Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: May 28, 2015

Business & Politics

FPAC begins search for new president and CEO

Lesprom
May 27, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

The Board of the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) is launching an executive search for a new President and CEO. The current office-holder, David Lindsay, has announced his intention to move on by the end of 2015 to return to the Toronto area to be closer to his family. Lindsay has led FPAC since 2012 and worked to position the sector as an environmentally friendly renewable resource industry that is innovative and globally competitive, as FPAC said in the press release received by Lesprom Network.

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Pulp mill worker questions WorkSafeBC response

Prince George Citizen
May 27, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

An employee at a pulp mill in Mackenzie is upset no WorkSafeBC officer showed up at the scene on the day a fellow worker’s arm was pulled into a running machine. Rick Berry said he showed up for the day shift at Paper Excellence on May 19 to learn the employee he was to relieve suffered the accident about four hours before. . …”We all expected WorkSafe to be there, because it could’ve been a fatality, it was a very traumatic accident and we all expected them there Tuesday morning,” Berry said. “As of Wednesday afternoon, they hadn’t shown up yet, which means there’s no point in them showing up at all. WorkSafeBC spokesman Scott McCloy said Wednesday that an official did show up on Monday.

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Canada North Resources Expo returns

Prince George Citizen
May 27, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

The second edition of the Canada North Resources Expo is set to start its massive, heavy-duty engines. The event is spread over four Prince George acres, encompassing most of CN Centre and the Exhibition Grounds. It was created on top of Forest Expo, an event that found itself confronting a changing industrial landscape and a wider reach into northern B.C.’s economy. In 2013 CNRE was born into its bigger, broader new life. It was no longer just for the forest industry, but all the resource sectors of the region and it would be held every two years.

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Minister Rickford and Minister Lebel Highlight Unprecedented Support for Canada’s Forest Sector

Natural Resources Canada
Canada Newswire press release
May 27, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

OTTAWA – The Honourable Greg Rickford, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario, and the Honourable Denis Lebel, Minister of Infrastructure, Communities and Intergovernmental Affairs and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec, today highlighted the Harper Government’s unprecedented support for Canada’s forest sector. Minister Lebel met with mayors from forest sector communities in Quebec and Ontario and with industry representatives. Minister Lebel was joined by Kelly Block, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources, and Jay Aspin, MP for Nipissing-Timiskaming.

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Canadian buyer shuts down Tideflats sawmill — temporarily, it says

The News Tribune
May 27, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

Less than three months after a Canadian wood products company acquired a Tacoma Tideflats sawmill, the company has shut down the mill temporarily to take steps to return it to profitability. Interfor Corporation said that it curtailed production Friday at the former Simpson mill because of weak lumber prices and high production costs. About 125 workers are affected by the shutdown. “The mill is affected by high log costs and productivity-related issues which we knew when it was acquired,” said Steven Hofer, Interfor’s Senior Vice President, U.S. Northwest operations.

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West Coast Log and Lumber Exports Decreased in First Quarter

Woodworking Network
May 27, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

PORTLAND, OR – Log exports from Washington, Oregon, northern California, and Alaska totaled 272 million board feet in the first quarter of 2015, a decrease of nearly 16 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2014, the U.S. Forest Service’s Pacific Northwest Research Station reported today. During this same period, west coast lumber exports declined 4 percent in volume to 162 million board feet. The total value of these log exports decreased by more than 21 percent to $200 million, while, for lumber exports, the total value decreased by more than 3 percent to $123 million compared to the fourth quarter of 2014.

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Former Monroe paper mill owner sentenced to prison for hiding funds in Swiss account

AL.com
May 28, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

George Landegger made millions of dollars and built a paper mill empire that extended into rural Alabama. His career will end with prison and a fine, punishment that is insufficient in the view of prosecutors. A federal judge in New York earlier this month sentenced Landegger, 78, to two months in prison, followed by a year of supervised release, with the first six months under home confinement. U.S. District Judge Richard J. Sullivan also fined him $30,000 and ordered him to pay $71,824 owed to the government.

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WorkSafe welcomes new forest safety council

WorkSafeNZ
May 27, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

WorkSafe welcomes the official launch yesterday of a new leadership organisation for forest safety – the Forestry Industry Safety Council, or FISC. The need for an overarching safety body supported by all parties in the sector was identified last year by an independent review panel and WorkSafe has been fully involved in its creation. At the launch at Parliament last night, WorkSafe Chief Executive Gordon MacDonald said the industry’s significantly improved safety performance moved it from being the “pariah of health in safety in 2013” to an exemplar for other sectors to learn from.

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Commercial roundwood harvesting volumes are growing in Ukraine

IHB
May 27, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

The Ukrainian State Statistics Servies recently published the data on commercial roundwood harvesting in the period from 2010 to 2014. In 2010-2014 commercial roundwood volumes had been constantly growing and reached 18333.2 thousand m3 in 2014, the highest point had been reached back in 2011 – 17510.3 thousand m3 against 16145.6 thousand m3 in 2010. Out of 18333.2 thousand m3 of commercial roundwood harvested in 2014, harvested softwood volumes came up to 11061.4 thousand m3, while hardwood – 7271.8 thousand m3.

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Forestry

B.C. Sending Personnel to Alberta to Help Fight Wildfires

Kelowna Now
May 27, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

In order to assist with the massive flames ravaging Northern Alberta, the B.C. Wildfire Management Branch is sending 88 personnel and two fixed-wing aircraft to our neighbouring province. Minister of Forests, Lands, and Natural Resource Operations Steve Thomson made the announcement  …“B.C.’s wildland firefighters and support personnel are recognized as some of the world’s best. We’re pleased to be able to lend assistance to other provinces whenever we can,” said Thomson.

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Surrey to cut down hundreds of Green Timbers trees to make way for LRT

The Green Timbers Heritage Society is fighting to protect trees from road widening project
CBC News
May 27, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The City of Surrey plans on removing hundreds of trees from Green Timbers Urban Forest to clear the way for a proposed light rail transit line that will run along Fraser Highway. The project will make room for two additional lanes of traffic, an LRT line, a bike path, a sidewalk and drainage ditches… Green Timbers was clear cut nearly a century ago and a replanting effort started in the 1930s. “Green Timbers is unique,” said Jim Foulkes with the Green Timbers Heritage Society.

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Ontario firefighters battle wildfires in Alberta, Yukon

About 5,000 people have been forced to leave their homes as wildfires rage across northern Alberta
CBC News
May 28, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

With a relatively quiet start to the forest fire season in Ontario, crews have headed west to help with out-of-control wildfires in Alberta and Yukon. About 5,000 people have been forced to leave their homes as wildfires rage across northern Alberta. More than 70 wildfires are burning in the province and 29 of them are considered to be out-of-control. The Ministry of Natural Resources said 126 Ontario firefighters are in communities around northern Alberta including Slave Lake, White Court, Peace River and High Level.

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El Nino ignites Western Canada wildfire season

Canadian Press
May 28, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER – Experts are blaming El Nino for speeding up nature’s clock and forcing firefighters to deploy weeks ahead of normal to battle wildfires across rural Western Canada. They say the natural phenomenon that cycles every two to seven years has been activated early this year and is predicted to accelerate wildfire activity across the northwest. The tinderbox effect will be felt from Oregon to British Columbia and across the northern Prairies into Manitoba and the Northwest Territories.

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Alberta fire season ‘hectic,’ destructive

Crews facing dry conditions, shifting winds
Edmonton Journal
May 28, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Alberta’s wildfire season is only three months in and already it has consumed significantly more forest than last year. So far, there have been 720 wildfires in the province, burning just under 30,000 hectares of forest, compared to 400 fires at this time last year that burned about 700 hectares. “The actual amount of forest that’s been consumed is dramatically different. … It’s been a significant increase in terms of activity,” said wildfire information officer Richard Horne, adding that the majority of those have been caused by people. The wildfire season, which began March 1, has been “very, very hectic,” with some firefighters working up to 24 days straight, said Horne.

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Bamfield kids help plant 40 millionth seedling

Alberni Valley News
May 27, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Students from Bamfield Community school helped make Vancouver Island a little bit greener in April with the planting of the 40 millionth seedling for Island Timberlands. The special cedar seedling was planted on April 10 in an Island Timberlands cut block 57 kilometres from Port Alberni in Huu-ay-aht traditional territory. Along with witnessing the planting of the 40 millionth seedling, the Bamfield school students had the opportunity to plant their own cedar seedlings in the cut block in Sarita. “I hope these youth will be able to remember where they were today so they can come out here and recognize where they planted trees,” Huu-ay-aht First Nation elected Chief Councillor Jeff Cook, who was present for the planting ceremony, said.

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Dry conditions not helping forest fire situation

The Battlefords News-Optimist
May 27, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Dry conditions across Saskatchewan continue to make it difficult for the province to get an upper hand on the forest fire situation. Some 19 wildfires were reported as burning across Saskatchewan as of Monday morning. By Tuesday, there had been slight progress down to 18 fires. Officials briefed reporters on the situation in a conference call Monday. They confirmed that the recent hot weather and lack of moisture has made for a high-risk situation across the province.

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Opinion: Dead wood on forest floor poses greatest fire risk

by Robert Gray
Vancouver Sun
May 27, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The mountain pine beetle has severely affected pine forests across more than 25 million hectares (60 million acres) of western North America in the last decade. In the aftermath of this epidemic, is there a significant increase in wildfire threat? For many given the task of managing wildfires the answer is a resounding yes. However, a recent research paper from a team of scientists based in Colorado suggests that is not the case and that forests killed by the mountain pine beetle do not pose an increased risk to wildfire… Who is correct in this debate?

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Wildfire threatens homes and properties throughout B.C.

Forest Practices Board
May 27, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA – B.C.’s Forest Practices Board warns that little progress has been made in protecting urban interface areas from catastrophic wildfire and we are all responsible. In 2010, the board issued a report and recommendations to government and communities to address the risks of wildfire in urban interface areas. This followup report finds that the work done in the past five years has not addressed the hazard in a meaningful way. …The report acknowledges that some excellent work has been done and the Province has committed millions of dollars to the effort. But the scale of the problem is so large, and the costs of treatment so high, that it’s merely a drop in the bucket. …The report also provides a number of suggestions to improve the situation.

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Forest Service launches short-haul program

Fire Aviation
May 27, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

This year the U.S. Forest Service is launching a short-haul program, which involves transporting personnel suspended beneath a helicopter. While the National Park Service and other federal and local agencies have been using the tactic for years to insert firefighters and rescue personnel and to extract people with injuries, firefighters in the USFS have not been authorized or trained in the technique. However short-haul operations have been conducted in the Forest Service for a number of years for law enforcement missions.

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Forest Service is slow to change, but must embrace climate role

The Register-Guard
May 28, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

I first met Jim Furnish in the early 1990s, when he was the supervisor of the Siuslaw National Forest, and I work with him on a project now, so I was keenly interested in reading his new book, “Toward a Natural Forest: The Forest Service in Transition.” It offers powerful lessons about how myopia and denial can lead to tragedy. His story also has important implications for our nation’s ability to address climate change….  He described the transition of the Forest Service from an agency totally committed to timber production with little regard for the environmental costs, to one that Furnish says is now more focused on fish, wildlife and recreation, but also uncertain of its mission.

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$2.5 million available for Oregon farmers, ranchers, foresters in drought-stricken counties

OregonLive.com
May 27, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Farmers, ranchers and foresters in Oregon can now apply for federal funding to upgrade equipment and deploy new techniques to conserve water. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is allocating $2.5 million out of $21 million to Oregon for people who rely on agriculture and forests for a living in drought-stricken counties. The funding will assist… Foresters to prevent wildfires with measures, such as fuel breaks, multi-purpose water impoundments and other fuel reduction. From the Conservation Service: “These actions reduce excess vegetation in a forest so that wildfire has less fuel to spread higher into the canopy, where it causes the most damage.”

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Timber company to benefit as RET deal creates market for unsaleable timber, says VicForests analysis

ABC News, Australia
May 27, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The revised Renewable Energy Target (RET) currently before Parliament would provide a market for otherwise unsaleable timber, according to a document from Victoria’s state-owned forestry business, VicForests, obtained by the ABC. Environment Minister Greg Hunt introduced the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Amendment Bill yesterday. The legislation locks in the bipartisan deal for a new, lower, 2020 Renewable Energy Target.

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Softwood felled in the UK for plant health reasons doubles

Felling of softwood trees in the UK under plant health legislation accounted for seven per cent of all softwood felling last year, according to latest figures from the Forestry Commission.
Horticulture Week
May 28, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The volume of timber felled for plant health reasons in 2014 amounted to 0.8 million green tonnes, more than twice the 2013 figure – 640,000 tonnes from Forestry Commission, Natural Resources Wales and Forestry Scotland plantations, and 170,000 tonnes from private land, despite public sector forest accounting for just 43 per cent of softwood harvested overall. “Softwood removals required by plant health legislation are expected to consist mainly of Japanese larch that is suspected to be infected by Phytophthora ramorum,” the commission’s report said.

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New chair for Forest safety council

A high profile professional director will chair the new Forest Industry Safety Council.
Radio New Zealand News
May 28, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The council was officially launched at parliament this week, following recommendations from the Independent panel which reviewed forest safety last year. Dame Alison Paterson will head the council which will include representatives of forest owners, contractors, workers, unions and Worksafe New Zealand. Ms Paterson is currently a director of GMI Investments, Vector, Stevenson Agriculture, among other companies, and has previously chaired the state owned farming enterprise, Landcorp. A national safety director is also being appointed to the council, whose role will be to make sure the work programme is being delivered, with a steady improvement in safety performance.

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Logging in East Gippsland losing up to $5.5 million a year

The Age
May 28, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Logging in East Gippsland is not commercially viable and cutting down native forests across the region is racking up losses of up to $5.5 million a year, internal government documents reveal. A leaked briefing by Victoria’s Department of Treasury and Finance to the former Napthine government says East Gippsland logging is being cross-subsidised by profitable harvesting in the state’s Central Highlands. The Highlands logging has come under growing public attention because of the impact it has on the critically endangered Leadbeater’s possum.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Biomass power play at risk

Industry is pushing province for more secure access to wood fibre
Vancouver Sun
May 28, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada, Canada West

B.C.’s biomass energy sector believes it has a unique opportunity in the aftermath of the mountain pine beetle infestation that has ravaged 18 million hectares of provincial forests, but it needs a little help from Victoria. Gordon Murray, the executive director of the Wood Pellet Association of Canada, which makes fuel for biomass power, says he can sense the industry’s opportunities stalling out because of delays in policy-making related to forest industry fibre supplies. And it isn’t just pellet producers who have a stake in the outcome. B.C.’s biomass electricity producers are also looking for ways to get better access to fuel.

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