Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: March 21, 2016

Business & Politics

Room for optimism?

South Peace News
March 21, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

A best case scenario would have Tolko Industries re-opening their mill west of High Prairie in late 2017.  Otherwise, the message is the same for the closed plant west of High Prairie. “The message hasn’t changed in a couple of years,” said Tom Hoffman, Tolkos manager, external and stakeholder relations. “That message” is simple. Until the American housing market improves, the plant will not re-open. “We’re not in a position today to re-open the facility,” added Hoffman. Hoffman and Jim Baskerville, Tolko’s vice president, OSB and kraft papers, attended a public meeting with High Prairie town council March 9 to update the public about the mill’s possible re-opening. Hoffman began by telling council that Tolko’s investment in High Prairie so far has been $250 million. 

Read More

Ben Parfitt: Rising hydro bills pushing mills to burn fossil fuel

The Province
March 18, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Premier Christy Clark’s vow to push work at the $9-billion Site C dam “past the point of no return” may be music to the ears of some construction contractors, but not to all pulp and paper firms. In a great irony, as the costs soar into the billions to build infrastructure to supply “clean” electricity to natural gas companies and a hoped-for liquefied natural gas industry, the province and B.C. Hydro are imposing costs that are pushing existing industries to boost their reliance on fossil fuels. One pulp mill near Quesnel is a case in point. To defray rapidly rising hydro costs, the company plans to spend millions of dollars to produce its own power using natural gas….“We estimate that the six mechanical pulp mills purchased eight per cent of the electricity sold domestically by B.C. Hydro last year,” the presidents and CEOs of Canfor, West Fraser, Catalyst Paper and Paper Excellence told Finance Minister Mike de Jong in June 2014.

Read More

Budget delivers good news to small firms, start-ups and exporting businesses

Montreal Gazette
March 17, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Small, start-up and exporting businesses were among the major beneficiaries of new fiscal measures introduced in Thursday’s provincial budget. “It’s a positive sign being sent to small and medium-sized businesses on whom payroll taxes weigh heavily and hinder growth,” said Martine Hébert, vice-president and spokesperson for the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. …The struggling forestry sector gets initiatives totalling $230 million to help it become more competitive.

Read More

BRIGHTON: Mill closure opens doors for Port Hawkesbury Paper

Chronicle Herald
March 18, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

A paper mill in Maine is closing down this spring, to the potential benefit of its rival, the heavily subsidized Port Hawkesbury Paper mill in Point Tupper. Nova Scotia ratepayers who think this contraction in the North American market for high-end paper has nothing to do with them should think again. Other customers of Nova Scotia Power are paying a significant part of the power bill for Port Hawkesbury Paper (PHP). And the justification for that power subsidy is all tied up with PHP’s earnings in this tightly contested paper market. …The closure of the mill in Maine opens up room for PHP to sell more product in the U.S.

Read More

US housing construction to increase by 13.4% in 2016

EUWID Wood Products and Panels
March 17, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

Economic recovery, a drop in unemployment figures as well as an increase in the number of private households are expected to lead to a rise in demand for housing in the USA over the course of the current year. Against this background the US National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) expects an increase of 13.4% vis à vis last year to a total of 1.26m units in the number of new housing construction starts. The number of detached house building starts is expected to increase by 18% to 840,000 units.

Read More

Mill expansion facing legal challenge

Bonner County Daily Bee
March 17, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

SANDPOINT — Bonner County commissioners’ approval of a contested sawmill expansion in the Selle Valley is being challenged in 1st District Court. A half-dozen landowners adjacent to the Alpine Cedar mill filed a petition for judicial review of the board of commissioners’ approval of a conditional use permit for the expansion on Monday, court records show. The Bonner County Planning & Zoning Commission approved a permit for the mill’s expansion in August 2015, but the mill’s operators appealed a condition of approval that limited the facility’s hours of operations in light of complaints that the county received from nearby landowners who objected to the mill’s noise, emissions and vehicle traffic.

Read More

Weyerhaeuser Eliminates Three Mill Manager Positions in Flathead Valley

Three manager positions have been cut in the wood products division in Columbia Falls, Evergreen
Flathead Beacon
March 18, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

In the aftermath of a major merger between Weyerhaeuser and Plum Creek Timber Co., three management positions have been eliminated in the Flathead Valley. Company officials confirmed with the Beacon that three manager positions have been cut in the wood products division. The mill positions existed in both Evergreen and Columbia Falls. “As our Montana operations have joined a much larger Weyerhaeuser Wood Products organization, we now have new benchmarks for organizational structure,” Tom Ray, Montana resource team leader for Weyerhaeuser, said. “Given that, the decision was made to modify the wood products structure here in Montana and eliminate three manager positions.”

Read More

Wood product companies consider Bellingham Shipping Terminal

Bellingham Herald
March 20, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

BELLINGHAM – Bellingham’s industrial waterfront could become the new site for two companies interested in exporting logs and dried biomass fuel. Since fall, DKoram of Aberdeen and Bio-Fibre Manufacturing of Mission, B.C., have had an exclusive negotiating agreement with the Port of Bellingham. The agreement has given the two companies time to study how successful it could be to ship round logs and biomass made from wood and/or plant waste to Asia from the Bellingham Shipping Terminal. The two companies can be sure the port won’t talk to competing forest product companies through at least late April, but the port is also talking to potential customers in different industries who are interested in the spot in the meantime, said Dan Stahl, the port’s maritime director.

Read More

Weaker lumber markets and strengthening US dollar pushed Global Sawlog Price Index down almost 22%

By Hakan Ekstrom
Woodworking Network
March 18, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

SEATTLE, Wash. – The Global Sawlog Price Index (GSPI) continued its two-year decline in the 4Q/15 when the Index fell another 4.8% quarter-over-quarter, as reported in the Wood Resource Quarterly. In just two years, the GSPI has fallen 21.6% both because of a strengthening US dollar and lower demand for lumber in Asia, the MENA countries and in Europe. There have been some spectacular price reductions in US dollar terms in a number of countries over the past two years including Russia (-48%), Brazil (-32%), Norway (-31%), Austria (-30%), Germany (-28%) and British Columbia (-26%). The only region experiencing higher sawlog prices in late 2015 than in 2013 was the US South, where prices have slowly trended upward for much of the past three years because of increased production levels at the region’s sawmills.

Read More

NZ export log prices slip on higher shipping rates

New Zealand Scoop
March 21, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

New Zealand export log prices slid this month as shipping rates edged up on higher oil prices and amid weak demand in overseas markets. The average wharf-gate price for New Zealand A-grade logs declined to $119 a tonne in March, from $122 a tonne in February, according to AgriHQ’s monthly survey of exporters, forest owners and saw millers. Low oil prices have pushed shipping rates to record lows, underpinning export returns for New Zealand logs. However oil prices edged up about US$8 a barrel in the past month, signalling shipping rates, while still low, may have reached their bottom. The in-market price of A-grade logs in China, New Zealand’s largest market, fell to US$107/JAS from US$111/JAS last month following a slowdown in activity during the Chinese New Year holiday.

Read More

Wood, Paper & Green Building

Middletown supervisors vote to advertise ordinance designed to protect firefighters

Bucks County Courier Times
March 20, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

The Middletown supervisors are taking another step to protect volunteer firefighters who serve the township. Board members at a recent meeting voted unanimously to advertise an ordinance that would require identification placards for many township buildings constructed with roof or floor trusses. …Since trusses are held together by glue and spiked metal plates and not nails, buildings that contain them are more prone to roof and floor collapses during fires, Farry said. “Truss construction is very dangerous for us,” he said. “When exposed to severe heat during fires, the glue melts and the metal pops off and that often leads to the collapse of the roof or floor.” …”It is almost impossible for firefighters to identify a truss construction structure from the outside, creating the need for a system by which such buildings can be easily identified by firefighters and other emergency responders,” the proposed ordinance continued.

Read More

Forestry

Opinion: Protecting the treasure that is Canada’s boreal forest

by Gregory E. Siekaniec, Chief Executive Officer of Ducks Unlimited Canada,
Vancouver Sun
March 18, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

Canada’s boreal forest is a vast tract of land, stretching from British Columbia to Labrador, from Yukon to southern Ontario. This forest is so big that it’s hard to put its size into perspective. But think about this: three-quarters of all Canada’s forests and woodlands are in the boreal zone — that’s some 307 million hectares in total. …That’s why Ducks Unlimited, one of Canada’s oldest conservation organizations, is working hard to improve the public’s understanding and awareness of this impressive natural heritage, while also ensuring that its conservation and sustainable development support communities and help grow our economy. It’s also why we’re working with organizations like the Sustainable Forestry Initiative Inc. (SFI), the largest forest certification program in North America with strong acceptance internationally.

Read More

Canadian Forest Products Retain World’s Best Environmental Reputation

Forest Products Association of Canada
March 21, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

On this International Days of Forests, the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) is pleased to note that as a supplier of forest products, Canada comes out as number one in the world in terms of environmental practices and reputation among international customers. A study undertaken late in 2015 by Leger the Research Intelligence Group asked international buyers of wood, pulp and paper in the United States, Europe and Asia about their perceptions of forest products and environmental issues. The results are comparable to a similar survey done by Leger two years ago. “Once again the Canadian forest products industry is getting top marks when it comes to our environmental credentials,” says Derek Nighbor, the CEO of FPAC. 

Read More

Interior recognizes driver’s bravery

Boundary Creek Times
March 18, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Ernst Baxmann is a hero, says International Forest products (Interfor) logging engineer Aaron Gunther. The company agreed without hesitation and stepped up with a way to thank him. It was in early December that Baxmann was driving his personally-owned logging truck, fully loaded, when he met a jeep that had crossed the centre line. Because of Baxmann’s driving expertise, both he and the female driver of the Jeep are alive today. “Ernst saved a lady’s life in Greenwood before Christmas by wiping out his own logging truck and could have easily either seriously hurt or killed himself doing it,” Gunther said.

Read More

Not All Forestry Is Carbon Equal

by The Nature Conservancy
National Geographic
March 18, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

The UN’s International Day of Forests is on March 21. …But on this International Day of Forests, as the world continues to see significant forest loss globally, I want to spotlight one important issue: we can’t ensure a sustainable future for forests by simply striving to protect them from development. We must also engage the forestry sector in sustainable forest management. …To be clear, there remain important challenges to achieving sustainable forest management. But exciting new developments — new science, technology and tools, and business models — are enabling us to address many of these challenges today.

Read More

Logging project in Bitterroot moves forward

The Missoulian
March 19, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

HAMILTON – Bitterroot National Forest officials are hoping fuel reduction work on the last section of wildland/urban interface on the west side of the valley will get underway this fall. Before that can happen, the forest’s Westside Collaborative Vegetation Management Project will have to survive an objection process that officially began Friday. Bitterroot National Forest Supervisor Julie King announced Friday the environmental analysis and her draft decision was available to the public. That announcement started a 30-day time period in which parties that had submitted comments earlier on the project could file objections. The objection period ends April 16.

Read More

Timber Firms Nearing Collapse

Payson Roundup
March 18, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The Eastern Arizona Counties Association has made a desperate plea for the U.S. Forest Service to knock loose enough forest thinning projects to keep the struggling timber industry in the White Mountains alive. Gila County Supervisor Tommie Martin joined with supervisors from five eastern counties in a letter pleading with U.S. Forest Service Chief Thomas Tidwell to immediately shift 4,000 acres from the Four Forest Restoration Initiative contractor to existing forest products companies in the White Mountains – in addition to 15,000 acres annually going forward. …“Approximately 90 percent of the log utilization capacity in the White Mountains is shut down currently for lack of wood supply and the only biomass plant in Arizona is currently operating with only 1 ½ weeks of fuel,” said the letter.

Read More

A burning question facing our forests

Albuquerque Journal
March 18, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

SANTA FE, N.M. — Are prescribed burns misguided? That claim flared up last week when the Santa Fe City Council approved financing to manage and restore Santa Fe’s municipal watershed. The council unanimously approved the loan/grant agreement with New Mexico Water Trust Board and the state Finance Authority despite passionate pleas from some people who say fighting fire with fire, using prescribed burns and pile burns to thin the forest and reduce fuel loads, is not only misguided, but also contributes to climate change. …Moses and others said peer-reviewed studies show that prescribed burns actually increase the risk of catastrophic fires by drying out forests and, worse, accelerate climate change by releasing carbon and mercury into the atmosphere.

Read More

Triple Tree timber harvest must be thoughtful

March 21, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The Montana DNRC plans a timber harvest and sale on the Gallatin front range adjacent to the Triple Tree and Eagle Rock subdivisions. This harvest has the potential to significantly change the forests and available wildlife in this area, which sports some of the most popular trails and roads for recreation that are enjoyed by the broader Bozeman community. … Those of us living in Triple Tree of course are highly concerned. This is to be expected. We invested in properties precisely in order to have views of this beautiful front range. But in Triple Tree, we also feel a stewardship to help preserve the beauty of this area and the abundant wildlife present here, so that it can be enjoyed by the broader Bozeman community. We welcome the many hikers, bikers, wildlife enthusiasts and hunters who enjoy our Triple Tree trails and roads every day.

Read More

4FRI loggers, mills struggling

Arizona Daily Sun
March 20, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The announcement last month that the Forest Service would be ramping up manpower and money on the region’s Four Forest Restoration Initiative was perhaps most anticipated and most desperately needed in an area far from Flagstaff. Loggers, mills and wood products businesses on the eastern portion of the project’s footprint are teetering on the edge of survival, according to a Feb. 17 letter sent to U.S. Forest Service Chief Thomas Tidwell. …The letter also lays out 16 potential solutions for the Forest Service to consider, including one to reevaluate biomass removal requirements in some contracts and another to offer east side acreage to local contractors instead of Good Earth Power AZ. Good Earth holds the largest 4FRI contract but so far has thinned only 12 percent of the acres it has been awarded.

Read More

Forest Crisis

Payson Roundup
March 18, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Someone or another once said: “Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.” Point being — we hope the U.S. Forest Service will take that old adage to heart and treat the need to thin Arizona’s forests as the desperate emergency it represents. …The Forest Service embraced the idea so clumsily as to nearly smother the poor dear. …Now the Eastern Arizona Counties Organization has made an urgent appeal to the Forest Service to shift enough of the 4FRI contracts from the Good Earth to the tattered remnant of the old White Mountain Stewardship group. …We hope the Forest Service will heed that plea and get these projects
moving. The Forest Service must make forest thinning and the revival of
the logging industry its top priority in Arizona.

Read More

Triple Tree timber harvest must be thoughtful

March 21, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The Montana DNRC plans a timber harvest and sale on the Gallatin front range adjacent to the Triple Tree and Eagle Rock subdivisions. This harvest has the potential to significantly change the forests and available wildlife in this area, which sports some of the most popular trails and roads for recreation that are enjoyed by the broader Bozeman community. … Those of us living in Triple Tree of course are highly concerned. This is to be expected. We invested in properties precisely in order to have views of this beautiful front range. But in Triple Tree, we also feel a stewardship to help preserve the beauty of this area and the abundant wildlife present here, so that it can be enjoyed by the broader Bozeman community. We welcome the many hikers, bikers, wildlife enthusiasts and hunters who enjoy our Triple Tree trails and roads every day.

Read More

Will Our Trees Survive the Warming Temps?

Public News Service
March 20, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A crew of scientists from Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory has been making its way through the Ozark Mountains, dodging snakes and poison ivy to study tree rings, to see how they’re reacting to climate change.  In much of North America, research has shown climate warming is happening so quickly that trees can’t adapt but that isn’t the case in the south-central U.S., where temperatures haven’t changed much yet.  Research professor Park Williams says some tree species will be more vulnerable than others. “And if we can identify some species that do very well versus other species that do poorly in the warmth, then maybe we can understand how these tree species may respond in a future world where warming takes place,” says Williams.

Read More

Forest service battles blaze in North Carolina mountains

Associated Press in Greenboro.com
March 17, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

FAIRVIEW, N.C. — Firefighters are working to contain a blaze in the mountains of western North Carolina. The North Carolina Forest Service told local media the fire started Wednesday night near Fairview in Buncombe County. The fire has burned about 60 acres of land south of Fairview. Michael Cheek with the forest service said more resources were being put into the containment effort Thursday morning. Cheek said it could be several days before the fire is out. No injuries have been reported. He said there are houses in the area but no evacuations have been needed so far. At least nine fire departments were called to the area.

Read More

Coffs harbour protesters deliver damning message to Forestry NSW

ABC News, Australia
March 21, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

“They’ve closed the office temporarily, now we want them to close it permanently” was the pronouncement of the North East Forest Alliance’s John Corkill as he taped a notice to the door of Coffs Harbour’s Forestry Corporation office. More than 100 protesters holding placards and waving homemade flags cheered him on as employees inside the building peered out from behind closed blinds. The Alliance and its supporters used the United Nations’ International Day of Forestry to oppose the operations of the Corporation, the largest manager of commercial forests in New South Wales. Mr Corkill said the group was symbolically revoking a “social licence” to log, burn and pollute the state’s native forests. “There is no continued public support for native forest logging,” he said.

Read More

Tasmanian loggers hit out at decision to drop World Heritage Area plans

ABC News, Australia
March 21, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Specialty timber loggers are disappointed the Tasmanian Government and its federal counterpart “don’t have the stomach” to fight a UNESCO recommendation that selective logging in the state’s World The Tasmanian Government wanted to open up parts of the protected area for logging, mainly for specialty species timber. But a UNESCO report advised against the plan and the state and federal governments accepted “the umpire’s decision”. Tasmanian Specialty Timbers spokesman Andrew Denman told 936 ABC Hobart the industry was very disappointed but did not expect either government to do anything about it.

Read More

NZ interest in forest certification marks International Day of Forests

Voxy.co.nz
March 20, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

NZ hosted the CEO and General Secretary of PEFC (The Programme for Endorsement of Forest Certification) (PEFC), one of the world’s leading forest certification schemes, on the eve of International Day of Forests (21st March). “Great progress has been made with the introduction of a PEFC scheme for New Zealand in the two years since my last visit”, said Ben Gunneberg. “In the last two years, the New Zealand Forest Certification Association (NZFCA) has been established, it has been recognised as the NZ member of the PEFC General Assembly and had the NZ Forest Certification Scheme endorsed by PEFC in December last year. The first certificates for PEFC chain of custody have already been issued”.

Read More

Time to cut losses not native trees, as deficit climbs, Australia Institute says

The Sydney Morning Herald
March 21, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Logging of native forests has cost NSW taxpayers $78 million over the past six years for a declining industry that is also a primary risk for the state’s rising number of threatened species, according to a report by The Australia Institute. The losses have been clocked up by the hardwood unit of the Forestry Corporation of NSW in the six years to the 2014-15 financial year. About 95 per cent of the division’s revenue comes from logging in native forests rather than hardwood plantations, the report said. “In this day and age, native forests can’t compete with professionally managed forestry,” Roderick Campbell, one of the report’s authors, said. The paper was commissioned by the Nature Conservation Council and the National Parks Association on NSW.

Read More

Tasmania’s Tarkine emerges as forest conflict hotspot over speciality timber access

ABC News, Australia
March 21, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The Tarkine is shaping up as the new battleground in the reignited conflict over forestry, as the Tasmanian Government looks for sources of specialty timber outside the World Heritage Area. The Government is abiding by UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee’s ruling against selective logging in the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area (TWWHA). Forestry Minister Peter Gutwein said the decision was disappointing, but work was underway to assess the availability of special species, such as myrtle and celery top pine, in other reserves and conservation areas. “I’m going to be looking at all of the land outside the TWWHA,” he said. “The special species timber industry in Tasmania is an important part of the fabric of this state, it’s important that it is enduring going forward.”

Read More

CK’s logging into a niche market

The Gympie Times
March 21, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

ELEISHA Kirk and husband Jason reckon “Dad knows best” when it comes to business. “The idea of a portable sawmill originated with my father,” Eleisha said. “He’d been talking about it since 2006.” The couple bought one in 2008 and named it CK’s Milling, after Eleisha’s father Ian Coulch and Jason’s surname Kirk. “We bought it, but dad was always interested in doing it and operating it,” Eleisha said. But now, the business is expanding due to another dream. “It has been my dream for many years to one day expand the portable sawmill part of CK’s and get my own excavator and truck,” Jason said. He realised the dream last year when he bought one of each. His eight-ton excavator has an array of attachments which gives him earthwork options.

Read More

Scientists stunned by rapid Chinese forest growth

BABW News
March 20, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Researchers from Michigan State University have announced that a national forest conservation program implemented by the Chinese government at the end of the 20th century has been a huge success. According to a report from CS Monitor, the program, which was implemented in 1998, has resulted in a full comeback of Chinese forests, which faced huge pressure from logging and clear-cutting. The research team used satellite imaging to monitor where and by how much Chinese tree cover was changing. Over the ten years from 2000 to 2010, the nation enjoyed a net gain in forest cover thanks to the success of the program.

Read More

NZ forest harvest falls in 2015 for first time in 7 years

New Zealand Scoop
March 21, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

New Zealand forest harvest volumes declined in 2015 for the first time in seven years as uncertainty about future prices prompted plantation owners to hold back from felling their trees. The country harvested 38,896,354 cubic metres of wood, mostly radiata pine, last year, 3 percent less than in 2014 and marking the first decline since 2008, AgriHQ said, citing data from the Ministry for Primary Industries. The value of wood exports, New Zealand’s third-largest commodity export behind dairy and meat, slid 4.1 percent last year to $3.52 billion, according to Statistics NZ data.

Read More

Tasmania abandons World Heritage Area logging plans on UNESCO advice

ABC News, Australia
March 20, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The Tasmanian Government has abandoned plans to selectively log its Wilderness World Heritage Area after UNESCO recommended against it. The Government wanted to open up just under 200,000 hectares for logging, mainly for specialty species timber. But in a final report released last night, UNESCO advised against the plan. The Government has no obligation to abide by the report, but said it would. Environment Minister Matthew Groom said the Government would abide by the recommendation as it said it would. “The Tasmanian Government together with the Australian Government accepts the recommendations of the mission’s report,” he said.

Read More

China’s forests recovering at the expense of other nations, study says

Reuters
March 18, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

TORONTO (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – After taking a beating from decades of logging, China’s forests have begun to regenerate, but the problem of deforestation may have shifted to other nations exporting wood to the world’s most populous country, researchers said on Friday. Between 2000 and 2010, about 1.2 percent of China’s territory – an area larger than Portugal – experienced a significant net gain in tree cover, said the study from researchers at Michigan State University in the United States. …Researchers cited Madagascar, Vietnam and Indonesia as countries that are felling forests to fulfill Chinese demand, potentially increasing climate change and hurting biodiversity in the process. “The exporting countries are suffering from deforestation,” Liu wrote in an email to the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Read More

China’s efforts to restore forests are working

Michigan State University
March 18, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

China’s sweeping program to restore forests across the country is working. The vast destruction of China’s forests, leveled after decades of logging, floods and conversion to farmland, has become a story of recovery, according to the first independent verification published in the current issue of Science Advances by Michigan State University researchers. “It is encouraging that China’s forest has been recovering in the midst of its daunting environmental challenges such as severe air pollution and water shortages,” said co-author Jianguo “Jack” Liu, Rachel Carson Chair in Sustainability and director of MSU’s Center for Systems Integration and Sustainability. “In today’s telecoupled world, China is increasingly connected with other countries both socioeconomically and environmentally

Read More

Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

American wood will heat homes in Paris

IOL
March 20, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Paris – Paris plans to import thousands of tons of wood per year from the United States as part of its push to use more renewable energy in its urban heating systems, city authorities said on Thursday. Paris urban heating company CPCU – which provides heat and hot water for more than a quarter of Parisians – plans to burn 140 000 tons of wood pellets per year in a new 75-million-euro ($84 million) plant in Saint-Ouen, north of Paris, that will start operating in a few weeks. Environmentalists have questioned to what extent wood-fired power plants can reduce carbon emissions, especially if the wood has to be imported. But CPCU said the use of wood – as well as a switch from fuel oil to gas – will avoid 300 000 tons of CO2 emissions per year.

Read More

Pacific forests important to climate resilience: SPC

The Pacific Community (SPC) wants better forest management to develop a region more resilient to climate change.
Radio New Zealand News
March 21, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Speaking on the theme “Forests and Water” for this year’s international day of forests SPC’s director general says forests act as natural water filters by helping to prevent soil erosion and lessen sedimentation in water bodies. Colin Tukuitonga says when trees are cut down, land areas are vulnerable to erosion, increasing the effects of flooding during the rainy season and drought in the dry season. He says the SPC is urging countries around the region to better manage their forest resources.

Read More

Planting trees is good for the environment, right?

Yes, but only if we plant the right trees in the right places, a Coillte conference on climate change and forestry heard
The Irish Times
March 18, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

t was election day, and the subject of debate was climate change. After a political campaign in which environmental issues were generally so neglected it was refreshing to find Coillte, the State-owned commercial forestry company, bringing together forest managers, businesspeople, civil servants, scientists and NGOs for an open-minded conference on climate and Irish forestry at Farmleigh House, in Phoenix Park. … Many speakers stressed that, in terms of climate benefits, there are still big question marks over what trees should be planted in what places, and over how best to manage them to meet diverse and sometimes conflicting economic, environmental and social needs.

Read More