Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: September 24, 2015

Business & Politics

Tumbling Canadian Dollar Aids Tembec As It Seeks Investors

Woodworking Network
September 23, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

MONTREAL – Forest products firm Tembec says earnings could reach $34 million this quarter, up from $2 million last quarter when some of its operations closed for maintenance. The decrease in the relative value of the Canadian dollar, which averaged US $0.77 in the months of July and August compared to US $0.813 in the June 2015 quarter, is also contributing to the more favourable operating results, says Tembec. Tembec said released its forecast early as it negotiates for additional investment.  Tembec says it expects that adjusted EBITDA for the September 2015
quarter will be in the range of $31 million to $34 million.

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Local politicians split over environmental ‘rights’

By Tom Fletcher
BC Local News in Campbell River Mirror
September 23, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Over vocal objections from some representatives, local politicians have narrowly endorsed a call for an “environmental bill of rights” for B.C. at their annual convention. Calling it “an idea whose time has come,” Richmond Coun. Harold Steves sponsored the motion Wednesday at the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention in Vancouver. It calls for recognition of a right to “live in a healthy environment, including the right to clean air, clean water, clean food and vibrant ecosystems.” Steves reminded delegates of a summer of smoke from forest fires and a drought that saw his Cache Creek farm run out of water. He noted the bill of rights has been supported by 36 municipalities around B.C., after a tour of local councils by the David Suzuki Foundation’s Blue Dot campaign. The idea was quickly challenged.

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BC logging company honoured with Aboriginal Business Award

Canada News Wire Press Release
September 24, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) and the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business (CCAB) are pleased to announce that LTN Contracting Ltd., the largest timber harvesting contractor in the Prince George area of British Columbia, has won this year’s FPAC-CCAB Aboriginal Business Leadership Award.  The company, represented by Troy Young, was honoured today in Vancouver at a reception before the CCAB 13th Annual Vancouver Gala. LTN is a joint venture between the Lheildi T’enneh Band and Roga Contracting Ltd. that endeavors to hire Aboriginal workers. The company has increased its annual logging contract volume ten-fold over the past 15 years and has become a significant contributor to the economic stability of the band.

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Vow to close Boat Harbour encourages First Nation leader

The Pictou Advocate
September 23, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

BERCROMBIE – Boat Harbour’s future closure dominated discussion last Thursday after the release of results from an economic impact analysis at Northern Pulp. Chief Andrea Paul from Pictou Landing First Nation said she was encouraged after hearing Tanner Elton, a representative from Paper Excellence which owns Northern Pulp, express the companies’ desire to close the treatment facility at Boat Harbour. “Northern Pulp and Paper Excellence are vehemently in favour of closing Boat Harbour, and we’re working with the province and Pictou Landing to do that,” said Elton. “I was really glad he spoke up,” Paul said. She said closing Boat Harbour is as important to the future of the area as Northern Pulp’s role as an economic generator for Pictou County and Nova Scotia.

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Lao Officials Fail to Enforce Government Ban on Timber Exports

Radio Free Asia
September 23, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

A recent ban on the export of raw logs imposed by the Lao government to increase the value of processed wood products is not being enforced in the country’s southern provinces because some national leaders are involved in timber smuggling, a civil society official with knowledge of the situation said. Although Vientiane imposed the export ban on Aug. 18, hundreds of trucks in Champasak, Salavan, Sekong and Attapue provinces, which have more timber than do the northern provinces, are continuing to transport wood to neighboring Vietnam around the clock, the official, who requested anonymity, and locals told RFA’s Lao Service. “This means the announcement cannot be implemented for enforcement because people and relevant officials know well that those who are behind the log smuggling are some national leaders,” said the civil society leader who requested anonymity.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

BC local governments recognized for leadership in wood design and building at 2015 Union of BC Municipalities Convention

Canada News Wire Press Release
September 23, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

Leadership in wood use for design and building of local government projects was recognized today at the Union of BC Municipalities (UBCM) Convention in Vancouver. Wood WORKS! BC announced winners of the 2015 Community Recognition Awards, which are presented annually to local governments that have been exemplary advocates for wood. This may be demonstrated through the specification of wood in a community project or through visionary initiatives that work toward building a community culture of wood. …”We congratulate these local governments for clearly demonstrating leadership and vision for their new community structures,” said Lynn Embury-Williams, Executive Director, Wood WORKS! BC. “We are very impressed with how wood was used in such a variety of projects and in so many BC communities, underlining the strong wood culture in our province.” 

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First look at record-breaking cross-laminated timber building

Architect’s Journal
September 23, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

HawkinsBrown has released these shots of what its claims is ‘Europe’s tallest cross-laminated timber building’ The recently completed £10.5 million timber housing scheme in Hackney, east London is 33m-tall and features a timber-steel hybrid structure. The ten storey, 6,750m2 building includes 49 homes alongside 1,190m2 of ground floor office space and has a cruciform-shaped plan which creates four outward-facing courtyards. Alex Smith, associate at HawkinsBrown, said: ‘The Cube breaks new ground and demonstrates the great potential of cross-laminated timber as a material that enables rapid construction with a reduced environmental impact.

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8 storey Cross-Laminated Timber apartments win Finlandia Prize for Architecture

by Lloyd Alter
TreeHugger
September 23, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

hey have one very strange architectural competition in the Finlandia Prize for Architecture. A short list of candidates, either buildings done in Finland by Finnish or foreign architects, or buildings done elsewhere by Finnish architects, is selected by a jury. Then the winner is selected by a single non-professional juror; this year it is Finnish Composer Kaija Saariaho. Her choice of winner is built of one of our favorite materials, Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT), the Puukuokka high-rise residential building in Jyväskylä, designed by OOPEAA Office for Peripheral Architecture.

Finland’s tallest wooden apartment block wins Finlandia Prize for Architecture 2015 from The Dezeen Magazine

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Gigantic wooden megaphones amplify the sounds of the forest in Estonia

Inhabitat
September 23, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

If you’ve ever enjoyed a walk in the woods, you’ve probably noticed the simultaneous “peace and quiet” and subtle busy-ness of Mother Nature. Students in Estonia certainly did – and for an extra dose of awesome, they decided to amplify these natural sounds with three huge wooden megaphones in a lush wooded area. Photographer Tõnu Tunnel captures the graceful giants in all their glory. …The installation is featured in Estonia’s Pähni Nature Centre, known for its study trails and using the forest as its “outdoor classroom.” Student Birgit Õigus designed the piece as a part of the Estonian Academy of Arts. Hannes Praks, who leads the Interior Architecture Department, says, “the three-metre diameter megaphones will operate as a ‘bandstand’ for the forest around the installation, amplifying the sounds of nature.”

More coverage in Sydney Morning Herald – Giant wooden megaphones take over Estonian forest

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Forestry

Rapattack helicopter demonstration set for UBC

Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations
BC Government
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER – In recognition of National Forest Week from Sept. 20-26, 2015, firefighters from the BC Wildfire Service will perform a rapattack (short for “rappel attack”) demonstration at the University of British Columbia’s Thunderbird Commons on Sept. 25, starting at 4 p.m. Rapattack firefighters are deployed by helicopter to fight wildfires in remote or inaccessible areas of the province, rappelling down to the ground while the helicopter hovers above them. On larger wildfires, they will build helicopter landing pads so additional crews and equipment can be strategically positioned around the fire’s perimeter.

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LETTER: Forestry road closures alienate public

by K.M. Hawes
Nelson Star
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Re: “Reopen Sitkum Creek Forest Service Road,” Letters, Sept. 18 I agree with Paul Moreau concerning the unnecessary closing of another one of our roads that we need, want, and use on a regular basis. Have the management, or should I say lack of management, at forestry decided that we do not need public input and discussion before they take it upon themselves to decide what’s best for us? This is exactly the type of attitude that alienates the public from any form of trust in government bureaucracy. They should stop doing this immediately! These are our roads, not theirs.

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B.C. suspends sale of ancient forest on Sunshine Coast identified as hot spot for bear dens

By Larry Pynn
Vancouver Sun
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Environmentalists who blocked construction of a forestry road on the Sunshine Coast for more than five weeks have won a temporary victory in their bid to stop logging of an old-growth forest identified as a prime spot for black bear dens. B.C. Timber Sales won’t put the forest up for sale as planned on Oct. 1 and instead is “going to consider its options over the winter,” said Vivian Thomas, spokeswoman for the Ministry of Forests, Lands, and Natural Resource Operations. The road builder, K & D Contracting, “had other jobs, so moved (their) equipment out,” she added. RCMP attended the logging site but no one obtained a court injunction to end the blockade.

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Scientists: Drought Stressing California’s Giant Sequoias

Associated Press in ABC News
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Giant Sequoias growing in California’s Sierra Nevada are among the largest and oldest living things on earth, but scientists climbing high up into their green canopies say they are seeing symptoms of stress caused by the state’s historic drought. Patches of brown, dead foliage are appearing more than in past years, say researchers studying the iconic trees, which only grow naturally in the Sierra Nevada. By taking stock of groves that are most vulnerable, scientists say they can better manage the forest through the hotter, drier droughts expected in the future. “They’re beautiful, majestic trees,” said Koren Nydick, a National Park Service ecologist and part of the research team focused on the treasured trees. “People come from all over the world to see the Giant Sequoias.”

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Comment period for timber project ends soon

Ravalli Republic
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A few days remain to comment on the Westside Collaborative Vegetation Management Project in the Bitterroot National Forest. The comment period ends Sept. 28. The timber project was designed as a collaboration between the U.S. Forest Service and the Bitterroot Restoration Committee, a group of residents with interests in conservation, community, agency, business and industry. The committee was concerned about the increase of wildfires during the past decade and the rising cost of fighting those fires. After examining national forest land on the west side of the Bitterroot Valley, where it is very difficult to stop a fire, the committee proposed thinning and under-burning to reduce fuels and restore forest health.

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Cameras Will Soon Do The Job Of Fire Tower Lookouts

Oregon Public Broadcasting
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

But soon, the Oregon Department of Forestry will phase out human lookouts in exchange for highly sensitive video cameras. The cameras have the potential to change how agencies detect fires nationwide. So Borg could be facing both his first, and his last, season doing this job. Working from a tower with a 360-degree window view, looking out on miles of forested peaks and river canyons, Borg raised his binoculars. He saw no smoke.  “That’s Happy Jack Ridge right there,” he said, pointing to a tree-covered hill. “Ant Hill is right behind it. Little Tamarack right here.”  Borg is one of the last in a long line of lookouts who have staffed this tower since off and on since 1936, watching for fires. “I don’t want to see these things get closed,” he said.

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Daines pushes for forest policy reforms tied to increased wildfire spending

Helena Independent Record
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

U.S. Sen. Steve Daines joined other Republicans Wednesday in calling reforms to wildfire spending inadequate without also including reforms to forest management policy. In a conference call, Daines, Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah, and Rep. Bruce Westerman, R-Arizona, challenged wildfire funding requests from the Obama administration and calls from some state and federal lawmakers to end the practice of “fire borrowing” without also passing reforms to limit litigation and increase the pace and scale of forest management. “It’s irresponsible and a missed opportunity to only address funding issues without reform,” Daines said in light of the recent fire season across the West.

Daines, other GOP congressmen say wildfire needs policy change from The MIssoulian

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California’s fire problem: Is it mostly a people problem?

Los Angeles Times
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The portmanteau word “firenado” is racing through social media the way mega-fires are racing across Western landscapes. Char Miller thinks it’s a great term. He’s a professor of environmental analysis at Pomona College, and this year’s brutal fire season is giving him plenty of material. The changing nature of fire, and its consequences, is Topic A at meetings of the Society of American Foresters, of which Miller is a member, and it’s also a fundamental part of his forthcoming book, “America’s Great National Forests, Wildernesses and Grasslands.” His conclusion after studying fire phenomena is that managing fire requires managing people. Good luck with that.

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Statesman Editorial: Kudos for collaboration and common sense

Idaho Statesman
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

We are doubling down on kudos today because there are two public lands efforts positively affecting forest and wildlife management in Idaho and the West that are deserving of note and our appreciation. The first is to acknowledge the quick and common sense approach being employed by the Idaho Department of Public Lands to expedite its timber salvage sales process to allow for clear cuts of 100 acres or more on fire-ravaged parcels it manages. Though this may not be the standard policy for regular timber sales with live trees, it is just what is needed to get in and harvest the estimated 60 to 80 million board feet that could be realized from the 76,000 acres of timber that burned on IDPL lands so far this fire season, according to an Associated Press story of last week.

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Collaboration needed to solve natural resource issues

Letter by Mack and Connie Long
Helena Indepentent Review
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

…As our Montana delegation heads back to Washington, D.C., from summer recess, it is our hope that they take that Montana spirit of collaboration back with them and work together. In January of this year, over 40 businesses and organizations (Montana Wood Products Association, Pyramid Lumber, Montana Wilderness Association, Bob Marshall Wilderness Outfitters and many more) signed a letter addressed to Rep. Zinke, Sen. Daines and Sen. Tester encouraging them to give bipartisan support and collaborative solutions to issues such as forest management. We’ve been working together as Montanans for decades. We are asking our Montana delegation to, as well. Rep. Ryan Zinke, Sen. Steve Daines and Sen. Jon Tester: we are counting on you to work together to stand up for Montana.

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From ashes of Rough fire, what’s the real problem here?

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

Our story Sunday about the 142,000-acre Rough fire touched a few nerves as it described seven weeks of burning, smoke, evacuations, expense and high anxiety. The fire is not a big threat now, though it will likely burn until snow flies in the Sierra. Now people are beginning to ask tougher questions. Will this dangerous scenario get worse for foothill residents and the San Joaquin Valley? Reader Carol Cusumano wrote: “Who is asking about the root problem of these fires being so out out of control? What about the lack of good management of the trees and brush?”

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Logger from Quilcene killed by falling treetop near Joyce, sheriff’s office says

Peninsula Daily News
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

JOYCE — A logger was killed today near Joyce when the top of an alder he was cutting broke off and struck him, the Clallam County Sheriff’s Office said. Scott Perkins, 49, of Quilcene was working as a timber feller west of Sadie Creek just off state Highway 112 at about milepost 42 on the south side of the road, said Brian King, chief criminal deputy with the sheriff’s office. Dispatchers received a call at about 10:05 a.m. after Perkins’ partner, who was working some distance from him, checked on him when he realized he did not hear his chainsaw. He found he had no pulse and started cardiopulmonary resuscitation, King said, but by the time others reached him, Perkins was dead.

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Forest thinning policy talks heat up as fires cool down

Great Falls Tribune
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Debate over forest management is heating up in Washington as the severe 2015 fire season in the West is winding down, and Montana lawmakers are in the thick of it. Republicans are backing a bill in Congress that would reduce environmental review of projects to speed up tree-thinning work meant to improve forest health while reducing wildfire risk. The bill also would limit what they describe as obstructionist litigation over forest projects. A similar forest reform bill already has been approved in the House that’s now sitting in the Senate Agriculture Committee. “I’m confident we’ll get the support we need in terms of getting the support of leadership in the U.S. Senate,” said U.S. Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont.

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Fund that protects Northwest forestland under threat

Its backers wary of possible government shutdown’s impact
The Columbian
September 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A federal fund crucial to protecting nearly 8,000 acres at the base of Mount St. Helens from development is set to expire at the end of the month unless Congress acts. The Land and Water Conservation Fund has protected parks and forests for the past 50 years, including playing a key role in safeguarding nearly 120,000 acres in Washington. Congress is in the midst of a budget impasse surrounding federal funding for Planned Parenthood, which has spurred talk of a government shutdown and imperiled the funding. On Tuesday morning, a group gathered in Vancouver to highlight the role the Land and Water Conservation Fund has played in the region, including protecting large swaths of land from development at the base of Mount St. Helens through its Forest Legacy Program.

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New Research Argues Devastating Wildfires Are Due to U.S. Forest Service Mismanagement

KFBK News
September 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

There is a controversial new research paper out that suggests California’s wildfires do not have to be so severe, and that is not going over so well with U.S. Forest Service officials. Intense wildfire behavior is due to forest mismanagement in California. Scott Stephens, a professor of fire science at U.C. Berkeley and co-author of a paper published in the journal “Science”. Stevens says recommended policies are not controversial, and some exist, but are being ignored. “You got to maybe change course a little bit,” Stephens said. “Not to suppress every fire, but to think about maybe managing some wildfires for resource benefit, maybe doing more restoration. Those things then can really change the course of how fires are going to burn in the future.”

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Small Tracts Act would help Forest Service with land management

The Ripon Advance
September 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The National Forest Small Tracts Act Amendments of 2015, introduced by U.S. Rep. Mark Amodei (R-NV), passed the House last week, partially opening the door for the U.S. Forest Service to sell smaller federal land parcels. If signed into law, the legislation would allow for the sale or exchange of federal land parcels of less than 40 acres to resolve encroachment or trespass issues. It also would increase the cap on the value of land eligible to be sold from $150,000 to $500,000 and expand conveyance authority for certain small isolated parcels. Amodel said the bill would enhance the Forest Service’s ability to better perform its land management responsibilities.

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Forest Collaboration Series: Part 14: Barry Wynsma Q&A

Evergreen Magazine
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

“Most folks – me included – don’t like big square or rectangular clearcuts. That would be one example of how the Forest Service got itself into so much trouble with the public. But I think it’s time for the public, Congress and the Administration to give the Forest Service a chance to prove that it can again be trusted to listen to the public and do what the public wants in its forests. Based on my experience, I believe the agency’s personnel can do the restoration work that needs doing in our national forests. So you can count me among those who are certain that the Forest Service has been reformed. Now we need to reform the laws and regulations that are impeding progress in some very sick national forests.”

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Walden: Enviros worsen wildfire problem

Wallowa County Chieftain
September 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West


ENTERPRISE — U.S. Rep. Greg Walden spoke to an enthusiastic audience during a town hall meeting on Sept. 14 at Community Connection. While Walden covered several issues during the meeting, management of U.S. forests and that relationship to growing wildfire problems in the West predominated. Walden did not criticize the U.S. Forest Service itself, but pointed to environmental groups that use lawsuits to stall or halt USFS efforts to maintain healthy forests.“These fires are dangerous and devastating and shouldn’t be occurring at this level. It’s happening in part because we’re not giving the men and women in the agencies the tools they need to do the work,” he said.

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Sierra Pacific to fight federal listing of California spotted owl

Timber giant Sierra Pacific Industries will oppose a plan to list the California spotted owl under the federal Endangered Species Act on the grounds that such a listing isn’t necessary.
Capital Press
September 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West


ANDERSON, Calif. — Timber giant Sierra Pacific Industries asserts that proposed federal endangered-species protections for the California spotted owl are unnecessary. The company has set up monitoring sites to observe the owl, whose listing is being considered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and found that their numbers are plentiful, spokesman Mark Pawlicki said. The number of owls per square mile on SPI lands is comparable to densities in Yosemite National Park and Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Parks, while the U.S. Forest Service’s study areas are less densely populated, Pawlicki contends.

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Local documentary traces origins of U.S. forestry in WNC; screens this weekend

Mountain Xpress
September 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States


A locally produced documentary about the introduction of forestry in America is scheduled to hit the silver screen this weekend at Biltmore Estate. The one-hour film, First in Forestry, tells the story of Carl Schenck and the Biltmore Forest School, the first forestry school in the country. “It’s the story of how American forestry started, and the forces that were pushing that along,” says Paul Bonesteel, director. Bonesteel Films, an Asheville production company, wrote and directed the film for the Forest History Society, a nonprofit library and archive in Durham.

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Still no good news on emerald ash borer

Green Bay Press Gazette
September 22, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

An update on the status of the tree-killing emerald ash borer insect population in Door County indicates the only changes are for the worse. The small insect lays its eggs after drilling through the bark of ash trees. The larvae hatch and feed on the tree’s inner bark on the layer that carries water and nutrients to the trees branches and leaves. Left untreated, the infected trees dies in three to five years, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Regional Forest Insect and Disease Specialist Linda Williams said recently. With treatment — using chemicals fed through trees’ root systems – they may take five to nine years to die, she said.

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Indonesia corporates to take action against suppliers responsible for fires

The Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association says it will expel members found to be responsible for causing forest fires.
Channel News Asia
September 23, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

JAKARTA: Corporations with land concessions in Indonesia are taking strong action against suppliers found to be responsible for causing forest fires. The Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association, or GAPKI, says it will expel members, while at least one pulp and paper company says it will terminate its business relationship with errant suppliers. Speaking at a forum in Jakarta on Wednesday (Sep 23), the corporations insisted they practise a zero-burning policy internally, and with their external stakeholders. The Environment and Forestry Ministry has taken four corporations to task for illegal land clearing, which has set forests ablaze and generated dense haze over the region.

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