than half of its elm trees, forcing crews to cut down more than 300 of them at a cost of about $700,000. Now the city is fighting back in an attempt to prevent such an ecological tragedy from happening again, or at least easing the impact. The city will launch a complete tree inventory this summer thanks to a TD Green Streets grant from TD Friends of the Environment Foundation and Tree Canada.

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U.S. Forest Service reducing number of area command teams

12news.com
May 18, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

The United States Forest Service is reducing the number of area command teams managing forest fires from four to three teams. Area Command Teams, or ACT’s, oversee the coordination and management of others battling very large and complex fires. The fire happened almost 13 years ago and it was initially two separate fires that grew into one large wildfire. It eventually burned at least 500,000 acres. During that fire one ACT was called in to oversee all operations. A spokesperson for the U.S. Forest Service told 12 News that in an effort to streamline agency efficiency the forest service decided a total of three teams are adequate for handling large complex fires.

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High pressure: is U.S. policy deterring illegal wood imports?

Mongabay.com
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

With forests razed around the world to feed the global timber market, some countries have clamped down on logging. However, this doesn’t always stem the tide. Indonesia, for example lost 840,000 hectares of primary forest in 2012 despite a ban on new palm oil concessions and logging; in Russia, old-growth forests are illegally felled to supply wood internationally. Some countries, such as the U.S., have imposed legislation at the consumer level, banning the import of illegally sourced wood through their borders. A new study finds that such legislation can be effective, with a 2008 amendment to the Lacey Act significantly reducing the influx of illegal wood into the U.S. 

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Endangered Species Act Gets A Makeover

May 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Add another item to the list of shake-ups expected from President Obama’s green agenda: The administration is pushing for changes to a decades-old environmental act in a bid to ward off attack from congressional Republicans looking to remake the law. The Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service on Monday will announce a slate of proposed updates to the implementation of the Endangered Species Act, National Journal has learned. The changes are intended to give states greater say in the federal decision-making process meant to protect at-risk species while improving the effectiveness of the law.

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A look back 35 years after Mount St. Helens’ deadly eruption killed 57, rained volcanic ash

Associated Press
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

SEATTLE – Thirty-five years ago, Mount St. Helens in southwest Washington state erupted, killing 57 people, blasting more than 1,300 feet (396 metres) off the top and raining volcanic ash for miles around. Today, the volcano has become a world-class outdoor laboratory for the study of volcanoes, ecosystems and forestry, as well as a major recreational and tourist destination… The once-barren grey landscape is coming back to life in the blast zone. Numerous species of plants, amphibians, fish and birds have returned and rebounded; some plants and animals surprisingly survived the blast. “We’re still in a rapid rate of change,” said Charlie Crisafulli, research ecologist with the U.S. Forest Service. “We’re gaining species. We’re getting to where all the players are out there. The land is getting filled in.”

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Wildfire season in Oregon expected to start earlier, last longer, experts predict

The Oregonian
May 19, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Oregon’s wildfire season is expected to start earlier and last longer than usual, thanks to a diminished, record-low snowpack and warmer temperatures that accelerated grass growth. Federal fire officials at the Northwest Coordination Center in Portland, which allocates firefighting resources for Oregon and Washington, said Tuesday that the early onset will affect both timber and range fires, and that drought is the main driver. “Drought is the word for nearly all areas west of the Rockies,” said meteorologist John Saltenberger, fire weather program manager at the coordination center. “And that means a greater than typical risk for major wildfires.”

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National forests: Intensive management is safest

Letter to the editor
The Missoulian
May 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Lightning-ignited wildfire has been a major force in the evolution of our native forests. Today we face an increased threat of human-caused fire in addition to a changing climate with shorter snow cover periods and longer summer wildfire conditions. In response to these well-known facts, forest managers endeavor to encourage establishment and growth of fire-resistant tree species, maintain desirable tree density and reduce forest fuel developments.

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Drought persists in the Northwest, despite winter rains

Water supplies and drought outlooks are grim in most Western states.
High Country News
May 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Last Friday, Gov. Jay Inslee declared a drought emergency in three Washington regions. Two days later, it rained across the state. In Seattle and Olympia, it poured enough to break decades-old records, and in Walla Walla County, one of the state’s dry spots, a half an inch fell. But the weekend’s rain won’t break Washington’s drought. Farmers, ski area operators and water managers are waiting on snows that haven’t come and that likely won’t until next winter. In the Pacific Northwest, as in other mountainous regions of the West, mountain snow normally acts as a reservoir, melting off in the spring and carrying the region through dry summers.

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B.C. extends support for Crown land wildlife conservation program to 2019

BC Government
May 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

PRINCE GEORGE – The Province is investing $100,000 over the next five years to enhance wildlife conservation throughout British Columbia. Parliamentary Secretary Mike Morris made the announcement yesterday evening at Ducks Unlimited Volunteer Convention. The funding is being provided to the Crown land securement partner program, a partnership that includes Ducks Unlimited Canada, The Nature Trust of British Columbia, the Nature Conservancy of Canada, the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation, Wildlife Habitat Canada, the Canadian Wildlife Service and the Province of British Columbia.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Sacrificing farmland for climate change

By Tom Fletcher, legislature reporter and columnist for Black Press
Nanaimo Bulletin
May 19, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA – It was 2008 when word first surfaced that B.C. farmland was being bought up to grow trees as a European carbon offset. Reckitt Benckiser Inc., a British-based global manufacturer of household products such as Lysol spray and Calgon laundry soap, bought 1,500 hectares east of Vanderhoof and planted aspen. …Since tree growing is permitted in the Agricultural Land Reserve, a use intended for fruit, ornamental or nursery trees, no permission was needed. And to meet the carbon offset rules of the UN’s International Panel on Climate Change, a 100-year restrictive covenant against harvesting trees was issued by B.C.’s land titles office. Goodbye farmland. …And where are B.C.’s tireless food security advocates on this dubious scheme?

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Oregon taps wood energy experts to tackle forest health

Portland Business Journal
May 19, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

The Oregon Department of Forestry is forming a new team to boost the value of forest waste products in a move meant to improve forest health and lessen the severity of forest fires. The state received $250,000 from the U.S. Forest Service to create a Statewide Wood Energy Team or SWET. The relatively new concept unites forest experts from the public and private sector to pursue projects that boost the commercial value of the scrub trees and bushes clogging the state’s forests. Forest debris contributes to the severity of forest fires. Removing it can be costly, but identifying commercial outlets can extend budgets, said Marcus Kauffman, biomass resource specialist for the state forest department.

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Drought-induced tree mortality accelerating in forests

EurekAlert!
May 19, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory have found that drought and heat-induced tree mortality is accelerating in many forest biomes as a consequence of a warming climate in their paper “Darcy’s law predicts widespread forest mortality under climate warming,” published in the journal Nature Climate Change. “The warming climate is creating a threat to global forests unlike any in recorded history,” said Nathan McDowell, of Los Alamos’ Earth and Environmental Sciences Division. “Forests store the majority of terrestrial carbon and their loss may have significant and sustained impacts on the global carbon cycle.”

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NCEC unhappy about Federal RET changes

ABC News, Australia
May 19, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

North coast conservationists have slammed an Abbott Government decision to treat wood fired power as ‘renewable energy’. The Government wants burning of native timber to be considered as renewable, and make power produced through it go towards meeting the renewable energy target (RET). We are worried that the Government will spend valuable research and development money and incentive grants in trying to get wood fired power off the ground, at the expense of putting money into solar and wind investment. The North Coast Environment Council (NEC) said that will directly damage the environment, and increase native forest clearing for wood chipping. The NCEC’s Susie Russell said carbon is best stored in living trees.

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Australian activists say Abbott’s biomass plan will destroy native forests

Asian Correspondent
May 20, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Australia’s Coalition government finally agreed to come up with an achievable Renewable Energy Target (RET), but it is not what conservation groups have expected. The Coalition government and the Labor opposition agreed on a reduced target of 33,000 gigawatt hours. The thing is Tony Abbott proposed burning biomass as a source of renewable energy, which the Greens find to be contentious. Conservation groups say Abbott’s biomass plan will lead to the destruction of native forests. The Wilderness Society has called on the government to shelve its plan to use native forest woodchips for electricity as a renewable energy source under the RET.

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General

Growing northern B.C. wildfire believed to be man-made

May 20, 2015
Category: Uncategorised

The RCMP has joined an investigation into a wildfire in northern B.C. over the possibility arson was involved. The police want the public’s help in the investigation of the Little Bobtail Lake fire southwest of Prince George that has already burned an area nearly 60 times the size of Stanley Park. Prince George RCMP Cpl. Craig Douglass said police and forestry investigators believe the fire — 24,000 hectares in size and only 15 per cent contained on Monday — was man-made. Whether the fire was accidental or set intentionally has not been determined, but an active investigation is underway, he said.

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Endangered Species Act Gets A Makeover

May 20, 2015
Category: Uncategorised

Add another item to the list of shake-ups expected from President Obama’s green agenda: The administration is pushing for changes to a decades-old environmental act in a bid to ward off attack from congressional Republicans looking to remake the law. The Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service on Monday will announce a slate of proposed updates to the implementation of the Endangered Species Act, National Journal has learned. The changes are intended to give states greater say in the federal decision-making process meant to protect at-risk species while improving the effectiveness of the law.

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