Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: December 18, 2015

Business & Politics

New Director Appointed to Cameco’s Board

Junior Mining Network
December 17, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

Cameco [one of the world’s largest uranium producers] announced today that its board appointed Don Kayne as a director effective January 1, 2016 until the next annual general shareholders’ meeting where he will stand for election by the shareholders with the rest of the board. Kayne is president and CEO of Canfor Corporation, as well as CEO of Canfor Pulp Products Inc. He has spent his entire career at Canfor and led the company’s effort to develop markets for Canadian forest products in China. “Don’s expertise doing business in developing markets, such as China, will be very valuable to Cameco,” said board chair Neil McMillan. “He is connected to important emerging markets around the world and we look forward to welcoming him to the board.”

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Global Malaise in Demand coupled with Rising Production Stalls Price Movement & Outlook in US Market

Wood Markets
December 18, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

Vancouver, BC – In WOOD MARKETS’ new five-year forecast, the short-term outlook is for North American and global economies, as well as softwood lumber and panel markets, are all forecast to improve, BUT at a much slower pace than expected. What has short-circuited the prospects of stronger demand is a slowdown in China and Japan, impacting export markets. The new wildcard that caused U.S. dollar prices to plunge in 2015, especially in softwood lumber, was the rapid currency devaluations of almost all major lumber producers as compared to the U.S. dollar. These factors have changed the WOOD MARKETS outlook to one that expects more lacklustre demand and corresponding price growth through 2018. After that, it starts to look very good!

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Pellet plant air quality results prove positive

Vernon Morning Star
December 18, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Lavington’s pellet plant is providing evidence of being a good environmental neighbour. McCall Environmental was hired to conduct air emission testing on the dryers and stacks at Pinnacle Pellet Plant, which took place Nov. 11 and 12, 2015. “We’ve reduced emissions by 83.1 per cent,” said Leroy Reitsma, Pinnacle president. Test results show the combined emissions of the pellet plant and Tolko planer mill is .75 grams/second. That represents 16.9 per cent of the previously permitted emissions of the planer mill. “It’s a huge improvement to the local air shed,” said Reitsma.

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Tense situation on markets for pine lumber

EUWID – Wood Products and Panels
December 18, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

According to the latest “Skog&Ekonomi” industry report by Danske Bank, stocks of pine lumber in Sweden are expected to rise in the winter half-year to their highest level since 2008/2009. During the second half-year, it became increasingly difficult for shippers to find sales markets for their pine lumber products. This has not only caused the pressure from volumes to rise since the summer months but the pressure on prices as well. The persisting difficult conditions on the Egyptian market are believed to be the main reason for the development.

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Resurgence in Global Wood Production

EIN News
December 18, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Rome – Global production of all major wood products is showing its largest growth since the global economic downturn of 2008-2009, according to new data published by FAO today. In 2014, growth in wood products, including industrial roundwood, sawnwood, wood-based panels and pulp and paper, ranged from 1 to 5 percent, surpassing the pre-recession levels of 2007. The fastest growth was registered in Asia-Pacific and Latin America and Caribbean. “Wood industries were among the hardest hit by the recent global economic downturn in 2008-2009. We are seeing now the highest growth of the global wood industries in the last five years, which is important to national economies and the wellbeing and livelihoods of millions of forest-dependant people worldwide,” said Thais Linhares-Juvenal, head of the FAO’s Forest Economics and Statistics Team.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Paris climate accord cannot be wasted

Daily Commercial News
December 17, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada

Now comes the hard part. The international accord reached in Paris a week ago marked the beginning of a worldwide transition away from carbon-based economies, but it matters only if it really spurs change at a scale we have never seen before. …For the construction industry, the accord doesn’t necessarily mean sweeping changes. Instead it likely means building upon practices that have been developed over the past dozen or so years. Think of LEED. When the idea was new, it seemed like a radical change for many in the industry. But before long, it had simply become the way buildings are designed and built. …So the industry will see more emphasis on energy, which means more LEED buildings, more NetZero buildings, more energy retrofits of older buildings. And more emphasis on the way we build.

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Untapped power of fungus being studied by Perth university student Ben Sharp

ABC News Australia
December 17, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Mushroom-made plastic? What about wood without trees? This may seem far-fetched but fungus is already being used to make materials that are environmentally and economically sustainable. …A company in the United States, Evocative, has been looking into the properties of mushrooms for a few years, and is producing and manufacturing fungi-made packing material, insulation and furniture. “They have developed a self-assembling biopolymer that’s entirely made from growing agricultural waste with fungal tissue,” Mr Sharp said. …Mr Sharp explains biotechnology as the study and manipulation of live organisms. “Almost like looking at organisms like they’re machines,” he said. “So treating a live organism or a live biological system, like the human body, like a machine that can be manipulated.”

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Robotmaster Dramatically Changing Construction Timber Industry

Robotics Tomorrow
December 17, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Hook Park is a commercial run forest for timber, and one of the biggest problems they face is a lot of their timber is of variable quality; it is bent, forked, or not suitable for the straightness needed to put through a saw mill. That means that a large portion of their timber ends up being sold as fire wood instead of construction timber. …Students from London’s architecture school …will take the bad trees; the trees that are firewood quality, and make a whole building out of it. …Once they find and choose the [trees] they want to use, they 3D-scan the wood to create a geometry, which is then used to program their robot using Robotmaster. …Using the scanned 3D image of each unique tree, the robot cuts the joints needed to fit them together during the final construction.

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Forestry

Logging in mountain caribou habitat examined

BC Forest Practices Board
December 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA – An investigation of timber harvesting within mountain caribou habitat near Blue River found that all licensees have met or exceeded the legal requirements of the Forest and Range Practices Act and a legal order that applies to the area. “We were pleased to find that the forestry, hydroelectric and adventure tourism industries all complied with requirements to protect caribou habitat,” said board chair Tim Ryan. “However, we were unable to comment on whether the legal requirements will benefit caribou populations in the long term because government’s effectiveness monitoring work is not yet far enough along.”

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Trudeau says sensitive rain forest no place for an oil pipeline

New prime minister’s stance in stark contrast to that of his predecessor, Stephen Harper.
UPI
December 18, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reiterated his opposition to advancing with crude oil pipelines that have riled some members of the activist community… Speaking to reporters in Vancouver, the prime minister said he stands in opposition to the planned Northern Gateway oil pipeline, which could run through a sensitive ecosystem in the region. “I’ve been saying for years that the Great Bear Rainforest is no place for an oil pipeline,” he was quoted by the Vancouver Observer as saying. “That continues to be my position.”

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Small reduction to Strathcona Timber Supply Area cut level

BC Gov News – Province of British Columbia
December 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Effective immediately, the allowable annual cut for the Strathcona Timber Supply Area is 1,138,000 cubic metres. Of this amount, 152,000 cubic metres is attributable to harvest from the Loughborough timber supply block, and 986,000 cubic metres to harvest from the Sayward and Kyuquot timber supply blocks. In 2005 the allowable annual cut was set at 1,217,000 cubic metres. In June 2015, the allowable annual cut was decreased to 1,203,576 cubic metres to account for the issuance of an area-based First Nations Woodland Licence in the timber supply area.

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Budworm Tracker program recorded ‘unheard of’ 90 per cent return rate on data

Millions of hectares in Quebec have been destroyed in the current outbreak and the budworm is heading east
CBC News
December 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

The Budworm Tracker program, which involved field reports from ‘citizen scientists,’ received an “unheard of” 90 per cent return rate on the data, says Rob Johns, a forest insect ecologist with Canadian Forest Service in Fredericton. “To put it in perspective, if you can get 20-40 per cent back from a citizen scientist program you’re really happy, so we were ecstatic by the response by people involved,” he said. It’s been about 35 years since the spruce budworm was a major problem for New Brunswick, but millions of hectares in Quebec have been destroyed in the current outbreak and the budworm is heading east.  Earlier this year, the Budworm Tracker program recruited 294 members of the public to trap and collect moths between July and August, and estimate how many were caught in the pheromone traps that were provided.

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Jon Sweeney wins award for work on brown spruce longhorn beetle

Fredericton scientist has been studying the creature since it hit Halifax’s Point Pleasant Park in 1999
CBC News
December 18, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

If you had to sexually attract a brown spruce longhorn beetle, would you know what to do? Jon Sweeney knows. Start with a deep whiff of male beetle sex pheromone. “By itself, it’s not very attractive, but if it’s emitted along with odours that smell like a stressed spruce tree …it increases the attraction five to ten times and brings in both sexes,” he explains. (He describes it as a “piney” aroma mixed with the stinging smell of ethanol.) “It’s kind of neat because it attracts both sexes, so you can get a measure of the number of females and males in the area.”

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Greenpeace welcomes FSC International mediation process for Resolute Forest Products’ logging operations

NationTalk
December 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

In response to today’s statement by the Forest Stewardship Council International (FSC) calling for Resolute Forest Products (Resolute) to join a mediation process to resolve its controversial logging operations, Shane Moffatt, Forest Campaigner at Greenpeace Canada said: “We are pleased that FSC has presented a mediation framework and we are ready to work with FSC, Ontario, Quebec and First Nations governments and others on the details to give it the best chance of success. As we have said for a long time, we believe that collaboration is needed to put in place lasting and equitable solutions to resolve Resolute’s controversial operations in critical areas of the Boreal Forest in both provinces.” Greenpeace urges FSC to extend mediation to Resolute’s operations in northern Ontario, specifically the terminated Caribou Forest certificate.

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FSC launching mediation process to bring peace to Quebec’s boreal forest

Victoria Times Colonist
December 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

MONTREAL – The Forest Stewardship Council is launching a mediation process to try and bring peace to Quebec’s woodlands. The organization that oversees the world’s most recognized forest certification standard said Thursday that the process will bring together Resolute Forest Products, First Nations, unions, environmental groups and others to find “common ground” over contentious issues raised about FSC certification in Canada. The announcement came several weeks after Resolute threatened not to seek new FSC certifications for its Canadian forests over fears that possible changes to an international designation process might constrain its supply of wood.

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Thinning planned near Tumalo Falls, Bend’s watershed

Deschutes National Forest taking public comment
The Bulletin
December 18, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The Deschutes National Forest plans logging and thinning west of Bend to lower fire risk around Tumalo Falls and the city’s watershed. “It is sort of a key pocket of land,” said Lauren DuRocher, National Environmental Policy Act planner for the Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District of the Deschutes. To the southwest of what is called the Ursus Vegetation and Fuels Management project is the watershed and to the east is private land. By logging and thinning woods over about 4,200 acres, she said the hope is to reduce the amount of vegetation that could fuel a wildfire. “It would reduce areas of high or extreme fire hazard to low or moderate,” she said Wednesday.

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Congress Can’t Reach Deal on Forest Service’s Fire Funding Problem

Firehouse.com
December 16, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A potential deal to fix the U.S. Forest Service’s chronic wildfire funding problem collapsed Wednesday in Congress. The lack of action means the Forest Service continues to face the prospect of cannibalizing its budget to fight wildfires while having fewer resources to reduce fire danger in the first place. Negotiators did agree to give the agency more money for the upcoming fire season, but all bets are off after that. The deal, which also included several forest management changes aimed at increasing timber harvests on federal land, was scuttled in part because of opposition from several environmental groups.

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Log debarker to depart from Port of Port Angeles-leased land

Peninsula Daily
December 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

PORT ANGELES — Port Angeles Harbor has fallen a bit quieter with the shutdown of a mammoth machine that stripped bark off hemlock logs before they were shipped to Asia.  Munro LLC’s lease on Port of Port Angeles-owned land that the huge, noisy contraption occupies on the east edge of the former KPly mill site expired at the end of October. The machine that peels hemlock logs remains at the site but will be removed in “a couple of months,” said Tanya Kerr, the port’s property manager.Meanwhile, the Port of Port Angeles is enjoying an uptick in unloading logs at its own Marine Drive yard off barges from Canada. …The Canadian timber is helping prop up a sag in log yard activity in 2015 caused by softening timber demand in Asia.

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More money to fight wildfires, but no long-term budget fix

Billings Gazette
December 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Budget legislation headed toward approval by Congress includes an additional $610 million for the U.S. Forest Service to fight wildfires next year but no long-term fix to how the agency, year after year, has had to borrow money from other programs to keep up with the ever-growing cost of fighting fires. The Forest Service spent a record $1.7 billion fighting fires this year. Firefighting now accounts for more than half of the agency’s budget, up from 16 percent 20 years ago. The Obama administration wants to address the Forest Service’s firefighting budget shuffle by treating wildfires like other types of natural disasters for funding purposes. The proposal, however, didn’t make it into the budget legislation the House and Senate plan to vote on Friday.

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Latest: Arizona forest restoration project falls short

High Country News
December 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

In 2009, the U.S. Forest Service undertook the biggest forest-health project ever attempted, on 2.4 million acres of overgrown ponderosa pine in northern Arizona. The Four Forest Restoration Initiative (4FRI) aimed to reduce wildfire danger in part by having contractors thin small-diameter trees and produce wood products and biofuel. But continual delays and serious accusations of agency bias and incompetence have plagued the controversial project and its main contractor, Good Earth Power-AZ (“Lost in the woods”, HCN, 9/1/14). To date, Good Earth has treated just 5,400 acres of forest, after promising in 2013 to thin 30,000 acres per year for 10 years.

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Sequoia National Park’s big trees earn title as ‘giants’

The Oregonian
December 18, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The planet’s largest trees can once again take a big drink of water. After four years of drought in California, managers of the groves of sequoias in the Sierra Nevada national parks were worried about the health of their giants. At least for now, the sequoias are able to take in some moisture. Snowfall in late November left a couple feet of snow on the ground, but the weather stabilized and made it easy to visit the sequoia groves in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Snow fell again in mid-December, making it treacherous once again to drive the roads to the parks’ 6,500-foot level where the big trees live.

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Lawsuit targets government’s decision not to protect marten

Longview Daily News
December 18, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

PORTLAND, Ore. — An environmental group is suing the government over its failure to protect coastal populations of the Pacific marten, a small forest animal related to the weasel. The Center for Biological Diversity and another group say the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s April 2015 decision to deny Endangered Species Act protection to the marten ignored science. The center first petitioned for protection for the marten in 2010. Federal biologists concluded that multiple stressors — from logging and development to exposure to poisons at marijuana plantations — do not rise to the level of a threat for the marten.

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National Forest Promotes Value Of Wildfires

Payson Roundup
December 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The Kaibab National Forest is announcing the release of an informational video explaining the importance of wildland fire in the ecosystems of northern Arizona from the perspectives of various natural and cultural resource specialists. Over the last decade, the Kaibab has managed both wildfire and prescribed fire to treat approximately 300,000 acres for a variety of objectives. That work wouldn’t have been possible without employees from all program areas actively engaging in the management of fire across the landscape, according to Kaibab fire staff officer Art Gonzales. Because of those ongoing efforts, Gonzales thought it important to highlight a part of the wildland fire world that most people never get to see.

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Challenges mount for NC timber industry

Though this year could turn out to be a down one in the region’s timber industry, some say, overall, it’s doing OK based on modern standards.
Citizen – Tiimes
December 18, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Based on forest regrowth and timber supply, life should be good for lumber companies in the Appalachian Mountains. But that hasn’t held true in recent years, though there is hope for the future. “In general, we’ve seen a 30 percent decline in pricing from the start of 2015 in a number of grades (of wood),” said Fred Hardin, a forester and leading salesman at Gilkey Lumber, a hardwood saw mill and dry kiln in Rutherdfordton. A weakening of overseas markets, such as those in China and Vietnam, is a primary cause, he said.

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Researchers test sustainable forestry policies on tropical deforestation, logging

EurekAlert
December 18, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

HANOVER, N.H. – New research by a Dartmouth scientist and her colleagues shows that policies aimed at protecting tropical forests in the Congo Basin may unexpectedly lead to increased deforestation and timber production. The findings link tropical deforestation — in the Congo Basin and globally — with rising international demand for timber, foreign investment and other factors, and contradict the goal of collaborative efforts by governments, environmentalists and corporations to adopt sustainable forest management since the 1992 Rio Summit.

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Fire prevention critical but forest operations will continue

New Zealand Scoop
December 17, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Forest operations will continue in Nelson and Marlborough forests during summer, except when the fire risk is at its highest. Andrew Karalus, estate manager for Nelson Management Limited, says providing continuous work is important for those working in the industry and it enables the industry to attract and retain highly skilled people. “It’s a trade-off to some extent. The risk of fire can never be totally eliminated, but there are probably 1500 people working in forests in the region who rely on year-round work for their livelihoods. Then there are the servicing firms, the trucking companies and wood processors – there are a lot of locals who rely on a steady wood flow for their income.”

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Climate change making it harder for trees to recover from drought

Digital Journal
December 18, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

San Francisco – Past studies of drought’s impact on forests have always led to the assumption that trees recover almost immediately after a drought ends. But with droughts becoming more common, basic structures in trees will make recovery more difficult. We know from scientific studies there have been 66 prolonged droughts in the last millennium. Studies have shown that of all those dry periods, only three were similar to the present drought in the western U.S. in the past 1,200 years. In a story reported in Digital Journal in December 2014, scientists using precipitation data and tree ring history were able to determine the present California drought is the worst in the past 1,200 years. But what makes this drought different is the heat, coupled with the lack of precipitation, making it an example of “consequential climate change.”

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Report illustrates growing pellet market in Italy

Biomass Magazine
December 17, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

A report recently filed with the USDA’s Global Agricultural Information Network addresses the Italian wood pellet market, noting Italy consumed 3.4 million tons of wood pellets last year. Italy’s use of wood pellets is expected to reach 3.3 million metric tons this year and 5 million metric tons next year. According to the report, pellets in Italy are main used in small-scale private residential and industrial boilers for heating. Approximately 96 percent of Italian pellet consumption is a result of these heating sectors, with most pellets delivered via bags. Bulk pellet delivers with silo trucks is estimated at no more than 20,000 metric tons.

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New Zealand Seeks To Reform A Floundering Emissions Trading Program

Ecosystem Marketplace
December 18, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Late last month, the New Zealand government published its expected emissions trading scheme (ETS) review and discussion paper. Unexpectedly, the government openly questioned many features of the ETS that forest owners and others have long critiqued, asking stakeholders for feedback on a floor price, international units, and the controversial 2-for-1 rule that gives leeway to emitters… The forest sector was the first to enter the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme (NZ ETS) back in 2008, due to its significance as the country’s largest potential carbon sink… However, planting new forests has largely stopped in recent years, in part because of weak incentives under the long-running ETS. In particular, domestic offset prices plunged from NZ$20/tonne in 2010 to NZ$1.50 in 2013 as a result of the unlimited inclusion of Clean Development Mechanism offsets from projects located from outside of New Zealand.

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New Zealand to draw on Kyoto surplus to meet 2020 emissions target

Carbon Pulse
December 18, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

New Zealand will use over 30 million Kyoto units from its massive surplus from the 2008-2012 period to meet its 2020 emissions target, the Ministry for the Environment said Thursday.
Climate Change Minister Paula Bennett on Thursday released three reports showing that New Zealand had met its Kyoto Protocol first commitment period goal, carrying a surplus of 123.7 million Kyoto units with it for future use… Meanwhile, the government estimated that carbon storage through forest sinks would continue to rise until 2017 despite declining levels in forest-planting in recent years. “The introduction of the NZ ETS and an NZU price of $15-$20 temporarily (until 2012) created an increased incentive for afforestation. 

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