Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: August 21, 2015

Special Feature

Forest stewardship plans need improvement

Forest Practices Board
August 19, 2015
Category: Special Feature
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA – An investigation of forest stewardship plans, the primary plan governing forest activities on public land, concludes that most of these plans do not meet the public’s needs, are not enforceable by government and provide little in the way of innovative forest management. “The board previously looked at forest stewardship plans in 2006 and found numerous problems, so we wanted to see if they had improved since then,” said board chair Tim Ryan. “Unfortunately, we found there has been no improvement in that time.” The investigation looked at a sample of 43 forest stewardship plans from all regions of the province, prepared by a variety of tenure holders, from major corporations to small communities. Forest practices on the ground were not examined.

Read More

ABCFP Responds to Forest Stewardship Plan Report

Association of BC Forest Professionals
August 19, 2015
Category: Special Feature
Region: Canada, Canada West

As the provincial regulator of forest professionals, the Association of BC Forest Professionals (ABCFP) supports long-term sustainable forestry and is mandated with supporting its members to provide excellence in forest stewardship. A recent Forest Practices Board (FPB) report analyzed Forest Stewardship Plans (FSPs), pointing out deficiencies and making recommendations on how they can be strengthened. As the report noted, FSPs — operational roadmaps that publicly outline plans governing forest activities and which must be approved by government — are significant because they allow government to hold industry accountable for their actions on forest lands. 

Read More

B.C. forest stewardship plans failing

By Tom Fletcher
BC Local News in Comox Valley Record
August 19, 2015
Category: Special Feature
Region: Canada, Canada West

The B.C. government’s forest stewardship plans for Crown land are unenforceable, lack measurable results and are not producing innovative forest management, according to an investigation by the Forest Practices Board. The board reviewed 43 stewardship plans from all regions of B.C., prepared under provincial law by tenure holders including forest companies and communities. There has been “no improvement” in problems identified by a similar review in 2006, said Forest Practices Board chair Tim Ryan. “We are recommending that government not renew or approve any forest stewardship plans that don’t meet the standards set out in the Forest and Range Practices Act,” Ryan said.

Read More

Statement on the August 2015 Forest Practices Board Report

By Rick Jeffery, President & CEO, Coast Forest Products Association
Coast Forest Products Association
August 19, 2015
Category: Special Feature
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Forest Practices Board (FPB) report on Forest Stewardship Plans (FSPs) released today falls short of properly informing the public on how forest resources are managed. The Report fails on three major accounts: 1. Their assertion that FSPs are the sole opportunity for the public to comment on operational plans ignores the extensive consultation with stakeholders, First Nations, the public, resource professionals and government agencies that foresters undertake in planning forest activities on-the-ground. It also ignores that the public interest in forestry is embodied in extensive legislation, regulation and policy that direct and prescribe how forest resources are developed. Finally, it ignores that FSPs are only one of dozens of science-based, professionally-developed operational plans required before activities can commence on-the-ground.

Read More

B.C. forest stewardship plans fail to offer enforceable results: report

Forest Practices Board said plans are important because they are the main avenue for public comment
Vancouver Sun
August 19, 2015
Category: Special Feature
Region: Canada, Canada West

Forest stewardship plans intended to guide logging in British Columbia and offer transparency about forestry activities are failing to deliver results that are enforceable and do not provide information to the public that is meaningful, the province’s forestry watchdog said Wednesday. Forest licensees are supposed to spell out in the plans how they will meet provincial objectives to protect environmental values such as biodiversity and water quality as well as declare what measurable, verifiable results they will achieve. The requirement to produce the five-year plans was introduced in 2004 as part of the Forest and Range Protection Act. However, after a decade of experience, the Forest Practices Board studied a sample of 43 of the plans and issued a report saying they “do not meet the public’s needs, are not enforceable by government and provide little in the way of innovative forest management.”

Read More

Business & Politics

Extra Measures at Westview Wood Pellet Terminal Working

CFTK TV
August 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Pinnacle Renewable Energy’s Westview Wood Pellet terminal has been the site of bustling activity since it’s inception. Handling over 3300 tonnes of wood pellets a day — it’s a tall order. But with all that activity, there’s bound to be some noise. Concerns from residents over noise and dust have prompted the terminal to add extra measures.  “On our property, we worked with the Port Authority to set up dust monitoring sites throughout the community. We’ve installed noise dampening curtains up top to knock down the noise on our drives up top, that run our conveyers” says terminal manager Steve Robin.

Read More

Surging Earnings Estimates Signal Good News for Resolute Forest Products

Zacks
August 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Resolute Forest Products Inc. is a Paper Products company that could be an interesting play for investors. That is because, not only does the stock have decent short-term momentum, but it is seeing solid activity on the earnings estimate revision front as well. These positive earnings estimate revisions suggest that analysts are becoming more optimistic on RFP’s earnings for the coming quarter and year. In fact, consensus estimates have moved sharply higher for both of these time frames over the past four weeks, suggesting that Resolute Forest Products could be a solid choice for investors.

Read More

Nova Scotia Jobs Fund to go under scrutiny

The Chronicle Herald
August 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

A controversial business loan program created by the previous New Democratic government will be examined by the provincial legislature’s public accounts committee. The now-defunct Nova Scotia Jobs Fund, previously the Industrial Expansion Fund, committed hundreds of millions of dollars in cabinet-controlled business loans to companies such as Irving Shipbuilding, Chorus Aviation, the operator of Jazz Aviation, and Pacific West Commercial Corp., which runs the Port Hawkesbury paper mill. Although the fund was axed by the Liberal government last year, its legacy will continue to cost taxpayers until 2028.

Read More

Troubled Verso plans ‘major reductions’

Dayton Daily News
August 20, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

Verso Corp., the Tennessee-based paper producer that acquired NewPage Holdings Inc. in January, plans to make “major reductions” in its coated paper and pulp production, company officials announced Thursday. In recent months, Verso has received two notifications from the New York Stock Exchange that it has fallen below the NYSE’s continued listing standards. Last week, the company reported net sales of $778 million in the second quarter of 2015, compared to $321 million for the same period last year. Verso’s net sales for the second quarter increased $457 million, or 142 percent, primarily due to the addition of net sales resulting from the NewPage acquisition, officials said.

Press release from Verso via MarketWired

Read More

No one hurt in Plum Creek Fire, MDF explosion

Hungry Horse News
August 20, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

The Plum Creek Medium Density Fiberboard plant experienced an explosion and fire this morning, but no one was injured in the blaze. The fire appeared to have been contained to one line of the plant, said Columbia Falls firefighter Karl Weeks. The call for the fire came out at 6:09 a.m. and firefighters were off the scene at 11:15 a.m. Weeks said there were multiple spot fires as a result of the explosion inside the massive plant. The facility underwent a multi-million dollar renovation after a fire and explosion damaged the building in June of last year. The cause of this fire remains under investigation. Whitefish responded with mutual aid and about 15 firefighters total fought the blaze, Weeks said.

Read More

Verso to lay off 300 at Jay paper mill

Bangor Daily News
August 20, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

PORTLAND, Maine — Verso Paper Corp. announced Thursday it plans to lay off 300 people at its mill in Jay and another 310 at a mill in Kentucky at the end of this year or in early 2016. Verso CEO David Paterson said the decision comes in response to declining demand for its products and a “comprehensive review” of the company’s assets, inventory and demand forecasts. The company plans to shut down the No. 1 pulp dryer and No. 2 paper machine at its Androscoggin mill in Jay, reducing its coated paper capacity by about 23 percent.

Read More

Future of Wickliffe paper mill is uncertain

WPSD Local6
August 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

WICKLIFFE, Ky. – Hundreds of workers at the Verso paper mill in Wickliffe are losing their jobs. The company says it’s stopping production indefinitely, starting Nov. 1. It’s Ballard County’s largest employer, providing jobs to 420 people from Illinois, Missouri and Kentucky. The president and CEO of Verso says 310 hourly employees who work in manufacturing will be laid off. About 110 salaried employees will keep their jobs… “We’ve made a tough decision,” said Verso Regional Vice President Adam St. John. He says the company was out of options.

Read More

Paul Burr set to stand trial in first forestry-related manslaughter case

New Zealand Stuff
August 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

A legal first for New Zealand will take place in the High Court in Palmerston North on Monday when Foxton man Paul Robert Burr enters the dock. Burr, 47, will become the first person in the country to stand trial in relation to a death in the forestry industry. Lincoln Kidd was 20 when he died on a forestry block between Levin and Foxton in December 19, 2013. Kidd was the tenth person to be killed on a forestry block in 2013. He was crushed by a tree Burr felled while operating a tree-felling mechanical harvester. It is alleged that Burr caused Kidd’s death, thereby committing manslaughter. 

Read More

UK wood pellet imports reach record high in the first half

IHB The Timber Network
August 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

UK’s wood pellet imports increased 47% in the first half of the year, a record for this period. Imports totaled 2.83 million metric tons. According to British Platts, the United States was once again the largest supplier for the UK, with deliveries reaching 1.55 million mt, up from 1.18 million mt in H1/2014, and as well a record high. Canada was the second-largest supplier…

Read More

Japan lumber demand expected to decrease in the upcoming months

IHB The Timber Network
August 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

The Japanese Forest Agency made up demand projection of major wood products for the second half of this year. On domestic wood, demand for lumber increases while that for plywood declines and total year figures would be less than last year. Imported lumber in Japan is expected to decline in the third quarter but is set to increase in the fourth quarter, while imports of logs should increase. Imported products will be less than last year. While Japan’s housing starts are estimated to increase, total wood demand will decline. Domestic logs for lumber will increase by December but less than last year.

Read More

Wood, Paper & Green Building

The QFIC deplores the reaction of cement and steel lobbies

This article is published in French, the blurb was translated with Google Translate
CecoBois
August 20, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

The Council of the Quebec Forest Industry Council (QFIC) deplores the reaction of lobbies for cement and steel following the announcement last Monday by the Government of Quebec, publication of a guide to frame the massive wooden buildings with 12 floors and under. These statements call into question the credibility of this measure, while the Quebec government has only simplify access for building professionals, to a material that reduces the environmental footprint of buildings and their performance, as in terms of sustainability and security of users, has been repeatedly demonstrated. The solid wood construction of 12 floors or less, is not a first. It is part of a global trend. Moreover, it is already possible to build solid wooden buildings over six storeys in Canada under the national code of the current building.

Read More

Province of Québec approves massive wood construction up to twelve storeys

by Lloyd Alter
TreeHugger
August 20, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

…But the Province of Québec is covered in trees, and now has factories that can produce Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) a sort of plywood on steroids that is solid, strong and yes, fire resistant. Until recently builders could only go to six storeys (That’s how they spell it in Canada, no comments please) using conventional stick framing. …Of course the concrete industry is outraged, claiming that the decision will compromise public safety, noting in a press release: Like the rest of Canada, Quebec has little experience in the construction of six-storey wood buildings – how can we venture into the construction of even taller wood buildings?

Read More

Forestry

Climate change pushing boreal forest to a tipping point: study

By Bob Weber
Canadian Press in Globe and Mail
August 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

Scientists say climate change is forcing the boreal forest that covers much of northern Canada to a tipping point. The study, published today in the journal Science, points out that temperatures are expected to rise faster and higher in the boreal forest than anywhere on Earth. Those temperatures are likely to bring drier conditions, new diseases, insects and huge wildfires to the vast green belt that covers much of the planet’s northern latitudes. Researchers say the forests can’t spread north fast enough to escape the new conditions. The old forests are unlikely to grow back once they’ve been damaged, leaving a new landscape with much more open space than the former unbroken expanse of green.

Read More

Comments invited on Forest Stewardship Plan changes

Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations
BC Government
August 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

BC Timber Sales invites members of the public to review and comment until Oct. 14, 2015, on a proposed amendment to an approved Forest Stewardship Plan for operations in the Prince George Business Area. The Prince George Business Area of BC Timber Sales (BCTS) has prepared a draft Amendment 14 to the Forest Stewardship Plan to allow a five year extension of the plan. It is available for public review and comment until Oct. 14, 2015, at the Prince George BCTS office (address below).

Read More

LETTER: Prelate Lake clear cut ‘disturbing’

By D. B. Stacey, Concerned Citizen
Thunder Bay News Watch
August 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

This is our third letter to the editor concerning Greenmantle’s planned clear cut no. 415. Prelate Lake. We have so much to say about this because the deeper we look, the more we find that is very much wrong and disturbing with the behaviour of the forestry industry in Northwestern Ontario.  Initially, our protest was about unfair distribution of Ontario’s forests, destruction of animal habitat and biodiversity as well as the belligerence of the forestry industry to tear up and destroy entire forests around lakes where people have camps and enjoyed for decades.  Unfortunately, the priority has shifted to something far more insidious and disgusting. That is the probability of mercury contamination of lakes and rivers caused by clear cutting. 

Read More

Knight Life: Legacy forest created in four northern Wisconsin counties (w/video)

The Leader Telegram
August 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

SOLON SPRINGS — There are no big timber companies anymore. Now there are only investment companies. So said Tom Duffus of the Arlington, Va.-based nonprofit organization The Conservation Fund. Duffus spoke Tuesday afternoon as a light rain beat against the top of a large canopy pitched on the shore of a small, undeveloped lake, Muck Lake, that was surrounded by miles and miles of sandy soil. The one-hour event, featuring federal and state natural resources people, politicians and timber industry representatives was designed to celebrate the final phase of the 67,205-acre Brule-St. Croix Legacy Forest. The deal is a permanent lease, 10 years in the making, that keeps the forest land in private ownership and forest management instead of being chopped up into small parcels.

Read More

Andy Kerr, the lightning rod of the Oregon timber wars, now plays behind-the-scenes role in D.C.

The Oregonian
August 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Andy Kerr’s hair is gray, too, now, and at 60, he is long past his days as Oregon’s most famous environmental activist. As he talks, though, the man who played a central role in the state’s bitter timber wars of the late 1980s and early ’90s re-emerges. …But Kerr is no longer the enfant terrible of the Oregon environmental movement. He spends most of his time in semi-obscurity in Washington, D.C., acting as a lobbyist, consultant and elder-statesman adviser to environmental groups. …Over the last few years, he cranked out white papers – 77 at last count – attacking a bill to dramatically increase O&C logging from DeFazio and fellow Oregon Reps. Greg Walden and Kurt Schrader.

Read More

The world’s forests are in major trouble, scientists report

The Washington Post
August 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International


The planet’s forests are vital to us all. For one thing, without them, global warming would be a lot worse. Forests pull vast amounts of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. They also foster untold biodiversity and deliver large human benefits — close to one out of six people on Earth “directly depends on forests” for food and other services, according to a recent report by the International Union of Forest Research Organizations. If recent research is to believed, trees even improve people’s mental health and well being.

Read More

Brazil’s illegal loggers downscale to avoid satellite detection

August 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Brazil’s drive to nip illicit tree-felling in the bud has shifted the nature of the problem, according to researchers. Small-scale illegal logging is – proportionally speaking – on the rise, says a report by the Climate Policy Initiative and the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro. Deforestation rates fell nearly 80% from 27,000 sq km in 2004 to 5,000 km2 in 2012, following a strict regime of regulation, monitoring and enforcement. But over the same period, destruction of patches smaller than 25 hectares has increased from a quarter of the total to more than half. By clearing areas of that size – equivalent to 15-20 football pitches – illegal loggers can normally avoid detection from satellite monitoring.

Read More

Genetically modified trees are being ‘strangled’ by red tape

US researchers say it has become “virtually impossible” to plant genetically modified trees in any part of the world.
BBC News
August 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

They argue that the GM trees are desperately needed to deal with an upsurge in forest diseases and pests. What they term “misguided” concerns about genetic engineering have slowed progress to a crawl. But environmental campaigners say the technology is risky and the long-term safety unproven. Genetically modified trees were developed in the 1980s amid hopes that the technology could tackle persistent problems such as pest infestations. It was also hoped that new fast-growing strains would be developed that would be attractive for commercial companies… Researchers say that these types of delays are paralysing the technology at a time of increased threat to forests.

Read More

Victorian Government considers buying timber industry out of Leadbeater’s possum habitat

ABC News, Australia
August 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

In a highly sensitive move, the Victorian Government is considering a plan that could buy the logging industry out of a forest to save the state’s faunal emblem, the Leadbeater’s possum. The Leadbeater’s possum is one of the most critically endangered animals in Australia and its habitat in the tall mountain ash forests of the state’s central highlands is in decline due to logging and fires. A long awaited industry taskforce has now been set up to consider whether logging and the Leadbeater’s Possum can both continue in these forests.

Read More

We ought to be criticised over our forest policy, admits Sarawak CM

The Rakyat Post
August 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

“Quite true,” Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem said when admitting criticisms by non-governmental organisations on its forest policy, which led to the large scale deforestation. “I admit there is something wrong with us and we ought to be criticised,” said Adenan at the launch of new forest research — Research for Intensified Management of Bio-rich Areas of Sarawak (Rimba) — here today. Since taking office, Adenan has made significant changes in the forest policy, which now includes a holistic approach in combating illegal logging and also nature conservation. Under his watch, the state has frozen new timber concessions and land development for oil palm plantations. 

Read More

Forest health in a changing world

Science Magazine
August 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Forests and woodlands cover about 20% of Earth’s land surface, spanning all but the highest latitudes. In the millennia since humans dispersed across all forested continents, we have transformed large areas of natural forest. Historically, our greatest impacts were made in temperate regions, but they now extend to forests in the tropics and the boreal zone. Only a fraction of the forests present centuries ago have escaped human influence; in many regions the forest is gone, has regrown as secondary forest, or consists of managed and plantation forests. Humans have also introduced new species, including pests and pathogens of trees. Other influences—such as climate warming that causes tree species to shift geographically and anthropogenic drought that causes forest dieback—take effect more slowly and may occur far from their source.

Read More

Forest Fires

Smoke advisory issued for Boundary and Kootenay regions

The Nelson Daily
August 20, 2015
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

Evironment Canada has issued a Special Air Quality advisory for the southern areas of the province, including Boundary and Kootenay regions Thursday due to the smoky skies in the area. The advisory was made in collaboration with the Interior Health Authority and Environment Canada. “In addition to local smoke from forest fires that continue to burn in the regions, those areas are being affected by transboundary smoke from forest fires south of the border,” the media release said. “Smoke concentrations will vary widely as winds, fire behaviour and temperatures change.

Read More

Letter: Disconnect between smokers and wildfires

Letter by Brian R. Mellis
Kelowna Capital News
August 20, 2015
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

I am constantly reminded of the disconnect between the raging fires, the millions spent, the burned out homes and businesses and the driver in front of me with the cigarette hanging out the window. The potential to cause financial loss and social upheaval, exists with every puff and the eventual flick to the dry grass at roadside. Yet, it continues unabated, while the mobile arsonist cruises down the highway, oblivious to the rising column of smoke in the rear view mirror. In times past and under similar perilously dry conditions, forest roads were chained off and no access was allowed to anyone.

Read More

Smoky skies advisory issued for Creston for second time this week

BC Local News
August 21, 2015
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

For the second time in a week, the Ministry of Environment and Interior Health Authority have issued a smoky skies advisory for the southern areas of the Kootenay and Boundary regions. “In addition to local smoke from forest fires that continue to burn in the regions, those areas are being affected by transboundary smoke from forest fires south of the border,” said the advisory. “Smoke concentrations will vary widely as winds, fire behaviour and temperatures change.” In addition to the Parker Ridge fire just south of the Canada-U.S. border and the Mount Midgely fire northwest of Creston, smoke from a controlled burn yesterday to prevent the Parker Ridge fire from spreading has also been visible in Creston. 

Read More

Rock Creek wildfire crews make progress, but wind could fan flames

Firefighters have been working to contain the large wildfire in B.C.’s southern Interior
CBC News
August 20, 2015
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

Firefighters are working fast to contain the huge Rock Creek fire burning east of Osoyoos, B.C., but changing weather could undermine their best efforts. The B.C. Wildfire Service says the fire is now 50 per cent contained, but less smoke and better mapping reveal flames have scorched 42 square kilometres of bush. A change in weather is also on the way, with a dry, cold front forecast to sweep across B.C.’s boundary region, which hugs the U.S. border. The wildfire service warns the front could pack some strong winds, potentially fanning the Rock Creek fire, complicating efforts to fully contain it.

Read More

Province still battling 47 northern blazes

The Star Phoenix
August 20, 2015
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

One month after evacuees from northern Saskatchewan started to return home, the province still has 47 active forest fires left to battle. Even so, the number of forest fires is less than half the 98 reported on July 20. “So now, we’ve fallen well below. We’ve managed to contain many of those fires working with the weather change,” Steve Roberts, executive director of wildlife management for the province’s Ministry of Environment, said on Wednesday. As many as 127 forest fires burned in northern Saskatchewan at one time, threatening 51 communities and forcing about 10,000 evacuees from their homes. More than 2,000 people, including 850 military personnel and help from other provinces, were involved in fighting the fires.

Read More

Forest Service Confirms Identities Of Firefighters Killed In Washington

Boise Public Radio
August 21, 2015
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

The U.S. Forest Service confirmed the names of three firefighters killed in a wildfire Wednesday night in Twisp, Washington. Tom Zbyszewski, Andrew Zajac and Richard Wheeler were killed when the vehicle they were riding in crashed and was overtaken by flames from the surrounding wildfire. Washington Governor Jay Inslee told reporters in Chelan that the deaths “burned a big hole” in the state’s heart. “The smoke is still there and it’s thick but it is not going to obscure their incredible act of courage,” Inslee said. “These are three big heroes protecting small towns. And we are going to remember them and there are 7 million Washingtonians that today are embracing them and their families and praying for them and hoping for the speedy recovery of our injured.” The Forest Service says firefighter Daniel Lyon is in critical condition at Seattle’s Harborview Medical Center. Harborview said in a statement Lyon has burns on about 60 percent of his body. END OF STORY

Read More

Statement from Secretary Tom Vilsack on the Loss and Injury of U.S. Forest Service Firefighters in Washington State

United States Department of Agriculture
August 20, 2015
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

WASHINGTON – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack today made the following statement regarding the loss of three U.S. Forest Service firefighters near Twisp, Wash. An additional U.S. Forest Service firefighter and two Washington State Department of Natural Resources firefighters also sustained life threatening injuries. “On Wednesday night, we received the news that three U.S. Forest Service firefighters lost their lives battling a wildfire near the town of Twisp, Washington. We mourn the loss of the brave firefighters whose commitment to duty was so deep that they gave their own lives to protect others. We also extend our profound sympathies to the families and loved ones of the fallen, whose sacrifices are equally worthy of honor, and our thoughts and prayers are with those who are recovering from injuries sustained in the line of duty. 

Read More

Washington Wildfires: State Battles Rampaging Forest Fires, Thousands Flee Homes

Headlines & Global News
August 21, 2015
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

Washington continues to battle rampaging wildfires, as thousands of people have been evacuated from several counties to avoid further casualties. Gov. Jay Inslee said that the extent of the wildfires this year has been devastating to the state, as U.S. Forest Service has fought with more than 100 wild fires this season, according to CNN. Some 6,500 people were evacuated from Chelan and Okanogan counties, CNN affiliate KIRO reported. Inslee said the number of acres that burned down so far this year has reached 390,000, an increase of about 56 percent compared to last year’s 250,000 acres.

Read More

Forest Service identifies fallen wildfire firefighters

KREM2
August 21, 2015
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

TWISP, Wash.— U.S. Forest Service released the names Thursday of the three fallen Okanogan Complex firefighters who died Wednesday. Tom Zbyszewski, 20, Andrew Zajac, 26, and Richard Wheeler, 31, all died fighting the Department of Natural Resources Land near Twisp. All three men were engaged in initial attack operations and were involved in a vehicle accident when it is believed that the fire overtook the vehicle according to officials. Richard and Jennifer Zbyszewski are now grieving the loss of their only son. On Thursday, they spoke with CBS News. “And the light of our lives,” Richard said. “Wish I could take this day back and just not let him go to work.” “And the light of our lives,” repeated Jennifer. “The center of our lives. He’s our only child.” “It’s gonna be hard to go on without him to tell you the truth,” said Richard.

Read More

Blame for Oregon Forest Fires Falls on Feds, Says Logging Industry

Go Local PDX
August 21, 2015
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

Oregon is in the midst of its third consecutive summer of severe forest fires, and industry professionals say logging limits on federal land are largely to blame. The fires have already made their costs felt, as the Oregon Department of Forestry has already spent an estimated $25 million to date on this year’s blazes. This comes on the heels of two consecutive severe seasons in 2013 and 2014, the former of which was the most destructive wildfire season in the state’s history. Executives and professionals within the logging industry told GoLocal on Thursday that limits on logging in National Forests and other federally owned lands are making conditions perfect for large-scale fires. Oregon does not have a similar ban on state-owned lands.

Read More

Home-destroying blaze in eastern Oregon tops 80 square miles

Longview Daily News
August 21, 2015
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — High winds forecast for an area of eastern Oregon where a wildfire has destroyed three dozen homes have prompted more evacuation orders, officials said Thursday. Red flag warnings concerning winds that could cause rapid spread of wildfires were posted across central Oregon and into eastern Washington, as the forecast called for a dry cold front with winds gusting to 40 mph from the Cascade crest to the east. Wind and fire potential were expected to decrease across most of the region during the weekend. After burning for a week, the fire 150 miles east of Portland was 10 percent contained at 85 square miles, with no date in sight for full containment. Much of the burning has been in Malheur National Forest.

Read More

Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Scientists warn of unprecedented damage to forests across the world

Carbon Brief
August 19, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Forests around the world are being affected by humans – both directly by deforestation and indirectly by climate change, say experts in a special issue of the journal Science. In a series of reviews of the latest research into the health of the world’s forests, scientists find they are far from being in the best shape for coping with climate change over this century. And this could affect how well trees absorb and store carbon in the future, they say. The world’s forests generally fall into three categories, according to where they’re found. You have the warm, humid conditions of tropical forests around the equator, the mild conditions enjoyed by temperate forests in the mid-latitudes, and the freezing cold of boreal forests in the North.

Read More