Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: January 20, 2016

Business & Politics

Ambiguity in TPP side letter about raw log exports to Japan

By Peter Ewart
Prince George 250 News
January 20, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

…And so it goes with the issue of raw log exports from Canada to Japan under the recently signed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal. In the negotiations, a side letter was agreed upon between the two countries that addresses log exports. The Canadian government negotiators claim that this letter protects existing restrictions on these exports. However, the Japanese side appears to interpret the letter differently. For example, the Japan Forest Products Journal (Oct. 23) claims that Canada has “agreed to ease” restrictions on raw log exports. According to a translation done by the Private Forest Landowners Association of BC, the Japanese Trade Journal (Oct. 10) has claimed the same thing. For its part, the Japanese government suggests that the TPP agreement will improve log export regulations and that this will result in higher prices for logs in Canada.

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Trestle bridge to be rebuilt, mill site to be redeveloped

Timmins Press
January 19, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

IROQUOIS FALLS – After a year of negotiations with both Resolute Forest Products and Abitibi Riversedge, the Town of Iroquois Falls finally has an agreement for a project that is expected to redevelop the former mill site that has been standing empty for more than a year. The agreement allows the former mill, by Abitibi to be turned into a new industrial site dedicated to the manufacturing of non-forestry products and service industry businesses. Under same agreement, the neighbouring golf course will become the property of the Town of Iroquois Falls and will remain open. The idea is to create a industrial site that will be attractive to new industries that are expected to come to the region, and will stop Iroquois Falls from being dependent on a single industry ever again.

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Unifor hopes deal with Resolute will set pattern for forestry sector bargaining

Canadian Press in Canadian Business
January 19, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

MONTREAL – Unifor says it has reached a tentative contract agreement with Resolute Forest Products covering one group of workers in a deal the union hopes will set a pattern across Quebec’s forestry sector. The agreement still needs to be ratified by forestry workers in the Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean region. Talks will then extend to Resolute employees in other regions of the province before moving to other companies, including Tembec. Pattern bargaining is also being sought in the industry’s paper and sawmill segments, union representative Renaud Gagne said.

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Questions swirl after board member removed before Plum Creek vote

Gainesville Sun
January 19, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

Hours before a crucial November meeting of the county planning board involving the Plum Creek Timber Company, a city employee serving on the board was told by his boss to resign from the panel. That request came shortly after the boss — interim City Manager Anthony Lyons — hung up the phone after talking with a Plum Creek official. The quick, unexplained departure of Planning Commission member Forrest Eddleton has led to sharp words among elected officials and a request by Alachua County to Gainesville city officials for an explanation.

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Lumber producer hopes for makeover

Catskill Daily Mail
January 19, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East

ATHENS — Northeast Treaters Inc, a manufacturer of pressure-treated lumber, is seeking a 21st-century makeover at its Athens-based plant. In 2014, the Greene County Industrial Development Agency began to work with the company on the plant modernization. IDA Executive Director Rene VanSchaack said the company has had a presence in Greene County since the mid-1990s. The plant is located at 796 Schoharie Turnpike. “They first approached us in 2010 and were looking to sink money into the plant or close it,” VanSchaack said. “We worked with them to make a commitment to modernizing the plant.” After a new management team took over the Belchertown, Massachusetts-based company in 2014, Northeast Treaters got serious about keeping the Athens manufacturing facility open.

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Forestry Tasmania boss Bob Annells’ exit linked to anti-logging protests, Opposition says ABC

ABC News, Australia
January 20, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

The flare-up of conflict over logging has been linked to the departure of four out of six Forestry Tasmania board members, including chairman Bob Annells. About 70 people turned out at Lapoinya in the state’s north-west on Tuesday to protest against the clear felling of Forestry Tasmania’s 49-hectare regrowth coupe. …Resources Minister Paul Harriss said Mr Annells decided not to seek reappointment as head of the government business for “personal reasons”. “He has done a very, very good job, in terms of his leadership of Forestry Tasmania during a particularly difficult time,” Mr Harriss said. But the State Opposition and the Tasmanian Greens believe the departure of more than half of the board suggests a disagreement with government direction.

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MTCC sees 21% rise in new certified timber firms

The Edge Markets MY
January 20, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) has registered 59 new certified timber companies via the Chain of Costody (CoC) certification in 2015, a 21% increase compared to a year earlier, which marks it as the third highest increase globally in the number of CoC-certified companies that year. In a statement, MTCC chief executive officer Yong Teng Koon said the council was recently honoured with an award from the Programme for the Endorsement for Forest Certification, the world’s largest forest certification scheme, for the achievement. Yong said by obtaining the CoC certification under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS), timber and timber-related companies do not only help protect the forest, but also gain a better market position and positive brand image for their products.

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Chinese wood import value declines 25% in past year

Timber Trades Journal
January 20, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

he import value of logs and lumber to China has fallen by 25% in 12 months because of declining housing constructions, reports Wood Resource Quarterly (WRQ). China imported softwood logs and lumber worth US$498m during the month of November in 2015. This was 26% lower than the same month in 2014 and the third lowest monthly level in three years. As recently as April 2014, the import value was at an all-time high of almost US$900m, WRQ said. WRQ said reduced demand for both overseas and domestic wood products in 2015 has been a consequence of the slowdown in the Chinese economy, which has also affected consumer spending on home remodelling and furniture.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Into the wood: America’s first modern tall timber building rises in Minneapolis

MinnPost
January 19, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

They’re called nail laminated timber panels, NLT for short, and they helped make some construction history on Monday. That’s when crews began laying the wooden panels on the cage of posts and beams at the Minneapolis site of what will eventually be the seven-story office building known as T3 (Timber, Technology and Transit). When it’s finished sometime in this fall, the building will be the first modern tall wood building in the United States. Not everything in T3 — which was designed by Vancouver’s Michael Green Architecture and Minneapolis’ DLR Group and is being developed by the Houston-based Hines — will be made of wood, of course. 

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Rewriting history

January 20, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Timber in its purest form is carbon neutral, making it currently the most sustainable form of construction.  When harvested responsibly, wood is the only carbon-neutral building material that can both reduce greenhouse gas emissions and actually sequester carbon over the life of the building. Looking at laminated veneer lumber (LVL) in particular, products such as Kerto can be employed in all types of construction – and offer numerous and wide ranging benefits. Aside from its obvious sustainability credentials, a key advantage of Kerto is its amazing strength and dimensional stability. The strength is a result of the production process, which involves 3 mm thick, rotary-peeled softwood veneers being glued together to form a continuous sheet. The sheet is then cut to length and sawn into beams, planks or panels according to individual requirements.

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Forestry

Industry challenged by new forest technology

Steep Slope Logging
January 20, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The tables are being turned on foresters and logging contractors in British Columbia. Disruptive technology from New Zealand is set to create a whole new way of logging in B.C.’s forests. When meeting challenges to safely harvest NZ’s steep sloped forests, practicing foresters found convincing safety advantages with the new harvesting technology. In recent years, loggers in New Zealand’s forest industry faced safety challenges in tree falling, especially on steep slopes. There was no choice but to reduce accidents. Up and down the steep, forested country, people turned to the safety of mechanized harvesters. Simultaneously, safety and productivity improved. …B.C.’s coastal loggers at the Truck Loggers Association (TLA) convention got a taste of the new disruptive technology for steep slope harvesting at their annual meeting last week.

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LETTERS: Fletcher misleading about Sierra Club

By Mark Worthing, Sierra Club BC
BC Local News in Pentiction Western News
January 19, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

According to Tom Fletcher, “an employee of the B.C. branch plant of Sierra Club lurks, apparently coordinating media and protesters” regarding logging in the Walbran Valley (Penticton Western News, Jan. 13, Avatar sequel bombs in Walbran). He’s referring to me. Far from lurking, I’m proud to be campaigning with Sierra Club BC to save the some of the last significant stands of unprotected old-growth on Vancouver Island. And, to correct but one of the many misleading or false claims in Fletcher’s piece, Sierra Club BC is entirely independent. Fletcher’s diatribe reveals him as Teal Jones’ willing stenographer, uncritically regurgitating the logging company’s talking points. Fletcher and Teal Jones may believe it is morally and ecologically acceptable to cut down these magnificent trees and destroy complex, delicate ecosystems.

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Officials plan to spray parts of southwestern Colorado Springs to battle insect attack

The Colorado Springs Gazette
January 19, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

City officials plan to spray thousands of forested acres in June to halt the spread of two insects that are defoliating and killing trees in southwestern Colorado Springs. The western spruce budworm and the Douglas fir Tussock moth are native to forests in the Pikes Peak region, but have been attacking trees at an alarming rate in a rare dual outbreak. In June, the city plans to spray 3,600 acres with a naturally occurring pathogen that will attack both insects’ larva and hopefully curtail their spread. While other local forested areas have not seen a similar outbreak, which strips the trees of their needles, managers of county, state and private property are girding themselves to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to spray several thousand more acres. Last week, El Paso County committed to pay for its portion of the spraying – 350 acres in Jones Park if experts find that park’s trees are in danger.

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Farm forestry marks 75th year in Evergreen State

by Elaine Oneil. executive director of the Washington Farm Forestry Association
The Olympian
January 19, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Drive near the Washington state Capitol Campus in Olympia this month and you’ll see a banner proclaiming that “Sustainable Forestry Started Here.” What does that mean? Seventy-five years ago, the first certified tree farm in North America was established on the Clemons Tree Farm near Montesano in Grays Harbor County under the American Tree Farm System. It was seen as a bold move in an era that was focused on rapid development, resource exploitation and world war. Today, Washington boasts 35 family-owned tree farms that have been continuously managed for sustainable forestry under the ATFS certification program for more than 50 years and an additional 204 that have been managed for more than 25 years. They are part of a cohort of small forest landowners who own nearly half the private forest land in the state.

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Forest Service continues to Battle with the Beetle

Representatives say plans are effective, want to stay the course
kotatv.com
January 19, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

RAPID CITY, S.D. – Congressional members from South Dakota and Wyoming are asking the U.S. Department of Agriculture to allow more timber cutting in national forests. A letter to USDA Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell asks for more trees to be cut in the Black Hills National Forest, sent as a request from all the Senators and House Representatives from Wyoming and South Dakota. They content cutting more timber would help manage the forest and support the forest products industry and could help contain the mountain pine beetle. Jerry Kruger, Deputy Forest Supervisor for the Black Hills National Forest said when it comes to the battle with the beetle, the forest services want to stay the course.

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From pest to opportunity

The Register-Guard
January 16, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Chalk one up for Oregon ingenuity — and cooperation. Western juniper is one of those rare subjects that just about everyone agrees on: It’s a plague. Junipers gobble up to 35 gallons of water a day — apiece. And they have spread like, well, wildfire, in central and Eastern Oregon due to grazing and fire suppression efforts, taking over both rangeland and sensitive habitat. There have been a few efforts over the years to find a commercial use for junipers that would make it cost-effective to get rid of them. But nobody had ever been able to develop a market of any size for the wood. Then a group of ranchers, environmentalists and people from state, local and national government agencies — in a moment of uncommon unanimity — decided to use their combined resources to tackle their shared problem.

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Wahkiakum County lobbying for timber bill

The Longview Daily News
January 18, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Wahkiakum County commissioners are asking for the state’s help in upgrading its trust timberlands. The county has turned to Gov. Jay Inslee in hopes of passing legislation that would allow the county to be compensated for encumbered lands. The county had received money from its state managed timberland, but about 25 percent of its more than 12,000 acres were set aside for endangered species habitat in 1999, putting the land off limit to harvesting. The 3,000 acres set aside has been valued at approximately $30 million. If passed, the legislation would benefit not just Wahkiakum County, but also Pacific and Skamania counties. All three counties have encumbered timberlands.

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Clallam timber panel given primer on trust land management to set the stage for future meetings

Peninsula Daily News
January 19, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

PORT ANGELES — Members of the Clallam County Trust Lands Advisory Committee have been given a crash course in forest management. Kyle Blum, state Department of Natural Resources deputy supervisor for state uplands, outlined the complexities of DNR management of Clallam County trust lands in a nearly four-hour meeting last Friday. The presentation laid the groundwork for future meetings of the advisory committee in February and March. The 20-member advisory committee was tasked by county commissioners to determine whether it makes sense for Clallam County to take back the management of 92,525 acres of revenue-producing forest trust lands. If reconveyance is not recommended, the committee will look for ways to help DNR fulfill its trust mandate to the county and its citizens and junior taxing districts that rely on revenue from timber sales.

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Wildfire Control Suffers from Activists’ Undue Influence

Heartlander Magazine
January 19, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Forest management and wildfire control has been a playground for anti-technology propagandists since the Clinton administration’s 1995 Wildland Fire Management Policy. Rewilding groups fight any mechanical thinning or pretreatment of overgrown firetraps each fire season, arguing human interventions in the forests are contrary to the 2001 revision of the1995 fire policy, which states, “Wildland fire, as a critical natural process, must be reintroduced into the ecosystem.” …Ideology has trumped practicality at federal agencies with responsibility for the nation’s public lands. Although wildfires are inevitable in every forest ecosystem, the size, intensity, and harm caused annually by the past two decades’ wildfires have been greatly intensified by radical environmentalists’ influence on government forest policy.

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Lyle Laverty: Support forest management to fight wildfires

Letter by Lyle Laverty, chair, Colorado/Wyoming Section, Society of American Foresters
Daily Camera
January 18, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Last week, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsak announced that 2015 was a record-breaking year for wildfires, with 10,125,149 acres burned across the U.S. Additionally, more than 4,500 homes and other structures were destroyed and seven U.S. firefighters lost their lives in the line of duty. With this news, it has become even more apparent that our national forests are in desperate need of active forest management in order to protect them from catastrophic wildfires. Fortunately, for residents in the vicinity of Gross Reservoir and Nederland, the Boulder Ranger District of the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests has proposed the Forsythe II project.

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Family-owned forest land may soon change hands

Marketplace.org
January 15, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

2016 may turn out to be a big year for real estate. In this case, it’s forests that are for sale. Over a third of U.S. forest land is owned by private families. And many of those owners are now senior citizens, suggesting that their land may soon change hands. . …According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, about 40 percent of private forest owners in the US are 65 or older. “That’s driving this huge transition in forest ownership,” said Ben Hayes, a research fellow with the Pinchot Institute for Conservation. “Particularly with families where the land has been in the family for multiple generations, they’re land-rich but cash-poor. So, if this is their most valuable asset, it creates challenges around estate planning and passing it on to the next generation.”

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Area members of Congress seek more timber sales, but not all are convinced

Rapid City Journal
January 19, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West


Local timber industry officials are praising a letter sent last week to U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell urging him to increase timber sales this year in the Black Hills National Forest to minimize damage from the mountain pine beetle, reduce fire risks and help sustain the forest products infrastructure. Meanwhile, area environmentalists argue that proponents of increased timber sales were relying on myths and invalid assumptions to support their cause and increase private timber company access to cheap wood in public forests. …Ben Wudtke, forest programs manager for the Black Hills Forest Resource Association, a nonprofit trade association that represents 13 companies in the Black Hills, said the issue is less about generating more business for forest products companies than it is about maintaining a healthy forest.

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Ash tree killer found in Des Moines, city officials say

Associated Press in KTTC
January 19, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

DES MOINES, Iowa – City officials say an invasive insect that kills ash trees has been confirmed in Des Moines. A news release says a larva sample obtained from a tree on the western edge of the city was confirmed as an emerald ash borer on Jan. 8. The insects are native to Asia and were first spotted in the U.S. in 2002, when they showed up in the Detroit area. Authorities say the insects have spread to at least 25 other states, killing millions of trees. Once infected, trees typically die within five years. In 2014 Des Moines Public Works began treatment and removal programs for an estimated 6,000 ash trees on public land. A city survey conducted last summer suggests there are about 10,000 ash trees on private property in Des Moines.

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Coconut trees are no longer considered trees in Indian state

Associated Press in St. Louis Post-Dispatch
January 19, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

PANAJI, India — Coconut trees are no longer considered trees in the tropical Indian state of Goa, where authorities have reclassified them as palms to allow farmers to cut them down more easily. Officials said they dropped the cocus nucifer from Goa’s official list of trees in order to help coconut farmers cull old or ailing stands without having to deal with red tape. But environmentalists and the state’s opposition lawmakers are incensed, and accuse the state of catering to industry and developers.

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Kiwi companies using totara extract see sales boom

New Zealand Scoop
January 20, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Kiwi companies making products, including toothpaste, that contain an extract from totara trees are riding a wave of global demand for natural healthcare. Wairarapa-based Mende Biotech has spent around 17 years and $3 million developing a process to extract the antimicrobial chemical compound found in totara trees that makes the wood resistant to rotting. The company supplies the commodity, which sells for around $1,350 a kilogram, as an ingredient in products ranging from toothpaste to anti-acne cream. Minute amounts of totarol provide a natural replacement for antiseptics and antibiotics.

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Peru sacks top anti-logging official

The Guardian
January 19, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Peru has sacked its top anti-logging official, leading to claims he was dismissed after pressure from the timber trade and drawing criticism from a leading US congressman and environmentalists. The presidential decision to dismiss Rolando Navarro , the former head of Peru’s forestry and wildlife inspection service OSINFOR was announced in El Peruano, the state-owned gazette. It makes no mention of why Navarro was dismissed.  “Clearly, illegal logging in Peru continues,” Earl Blumenauer , the US Congressman for Oregon who has campaigned to toughen the US’s stance on illegal rainforest logging, told the Guardian. 

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General

Rewriting history

January 20, 2016
Category: Uncategorised

Timber in its purest form is carbon neutral, making it currently the most sustainable form of construction.  When harvested responsibly, wood is the only carbon-neutral building material that can both reduce greenhouse gas emissions and actually sequester carbon over the life of the building. Looking at laminated veneer lumber (LVL) in particular, products such as Kerto can be employed in all types of construction – and offer numerous and wide ranging benefits. Aside from its obvious sustainability credentials, a key advantage of Kerto is its amazing strength and dimensional stability. The strength is a result of the production process, which involves 3 mm thick, rotary-peeled softwood veneers being glued together to form a continuous sheet. The sheet is then cut to length and sawn into beams, planks or panels according to individual requirements.

Read More