Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: January 14, 2016

Business & Politics

Low dollar could ignite softwood lumber tensions

CKNW News
January 13, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

With the Canadian dollar hovering below $0.70 U.S., Canada’s forestry industry is getting some much needed help, but storm clouds could be on the way. The Canada-U.S. Softwood Lumber Agreement, which kept trade peace between the two countries, expired last October, and U.S. timber producers have already been fighting against its renewal. Industry analyst Naomi Christensen, with the Canada West Foundation say cheaper Canadian wood will only further that effort. “The fact that the low Canadian dollar is good for Canadian companies that are exporting into the U.S. is probably going to probably ignite those protectionist fires in the U.S. fires, unfortunately.”

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Former Weyco site, Rabbit Island sell for $5.1 million

Cando Rail Services purchased property
Kamloops This Week
January 13, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

A Manitoba-based rail service company has purchased the most significant piece of industrial land on the market in Kamloops. The 36-hectare former Weyerhaeuser Co. sawmill site was bought for slightly less than $5.1 million by Cando Rail Services on Dec. 31. A company representative said Wednesday it will make a public statement later this week. Ron Ehrenholz, managing broker of Colliers International in Kamloops, confirmed the sale, but declined to publicly discuss the purchaser. While the heavy-industrial property has been for sale since Weyerhaeuser closed its Kamloops sawmill more than seven years ago, the fact it lacked an environmental certificate hampered marketing efforts.

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Lumber production up 1.2% in the U.S.

IHB – The Timber Network
January 14, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

Lumber production in the United States totaled 27.022 billion board feet from January through October 2015. This represents a 1.2% increase as compared to January-October 2014, according to the Western Wood Products Association’s “Lumber Track” publication. Production through 10 months in the West was down 1.2% compared to the same period of 2014; output in the South rose 3.1% in the same time frame. Nationwide, lumber production in October totaled 2.804 bbf, down 7.0% from the October 2014 total, but up 1.2% from September. END OF STORY

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WestRock paper mill in Montville to close permanently

The Day
January 13, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

Montville — The WestRock corrugated packing plant in Uncasville will close permanently on Feb. 1, according to a company spokesperson. Officials from the Georgia-based company informed the 85 local employees that the mill would be closing, WestRock spokesman Tucker McNeil said Wednesday. “It’s about matching our supply and our system to our customers’ demands,” McNeil said. “We’ve got a big mill system, and we have to be able to match the entire supply.” The Montville mill, which produces about 166,000 tons of corrugated cardboard packaging per year, temporarily was shut down in October.

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Ta Ann’s plantation profit before tax to surpass that of timber this year

January 14, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Maintain buy with a higher target price (TP) of RM6.22: The share price has appreciated by around 18% in the past one month, driven by firm log and crude palm oil (CPO) prices, a weaker ringgit and the anticipation of the Sarawak state elections. We see more upsides as the market improves its appreciation of the undervaluation of the plantation business. Firm demand for tropical logs and the global log shortage are keeping selling prices high, which together with a stronger US dollar, have benefited timber companies, including Ta Ann Holdings Bhd, and offset the drop in log exports. 

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Ta Ann’s plantation profit before tax to surpass that of timber this year

January 14, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Maintain buy with a higher target price (TP) of RM6.22: The share price has appreciated by around 18% in the past one month, driven by firm log and crude palm oil (CPO) prices, a weaker ringgit and the anticipation of the Sarawak state elections. We see more upsides as the market improves its appreciation of the undervaluation of the plantation business. Firm demand for tropical logs and the global log shortage are keeping selling prices high, which together with a stronger US dollar, have benefited timber companies, including Ta Ann Holdings Bhd, and offset the drop in log exports. 

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Forestry

Embracing Change: First Nations and the Forest Industry

Truck Loggers Association
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Different perspectives on relationships between First Nations and the forest industry will be discussed at today’s panel “Embracing Change in First Nations Relationships” at 4:30 pm at the Westin Bayshore Hotel co-hosted by the Truck Loggers Association and the B.C. First Nations Forestry Council. “The TLA recognizes the rights and title of First Nations and is working to build mutually beneficial partnerships,” said David Elstone, TLA Executive Director. “This panel is part of our ongoing work to build on our members’ successful history of working with First Nations and to support their collaborative relationships that are rooted in a foundation of deep respect.”

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US issues rules to protect bat threatened by fungal disease

Assoc. Press in St. Louis Post-Dispatch
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. — Federal officials issued regulations Wednesday designed to protect the northern long-eared bat, one of several types of bat that have suffered steep population declines because of a rapidly spreading fungal disease. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said it had updated interim rules that accompanied a decision last April to designate the northern long-eared bat as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. The final version is less restrictive toward timber harvesting, clearing land for wind turbines, houses or oil pipelines and other activities that might cause some bats deaths but have no significant effect on the overall population, agency director Dan Ashe said.

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New Rule Allows Logging, Oil and Gas Drilling, Other Damaging Activities in Habitat of Threatened Northern Long-eared Bat

Center for Biological Diversity
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

WASHINGTON— Forest-clearing by loggers, developers and the energy industry that is normally prohibited under the Endangered Species Act will be allowed in the habitat of the threatened northern long-eared bat, under a final rule for the bat issued today by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Although the deadly disease known as white-nose syndrome is the primary cause of the species’ decline, ongoing forest loss and conversion continues to be a serious threat to the bat, which prefers to roost in larger, continuous tracts of mature forest. “These bats have already been pushed to the brink of extinction by white-nose syndrome, with 96 percent population declines, and the disease continues to spread,” said Tanya Sanerib, a senior attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity.

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Most listed plants and animals are declining — report

E&E Publishing
January 12, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

More than half of the threatened and endangered species in the United States are in decline, according to a new report from a diverse team of scientists. The wide-ranging report published this month in Issues in Ecology also recommends improvements, urging federal wildlife agencies to improve how they allocate recovery funds and better leverage partnerships with states and private landowners. Some of its core findings will give wildlife advocates pause. Out of 1,292 species that are protected under ESA, roughly one-third of them are considered “stable” and 8 percent were improving, with most of the rest in decline, according to the report, which cited biennial reports submitted between 1990 and 2010 to Congress by the Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service, the two agencies that administer ESA.

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New report provides conservation, management strategies for yellow-cedar in Alaska

Science Codex
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The U.S. Forest Service’s Pacific Northwest Research Station today released a new report that outlines a climate adaptation strategy for yellow-cedar in Alaska. The report, A Climate Adaptation Strategy for Conservation and Management of Yellow-Cedar in Alaska, is the first to provide a comprehensive science-based approach for managing the species in the face of climate change in the state of Alaska, where some populations of the tree have been declining over the past century. The report was produced in collaboration with land managers and specialists with the Forest Service’s Alaska Region and State and Private Forestry forest health professionals and will be an important reference for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to review as it considers a petition to list yellow-cedar under the Endangered Species Act.

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Linn County plans class-action lawsuit against state

Corvallis Gazette-Times
January 12, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Linn County officials say they’re planning to file a class-action lawsuit against the state of Oregon but are staying mum on the details until a Wednesday morning press conference at the state Capitol in Salem. … In an interview with the Democrat-Herald last month, however, Nyquist pointed to a pair of specific issues he and the commissioners have with the state. One of the issues, he said, is how the Oregon Department of Forestry manages state-owned forest lands. “The state is not meeting its contractual obligations with us,” Nyquist said. Counties rely on income from timber sale, but that income continues to decrease annually.

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More than three years after Waldo, our overgrown forests still threaten the city

Colorado Springs Independent
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Though he’s charged with protecting wild spaces, Colorado Springs City Forester Dennis Will speaks with ardor about cutting down trees. “I’m looking out my window at North Cheyenne Cañon [Park] right now, and it’s just a carpet of forest out there,” he says with evident dismay. If Will had his way, the park would go from having as many as 100 trees per acre to just 30 to 75. While that lush forest is beautiful, Will says the park isn’t meant to support so much greenery. Overgrowth puts the area at risk for fire and other hazards. His department has done significant mitigation projects in the park recently, but rains spurred new growth, and Will says finding the funds to maintain work that’s already been completed once is a challenge.

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Idaho accidently puts tracking collars on wilderness wolves

Assoc. Press in Longview Daily News
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

BOISE, Idaho  — The U.S. Forest Service says it’s investigating after Idaho officials reported inadvertently putting tracking collars on four wolves during recent helicopter flights into a central Idaho wilderness restricted to putting collars on elk. Idaho Department of Fish and Game Deputy Director Ed Schriever in a statement Wednesday said the agency didn’t clearly communicate to one of the helicopter crews entering the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness. “We will refine our procedures to make sure this doesn’t happen again,” Schriever said. Environmental groups said they are concerned that Fish and Game is aiming to gather information to justify killing wolves in the area. Forest Service spokesman Wade Muehlhof said the agency is interested in what went wrong that allowed the capture and collaring of the four wolves.

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Linn County plans to sue state over forest land management

Assoc. Press in The Longview Daily News
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

SALEM, Ore.  — A county that claims the state mismanaged Oregon Forest Trust Lands and cost it and others millions of dollars in lost revenue for schools and public safety is threatening to file a class-action lawsuit seeking $1.4 billion. Linn County notified the governor and state forester of its plans to sue on behalf of 14 other counties over breach of contract. It says Oregon has failed to live up to decades-old contracts that allow counties to receive payments based on annual timber harvests on state-managed lands. The payments go toward local law enforcement, schools and other special county districts to help cover basic services. “This breach of contract has had devastating effects on local communities that have seen both poverty and unemployment rates skyrocket in the last two decades as a result of current practices,” Linn County Commissioner Roger Nyquist said at a news conference.

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Input sought on Swan Valley timber project

KPAX
January 12, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

MISSOULA – Flathead National Forest officials are working on a new project to reduce future fire fuels in the Swan Valley. They are asking for public input on the timber project. The Beaver Creek Landscape Restoration Project spans almost 35,000 acres of land between Highway 83, the Swan River and the Mission Mountains Wilderness. The project borders the Flathead Indian Reservation, the Lolo National Forest and Lindbergh Lake. Flathead National Forest Service spokesperson Teresa Wenum says it has been nearly 100 years since the last major fire event for the area.

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New NC forestry chief arriving in middle of crucial process

Carolina Public Press
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

A new chief forester is taking the helm of the office that oversees North Carolina’s national forests, even as the agency’s plan for those forests undergoes a major revision process. Allen Nicholas, a 30-year veteran of the USFS, will report to duty Feb. 22 after a 12-year stint at the Shawnee National Forest where he most recently served as supervisor of the 286,000-acre forest in Southern Illinois. “I love to hike, I’m a fly fisherman, I hunt,” Nicholas said. “The varied ecology of the forest in North Carolina and the whole outdoor piece of this job is really exciting to me.”

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Column: Trees combat climate change

The Independent Florida Alligator
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

…Florida, which has approximately 17.3 million acres of forests, will commemorate Florida Arbor Day, an annual observance that celebrates the role trees play in our lives, on Jan. 15. The holiday is meant to promote tree planting and care. We should thank Julius Sterling Morton, a journalist and nature lover, who came up with the idea to plant trees in Nebraska when he noticed there were virtually no trees there in 1854. Later, the State Board of Agriculture accepted Morton’s resolution on April 10, 1872, by planting one million trees in Nebraska in honor of the first Arbor Day. Now, all 50 states in the U.S. have official Arbor Days aimed to take the correct climatological conditions for planting trees into consideration.

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GOP-Backed Bill Protects Forests From State-Backed Logging

WBAA
January 12, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Legislators plan to introduce a bill that would force the Division of Forestry to set aside 10 percent of each state forest, with no logging allowed in those areas. Two Republicans, Rep. Tony Cook (R-Cicero) and Rep. Eric Koch (R-Bedford), will introduce the bill during this legislative session. Previous efforts to protect state forests from logging have gotten stuck in committee with little support from GOP legislators. “I think what you’re going to see is bi-partisan support for the legislation,” says Jeff Stant, Executive Director of the Indiana Forest Alliance. The Division of Forestry has been criticized over a new strategic plan, which some say allows for too much logging.

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Ash dieback breakthrough as scientists learn to spot resistant trees

The Telegraph
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Britain’s forests have been granted a reprieve from the deadly disease ash dieback, after scientists discovered how to predict which trees will survive an infection. Researchers at the University of York and the John Innes Centre have found genetic markers which can be used to predict trees that are resistant to the disease, which can then be planted to replace lost woodland. There are around 157,000 hectares of ash woodland in Britain with 68 million trees as well as a further 12 million ash trees outside those areas. Nearly 1,000 cases of ash dieback have been reported across the UK and in some areas as little as two per cent of the trees remain.

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The Rainforest Alliance Announces New President: Nigel Sizer

Ethical Corporation Press Release
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The Rainforest Alliance proudly announces that Nigel Sizer has been named as its new President, effective as of 1 February 2016. Sizer brings with him 25 years of international experience in natural resources management, most recently as Global Director of the Forests Program at the World Resources Institute. During his tenure at WRI he led a hundred-person team located in Africa, Asia and Latin America, launched pioneering partnerships including the Global Restoration Initiative and Global Forest Watch, transforming access to information about forests for everyone everywhere.

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State forester hit hard by major Waroona and Esperance fires ABC Online

ABC News, Australia
January 14, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The West Australian timber industry may face a supply shortage in 10 to 15 years as the effects of recent major bushfires are realised. Thousands of hectares of state-owned timber plantations have been lost in major bushfires since November, with trees up to 40 years old destroyed. Approximately 3,300 hectares of Forest Product Commission (FPC) pine plantations were engulfed by bushfires in the south west of the state this week. A further 150 hectares of timber plantations were affected during a bushfire in Esperance in November. Forest Products Commission manager of operations Gavin Butcher said the short-term disruptions to the industry had been minor.

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Conservationists fight to save New Zealand’s most threatened tree

Radio New Zealand News
January 14, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Conservationists are fighting to save New Zealand’s most threatened tree by using DNA profiling and cracking down on possum control. There are only 14 r?t? moehau trees left in the wild, found at the top of North Island near Spirits Bay in the Unuwhao Forest and Te Paki. Out of those, just five have the distinct genotypes needed for genetic diversity, which is crucial to its survival. Department of Conservation (DOC) principal science advisor Peter de Lange said without intervention the future was bleak for the 35 metre high, white flowering tree, also known as Bartlett’s r?t?.

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Forestry machinery demo to help boost small scale businesses

Farming UK
January 13, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A free demonstration of small to medium sized harvesting machinery next month (Feb ’16) will show small scale forestry businesses how the new Forestry Grant Scheme can help boost their businesses.  Appropriate small or mini scale harvesting and extraction machinery can increase local harvesting and processing capacity. This will add long-term, sustainable value to local economies by helping bring smaller woodlands – and those on more sensitive sites – into management.  Derek Nelson, Forestry Commission Scotland’s Business Development advisor, said; “It’s really about supporting, facilitating and enabling diversification.

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Illegal Logging Named a Threat to Romanian Security

January 14, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A new law might give Romania’s threatened forests a new lease on life. Illegal deforestation of an area larger than one hectare, as well as the exploitation of forests without a development plan, are now considered threats to national security, after President Klaus Iohannis put his signature on the bill, according to Radio Romania International. The measure was badly needed, given the rapid loss of Romanian forests, at a rate of three hectares per hour, according to a Greenpeace Romania study. Cases of illegal logging investigated by the authorities jumped from an average of 28 per day in 2009-2011, to 50 per day in 2012, and 62 per day in 2013-2014, Greenpeace said.

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Illegal Logging Named a Threat to Romanian Security

January 14, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A new law might give Romania’s threatened forests a new lease on life. Illegal deforestation of an area larger than one hectare, as well as the exploitation of forests without a development plan, are now considered threats to national security, after President Klaus Iohannis put his signature on the bill, according to Radio Romania International. The measure was badly needed, given the rapid loss of Romanian forests, at a rate of three hectares per hour, according to a Greenpeace Romania study. Cases of illegal logging investigated by the authorities jumped from an average of 28 per day in 2009-2011, to 50 per day in 2012, and 62 per day in 2013-2014, Greenpeace said.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Port Townsend paper mill already below carbon cap proposed by state

Peninsula Daily
January 14, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

PORT TOWNSEND — Proposed state regulations requiring the state’s largest industrial emitters to reduce carbon emissions by 5 percent every three years would not affect Port Townsend Paper Corp., because the factory is already within acceptable levels, according to the company.  “Port Townsend Paper Corporation is currently in full compliance primarily because of the work we’ve done over the past several years,” said company spokesman Felix Vicino in an email. “And we expect to stay that way.” The state Department of Ecology’s proposed Clean Air Rule would initially apply to about two dozen manufacturing plants, refineries, power plants, natural gas distributors and others that release at least 100,000 metric tons of carbon a year.

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Plant closures stifling the market for biomass

The Ellswoth American
January 14, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

EASTBROOK — Duane Jordan has a pile of pre-biomass — a tangle of branches, leaves, tree tops and other “junk wood” not suitable to be sold as logs — that no longer have a home. The closing of biomass plants in Bucksport, Old Town, Jonesboro and Enfield have taken away one-third of his logging business. Up until this time, Elliott Jordan & Son would take the leftover timber and churn it into wood chips, or biomass. The biomass plant that once fueled the now shuttered Verso Paper Mill in Bucksport recently declared bankruptcy. Expera Specialty Solutions in Old Town — the former Old Town Fuel & Fiber — announced at the end of September that it was closing the pulp mill. The plant had a biomass boiler.

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Biomass power could bring thousands of jobs to the North East – but is beset by uncertainty

Sale of Lynemouth power station and developments on Teesside reflect dynamic nature of biomass industry
Chronicle Live
January 13, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

A thriving North East biomass power industry would create thousands of jobs but the sector is dogged by controversy, uncertainty and delay, as Peter McCusker reports. New European emissions rules have led to a suspension of operations at one the North East’s few remaining power plants – but the good news for the 130-plus workers is that the shutdown should be temporary. In late December the European Commission (EC) gave to go-ahead for the biomass conversion of the Lynemouth power plant, which was owned at the time by German energy giant RWE. A spokesperson for RWE told Journal Energy in the days before the sale that it was in the process of finalising pellet importing contracts and that the shut down will have no impact on the jobs of its 130 full-time employees.

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