Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: March 8, 2016

Business & Politics

Softwood Still Problem for Trudeau

Baystreet.ca
March 7, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

As Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s enjoyed a state dinner at the White House this week, these two great neighbours continue to have one of the largest and longest-running trade disputes in the world, a battle over softwood lumber that has seen Canadians and Americans at odds for 30 years. Trudeau and his trade minister, Chrystia Freeland, are working hard to show, in the trade minister’s hopeful words, “significant progress” on the issue. But loggerheads loom. …But two things seem clear as Trudeau and his delegation get ready to head to Washington: renewing the now-expired deal is not possible, and not everyone sees negotiating a new one as urgent.

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Northern Ontario sawmills fear recovery will be cut short by US trade war

Eight mills in the northeast employ hundreds of workers
CBC News
March 8, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Lumber companies in northeastern Ontario are fearing a new trade war with the U.S. just as their industry is rebounding. After the dark days in the middle of the last decade when many mills were shuttered across the region, the strengthening American housing market has seen the bottom lines improve and new jobs created. But with the 10-year-old softwood lumber deal negotiated by the Conservative government expiring this fall, companies fear the U.S. will once again impose duties and tariffs on Canadian wood. “We expect this market is going to continue its slow, steady recovery,” said Jim Lopez, president of Tembec, which runs sawmills in Hearst, Kapuskasing, Cochrane and Chapleau. “That’s why I think it’s so important to get a trade deal in place now, so we don’t have disruptions in this recovery.”

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Time for a boost – mayor

Botwood council calling on province to focus on forest industry
The Telegram
March 7, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Botwood council is content to wait out the provincial budget process, but government should expect the port town’s leaders to knock on the doors of Confederation Building come spring. “We’ve got to see some economic action,” said Mayor Scott Sceviour. “We have seen nothing in this town to replace Abitibi.” The town has been hard hit since the early 2009 closure of the former paper mill in Grand Falls-Windsor, as it provided the shipping avenue for the finished product. Many locals worked either in the mill, supplying it or in and around the shipping facilities. …There has been much talk locally since the mill closure regarding the possibility of a wood pellet operation in Botwood, but nothing has materialized. 

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Roseburg executive explains move to Springfield

The Register-Guard
March 4, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

SPRINGFIELD — Where to move the Roseburg Forest Products headquarters came down to selecting either the Portland area or Eugene-Springfield for leaders of the company long based in Dillard, a small Douglas County town near Ro The company announced the move last year. Steve Killgore, Roseburg’s senior vice president for solid wood and marketing, on Thursday explained the decision to the Springfield City Club. He said Springfield offers access to an airport, banks and attorneys, while having a culture supportive of wood products. And Springfield is about 11/2 hours away from Dillard, where the company will keep a major manufacturing hub. Portland would have been more than three hours away. “We are really excited to be a part of the community,” Killgore said of Springfield.seburg. They chose Springfield.

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Program seeks to boost profile of wood-products industry in SE Ohio

The Athens News
March 6, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

The wood-products business in Ohio contributes an estimated $22 billion a year to the state’s economy. While that may sound like a lot, Craig Rosenlund thinks the number could and should be higher… a lot higher. Rosenlund works with the Appalachian Partnership for Economic Growth in Nelsonville, where he is senior product associate for a program to boost the wood-products industry in a 32-county region. He has more than three decades of management and operations experience in the field, in both domestic and international markets. Rosenlund is not the only person to think wood products in the Buckeye State have significant, untapped potential. The U.S. Small Business Administration believes the same. The agency is putting money where its mouth is, to the tune of up to $2.5 million, for the Forest Products Innovation Cluster Initiative.

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Decrease in German beech lumber exports to China

EUWID
March 8, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Exports by German sawmills and trading companies of beech lumber to China were slightly below volumes recorded in 2014 in all quarters of 2015 with the exception of the third quarter. After the Federal Statistical Office recorded a decline of 3% in both the first and second quarters followed by an increase of 3% in the third quarter vis à vis the preceding year, deliveries in the fourth quarter decreased by 6% to 25,217m³. Thus reports of slightly weaker demand for lumber in China which have been circulating since the summer months are reflected in the export figures of the Federal Statistical Office. The decline, however, is less than had been expected in some cases.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Why Canada’s cement industry is crumbling

March 8, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada

…For every tonne of cement produced, more than three-quarters of a tonne of carbon is released into the atmosphere. The industry accounts for more than eight per cent of global carbon emissions. …A carbon price above $100 per tonne—likely the minimum necessary for Canada to meet its obligations from the Paris climate change summit last year—would raise the cost of Canadian cement by about a third and threaten the survival of plants like St. Marys. …Perhaps the biggest threat to the future of cement is coming from one of its oldest competitors. Building code changes now permit the construction of wood-frame buildings up to six storeys high in some provinces. Provincial policies specifying “wood first” as the building material of choice for certain government-funded construction projects add to wood’s appeal. And wood retains, rather than emits, carbon, giving it an edge on the climate change file as well.

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Toyota unveils the Setsuna: A wooden electric car

Examiner.com
March 7, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Wooden cars may seem like a weirdly anachronistic idea nowadays, bringing to mind the horseless carriages of old, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, or worse. Sure, the old wood sided cars were all the rage for a select group of people during the middle part of the last century, and some diehards are even fans of them today, despite the fact that Woodys are as ugly as sin. But now Toyota is banking on a comeback of sorts for wood-based vehicles, except they are going far beyond a simple panel or veneer: They are releasing an almost entirely wooden vehicle called the Setsuna. Not only that, but it will be made without the use of screws or nails in the assembly of the body for a smoother, sleeker look. Instead it will be held together using the Japanese craft of Okuri Ari, which uses joints and dovetails rather than fasteners. It will also run on electricity instead of fossil fuels.

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Klabin kicks off new giant 1.5 million tonne/yr BSK and BEK pulp mill in Brazil

RISI
March 7, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

SAO PAULO – Brazilian packaging paper producer Klabin today announced the startup of its new pulp mill located in Ortigueira city, Paraná state, known as the Puma project. According to the company, the first pulp bale was produced on Mar. 4, 2016, already with the chain of custody certification issued by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). The Ortigueira unit has capacity to produce 1.5 million tonnes/yr of pulp, of which 1.1 million tonnes are bleached eucalyptus pulp (BEK) and 400,000 tonnes are bleached softwood pulp (BSK) made of pine. Part of the softwood will be converted into fluff pulp, making it the world’s only industrial unit designed to produce the three fibers. [the rest of the story is only available to RISI subscribers]

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Forestry

Derek Nighbor is the new CEO of the Forest Products Association of Canada

Forest Products Association of Canada
March 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

Derek had served as Senior Vice-president with Food & Consumer Products of Canada, overseeing the organization’s strategic development in government relations and regulatory affairs. Before this he was Senior Vice President of Public Affairs with the Retail Council of Canada. Derek has also held senior political positions with the Government of Ontario, including two years as chief of staff to the province’s Consumer and Business Services Minister.  Derek is a member of the Board of Directors of Ronald McDonald House Charities Canada and the Churchill Society for Parliamentary Democracy. He has an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with an Option in Business Administration from Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario.

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The Great Bear Rainforest: a legacy for the lungs of the earth

National Observer
March 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Despite being one of the original architects of the Great Bear Rainforest campaign, it took veteran activist Tzeporah Berman nearly 20 years to fully grasp the impact of its conservation. …The Great Bear Rainforest — the largest temperate coastal rainforest left on the planet — is a rare and magnificent ecosystem roughly twice the size of Belgium, located off the B.C. coast. The story of its conservation is remarkable; loggers and activists were forced to resolve bitter, historical conflicts, while First Nations seized unprecedented power to create a sustainable future for their people and territory….But the ripple effect of the Great Bear Rainforest extends far beyond the world of advocacy, environmentalism, or even the fight for Indigenous rights and title — it brought corporations to their knees, said Berman, and practically re-wrote the rules of corporate social responsibility.

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DNA testing on trees fells illegal loggers

The Lead South Australia
March 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, International

DNA testing of wood from high-value bigleaf maple trees has led to the landmark prosecution of four timber thieves in the United States. Researchers at the University of Adelaide in South Australia were approached in 2012 by officers from the US Forest Service following the felling and theft of bigleaf maples from the Gifford Pinchot National Forest in Washington State. Four defendants charged with the theft recently pleaded guilty in a case that marks the first time the US government has prosecuted for illegal interstate trade of wood products under the Lacey Act.

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Timber companies shouldn’t get tax break for forests if they don’t share the forests

By Wes Cormier, County commissioner
The Daily World
March 5, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

I am writing this guest opinion piece because I continue to be asked questions about Ordinance 412, more commonly known as “fee for access.” It is a convoluted issue so I am happy to explain the details. …y issue lies with the broken promise of recreational access and the collection of large recreational fees while receiving a generous tax shift at the expense of our county residents. In other words, if you are operating a large scale hunting game reserve while shifting your property tax to neighboring residents, then you should no longer qualify for the timber program.

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Does Vt. need new laws to cut timber trespassing?

WCAX
March 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

NORTHFIELD, Vt. – Vermont loggers are busy this time of year trying to take advantage of the frozen ground to haul out their loads. This carefully monitored cut off Berlin Pond Road in Northfield is in a section of Montpelier’s Town Forest. …Not all loggers follow these best practices and a handful end up on the wrong side of the law. It’s called timber trespassing, and administration officials say it’s not being treated like the crime that it is. …Lawmakers are looking at measures that would require loggers to notify when they begin a cut, make trip tickets mandatory and other measures to discourage illegal activity. In an industry with thin profit margins, it’s not clear what this would cost loggers, much less the state.

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Bill Would Use Public Lands Timber Harvest Funds to Help Forest Industry

Maine Public Broadcasting News
March 3, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

The LePage administration is opposing a bill that would use money from the sale of timber on public lands to help the forest industry. Last year the governor proposed using timber sales to create a heating assistance program. But the plan fizzled after the Legislature balked at the plan and the attorney general’s office said that use was inappropriate. …“This is not the time to incentivize more people to enter this profession in recent months,” says Avery Day, the governor’s chief legal counsel. “And folks within the logging industry are looking for other means of employment.” Day says that while there are aspects of the bill that he likes, preparing more young people to enter the timber-harvesting industry isn’t one of them. “

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The Ecology of Economy

Bangor Daily News
March 4, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

…The relationship rests on how the establishment of robust markets incentivizes the various aspects of forest operations. When most people think of logging and forestry, the product that comes to mind is dimensional lumber, but in fact this constitutes a relatively low percentage of product. Sawlogs, the name for the higher-grade timber from which lumber is milled, accounts for only 27.5% of Maine’s production. While that is still a significant number (and if we were to look at it as a monetary value, it would doubtless be higher), you can’t build an industry on a quarter of the wood in the forest. Success of the industry and the forest rests on marketing the 75% of production that is low-grade. Otherwise, wise silviculture is more expensive, and it becomes more economic to simply strip away the gold.

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New Generation of Loggers Recruited

Building-Products
March 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Six apprentices recently became the first graduates of the Perforex Apprenticeship Program in a partnership between Perforex Forest Services, Woodworth, La. (RoyO-Martin’s harvester/hauler division), and Central Louisiana Technical Community College. Through their training, funded in part by a workforce opportunity grant, the graduates demonstrated the skills necessary to obtain a Commercial Driver’s License and become a certified Timber Harvesting Equipment Operator. Apprentices selected for the program were hired by Perforex and underwent a 10-month combination of classroom and on-the-job training covering logging-truck and timber-equipment operations and certification.

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Forest fires flare in Indonesia province

The Sydney Morning Herald
March 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Jakarta: Indonesia’s western province of Riau has declared a state of emergency over forest and land fires blazing on the island of Sumatra, a government official says. The fires, which send choking smog over south-east Asia every year, raged uncontrollably across several provinces last year, costing an estimated $US16 billion, and pushed average daily greenhouse gas emissions above those of the US. About 500 military and police personnel and a water-bombing helicopter have been deployed to help fight the fires but the haze had not yet reached urban areas, he said on Tuesday.

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Losing Papua New Guinea’s rainforest

ABC News Australia
March 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

An area of Papua New Guinea’s internationally significant rainforests in excess of the size of Australia’s entire Wet Tropics Heritage Area in north Queensland has been cleared or logged in the 10 years to 2014, a new report has found. The latest report from the University of Papua New Guinea’s Remote Sensing Centre shows pristine rainforest and unique species are being lost, and they are calling on PNG not to go ahead with major new logging concessions. There are also concerns about the climate change impact of new logging, including for countries in South East Asia where weather is influenced by moisture from PNG’s forests. It took scientists two and a half years to piece together evidence from satellite images to produce their report, State of the Forests of Papua New Guinea 2014. The report found 11,457 square kilometres of pristine forest had been cleared or logged between 2002 and 2014. 

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Government spending: embrace carbon first

The Boundary Sentinel
March 7, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada

Rare in the history of our collective battle to address climate change has there been a more serendipitous opportunity for our federal, provincial and territorial governments to lead by example. On the one hand, First Ministers at their recent Vancouver meeting underscored their commitment to move towards a low carbon economy. On the other, in the wake of the recent global economic slowdown, governments are rolling out economic stimulus spending initiatives to support jobs and address the country’s very real infrastructure deficit. The federal government alone is pledging to spend $60 billion over 10 years to support our economy. All levels of government in Canada spend more than $100 billion every year in goods and services. How all that money is spent will determine the size of the carbon footprint left behind.

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Forest Bioenergy Defined As Carbon Neutral By Federal Amendment

CleanTechnica
March 7, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

An amendment to the Energy Modernization Act of 2015 introduced by U.S. Senator Susan Collins, a Republican from Maine, says that forest bioenergy is carbon neutral and recognizes biomass as a form of renewable energy. The idea behind it seems to be that wood can be burned from forests because although it releases carbon into the atmosphere, new trees can be planted that take it back out. However, it has been pointed out that it might take decades or even longer for the new trees to mature and remove carbon from the atmosphere, and during that time the added carbon would be contributing to climate change. So, burning wood from forests would not be carbon neutral, it would be carbon additive.

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Vilsack defends biofuels, bioenergy during House hearing

Biomass Magazine
March 3, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

On Feb. 24, the House Committee on Agriculture held a hearing on the state of the rural economy. Biofuels and bioenergy were among the topics discussed during the nearly three-hour event. When asked to characterize the state of the biofuels industry, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack spoke about the need to maintain a strong rural economy. …Vislack stressed that the biofuels industry is something people like and want. It’s helping create jobs, reducing the cost of gas over time, reducing emissions, reducing the trade deficit, and helping to reduce U.S. reliance on foreign oil. …Responding to questions about USDA support of biomass fuels, Vilsack noted the department is working through its network of research centers to look for ways in which appropriate biomass supply chains can be created for each region of the country.

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General

Why Canada’s cement industry is crumbling

March 8, 2016
Category: Uncategorised

…For every tonne of cement produced, more than three-quarters of a tonne of carbon is released into the atmosphere. The industry accounts for more than eight per cent of global carbon emissions. …A carbon price above $100 per tonne—likely the minimum necessary for Canada to meet its obligations from the Paris climate change summit last year—would raise the cost of Canadian cement by about a third and threaten the survival of plants like St. Marys. …Perhaps the biggest threat to the future of cement is coming from one of its oldest competitors. Building code changes now permit the construction of wood-frame buildings up to six storeys high in some provinces. Provincial policies specifying “wood first” as the building material of choice for certain government-funded construction projects add to wood’s appeal. And wood retains, rather than emits, carbon, giving it an edge on the climate change file as well.

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