Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: December 21, 2015

Special Feature

This video shows how fast a Christmas tree catches fire

It went from a normal Christmas tree to a destroyed family living room in a matter of seconds
Wales Online
December 21, 2015
Category: Special Feature
Region: International

 

This shocking video shows just how fast a Christmas tree can catch fire – going up in flames in a matter of seconds and spreading through a living room in less than one minute. Going from a normal image of most households at this time of year, the Christmas lights cause the tree to go up in flames and destroy the entire room. The video highlights the importance of switching off Christmas lights when unattended.

Read More

Froggy Foibles

‘Bicycle Tree’ in the Trossachs given protected status

BBC News
December 18, 2015
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: International

A renowned tree which appears to have metal growing out of it has been awarded protected status. The ‘Bicycle Tree’ is close to the site of a former blacksmith’s shop in Brig O’Turk in the Trossachs. It is known for its unusual features, particularly a bicycle handlebars and part of a frame which are on the trunk. Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park confirmed it has issued a provisional tree preservation order after a campaign. Along with the bike, it is thought a ship’s anchor and chain and parts of a horse’s bridle may also have been swallowed up by the sycamore’s expanding trunk.

Read More

Business & Politics

Alberta’s forest industry stable in first half of 2015

Wood Business
December 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

In the first half of 2015 Alberta’s forest sector began to slow, but remains stable. Values of lumber, pulp and paper, and panelboard manufactured by Alberta Forest Products Association (AFPA) members totalled $750 million in the first quarter of 2015 and $718 million in the second quarter. The numbers reflect a 4.4 per cent increase from the first quarter of 2014, followed by a year-over-year decline of 1.3 per cent in the second quarter. “Our industry has many opportunities that bode well for the future,” said AFPA president and CEO Paul Whittaker. “We have seen an increase in the generation of green power, development of markets abroad, and the use of cutting-edge technology in facilities.”

Read More

TPP looking to ease restrictions on log exports?

Chamber Shipping
December 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Differences have emerged in the interpretation of the Trans Pacific Partnership trade agreement on Canadian restrictions when it comes to raw log exports. A bilateral committee on forest products is set to come into effect within 5 years of TPP coming into force, a mechanism through which Japan will have an opportunity to negotiate an end to BC’s restrictions on log exports. In 2014, BC exported to Japan approximately 1.5 million cbm of primarily Douglas Fir logs to Japan. The Canadian side is arguing that the TPP will maintain the status quo whereby logs must be proven to be surplus to domestic needs before export permits are issued. On the other hand, statements from Japan make it clear that they see these restrictions coming to an end as a consequence of the language agreed within the TPP agreement.

Read More

Peace MLAs congratulate Canfor and Pacific BioEnergy’s partnership

Mike Bernier, MLA
December 18, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

FORT ST. JOHN – Peace River MLAs Pat Pimm and Mike Bernier congratulate Canfor and Pacific BioEnergy on forming a partnership to construct new wood pellet plants in Fort St. John and Chetwynd. The partnership follows the successful conclusion of a long term supply agreement with a major Japanese trading company. “The two new mills will have combined annual production capacity of 175,000 metric tonnes and over 1.5 million tonnes will be delivered to a Japanese electrical utility under the 10-plus year contract,” Pacific BioEnergy President Wayne Young said. “The new plants will be commissioned by the end of the first quarter of 2016.”

Read More

Catalyst Paper fined $200000 for the deposit of untreated pulp and paper effluent

Canada NewsWire
December 18, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER – Catalyst Paper, operating in Powell River, was fined $200,000 in British Columbia Provincial Court on December 8, 2015, after pleading guilty to offences under the Fisheries Act related to the deposit of a deleterious substance into water frequented by fish. The offences stem from two releases of untreated pulp and paper effluent. On September 4, 2012, 3,500,000 litres of effluent were released into the Malaspina Strait, located near the City of Powell River. Another release of 100,000 litres occurred on September 18, 2012. The investigation determined that the first release was due to a power loss and the second was due, in part, to a broken check valve.

Read More

Value of Alberta Forest Products Assn. members’ production down 1.3% in 2Q

Lesprom
December 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

In the first half of 2015 Alberta’s forest sector began to slow, but remains stable. Values of lumber, pulp and paper, and panelboard manufactured by Alberta Forest Products Association (AFPA) members totaled $750 million in the 1Q 2015 and $718 million in the 2Q. The numbers reflect a 4.4% increase from the 1Q 2014, followed by a year-over-year decline of 1.3% in the 2Q, as AFPA says in the press release received by Lesprom Network. AFPA-member companies produced 822 million board feet of lumber in the 1Q 2015 with a value of $312 million. 

Read More

Hornepayne, Ont. lumber mill workers wait for news

CBC News
December 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Workers at the sawmill in Hornepayne want to hear if they will ever return to work. Three weeks ago, Haavaldsrud Timber said it would shut down if it could not negotiate a new power agreement for the neighbouring co-gen plant. The company imposed a deadline of today to get a new power deal. The union steward at the mill said employees have not heard anything about the future of the operation. Serge Trudel said he’s been “calling on the phone, and I got our local office calling them as well. I’ve been trying to contact the HR with the company. They’re not answering. They’re not replying to their e-mails. Nobody’s answering.”

Read More

Georgia-Pacific Announces Agreement To Sell Engineered Lumber Business To Boise Cascade

PR Newswire
December 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

ATLANTA — Georgia-Pacific LLC announced today that it has reached an agreement to sell its engineered lumber business to Boise Cascade for $215 million, including working capital. The transaction is subject to standard regulatory review and other customary closing conditions. “Georgia-Pacific is firmly committed to the building products industry. Although the engineered lumber business has been profitable and employees have done a great job running safe, productive assets and meeting our customers’ needs, it is not a large part of our overall building products division,” said Mark Luetters, Georgia-Pacific executive vice president – building products. “We believe this potential sale to an established player in the industry is in the best interest of our engineered lumber employees, customers and stakeholders.”

Read More

Boise Cascade to Acquire Engineered Lumber Production Facilities from Georgia-Pacific

Street Insider
December 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

Boise Cascade Company announced that it has reached an agreement to purchase Georgia-Pacific LLC’s engineered lumber production facilities located at Thorsby, Alabama, and Roxboro, North Carolina, for $215 million, including a closing date working capital target of $25 million. The Company currently plans to use approximately $90 million of its cash and $130 million in new borrowing to pay for the transaction and closing-related expenses. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2016, subject to standard regulatory review and other customary closing conditions.

Read More

2015 Review – Manufacturing

December 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

When workers first heard that Simpson Lumber’s Shelton mill was closing down, there were a lot of emotions. But three words summed it up succinctly. “They were pissed,” said Aaron Arnold, president of Woodworkers Union Local 38 and a safety inspector at the Simpson mill in Shelton. On April 28, Sierra Pacific Industries — which completed a deal to acquire Simpson’s remaining assets in downtown Shelton — announced that it will not continue operating the sawmill. By the end of June, 270 employees lost their jobs.

Read More

Indonesia, Already Squeezed, Braces for Higher Interest Rates

New York Times
December 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

PANGKALAN KERINCI, Indonesia — In this company town where acacia and palm oil trees stretch for miles, the Indonesian conglomerate Royal Golden Eagle is bracing for impact. Already, prices of palm oil, one of its main products, have fallen. And the value of the Indonesian rupiah has plummeted, hurting the buying power of the 100,000 people in this dusty town, many of whom rely on the sprawling mill and plantation for jobs, as well as electricity and water. And foreign investors have been broadly rethinking the country’s prospects, creating economic uncertainty.

Read More

UK now burning 33% of world’s wood pellet imports

Carbon Brief
December 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

The world produced a record 26 million tonnes (Mt) of wood pellets last year, fuelled by increasing demand for renewable power. Despite record volumes, the UK increased its share of imports to a third of the 14Mt total, according to the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). UK wood pellet imports have risen rapidly as Drax, its largest power station, has progressively converted units to burn biomass instead of coal. UK imports have tripled since 2012 and its share of global trade has risen to 33%, up from 17% in 2012. 

Read More

NZ export log prices jump to 9-month high; slowdown looms

Scoop.co.nz
December 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

New Zealand export log prices jumped to a nine-month high amid steady inventories and stronger demand from China, the country’s largest market. The average wharf-gate price for New Zealand A-grade logs rose to $104 a tonne in December from $92 a tonne in November, marking the highest level since March, according to AgriHQ’s monthly survey of exporters, forest owners and sawmillers. The AgriHQ Log Price Indicator, which measures log prices weighted by grade, increased to 97.11 from 92.51, its highest level since February. New Zealand A-grade log prices rose for a third straight month as inventory levels on Chinese ports held steady and demand improved.

Read More

Metsä Group boss wins RISI European CEO of the Year

Labels and Labeling
December 18, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Kari Jordan, Metsä Group president and CEO, has been named as RISI’s 2016 European CEO of the Year. RISI is an information provider for the global forest products industry. The company works with clients in the pulp and paper, packaging, wood products, timber, biomass, tissue and nonwovens industries. Its European CEO of the Year is nominated by a group of investment analysts and portfolio managers covering the European and global pulp and paper industry. …Jordan has been the president and CEO of Metsä Group since 2006. On the reasons for selecting Jordan as the recipient of the 2016 European CEO of the Year award, one analyst said: ‘Under Jordan’s leadership the performance and prospects of Metsä Group have been transformed over the last 4-5 years. The group was at risk of failing at one point, but the management team made a number of shrewd decisions in order to turn around the business.

Read More

Heinzel restarts PM 10 at Laakirchen Papier mill EUWID Pulp and Paper

EUWID Pulp and Paper
December 21, 2015
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Laakirchen Papier, a Heinzel group company, has restarted the fire-hit SC paper machine PM 10. Production resumed on 16 December; tests with “stock on wire” had been successfully held two days earlier in preparation for the restart, the company announced. Heinzel expects PM 10 to reach full capacity just before Christmas. PM 10 was partially destroyed in a fire on 24 September. The total loss including the interruption in operations amounted to double-digit million euro sum, but the expenses were adequately covered by an insurance, Laakirchen Papier explained.

Read More

Wood, Paper & Green Building

UMaine lab making history in forest products

Press Herald
December 21, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

ORONO — Standing in his laboratory at the University of Maine, Russell Edgar watches a piece of lumber slowly bend to its breaking point. A sharp “crack!” pierces the air. Looking at his computer, Edgar notes it took exactly 4,089 pounds of force applied to this particular two-by-eight board – sawed from a Norway spruce log harvested in northern Maine – before it snapped. Edgar, wood composites manager at UMaine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center, and his team have put roughly 125 pieces of lumber through this type of test. They’re only getting started. Over the next four to six weeks they’ll put more than 1,000 two-by-fours, two-by-sixes and two-by-eights – all sawed from Norway spruce trees from Maine, New York, Wisconsin and Vermont – through these same strength tests.

Read More

UMaine breaks boards to test Norway spruce for US market

Bangor Daily News
December 19, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

ORONO, Maine — The University of Maine is testing wood planted during the Great Depression to determine whether it could stand up as construction material or give a much needed boost to Maine’s mill industry. Researchers at the Advanced Structures and Composites Center are breaking about 1,320 boards cut from trees harvested in Maine, Vermont, Wisconsin and four sections of New York state. They’re using hydraulic machines and pressure sensors to test the breaking point of the boards. That data will be passed on to the American Lumber Standards Committee, according to Russell Edgar, wood composites manager at the center.

Read More

Eastport company hopes to boost wood fiber market

Bangor Daily News
December 19, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

EASTPORT, Maine — An Eastport firm’s efforts will create a new market for low-grade fiber that will help the entire wood pulp industry in Maine, a company official says. Stephean Chute, managing director of Phyto-Charter Inc., said the firm plans to export cull — waste wood unsuitable for paper and pulp mills in Maine — to Europe, where the wood fiber will be used for heating and generating electricity. No such market for low-grade wood chips exists in Maine or the United States, he said. The company plans to host a meeting Dec. 22 at 141 Water St. in Eastport to present information on its patented system, which is designed to rid wood chips of pathogens and pests so they meet import regulations imposed by the European Union, he said.

Read More

Apartments’ lightweight wood construction has advocates, critics

Charlotte Observer
December 19, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

It’s hard to miss the raw material forming the skeletons of new apartment buildings going up around Charlotte: wood. Lightweight construction materials – beams formed of wood fibers and wooden floor assemblies built in factories – allow for faster, easier construction, advocates say. But there’s a potential downside: Some experts say these materials burn faster than traditional lumber and can collapse more quickly in a fire, endangering firefighters. … “We’re equipped, we’re trained, and we’re aware of the hazards,” said Rob Kinniburgh, the Charlotte Fire Department’s fire marshal. Wood construction advocates say their buildings must meet the same fire and safety codes as any other building before they’re occupied.

Read More

Fate of UMaine research center for wood-based products still uncertain

Bangor Daily News
December 18, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

OLD TOWN, Maine — The fate of the University of Maine research center for wood-based products located on the former Expera pulp mill site is up in the air, according to a university official. “We originally leased from Old Town Fuel & Fiber, and when it sold to Expera, we signed a lease with them,” Jake Ward, UMaine’s Vice President of Innovation and Economic Development, said Friday. “We would hope to continue leasing with the new owner. We’re [leasing] month to month right now because of the transition they’re going through.” 

Read More

Govt embraces era of CLT timber / New material as tough as concrete with high insulation

The Japan News
December 21, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

A new type of timber as tough as reinforced concrete is drawing attention as promising construction material, offering a range of advantages including high insulation and shorter project times. Cross-laminated timber, often referred to as CLT, is set to be widely available for common use next fiscal year. The material is also expected to be used for the new National Stadium, the main venue for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The government is pushing for such heavy use of lumber to help stimulate local economies, and hopes to leverage cross-laminated timber in its growth strategy. Japan’s first hotel to use cross-laminated timber is being built at Huis Ten Bosch resort in Sasebo, Nagasaki Prefecture.

Read More

Innventia consortium develops advanced wood-based 3D printing materials and structures

3ders.org (blog)
December 18, 2015
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

As the additive manufacturing industry continues to branch out into new areas of industrial development, the question of how to make both the processes and the materials more sustainable remains top of mind. In order to develop the sustainable materials of the future, Swedish research institute Innventia has launched an interdisciplinary consortium known as “Would wood” to develop integrated material and production concepts for the large-scale additive manufacturing of advanced wood-based structures. The project involves an innovative wood-based material for 3D printing as well as its manufacturing technique, which is aimed at producing furniture, structural elements, and in the long-term, large-scale construction projects for smart cities.

Read More

Forestry

Why are we logging the municipal forest reserves?

Letter by Garth McGeary, Maple Bay
Cowichan Valley Citizen
December 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Over half a century ago the municipal council had the amazing foresight to assemble the municipal forests from land that had been abandoned for taxes. Rather than have tax sales they kept the land and created what is now a fabulous recreational resource. Assuming the land had been logged before it was abandoned, it has taken 70 years to get where it is now. However the forests are still being logged and it will be longer than the lifetime of most us in the valley before the cut parts get back to where they were before. From a logging point of view the business seems marginal at best. Over the last 10 years over $10 million worth of logs were sold for a profit of about $450,000, a rate of just over four per cent. It seems that the main reason the forests have been logged is to pay the costs of managing them.

Read More

Christmas tree crisis hits Vancouver after long summer drought

Hot, dry summer takes its toll on selection of trees available in leadup to Christmas 
Business in Vancouver
December 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The situation is not quite “woe Christmas tree,” but the legacy of 2015’s long, hot and dry summer is being felt at Metro Vancouver lots, where selection is less than last year. “The drought had an impact on some of the Noble and Fraser firs, and basically a lot of the high-end stuff,” said Jesse Johl, president of the Vancouver South Lions Club and co-chairman of the Lions’ Christmas tree lot at 41st and Fraser. “It was really affected by the drought. We ended up having not very many, not a lot of the high-end trees.”.. “That being said the quality of the trees actually wasn’t that bad this year,” Johl said. “The ones that were able to get water did well. 

Read More

B.C. balks at changing law to protect wildlife and biodiversity

Vancouver Sun
December 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The B.C. government will not be changing laws or considering hiring more staff as recommended in a report by one of its own MLAs on how to protect wildlife and biodiversity from the affects of resource industries. Hunting and fishing organizations including the 42,000-member B.C. Wildlife Federation made a call in the fall of 2014 — following the catastrophic Mount Polley Mine tailings dam failure — for the Liberal government to retake control of resource extraction practices, planning and oversight. The groups said the government’s move in the past decade to rely on professionals hired by industry to make decisions on the land base, with little government oversight, had failed.

Read More

EDITORIAL: Nova Scotia Christmas trees a growing industry

The Chronicle Herald
December 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Although overall economic growth has been disappointing in Nova Scotia lately, the province’s Christmas tree industry looks headed for a second straight year of strong export sales. Nova Scotia growers’ home advantage is the native balsam fir, a tree that smells like Christmas and regenerates naturally across much of the province. Sarah Weston, executive director of the Christmas Tree Council of Nova Scotia, cautions it’s too early for firm numbers or to compare year-over-year results. But, she says, based on what she’s hearing from growers, 2015 is shaping up to be a “strong year overall.” The weather’s been generally good, she says. Unlike previous years, when finding enough trucking could be a challenge, transportation doesn’t seem to be a problem this year, she adds.

Read More

The bugaboo with caribou

Northern Ontario Business
December 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) finds there’s been “spotty progress” made on protecting woodland caribou habitat in the province. The Toronto-based conservation group said Ontario is “lagging” behind other provinces is protecting the species and in having federally-mandated plans in place to restore caribou populations by 2017. “In Ontario, we are deeply concerned that the situation for boreal caribou has not improved in the past 12 months,” said Anna Baggio, CPAWS’ director of conservation planning, in a Dec. 14 press release. Signs of positive change and government policy action are evident in Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Alberta, but not much is happening in Ontario.

Read More

Forest Service sees unmanned aircraft as boon and bane

The Missoulian
December 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Somewhere between fascination with the military’s vaunted Predator drones and fear of the public’s private drones over wildfire, the U.S. Forest Service is deeply entangled in the unmanned air force. The Forest Service deals with all kinds of drones – research and recreational, large and small. Concern about collisions between private drones and firefighting aircraft prompted it to start the “If you fly, we can’t” campaign last summer. Forest Service Fire and Aviation Management spokeswoman Jennifer Jones said firefighters have documented 25 incidents where private drones interfered with wildfire activity in 2015 alone. 

Read More

Showdown Looms between Vilsack, Congress over Wildfire Costs

Twin Falls Times-News
December 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

CHEYENNE, Wyo. • “The American public can no longer afford delays to forest restoration and other critical Forest Service activities caused by annual fire transfers”, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. Federal budget brinkmanship could flare while wildfires are bearing down on U.S. communities after Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack vowed to end the practice of raiding other programs’ funding to cover firefighting costs. The U.S. Forest Service depleted its firefighting budget in August as the costliest fire season in U.S. history destroyed hundreds of homes in California and the Pacific Northwest. If money budgeted for firefighting runs out again next year, Congress will need to step in with emergency funding instead of expecting the Forest Service to fill the gap, Vilsack wrote congressional budget leaders Thursday.

Read More

3085 sq. ft. State Forest Cover Lost in 28 Years in Assam

The Northeast Today
December 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

GUWAHATI: At a time when climate change has become a global issue with more than 190 countries including India signing a historic pact to deal with the problem, alarming decrease of forest cover in Assam has become a major cause of concern as the State lost more than three thousand square kilometres of forest cover in the past 28 years. Successive reports of the Forest Survey of India pointed out the alarming picture of decrease of forest cover in Assam over the years. According to the first such report published in 1987, the forest cover in Assam was 30,708 square kilometres, but the latest report , released recently, revealed that the forest cover in the State came down to 27,623 square kilometres.

Read More

New 12,700 acre preserve borders Sunkhaze Meadows in Milford

Bangor Daily News
December 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

The Nature Conservancy recently purchased more than 12,000 acres of wetlands and woods, linking the Sunkhaze Meadows National Wildlife Refuge in Milford and the state-owned Bradley Public Reserved Unit. This newly conserved land serves as a wildlife corridor, contains an abundance of waterfowl and wading bird habitat and will be open to low-impact public recreation. “The exciting thing about this particular property is that it’s so close to Bangor, Orono and Old Town and the communities of Bradley and Milford,” Nancy Sferra, director of science and stewardship of The Nature Conservancy in Maine, said. “It’s an area where there’s a fairly decent local population that would come out and enjoy the land.”

Read More

A hundred forest fires break out in northwest Spain

TODAYonline
December 20, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

MADRID — Some 230 firefighters were dispatched to battle around 100 wildfires which broke out in northwest Spain yesterday (Dec 20, Singapore time), emergency services told AFP, but there were no reports of casualties. “Around 100 fires are currently blazing,” a spokeswoman for fire fighters in the Asturias region said. “On the ground we have 230 firefighters” as well as officers from the civil guard, other volunteers and officials, she added. Five homes were affected by forest fires in the northwest of the region and a section of motorway was closed off due to fumes, according to an early statement from the emergency services.

Read More

South Coast residents concerned about bushfire risk from logging slash

Sydney Morning Herald
December 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Residents on the NSW south coast have expressed alarm at “metres high” piles of logs, leaves and branches left on forest floors after logging, as the bushfire season approaches. The piles of logging slash, in areas stretching between Nowra and Eden, are the result of the most recent logging harvest by Forestry Corp. “They are removing a lot of the tree canopy. So those piles are getting a lot more sunlight beating down on the forest floor and drying out rapidly. A cigarette butt or lightning strike would get that going really quickly,” said John Perkins, convenor of community group Friends of Durras.

Read More

Report: Mexico’s monarch butterfly reserve lost 24 acres

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
December 21, 2015
Category: Forestry
Region: International

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Studies found that illegal loggers clear-cut at least 24 acres (10 hectares) in the monarch butterflies’ wintering grounds in central Mexico this year, a Mexican environmentalist said Friday. Writer and activist Homero Aridjis said the illegal logging went on unchecked between April and August and occurred in one of the most important areas of the reserve. Earlier, Mexican officials had said that the reserve lost about 22 acres (9 hectares) due to illegal logging in one area this year and that a number of arrests were made. Illegal logging had fallen to almost zero in 2012. The butterflies depend on the pine and fir forests west of Mexico City to shelter them against cold and rain.

Read More

Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Report: Carbon Pricing Works for Granite State

Public Service News
December 21, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

CONCORD, N.H. – A new business report says the Granite State has a major opportunity to accelerate the growth of clean energy and the state economy by enacting a program that charges producers of carbon dioxide. Steven Walker is founder of the New England Wood Pellet Company, which produces fuel out of biomass. He says the Clean Power Plan gives states the flexibility to design their own carbon-pricing plan – and he has long advocated the need for a carbon price that investors can count on. “Trying to come up with just one common denominator that we can all hang our hat on,” he states. “And that is to price carbon, instead of government picking winners and losers, which is always scary and a big risk.”

Read More

Animals Are Helping to Slow Climate Change—But They’re Dying

Animals play a key role keeping forests healthy
TIME
December 19, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

The decline in animal populations in tropical forests may play a role in accelerating climate change, according to new research. The study, published in the journal Science Advances, shows how the loss of animals reduces the ability of forests to store carbon that would otherwise accelerate global warming. Large animals like large primates, tapirs and toucans play a key role distributing the seeds of the large trees that store the most carbon and in turn ensuring a healthy forest. The researchers note that tropical forests store 40% of the world’s carbon, but that carbon is released into the air when forests are degraded or destroyed. The decline in those animal populations thus has a tangible effect on how well their habitat can prevent carbon from reaching the atmosphere.

Read More

Stanford researchers find world forest carbon stocks overestimated

Researchers with The Natural Capital Project show how fragmentation harms forests’ ability to store carbon; more restoration is needed to reconnect forest patches.
Stanford University News
December 18, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Scientists have been significantly overestimating the amount of carbon stored in the world’s tropical forests, a new study reports. World leaders and climate scientists use carbon storage estimates to devise carbon trading and mitigation agreements, such as those at the center of the recent 21st United Nations climate change talks in Paris. Deforestation is a huge source of excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, and leaders recognize forest conservation and restoration as a critical tool for reducing and mitigating climate change. The new findings, published in Nature Communications, apply to forests where people have cleared trees – usually for roads, timber or agriculture. 

Read More

Daiwa Securities, Green Thermal to invest in 6-MW Japanese biomass plant

SeeNews Renewables
December 21, 2015
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Japanese firm Daiwa Securities Group Inc and Tokyo-based biomass power projects developer Green Thermal Co Ltd plan to jointly invest in a 6.25-MW wood-fired biomass power plant in the northern parts of the country. In a press release on Friday, the company’s unit Daiwa PI Partners Co said that the project will require a total investment of about JPY 4 billion (USD 33m/EUR 30m). The partners did not disclose the planned equity ownership ratio under the scheme or the respective capital contributions they intend to make.

Read More

General

Nature conservancy continues work to boost N.S. moose numbers

The Chronicle Herald
December 20, 2015
Category: Uncategorised

Nova Scotia has slightly fewer than 1,000 moose, according to the Nature Conservancy of Canada, which is trying to raise $28 for every one of them. “We’ve raised a lot of money already,” conservancy spokesman Andrew Holland said in a weekend interview. For the fourth-straight Christmas, the not-for-profit charity has raised money to buy land in the Isthmus of Chignecto, which connects Nova Scotia to New Brunswick. “There’s a lot of moose on the New Brunswick side,” about 29,000, Holland said. This year, the Moose Sex Corridor Project is working to secure about 215 hectares on both sides of the Nova Scotia-New Brunswick border, so the moose and other animals can safely get here. 

Read More