Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: May 26, 2016

Business & Politics

Nanaimo pulp mill to pay $135,000 penalty

By Derrick Penner
Vancouver Sun
May 25, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Nanaimo’s Harmac Pacific pulp mill will pay $135,000 in penalties under the Fisheries Act as a result of a June 2013 power failure that caused it to spill raw effluent into an arm of the Strait of Georgia for 90 minutes. The mill’s owner, Nanaimo Forest Products Ltd., pleaded guilty in provincial court in Nanaimo on April 8 to one charge of depositing a deleterious substance into fish habitat related to the June 26, 2013 incident, according to Environment and Climate Change Canada. The power failure at a pump house led to the spill of 3.75 million litres of untreated pulp mill effluent, enough liquid to fill one-and-a-half Olympic swimming pools, into Northumberland Channel, the body of water separating Nanaimo and Gabriola Island.

Read More

Nanaimo forestry company fined for spill in Northumberland Channel

The fines collected will be directed towards projects that benefit the environment.
Vancouver Observer
May 25, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

A Nanaimo-based timber company has been ordered to pay a penalty of $135,000 after spilling roughly 3.75 million litres of untreated wastewater into the Northumberland Channel during a power failure. On June 26, 2013, Nanaimo Forest Products Ltd. — under the trade name Harmac Pacific— was sentenced by Environment and Climate Change Canada to pay up after a blackout impacted its outfall pumphouse, dumping effluent for three hours into a channel that connects to the Pacific Ocean and Strait of Georgia.

Read More

New Brunswick investigating plume of dark water in river near pulp mill

Aboriginal Peoples Television Network
May 25, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

New Brunswick is expected to carry out an inspection of a pulp mill over the next few days after a Mi’kmag salmon fisherman discovered a plume of dark water in the Restigouche River. Shawn Metallic recorded a video on Monday showing the dark substance flowing underwater, trailing along the riverbank near the Atholville Mill. …In a media release, the AV Group, NB Inc., the company that runs the mill, “absolutely refutes the allegations of a chemical spill from its Atholville Mill. Discharges from the Atholville Mill are approved by the Department of Environment and meet all environmental standards. Discharges are not toxic and are a part of the normal operation of the effluent treatment system of this mill.”

Read More

Sudbury could lead ‘Northern renaissance’ — Robinson

The Sudbury Star
May 25, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

…Northern Ontario produces lumber. Southern Ontario only recently allowed four-storey wooden buildings. Vic Fedeli, the MPP for North Bay had to fight for it. Why? Because the southern concrete and steel industries didn’t want competition from Northern wood. Wood is a fairly important product for us. We should have a timber engineering program and the industrial design school developing new value-added products for our wood industry. The Ministry of Education says you don’t have a value-added wood industry, so we won’t invest in building one. The province is still supporting a Forestry Faculty at the U of T. Is it because of the vast commercial forestry industry in the cemeteries of the GTA? It’s not because they have a forestry industry. It is all about keeping the money in the south.

Read More

Allard Lumber honored by Northeastern Loggers’ Association

Commons News
May 25, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

BRATTLEBORO—The Northeastern Loggers’ Association (NELA) recently honored Clifford Allard and Allard Lumber Company as the recipient of its 2015 Outstanding Sawmill Operator Award. NELA Board Secretary William Sayre presented the award at the annual Loggers’ Banquet in South Burlington in a ceremony attended by more than 200 members of the Northeast’s forest products industry. Sayre said Allard Lumber — in its 42nd year of business — was started by Cliff and his brother on the farm of Robert Allard Sr. At the start, they used a 100-year-old hand-set circle mill to saw custom orders.

Read More

Nippon Paper Industries to build a large-scale cellulose nanofiber production facility at its Ishinomaki mill in Japan

Lesprom Network
May 25, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Nippon Paper Industries plans to build a large-scale cellulose nanofiber (CNF) production facility at the Ishinomaki mill in Miyagi, Japan, as the company said in the press release received by Lesprom Network. This facility will produce CNF from wood pulp that is chemically treated by the TEMPO catalytic oxidation method. A total of 1.6 billion yen ($14.5 million) will be invested on the facility, and an annual production capacity is 500 tons. It is scheduled to begin its operation in April 2017.

Read More

Forest industry exports continue to show moderate growth in Latvia

The Baltic Course
May 26, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Latvia’s forest industry exports continued moderate growth in the first quarter of this year, reaching EUR 537.527 million at the end of March, up 6.9% from the respective period in 2015, the Latvian Agriculture Ministry informed LETA. Timber and timber products made up the bulk or 86.3% of total forest product exports in the first quarter of 2016 (85.3% in Q1, 2015), accounting for EUR 463.813 million and growing 8.2% year-on-year. Timber exports in January-March this year included EUR 129.788 million worth of sawn timber, down 9.5% year-on-year and accounting for 24.1% of total forest industry exports.

Read More

Wood, Paper & Green Building

Risk was high at Saanich townhouse fire site: building inspector

By Richard Watts
Victoria Times Colonist
May 25, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

The towering Saanich townhouse blaze with its 25-metre flames that seared neighbouring homes was just waiting to happen, a Saanich building inspector said Tuesday. Graham Barbour, Saanich manager of inspection and bylaw services, said the exposed lumber of the three-storey building, which was under construction, was at a stage long recognized by builders and safety officials as a fire risk. “It was at that vulnerable point, where there was this enormous fuel load lying exposed and none of the safety requirements are in place,” he said. “It’s really just a bonfire that is going to happen if something goes wrong.” …Flames fed by raw lumber and exploding propane tanks were unimpeded by any fire-resistant building materials such as drywall.

Read More

Forestry

Mountain pine beetle continues to flourish

By Paul Clarke
The Fitzhugh
May 25, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The mountain pine beetle epidemic that is spreading eastward through Jasper National Park is expected to only get worse after an unseasonably warm winter, according to Dave Smith, a fire and vegetation specialist with Parks Canada. Since January 11, he said there have been only eight days where temperatures remained below zero allowing the beetle to survive the winter relatively unscathed. “If we continue to get the warm winters that we’re getting I think there’s a good chance that we’re going to see the beetle do really, really well,” said Smith, during a public information night, May 18. In March, Parks Canada reported the beetle colonized just over 21,500 hectares of the park’s pine forests, more than three times the amount mapped in 2014. A year earlier the agency mapped 122 hectares.

Read More

Contract dispute leaves prime timber to rot

By Stephen Hume
Vancouver Sun
May 25, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

South of Caycuse Camp — Enough prime old-growth timber to build about 2,350 average-sized homes, about 70,000 cubic metres, is rotting on Vancouver Island mountainsides because of a disagreement between two companies. The trees were felled between 18 months and two years ago but left stacked beside logging roads or strewn across clearcuts where they are degraded by insects and weather. They represent lost revenue for the province, for the company holding timber rights and for the contractor, lost wages for forest workers and lost business activity in small communities. The timber rights belong to Western Forest Products, a forestry giant that succeeded Weyerhaeuser, itself a successor to MacMillan Bloedel. WFP contracts out the cutting and hauling of the trees, in this case to Island Pacific Logging. But the two companies have been locked in a lengthy dispute over the rates to be paid.  

Read More

NDP leader talks forestry, education in Nanaimo

By Greg Sakaki
Nanaimo News Bulletin
May 25, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

…John Horgan was in town Tuesday for an evening fundraiser at the Coast Bastion Hotel following a tour of the Harmac mill during the day. Horgan called Harmac the sort of operation that’s revitalizing B.C.’s forest industry. There are many forest policy changes that need to be made, such as more value-adds and fewer raw-log exports, he said, as well as job creation in the sector. But he called Harmac a success story and an example of how the region’s economy is changing. He said Nanaimo is attracting more young families, it isn’t as isolated as it used to be, and tourism is expanding. “And that, I think, is in keeping with the transformation that’s happening in the B.C. economy and I think that the B.C. Liberals are missing that by talking almost exclusively about liquefied natural gas, which is important in itself, but is not what’s driving the growth and the opportunity in B.C. and particularly here on the Island,” Horgan told the News Bulletin.

Read More

Chilliwack Community Forest grand opening Saturday

By Sam Bates
Chilliwack Progress
May 25, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Nearly a year of trail building has led up to this moment. The Chilliwack Park Society will celebrate the official opening of the Community Forest with a hike this Saturday. Since June of 2015, volunteers have – quite literally – been laying the groundwork for a network of trails in 130 acres of mature forest area. Project manager Marc Greidanus has been working closely with Coun. Sam Waddington from the beginning, and the City of Chilliwack has embraced the project as a worthwhile initiative. Families return again and again to shovel new sections of trail together, student groups come out as a class to clear shelters and work on water drainage, outdoor enthusiast groups like the Fraser Valley Mountain Bike Association offer time and expertise to ensure the park can reach its fullest potential.

Read More

Endangered Species Act hot topic at upcoming Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities

By Len Gillis
Timmins Press
May 25, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

KIRKLAND LAKE – Concerns over Ontario’s Endangered Species Act continue to dominate discussions amongst Northeastern Ontario municipal leaders. Less than two weeks after the annual meeting of FONOM (Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities) was held in Timmins, Northern leaders are now preparing for the annual meeting of the Northeastern Ontario Municipal Association (NEOMA) which is to be held in Kirkland Lake this coming Friday. Several items on the NEOMA agenda include The Endangered Species Act and what the implementation of the act means for Northern Ontario communities that rely on resource-based industries, such as logging and mining.

Read More

Groups Protest BLM Plan

Source Weekly
May 25, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

…Earthjustice and the Western Environmental Law Center filed a formal written protest with the BLM on behalf of 22 groups. The Coquille Tribe is also protesting the BLM’s plan to increase clearcutting. The decision maker of the protests, however, is none other than the BLM Director. “The decision of the BLM Director shall be the final decision of the Department of the Interior for the protest,” according to the notice of April 19, 2016. The BLM’s plan will likely go into effect later in the year. The launch party of the Wild Ones in Bend is May 26. People of all ages are welcome to come and learn more, whether one’s interests are in research, wilderness leadership, or public speaking. “We’ll find a way to make that skill make a difference for wildlife and wild places,” she says.

Read More

Probert: J-Bar fire salvage project decision to be withdrawn

Idaho County Free Press
May 26, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Earlier this month, a federal court ordered a preliminary injunction in the civil case over the Forest Service’s Johnson Bar Fire Salvage project. The order stopped salvage logging near the Selway and Middle Fork Clearwater Wild and Scenic rivers, which was set to begin as early as May 16. Now the salvage logging project is being withdrawn. Had it gone as planned, the Johnson Bar Fire Salvage project would have reaped approximately 34 million board feet of timber from 2,104 acres of Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests in parts roughly east of Lowell, among the 13,000 acres burned by the 2014 Johnson Bar Fire. Idaho Rivers United and Friends of the Clearwater argued that the Forest Service “violated its duties to protect the Selway and Middle Fork Clearwater rivers under the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, and also failed to fully evaluate cumulative environmental impacts along with other private and state land logging and 2015 fires in the same area,” the groups noted in a joint news release May 13.

Read More

House OKs forest bill (again); Wyden intros Senate measure

Rep Greg Walden: ‘It’s time to fix the problem’
KTVZ
May 26, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

WASHINGTON – As Oregon prepares for yet another fire season, the U.S. House has again passed a bipartisan bill to reduce the threat of catastrophic wildfire in national forests with strong support from Rep. Greg Walden, the Hood River Republican said Wednesday. Walden said the Resilient Federal Forests Act would bring much-needed reforms to federal forest policy and help bring active management back to our forests. It was passed as part of a larger energy bill as a way to pressure the U.S. Senate to take action on forestry legislation. “This House, for four years in a row, has considered much=needed legislation to fix the management of our federal forests.

Read More

Asking for simple fairness and compromise

The World Newspaper
May 24, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

As interest groups continue to pile onto the Bureau of Land Management with their opposition to the resource management plan for Western Oregon, a few issues become clear. Timber harvests, or the lack thereof, impact everything. Commercial logging interests are obviously impacted. And environmentalists are their well-known antagonists. But evidence of timber harvesting’s ripple effects were revealed last week in words from Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations regional director Glen Spain. “Productive salmon streams are far more valuable for the salmon-related jobs they create than for the market value of the lumber you could generate from logging them,” Spain said. “Stronger stream protection makes excellent economic sense, logging them does not!” That’s a conflict we don’t often see — two iconic Northwest industries at odds with each other — but it’s real. And BLM’s plan has brought it into the daylight.

Read More

Daines’ Water Projects Bill Receives Hearing

KMMSAM
May 24, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Senator Steve Daines’ bill that would move Montana water projects forward and ensure the completion of authorized projects across Montana recently received its first hearing in the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. …The bill also accelerates implementation of Montana-made forest management projects that enhance watersheds and reduce the risk of wildfires. This is critical for Montana as there are approximately 1,393 watersheds encompassed by at least 25 percent of National Forest lands in the state. Daines stressed the damaging impacts of litigation against forest health projects, highlighting a court injunction that has stopped work on the collaboratively-developed Bozeman Municipal Watershed project.

Read More

Problems halt timber sales

Corvallis Gazette-Times
May 24, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West


A number of timber sales on the Siuslaw National Forest have been put on hold because they failed to adequately protect two sensitive bird species. According to Forest Supervisor Jerry Ingersoll, the timber sales in question used outdated field survey data or broad-scale computer modeling without supplemental field observations to define buffers around actual or potential nesting sites for marbled murrelets and northern spotted owls, which depend on old growth forest for nesting habitat   Both birds are listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act, and protecting them has been a high priority for years in the Siuslaw National Forest’s management plan, which emphasizes the thinning of Douglas fir plantations to cultivate old growth forest characteristics.

Read More

Feds intercept beetle that could have ravaged N.J.

NJ.com
May 25, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

NEWARK — Federal customs agents in New Jersey earlier this month intercepted a shipment that contained a species of invasive beetle never before found in the United States, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection said Wednesday. The shipment, a container of bananas from Ecuador, also carried a species of longhorn beetle known as Psapharochrus bivittus (Cerambycidae), customs officials said. …According to customs, insects such as the longhorn beetle “are significant pests to living trees with potential to cause extensive damage and massive losses” not only to trees, but also untreated lumber.

Read More

Beekeepers rejoice as karri forest in full bloom for first time in decades

By Hayley Roman
ABC News Australia
May 25, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

There is a buzz about a Western Australian karri forest that has not been heard for nearly 50 years. The giant trees near Pemberton only flower once every seven to 10 years but this season, there is a uniform budding across the whole forest and the bloom has lasted for almost a year. Karrakup beekeeper Mike Spurge said it was an extremely unusual event. “It hasn’t flowered like this for 40-odd years or more; nearly 50 years that it’s been over the whole forest,” he said.

Read More

Secret population of Tasmanian devils discovered in remote forest Mother Nature Network

By Michael D’Estries
Mother Nature Network
May 25, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The Tasmanian devil, brought to the brink of extinction in recent years due to a fatal, highly contagious disease, may yet recover thanks to the discovery of an isolated population in the island state’s remote southwest. While the researchers didn’t actually lay eyes on the animals, they did discover quantities of feces in a heavily forested World Heritage area. When analyzed, the stool revealed nine completely new genetic variants for the devil, a boon for conservationists attempting to help captive populations improve their chances for survival. “For us this is massive,” Sydney University geneticist Kathy Belov told the Sydney Morning Herald. 

Read More

Forest Fires

Terence Corcoran: Experts won’t blame Fort Mac’s fire on climate change. Neither should we

The Financial Post
May 25, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

We need to talk about climate change. That was the headline on an article by Eric Holthaus in Slate magazine earlier this month as the Fort McMurray fire disaster raged. …London’s The Guardian talked about climate change with a column by Montreal environmental writer Martin Lukacs. “The arsonists of Fort McMurray have a name,” wrote Lukacs, “the fossil fuel corporations.” …Well, if everybody else is throwing around claims about links between future climate change and today’s forest fires, allow me to take a stab at it. As I reviewed the scientific research on Canadian forest fires, I found no consensus around the claim that climate change is to blame for Fort McMurray’s fire or that manmade climate change is creating a new era of infernos.

Read More

Fort Mac wildfire to impact second quarter growth in Canada

NewsTalk770
May 25, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Fort McMurray wildfire is going to likely have an effect on economic growth in the second quarter. The Bank of Canada says damage from the wildfire and the slowdown in nearby oilsands operations will cut about 1.25 percentage points off real GDP growth in the second quarter. The central bank revealed the information while announcing it is holding it’s key interest rate steady at 0.5 per cent. The Bank of Canada says growth in the first quarter appears to be in line with its April forecast, although business investment remains a disappointment.

Read More

Forest fire risk high across many parts of Quebec

By Kim Garritty
CBC News
May 25, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

A sunny long weekend and low humidity have led to an increased risk of forest fires across many parts of Quebec. “We were lucky. There wasn’t much wind throughout the past few days so it did minimal damage when there were forest fires,” said Mélanie Morin, fire information officer with the province’s fire protection agency (SOPFEU). The risk was listed as extreme across the Laurentians, in the Montreal area, the Montérégie and the Eastern Townships early Wednesday morning. But after reports of rainfall overnight, SOPFEU lowered the risk in those areas to high, except for in the Montérégie, still listed as extreme fire risk conditions.

Read More

Fire update: Crews continue relentless attack on Nipigon 14

TB Newswatch
May 25, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

The combined efforts of the Aviation, Forest Fire and Emergency Services personnel from the Greenstone Fire Management Headquarters and the Northwest Region Forest Fire Management Center as well as Greenstone municipal officials, the Geraldton Fire Department and the Ontario Provincial Police resulted in the protection of lives and property. Nipigon District Fire Number 14 west of Geraldton showed intense fire behaviour. Relentless attack with water bombers stopped the fire at the western edge of Geraldton and it is believed that no structures were lost. Five water bombers worked the main fire until dark. Two of those water bombers came from Manitoba to assist in holding the fire which is now listed as being held at 12 hectares in size. It is now smouldering in a patchy burn that FireRanger crews are working to put out..

Read More

Forest fires continue to burn across northwestern Ontario

CBC News
May 25, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry says fire crews continue to battle blazes across the northwest fire region.  Nipigon Fire 14, which burned on Monday to the western edge of Geraldton, is now listed as being held at 12 hectares in size. That fire, although not a threat to the community of Geraldton, still requires fire crews to combat a smouldering patch near the community. The MNRF had five water bombers, including two from Manitoba, continuously douse the fire until darkness on Monday night. A second fire, Nipigon Fire 13, just north of Geraldton, near the local airport, is a combination of four fires that merged into one.

Read More

Six new forest fires burning in the northeast

Sudbury.com
May 25, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry are reporting that there are six new fires burning the Northeast Region, as of mid-afternoon on May 24. Those fires are Chapleau 5, which is being held at 0.5 of a hectare; Chapleau 6 is not under control at 0.2 of a hectare; Parry Sound 13 covers 0.1 of a hectare and is not under control; Parry Sound 14 covers 0.3 of a hectare and is not under control; Sault 17 is not under control at 3.0 hectares; and Timmins 4 is being held at 0.1 of a hectare. There are eight other active fires in the region, the ministry reported yesterday. 

Read More

Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Southern states lead growth in biomass energy electricity generation

PennEnergy
May 25, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

Over the past five years, U.S. electricity generation from biomass across all sectors grew from 56 gigawatthours (GWh) in 2010 to 64 GWh in 2015. Much of this growth occurred in southern states such as Virginia, Florida, and Georgia. In 2015, electricity generation from biomass across all sectors accounted for 11.3% of renewable electricity generation and 1.6% of total electricity generation in the United States. Nearly half of the electricity generated from biomass in 2015 was at industrial facilities outside of the electric power sector, such as pulp and paper mills. Within the electric power sector, biomass accounted for 6.3% of renewable electricity and 0.8% of total U.S. electricity generation. Electricity generation from biomass uses several types of fuel, including forest wastes from clearing and thinning, sawmill residues, and urban landscape trimmings. 

Read More

How to make clouds from pine trees: a recipe from physicists

And what that means for climate change projections
The Verge
May 25, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States


Wanna make it rain? Try pine trees. It turns out that the delightful, Christmas tree scent may lead to precursors of clouds, according to two studies from CERN. And what’s more, it may mean that scientists have to slightly scale back their current climate change projections. This is a little complicated, but here’s the short version: when vapors from pine trees combine with oxygen, the resulting particles can cluster together if they’re helped by high-energy particles from space that rain down on the Earth’s atmosphere, called cosmic rays. Scientists think cosmic rays may play an important role in determining our climate — and in experiments they found that these interactions can lead to the formation of aerosol particles, which can grow to become precursors to clouds, according to two studies published in Nature today.

Read More

Serious about climate change? Look to forests

By Brian Dahle
The Fresno Bee
May 24, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

…I’ve said for years that if the state is truly concerned about the climate, it urgently needs to look to its forests – which are unhealthy, thick with dead and dying trees and other heavy fuels, primed for massive fires whose smoke plumes are an enormous source of carbon emissions. The LAO’s report agrees. Using data from the Air Resources Board, it found that investing in forest health achieved the best carbon benefits at the lowest cost of any greenhouse-gas program, tied with loans for recycling and waste diversion. For every four dollars the state spent, it reduced carbon emissions by a ton. For comparison, the average cost to avoid a ton of emissions was $57 – more than 10 times as costly as improving our forests. Some incentives for cleaner vehicles were even higher – as much as $725 per ton of carbon.

Read More

Sumitomo Forestry eyes wind, geothermal power plants

Nikkei Asian Review
May 26, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

TOKYO — Sumitomo Forestry plans to add wind and geothermal power to its renewable energy portfolio and expand its biomass business over the next three years, bringing around five new plants online in Japan and abroad. The Tokyo-based forest manager and lumber producer plans to put around 20 billion yen ($181 million) — more than 10% of planned investment — into growing renewables operations in that time. It will buy a nearly 10% stake in Renova, a Japanese environmental technology startup with a track record in biomass and solar power plant development, for 1 billion yen when new shares are issued Monday. Sumitomo Forestry plans to collaborate with Renova on wind and geothermal power operations, fields both are taking steps to break into.

Read More