Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: May 10, 2016

Special Feature

Sustainable Forestry is Key in Fighting Climate Change!

Coast Forest Products Association
May 10, 2016
Category: Special Feature
Region: Canada, Canada West

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Business & Politics

Minister Thomson announces $1 million replenishment to the Forestry Service Providers Compensation Fund

BC Truck Loggers Association
May 6, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Vernon – Today Minister Steve Thomson announced an additional $1 million contribution to the Forestry Service Providers Compensation Fund—bringing government’s total fund contributions to $7 million—in a move that supports contractor sustainability and the independent harvesting contractors at the heart of BC’s forest industry. “Since it came online in 2013, almost $500,000 has been paid from the Fund to contractors who were working for licensees that became insolvent,” said David Elstone, TLA Executive Director. “This shows the fund is needed to support contractors left high and dry.” …Forest contractors run locally owned businesses that create jobs throughout BC’s rural communities. When these companies are left in the lurch by a tenure holder that becomes insolvent, the whole community suffers. “We’ve seen this happen more than once,” said Elstone. “And we know that the ripples are felt throughout our communities.”

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Chinese provincial delegation seeks more business with B.C.

By Chuck Chiang
Vancouver Sun
May 9, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

A high-level trade delegation from the southeast Chinese province of Guangdong is in Vancouver this week touting trade and investment cooperation and China’s economic development plans in southern Asia. Canadian officials met at the Vancouver Convention Centre on Monday with members of a 200-strong delegation from China that included Hu Chunhua, the top Communist official in Guangdong. …Clark noted that deals such as Squamish’s Woodfibre LNG agreeing to sell liquefied natural gas to Guangdong’s Guangzhou Gas Group are key for both B.C.’s economy and it contribution to fighting climate change. …Hu said he sees B.C. as an ideal target as China tries to integrate into western economies. He said Guangdong wants to invest in Canadian sectors such as engineering, bioscience and finance, as well as environmental innovation.

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Catalyst Announces First Quarter Results

Marketwired
May 9, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

RICHMOND, BRITISH COLUMBIA— Catalyst Paper (TSX:CYT) today announced results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2016. Adjusted earnings before tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) was $17.1 million and adjusted EBITDA before specific items was $17.7 million in the first quarter, compared to adjusted EBITDA of $15.1 million and adjusted EBITDA before specific items of $19.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2015. In the first quarter, the company reported $16.9 million in net earnings and a net loss before specific items of $5.1 million, compared to a net loss of $26.3 million and a net loss of $10.0 before specific items in the fourth quarter of 2015. First quarter earnings benefited from a $22.6 million foreign exchange gain on the translation of U.S. dollar denominated debt.

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Finance Minister promotes spending in the 2016 Alberta Budget

Hinton Parklander
May 9, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Alberta Finance Minister, Joe Ceci, unrolled the Alberta Jobs Plan with one strong message at its core: now is not the time to save, but the time to spend. …Mayor Rob Mackin asked Ceci what the government’s plan was in regards of the mountain pine beetle. “Forestry is probably one of the most resilient industries in Alberta right now,” he said. “And it’s a con- cern of industry folks that the government may be pulling focus from the mountain pine beetle efforts.” Ceci said he wasn’t aware that there was any pull-back in funding and that he would “look into it”. However, according to West Yellowhead MLA Eric Rosendahl, the NDP government has pulled back nearly $2 million in funding to fight the epidemic. Rosendahl said the government has promised to continue to support mountain pine beetle efforts, regardless of fund cuts.

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Norbord Provides Update On Fire At High Level, Alberta Mill

Canada Newswire press release
May 9, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

TORONTO, – Norbord Inc. (TSX and NYSE: OSB) today provided an update on the fire at its OSB mill in High Level, Alberta. As previously reported, in the afternoon of May 4th, a fire broke out in the mill yard which, as a result of the hot, dry, windy weather conditions in northern Alberta, quickly spread to the log storage area outside the plant. As a precaution, Norbord immediately suspended production at the mill. Fire crews have contained the fire to one end of the log storage area outside the mill. Norbord continues to assess the damage and currently estimates that the mill should be able to resume production in two weeks. Shipping from finished goods inventory resumed over the weekend.

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Acadian Timber Corp. Reports First Quarter Results

Stockhouse
May 9, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Acadian Timber Corp. today reported financial and operating results(1) for the three months ended March 26, 2016. “Acadian continues to benefit from strong hardwood markets and high operating rates among our softwood sawmilling customers supported by the steady recovery in the U.S. housing market,” commented Mark Bishop, Chief Executive Officer of Acadian. “Our business continues to perform well with key market trends that remain supportive.”

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Enviva reports production increase, lower fiber costs in Q1 resul

Biomass Magazine
May 9, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

On May 5, Enviva Partners LP released its first quarter financial and operating results, with Chairman and CEO John Keppler noting that as Enviva just completed its first year as a public company, it has established an early track record of increasing distribution every quarter, and with strong operational performance, expects to continue to do so while building coverage throughout the year. …For the first quarter of 2016, Enviva LP generated net revenue of $107.3 million on sales of 560,000 metric tons of wood pellets, representing a decrease of 6 percent, or $7.1 million, from the corresponding quarter of 2015 with net revenue of $114.3 million on 583,000 metric tons sold.

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Trump promises to tackle Oregon’s declining timber industry

Portland Tribune
May 7, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West


About 5,000 people crowded into the Lane Events Convention Center Friday afternoon to hear Republican presidential candidate Donald J. Trump during his first campaign stop in Oregon. …Trump told the crowd that he would tackle Oregon’s declining timber industry and rural Oregon’s joblessness and economic issues. He said he would restore the timber industry, KOIN reported.  Cindy Land, chairwoman of the Lane County Republican Party, told KOIN that she was confident Oregon voters will get behind Trump in the fall.

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Project incentives in legislation

Mesabi Daily News
May 7, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

ST. PAUL — The wood products company seems close to officially announcing Minnesota’s Iron Range has been chosen over Michigan and Canada for a new manufacturing plant to produce home siding. The incentive package for the project is ready and has been put into Senate and House bills by DFL Sen. David Tomassoini and Rep. Jason Metsa. The proposal is now awaiting debate and votes in conference committee. …It would produce 250 permanent positions and several times that number of indirect jobs. Loggers and truckers would reap major benefits daily as timber resources would be loaded up and delivered to the plant and final product shipped out.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

History museum architect has designed better northern home

Ottawa Sun
May 9, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

Construction techniques employed at the Canadian Museum of History could help replace shoddy, mould-ridden homes in northern indigenous communities with durable, healthy residences. Douglas Cardinal, the renowned Ottawa architect who designed the history museum, has designed a prefab three-bedroom loft-style house using cross laminated timber, made by gluing two-by-fours together at 90-degree angles. The result, Cardinal says, is a solid slab of wood that’s as strong as concrete, more fire-resistant than steel and far more energy efficient than houses made with traditional stick-frame construction. …Traditional stick-frame construction is ill-suited to the north, Cardinal said in an interview. “The housing is terrible. It’s not designed around the people’s needs or culture.”

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Tall wood building proponents reach for federal R&D, market development subsidies

By Concrete News
Concrete Produts
May 9, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

Senators Mike Crapo and Debbie Stabenow have introduced the Timber Innovation Act to “help accelerate research and development—and ultimately construction—of wood buildings in the United States [and] focus on finding innovative ways to use wood in the construction of buildings above 85 feet in height or roughly seven or more stories.”  …The Timber Innovation Act would incentivize investment through the National Forest Products Lab plus American colleges and universities to conduct research and development on new methods for wood building practice; and fund Department of Agriculture efforts to support the use of wood products as a building material for tall buildings, authorizing for five years the agency’s annual Tall Wood Building Prize Competition. …“Advancing the construction of tall wood buildings will help lower the cost of building construction and reduce reliance on fossil fuel-intensive materials,” claims American Wood Council CEO Robert Glowinski.

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Forestry

B.C. caribou herds decline, wolf kill to continue

By Tom Fletcher
BC Local News in Rossland News
May 9, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Endangered caribou herds in the Kootenays and South Peace region have continued to decline as the B.C. government assesses the second year of its wolf removal project. Nine wolves were killed by hunting and trapping in the South Selkirk Mountains this winter, while wolves took two caribou out of a herd that was down to 18 animals at last count. Forests ministry staff will try to shoot 24 wolves from helicopters before the snow melts in the South Selkirks. Six of the remaining caribou have been fitted with radio collars to track them. Four northern caribou groups in the South Peace targeted for wolf control have also declined, to about 170 animals in the Quintette, Moberley, Scott and Kennedy Siding herds. Ministry staff have documented that about one third of losses in the South Peace are from wolves, where there are seven herds, one down to a single bull.

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Canada does little prescribed burning, forest thinning

B.C. professor says laws, liability led to change; C.O. practices very different
KTVZ
May 9, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Prescribed burns were used more frequently in Canada from the 1960s to 1990s, Lori Daniels of the University of British Columbia’s Department of Forest and Conservation Sciences, told NewsChannel 21 on Monday. Since then, she said, “Changes in our laws and changes in issues around liability and human health have restricted the amount of prescribed burns. At the same time, residential areas (close to forests) have been growing.” …Central Oregon fire prevention strategies are vastly different. “We’re actually trying to accelerate the amount of prescribed burning we do,” said Alex Enna, assistant fire management officer with the Deschutes National Forest. It’s not the only tool they’re using. Forest thinning is another essential part of fire prevention nowadays.

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Calgary trees need a good, long drink after a dry winter and spring

City encouraging public to hydrate older trees in their communities
CBC News
May 9, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Calgary’s warm winter and spring has certainly helped fill out our city’s lilac bushes and grassy spaces. But some of our trees are going bald. “[They’ve] pretty much leafed out but there’s nothing happening at the top,” said Jeanette Wheeler, the urban forestry lead for the City of Calgary. She’s been keeping a close eye on all the trees planted on boulevards and in parks, and says the dry weather is starting to take a toll on some of the city’s gentle green giants. “There is a moisture deficit and they’re not able to pull enough moisture from the ground all the way up to the top,” Wheeler told the Calgary Eyeopener on Monday.

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P.E.I. forestry employees learn how to get out of moving helicopters

‘They can go to fires in other parts of the country where safe landing sites might not be available’
CBC News
May 9, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Some P.E.I. forestry workers are learning how to safety get in and out of a moving helicopter — a skill they’ll need if they’re eventually deployed to help fight wildfires in Fort McMurray or other fires in remote areas. Ken Mayhew, the information officer with the Forests, Fish and Wildlife division of the provincial government, said the eight employees will be taking part in training in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. “Four are going to New Brunswick and four are going to Nova Scotia over the next couple of days. The intent here is take training in how to exit and enter a helicopter — a moving helicopter — safely,” said Mayhew. “So that they can go to fires in other parts of the country where safe landing sites might not be available.”

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US must step-up forest pest prevention, new study says

Phys.org
May 10, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Imported forest pests cause billions of dollars in damages each year, and U.S. property owners and municipalities foot most of the bill. Efforts to prevent new pests are not keeping pace with escalating trade and must be strengthened if we are to slow the loss of our nation’s trees. So reports a team of 16 scientists in a new paper published online today in the journal Ecological Applications. Dr. Gary Lovett, a forest ecologist at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies and the paper’s lead author, explains, “Imported forest pests are the most pressing and underappreciated forest health issue in the U.S. today. We need to act now to strengthen prevention if we are going to protect billions of valuable trees in communities and forests all across the U.S.”

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Get your hit of nature inside your home or office with NaturePod

TreeHugger
May 9, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Biophilia is human’s deep-seated affinity for nature. It explains why we feel restored after being in a park, invigorated by the seashore, captivated by crackling fires and crashing waves; why our capacity to be creative can be influenced by viewing scenes of nature. That’s why it is now part of good green building practice and is considered critical in the Living Building Challenge and the Well Building Standard. But people who work in the city cannot always get out to a park. … That’s why the NaturePod is so interesting. It looks like a massage chair with a headset, but it is much more: NaturePod™ is a revolutionary new way to deliver nature to the workplace. Its proprietary technology uses Natural Resonance Imaging (NRI) to recreate the diverse restorative and physical health gains of spending time in nature through scientifically curated imagery.

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Mendocino County voters to decide on timber practices, Fort Bragg zoning issues

The Press Democrat
May 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A ballot measure aimed at halting the controversial timber harvest practice of poisoning unwanted trees and then leaving them to die and decompose is among three initiatives Mendocino County voters will decide in the June 7 election. If approved, Measure V would create a county ordinance declaring trees that are killed and left standing for more than 90 days to be a nuisance and fire danger. Companies conducting such operations would be liable for any damage the practice causes to structures, water sources and telecommunication lines within 1,000 meters of the trees. The ordinance does not state who determines liability. The ballot measure’s proponents, led by local fire district officials, say the current practice increases the risk and intensity of wildfires, endangering both rural residents and firefighters. They claim the timber industry has left millions of trees standing dead across tens of thousands of acres.

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Mountain pine beetle outbreak subsides, but dead trees remain

Wyoming Tribune Eagle
May 9, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

CHEYENNE – The mountain pine beetle outbreak that spanned almost two decades is all but over locally, but dead and dying trees remain. Since the outbreak’s beginning in 1996, the pine beetle has killed thousands of mature lodgepole pine trees across Wyoming, Colorado and other Rocky Mountain states. But as the beetle has run into fewer trees to attack, the outbreak has subsided. “The mountain pine beetle epidemic for Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests has basically run its course,” said Mark Westfahl, a timber program manager for the national forests and Thunder Basin National Grassland. Westfahl said evidence from aerial surveys shows the number of acres affected by pine beetles has decreased.

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Forestry Service software tool shows which Houston areas need trees

Chron.com
May 9, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Money trees may not exist, but that doesn’t mean trees don’t make money. i-Tree Landscape, just one part of a software suite developed by the U.S. Forestry Service, provides information on how valuable trees are in a given area. Those giant green stalks help to recycle air pollution, keep things cool and can help reduce the effects of heavy rainfall. More than simply details, the interactive also provides data on which areas have greater need of trees based on selective criteria. For the purposes of the gallery above, we selected a population density criteria.

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Rep. Dianda recognized for leadership on forestry issues

UpMatters.com
May 6, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

State Representative Scott Dianda (D-Calumet) said today that he is honored to be given the Legislator of the Year Award by the Great Lakes Timber Professionals Association. “Michigan’s forests are important to the Upper Peninsula’s economy and culture, and I know that actions taken in Lansing can have great impact on both the timber industry and the families who have made this their life’s work,” said Dianda. “I am glad to be able to work with the timbermen and the people of the U.P. to make sure that we make the right decisions in Lansing about our forests so that they will continue providing jobs in both the timber and tourism industries.”

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The fallacies surrounding Sparta Mountain

by Marie Defalco
New Jersey Herald
May 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Loaded words whose definitions do not match the arguments, such as pristine, preserved and logging. For example, is cutting down a tree and leaving it on the ground considered “logging?” Is an area considered “pristine” even after it was cut and/or mined decades ago? Is a forest protected from development no longer considered “preserved” because the forest is being managed? Perhaps these professionals want members or donations for their organizations, or don’t want trees cut. Either way, it’s troubling to see disingenuous behavior considered acceptable. In today’s world, we need more honesty and collaboration, not less.

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Technical advisory team formed to re-examine billion tree project

SAMAA TV
May 9, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

ISLAMABAD: The government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has decided to form a technical advisory committee comprising of foresters, ecologist, academia, civil society and media to re-examine the species to be planted under KP’s Billion Tree Tsunami Project. The decision was taken during a ‘Billion Tree Tsunami Project (BTTP) meeting’ held at the KP House on Monday. …The meeting was convened after a news story of planting ‘”wrong species” such as Conocarpus, Eucalyptus, Dodonea and Mesquite,appeared in a newspaper and was circulated with foresters on All-Forester Network, maintained by a think tank LEAD Pakistan.

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The challenges of working in the Hunter Valley’s sustainable timber industry

By Robert Virtue
ABC News Australia
May 10, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Education is key to ensuring timber resources last the distance, a sustainable timber mill operator says. Annabel Kater operates an Australian Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified sustainable milling operation at Monkerai, north of Newcastle, with her husband. She said with timber resources being diminished in areas around the state, the broader logging industry should look to strategies such as education to help it manage in the long term. Ms Kater and her husband started in the sustainable timber industry after being involved in the planting of trees across the Hunter region. “We realised that the native forest just grew itself, and we were trying to design plantations more like native forests, and we thought, ‘Why not manage the native forests properly?'” Ms Kater said.

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Forest Fires

Theo Moudakis: Firefighting superheroes

Toronto Star
May 10, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada

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Q&A: What you need to know about the science of forest fires

How do fires jump over bodies of water? How are fires like tornadoes?
MacLean’s
May 9, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada

Over the last 35 years working as researcher with the Canadian Forest Service within the federal department of Natural Resources Canada, Tim Lynham has become an expert in fire behaviour, prediction and ecology. The latest project Lynham is leading focuses on developing remote sensing technology, and will build on Canada’s strength at fire forecasting. Against the backdrop of all that’s happening in Fort McMurray, Lynham spoke from his post in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., about how fast and furious forest fires burn, how plants and animals survive, and the stunning power of fire over wind and water. Q: Are fires different depending on where they’re happening?

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Now is not the time to discuss global warming in Fort McMurray

By Stephen Hume
Vancouver Sun
May 10, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

An ethical argument seizes environmentalists as events unfold across northern B.C. and Alberta, where fire threatens Fort St. John and 80,000 people were evacuated from Fort McMurray — bedroom community, supply depot and staging point for oilsands development. Is it appropriate to indulge in victim-blaming by declaring it’s all bad karma for the inhabitants now fleeing a vast forest conflagration caused by the global warming for which petroleum development is demonized? Or would that be bad taste, bad public relations and misplaced blame — not to mention colossal insensitivity to the sadness of this human calamity — since weather is not climate and linking one hot spell in a particular place to global warming is dubious? The answers are, first, that this has nothing to do with karma.

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Investigators believe wildfires in B.C.’s Peace region deliberately set

Canadian Press in Vancouver Sun
May 10, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

FORT ST. JOHN — Investigators say arson is believed to be the cause of at least 10 wildfires in northeastern British Columbia. The Environment Ministry said fire investigators and conservation officers have found evidence to suggest the fires in the Peace region were deliberately set. Some of the fires have caused property damage, said Chris Postuma with the B.C. Conservation Officer Service. He declined to provide details, saying an investigation is ongoing. The blazes are believed to be connected, and the extra conservation officers brought in to help investigate are asking for tips from the public. The Peace region has been hit by an early and aggressive start to the fire season as flames have been fanned by hot, dry and windy conditions.

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UPDATE: Wind No Friend To MB In Forest Fire Fight

CJOB
May 9, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

Hundreds of cottagers have been evacuated as two fires burning on the Manitoba-Ontario border continue to challenge crews. The latest – 61 cottages and a lodge are being cleared out at Wallace Lake because of the fire near Beresford. That fire is about 50,000 hectares, but most of it is in Ontario. Officials are closely monitoring conditions at Long Lake. Further south, the second 2,800 hectare fire sparked the evacuation of the east shore of Caddy Lake this morning. Gary Friesen, the manager of the province’s fire program, say the winds have not been on our side. “The wind’s not very favourable for us for the next couple of days and it hasn’t been for the past few days. It’s a south-southeast wind, so that pushes it further into Manitoba,” he said.

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Fort McMurray wildfire: Media survey damage on escorted tour

Blackened bicycle, barbecue seen surrounded by ash and metal
CBC News
May 9, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

Fort McMurray has been sealed off for days, but members of the media boarded a bus Monday and were escorted by emergency vehicles into the fire-ravaged city, even as helicopters continued to drop buckets of water on the trees along Highway 63. Smoke hung in the air as the convoy travelled down Highway 63 and into the city amid blackened, smouldering forest. Dozens of vehicles have been abandoned, some along the shoulder of the southbound lanes, while others have been left stranded in a ditch. Before entering the city, Darby Allen, the regional fire chief of the Rural Municipality of Wood Buffalo, told reporters that despite some scenes of devastation, about 85 per cent of the buildings in this community have been saved. Other officials said it could be as high as 90 per cent. On Tuesday night when the fire tore into town, he had thought half the town might be lost.

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Northern Alberta wildfires 30 km from Sask. border

CBC News
May 9, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

Smoke from the forest fires in Fort McMurray, Alta. continue to have detrimental effects on air quality in communities in northern Saskatchewan. …The front line firefighters in Fort McMurray said the fire is growing slower today, but still covers an area of 204,000 hectares. It is still some 25 to 30 kilometres from the Saskatchewan border with about 700 firefighters battling the blaze with another 300 on the way. Dry conditions are also providing ideal conditions for wildfires in Saskatchewan. On Monday the province’s emergency management office said there are currently 17 wildfires burning in Saskatchewan and all are contained at this time.

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Clearing natural debris from ground can reduce spread of wildfires: expert

By Cormac MacSweeney
News1130
May 9, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER – Fort McMurray should serve as a warning to other cities across the country when it comes to wildfire prevention. That’s what we’re hearing from an expert at UBC, who also says we need to adapt for climate change. Dean of Forestry John Innes says there are many ways other cities and towns can prevent this kind of disaster. He tells us it can be as simple as clearing the brush, sticks and leaves that litter the ground in the forests surrounding these municipalities. “If we actually remove the material that’s on the ground and remove any small branches in the trees, we reduce the risk of the fire spreading up into the tree canopies.” “If we can keep it at the ground level, we can keep fuel loads down and we can allow fires to come through on a regular basis — but they are low intensity, so they don’t cause the damage that a grand fire would do,” he adds.

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Fort McMurray wildfire will leave toxic legacy: experts

Chronicle Herald
May 9, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

EDMONTON — Danger from the Fort McMurray wildfire that has destroyed entire city blocks in the northern Alberta city won’t end when the flames stop. Research from California fires that have burned through homes and communities suggests such blazes leave a threatening legacy of caustic ash and toxic heavy metals. “There’s no doubt, it is hazardous,” said Scott Stephens, a fire scientist at the University of California Berkeley. California has sad experience with wildfires raging through urban areas. Every summer, said Stephens, the state loses homes to marauding flames from the woods. Wildfires big and bad enough to force their way into communities are generally hot enough to burn off hydrocarbons such as vinyl siding, nylon carpets or household chemicals. 

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New forest fire found in North Bay region

The Bay Today
May 9, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

So far today one new fire was discovered says Shayne McCool, Fire Information Officer for the Northeast Fire Region. “North Bay 3 is being held at 0.1 of a hectare. There are no other active fires in the region,” he reports. The forest fire hazard is low to moderate across the region. Ontario has deployed 82 staff members, including four from North Bay, to Alberta. They left the afternoon of May 6. The Northeast Region has shifted some staff to aid with fires in the Northwest Region of Ontario.

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‘We’re not good at doing maintenance, and then really bad things happen’

Time Magazine
May 6, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States

Smokey the Bear told forest and National Park visitors for decades that they held the health and safety of the areas they visited in their hands. “Only you can prevent forest fires,” the character says. But as it turns out, Smokey has been lying to us. Stopping wildfires is simply not that easy, researchers say. And while some forest experts support plans that could substantially reduce the risk of large-scale burns like the one raging in Fort McMurray, the endeavor will cost billions and take decades. And even then risks will still remain. …“We’re not good at doing maintenance, and then really bad things happen,” says Chris Topik, director of the Restoring America’s Forests program for The Nature Conservancy. “Last year the wildfire season was terrible, worst in decades. The fire fighting sucked up all the money and then some.”

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Industry’s 30 by 30 plan targets forestry’s carbon dioxide emissions

By Nelson Bennett
Business in Vancouver
May 9, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada

Canada’s forest industry is pledging to do its part to fight climate change by reducing Canada’s carbon emissions by 30 megatonnes by 2030. The Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) said its “30 by 30” project could account for 13% of the federal government’s total carbon reduction target. But measuring the actual reductions to gauge the success of those targets could prove tricky. Ken Lertzman, a professor at Simon Fraser University’s School of Resource and Environmental Management, said the devil will be in the details when it comes to reducing forestry’s carbon footprint and measuring the plan’s initiatives to prove they’re working.  “The goal is great,” he said. “Forests in the global system play a really important role. There are huge opportunities there. 

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Climate change should be linked to Alberta inferno

By Thomas Walkom
Toronto Star
May 9, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Fort McMurray fire disaster brings out the eloquence in Canada’s politicians. They talk movingly – and I think sincerely – about the devastation wreaked on the inhabitants of the northern Alberta city. They praise the generosity of those Canadians who help. They put partisanship on ice. In one memorable instance last week, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau crossed the Commons floor to hug Rona Ambrose, the teary-eyed interim Conservative leader. They invariably offer their hearts and prayers. But the one thing they are reluctant to talk about is the shadow lurking behind the massive forest fire raging in Alberta’s north. And that is climate change. …But climate change is hardly irrelevant. If the world’s leading climate scientists are correct, global warming raises the probability of extreme weather conditions occurring – from drought to ice storms to floods to the kind of unseasonably high temperatures experienced this spring in Fort McMurray.

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Dispatch from Stockholm

Executive Editor Tim Portz was on location today in Stockholm, Sweden as the Fortum Varme wood chip fueled CHP plant
Biomass Magazine
May 9, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Stockholm is the capital of Sweden, home to roughly a fifth of the country’s inhabitants, responsible for nearly one third of the country’s economic output and is now home to one of the world’s largest biomass-fueled combined heat and power plants. …The plant replaces a coal plant that tied into Stockholm’s CHP system that features 2500 kilometers of pipe. The facility, jointly owned by Fortum and the City of Stockholm cost roughly 500 million Euro to build and will begin commercial operation this fall. Once operational, the plant will burn roughly 12,000 cubic meters of wood chips (with moisture content of between 20-30%) that will be received by boat and rail. Unfamiliar with cubic meters, I asked and was told that one cubic meter of biomass is equivalent to approximately one metric ton.

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Environment Ministry rapped for not using funds fully

Only 11% of funds were utilised for National Action Plan on Climate Change
Hindu Business Line
May 9, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

The Centre and more specifically the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change is not putting money where its mouth is — literally. While the Ministry, led by Minister of State (Independent Charge) Prakash Javadekar, has fought for climate justice at international forums and made big targets for curbing climate change, the Ministry’s allocation of funds to, and expenditure of these funds on climate change tell a different story. The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Science and Technology, Environment and Forests, has criticised the Ministry for falling far short of targets. 

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