Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: June 8, 2016

Business & Politics

Powell River mill manager addresses Catalyst takeover

By Dave Brindle
Powell River Peak
June 7, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

To conclude a presentation to interested community stakeholders on Wednesday, June 1, Catalyst Paper Corporation’s Powell River division vice-president and general manager Fred Chinn said, despite recent talks of corporate takeover, the mill is here to stay. “This is a company that’s going to be here,” said Chinn at the meeting, “and this is a mill that’s going to last.” Chinn answered questions from stakeholders on the recent news that Kejriwal Group International (KGI) has targeted Catalyst for takeover. Chinn said KGI’s owner Rahul Kejriwal has already had conversations with Catalyst’s board of directors and has been “looking to buy a pulp and paper company for a while.” Kejriwal wants to build up Catalyst, not break it up, said Chinn.

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Catalyst Paper Named One of Canada’s Top Corporate Citizens, 10th Year in a Row

Benzinga
June 7, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

RICHMOND, BC – Catalyst Paper  today announced that it has been named for the 10th consecutive year as one of the Best 50 Corporate Citizens in Canada by Corporate Knights Magazine, which reports on corporate sustainability and transparency. “We are proud to be acknowledged for the 10th consecutive year as one of Canada’s Best Corporate Citizens,” said Joe Nemeth, President & Chief Executive Officer. “This designation acknowledges the investments we have made to put our sustainability values and commitment into practice.”  The Best 50 Corporate Citizens in Canada are selected by Corporate Knights Magazine on the basis of their performance against 12 key sustainability indicators, including greenhouse gas production, percentage of taxes paid, health and safety performance, and pension fund quality. 

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Resolute Announces Downtime at Kénogami (Quebec) Paper Mill Due to Ongoing Government Support of Port Hawkesbury (Nova Scotia) Mill

PR Newswire
June 7, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

MONTRÉAL – Resolute Forest Products Inc. today announced the temporary closure of its Kénogami (Quebec) supercalendered paper mill from June 23 to July 4, 2016. The 11 days of downtime, impacting 184 employees at the operation, is in large part attributable to the ongoing market disruption caused by measures taken by the former provincial NDP Government in Nova Scotia and the former Conservative Government of Canada in support of the Port Hawkesbury (Nova Scotia) paper mill. Resolute has consistently raised concerns with government officials, including at the Canadian federal level, that special measures of support discriminated in favor of Port Hawkesbury and resulted, among other damages, in the permanent closure of Resolute’s Laurentide (Quebec) paper mill in the fall of 2014. 

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Rugby Architectural Building Products buys New Mexico lumber company

Wood Working Network
June 7, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

CONCORD, N.H. – Rugby Architectural Building Products acquired domestic and imported hardwood lumber supplier Albuquerque Hardwood Lumber Company, which is located in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Established in 1988, Albuquerque Hardwood Lumber sells furniture grade hardwood lumber, sheet goods and hardware. The company services all of New Mexico, Southern Colorado, West Texas, and the Texas Panhandle with three locations.

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Japan: Wood demand decreased by 1.9% in 2015

Global Wood Markets Info
June 7, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

The wood demand in Japan reached 25,092,000 m2 in 2015. This represents a 1.9% decrease compared to 2014, according to the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. As ITTO reported, this is a two consecutive years’ decline, even if the new housing starts were 1.9% in 2015 than in 2014. Also, the imported wood products from foreign countries decreased. Yet, the domestic wood demand keeps on growing in the domestic consumption of materials. In 2015, it reached a total material supply of 20,049,000 m2, which is 0.7% more than in 2014.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

UBC’s timber tower starts to rise

by Derrick Penner
Vancouver Sun
June 7, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

Construction on the University of B.C.’s landmark, 18-storey, mass-timber Brock Commons student residence has just begun, but in a way, the building is already half made. For about the last month, Structurlam Products has been busy manufacturing the building’s key components — engineered wood panels and pillars — at its Penticton production facility, where they are being stored before delivery to UBC. This week, contractors began trucking those components to Vancouver for final assembly in a just-in-time process to build a 53-metre-tall highrise that will be the world’s tallest mass-timber building. And it is garnering attention in all corners of the construction and wood-products industry.

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Today’s log homes aren’t just rustic — they’re upscale

Washington Post
June 7, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

Log homes. These pioneer-like residences conjure images of Abraham Lincoln reading by candlelight or Daniel Boone and his coonskin cap. For whatever reason, there is something Norman Rockwell-esque about these rustic structures that make us feel warm and safe. These days, however, log homes (vs. the log cabins that were built by early European settlers) look nothing like the throwbacks from our history but are, rather, more comfortable and luxurious — and perhaps that’s the appeal.

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White Arkitekter wins bid to design Sweden’s tallest timber building

Inhabitat
June 8, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Swedish firm White Arkitekter has been tapped to design a 19-story timber structure that will be the tallest wooden building in Sweden, and possibly of all the Nordic countries. The architecture firm’s “Sida vid sida” (“Side-by-side”) proposal beat out over 55 other entries in an international design competition for Kulturhus i Skellefteå, a mixed-use cultural center and hotel. The choice of timber references Skellefteå’s local timber industry and will be built using hybrid prefabricated construction techniques with wood, steel, and concrete. Located just below the Arctic Circle, the city of Skellefteå is surrounded by dense forests and renowned for its wooden buildings and timber construction techniques that range from traditional methods to modern technology.

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Forestry

Canada’s tundra is turning green — and its Boreal forest brown — NASA study finds

By Justin Dallaire
National Post
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

In the most precise study yet on vegetation growth trends across North America, researchers from America’s space agency have found that nearly a third of the land cover in Canada and Alaska has greened in recent decades as a result of climate change. The researchers also found that, while vegetation productivity is on the rise in the tundra regions of the continent, warming temperatures might be having the opposite effect on the Boreal forest, which showed some signs of browning. Overall, three per cent of the land experienced vegetation decline…“Whereas temperature limited tundra regions have almost ubiquitously increased productivity with warming temperatures trees in the boreal system do not respond well to high temperatures,” he wrote in an email to the National Post… Jeffrey Masek, a researcher with NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center and a co-author of the study, said it offers a “glimpse of how a warming climate is starting to alter global vegetation patterns.”

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Logging firms fined $20K for burning waste

CBC News
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Two logging contractors working in the area near Hudson Bay, Sask., have been fined a total of $19,600 after pleading guilty to several charges under the Clean Air Act. Lutz Logging Inc. pleaded guilty to two counts of burning industrial waste and received $14,000 in fines and surcharges. WE Logging pleaded guilty to a single count of the same offence and received a $5,600 penalty. The waste included oil filters, plastic product containers, oils, hydraulic hoses and aerosol cans, the Ministry of Environment said in a news release. The illegal activity happened in the fall of 2014 and the companies were charged about a year later. The companies recently received their fines in Melfort provincial court. 

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‘I don’t want to be just a rubber stamp’: Whalley

Campbell River Mirror
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

When Western Forest Products’ advisory committee sits down to meet for the first time in nine months, the Strathcona Regional District will not be participating. Area A Director Gerald Whalley, who has been the regional district’s representative on MIFLAG (Mid-Land Forest Lands Advisory Group) for seven years, said he had no desire to attend the meetings under the new Terms of Reference created by Western… While the new Terms of Reference do allow Western to approve or reject an agency’s representative to MIFLAG, they also include a new code of conduct. Amy Spencer, spokesperson for Western Forest Products, said the new terms were drawn up after an internal review “determined that MIFLAG was not functional, was getting stuck on issues, and it wasn’t productive use of time for all members.”

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Province not rushing to extinguish old growth chainsaws any time soon

By John McKinley
Campbell River Mirror
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

If attitudes about old growth logging are changing in Vancouver Island forests, does the government hear? The answer, apparently, is “sort of.” In the wake of a recent resolution by Vancouver Island communities calling for a halt of old growth harvesting, followed last week by a similar — though conditional — resolution by the B.C. Chamber of Commerce, the provincial government did not make forests minister Steve Thomson available for comment to the 230,000 Vancouver Island homes and businesses served by Black Press. Instead, it released an emailed statement that defended its record on forest policy while implying that such a significant policy change will not be forthcoming any time soon.

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Ontario Lumberjack Championships take place Saturday at Beaverton Fairgrounds

By Ross McIntyre
Orillia Packet
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

With the popularity of beards and plaid shirts these days, one might feel as if they already have lots of exposure to lumberjack culture, or at least these stereotypes. Actual lumberjacks in North America have a long and hearty history spanning from the 1800s up to the 1940s. As North America was settled, the need for lumber grew exponentially and lumberjacks worked the frontlines of this economy. All of this work was done in a world without chainsaws and gas-powered machinery, making the work even more impressive. The skills and hand tools associated with this traditional trade could have easily ended up in logging museums but this is not the case thanks to lumberjack competitions. 

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USDA, Partners to Invest Over $11 Million in 21st Century Conservation Service

USDA Press Resease
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

WASHINGTON — As National Get Outdoors Month begins, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that the U.S. Forest Service and partners have invested over $11 million to support work and training opportunities for more than 1,500 youth and veterans on national forests and grasslands in fiscal year 2016. The funds support the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps (21CSC), a public-private initiative to connect America’s youth and veterans with job opportunities that conserve and sustain our natural and cultural resources.

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Draft plans look at future use of national forests

AgAlert
June 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The future of national forests in California and the West is being shaped in the first released plans that could have far-reaching implications for how public forestland is used. To start, the U.S. Forest Service has released draft environmental impact statements and forest plan revisions for Inyo, Sequoia and Sierra national forests, with plans for other federal forests to follow. The release opens a 90-day comment period. The notice also listed a schedule of public meetings and tribal forums. Agricultural and forest policy experts urged farmers, ranchers and private timberland owners to attend. “The plan documents will set regulations that will be in existence for the next 15 to 20 years,” said Larry Duysen of Sierra Forest Products in Terra Bella. “It’s important they’re carefully analyzed and written comments submitted before the Aug. 25 deadline.”

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Kalispell man dies after tree falls on him at logging camp

KRTV.com
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

MISSOULA – A Kalispell man died after a tree fell on him at a commercial logging camp in Lake County on Monday. Lake County Sheriff Don Bell tells MTN News that Randy Scott Drollinger of Kalispell, 61 years old, died at a remote logging camp near Lake Mary Ronan. Bell says Drollinger was a crane operator, but stepped away from his machinery when the accident happened. Workers performed CPR until emergency responders arrived at the extreme remote site on a mountainside. Bell says that despite the heroic efforts of his co-workers, Drollinger died at the scene. END

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Q&A – Lt. Matt Stowers Brings Us an Inside Look at Discovery Channel’s Newest Series ‘Dark Woods Justice’

Fansided
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

This Tuesday, Discovery Channel will take viewers into the Olympic Peninsula’s vast wilderness – an area of land so massive that it has been described as “America’s Last Untamed Wilderness.” With over 2,000 square miles of land, the Olympic Peninsula serves as the home to some of the rarest trees on earth which draws the attention of tree poachers looking to cash in on the black market. Now we’re not talking about a few couple hundred or thousand dollars. These rare trees such as the Western Big Leaf can fetch millions on the black market as buyers look to get their hands some the wood to create high end musical instruments.

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Tree die-off in local forests caused by past drought years

The Mail Tribune
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Three years of drought are taking their toll on Southern Oregon forests now dotted with dead and dying trees hit hard by lack of water or by insects in seemingly worse fashion than in past droughts, and the death likely will continue. The dead trees are primarily Douglas firs that are showing their vulnerability, while even some of the more drought-tolerant trees such as Ponderosa pines have lost in the competition for water in denser stands, experts say. The burnt-orange stain of dead conifers plagues forests from the Applegate Valley up the West Cascades into the Willamette Valley, and the levels are even worse than the die-offs in the mid-1990s and early 2000s caused by drought years that were less severe than recent episodes.

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Forest Service needs to back up Lopez

Letter by Kay Matthews
Taos News
June 6, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

I was glad to see the article “Tapping local woodcutters could build grassroots support for large-scale thinning” in the May 26-June 1 Taos News. My family and I have also cut our firewood in stewardship blocks for many years, and Henry Lopez deserves a lot of the credit for keeping the program alive despite Forest Service administrative neglect. …Federal and state agencies need to be on board and the state legislature needs to step up and make sure the financial resources are there. Lopez is right to point out that it’s going to take more than stewardship blocks to get this work done, but it’s a good way to engage folks on-the-ground and get them involved in forest issues. The Forest Service needs to back up the good work he’s doing.

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Falling tree claims life of Kalispell logger

By Michelle Lovato
Daily Inter Lake
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Randy Scott Drollinger, 61, of Kalispell died Monday when a tree fell on him at a logging camp near Lake Mary Ronan. About half a dozen fellow crew members worked unsuccessfully to revive Drollinger. “That crew did a heroic job trying to save his life,” Lake County Sheriff Don Bell said. They performed cardio-pulmonary resuscitation while waiting for emergency responders. Chief Cliff Volunteer Fire Department and the ALERT medical helicopter went to the Camp Tuffit Road location.

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BLM plan won’t create jobs or diversify economy

by Nick Smith, Executive Director of Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities
The World Newspaper
June 6, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West


An editorial from the The World recently opined that “forces are working to wean us off timber,” as if this is a new development. These forces have been at work for decades. Timber harvests on federal lands today are a fraction of what they were a quarter century ago. Ever since the development of the Northwest Forest Plan and creation of temporary “timber payments,” politicians and organizations such as Pew Charitable Trusts have promised a prosperous “new direction” for rural communities once tourism replaced timber jobs. Over the last 20 years, how has this transition worked for Oregon? Have these forces made Southwest Oregon’s forests healthier and less vulnerable to wildfire? Has “hands-off” management resulted in a stronger economy and lower levels of poverty? And has increased activity from tourism provided the revenues that local governments need to educate kids and keep neighborhoods safe? These are the questions The World should be asking.

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Unique forestry method creates perfect habitat for golden winged warbler

Forum News Service
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

WARBA — Golden winged warblers are little birds in big trouble. Scientists say they are declining faster than any other songbird in North America. They are under consideration for federal Endangered Species Act protections. The Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology says only about 400,000 breeding adults remain, a decline of 66 percent since the 1960s. In some eastern states their population has crashed by 98 percent. And on a plot of Blandin Paper Co. land in eastern Itasca County, golden winged warblers are thriving more than anyplace else. On Friday bird researchers for the Natural Resources Research Institute at the University of Minnesota Duluth were conducting their annual field survey to see if the warblers were still doing well here.

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Bigelow Preserve manager says he resigned over pressure to cut timber

Maine Sun Journal
June 6, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Friends of Bigelow, the group that formed to protect the range from development and the over-harvesting of timber, said state forestry officials have approved dramatic increases in the amount of timber being cut from the preserve. The move, according to Lance Tapley, a spokesman for the Friends of Bigelow, is in direct conflict with the voter-approved law that protects the mountain and its forests for public use. Tapley said Monday that the widening of logging roads to facilitate the increased timber harvest is in conflict with state law requiring the public land reserve to be maintained in a primitive state. The state’s longtime manager of the Bigelow Preserve, Steve Swatling, resigned in June 2015 because Gov. Paul LePage’s administration was ignoring sound forestry and allowing the preserve to be over-cut, Swatling said in a letter to the Friends of Bigelow released Sunday.

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Mitigating forest mismanagement with 3D mapping

June 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

35 % of Europe is covered by mountains, many of which are blanketed by dense forests. For the many Europeans who live in these mountainous areas, the forest and the land are often the main sources of income, thus representing an important economic resource. Unfortunately, these same regions are all-too-often victims of mismanagement and deforestation – with significant economic consequences for local communities. To mitigate against this trend, the SLOPE project aims to improve the long-term management and sustainability of Europe’s mountains and forests by providing local communities and forest administrations more precise knowledge about forest ecosystems.

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European forest trees show high levels of biodiversity within one tree species

Cordis
June 7, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Discovering how forest tree ecosystems function is crucial to both predicting how they might respond to climate change and to drawing up forest management plans. It is also key to the EU Forest Action Plan’s objective to maintain and enhance biodiversity, carbon absorption, and the health and resilience of forest ecosystems. One EU-funded project, DIVERFOR, has focussed on European forests which, when compared to forest regions in other areas of the world, are considered to have a relatively low range of different species. The project found that individual trees in a single tree species can have high levels of functional biodiversity, meaning they may perform a diverse range of ecosystem activities. 

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Forest Fires

Hot start to wildfire season doesn’t necessarily lead to a bad season

News 1130
June 6, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER – BC’s wildfire season is off to a blazing start, but a big start may not lead to an above average year. There are 36 fires burning in BC right now with six that started over the weekend due to high temperatures, wind, and low humidity. “We’re looking at about twice what we experienced last year at this time, so it has been a very early and active start to the fire season,” says Claire Allen with the BC Wildfire Service. From April 1st, we’ve had 332 fires in BC scorching 92,153 hectares. Last year we had 400 fires but only 45,000 hectares burned to this point.Much of it is because of a fiery start in the Peace River region. “An early and active start isn’t the best indication of what’s to come. The June rains really help determine what kind of fire season we will experience.”

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Tanker fleet undergoing manoeuvres

Kamloops News
June 6, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

Heightened traffic over the weekend at the Provincial Airtanker Centre in Kamloops wasn’t related to wildfire activity. The air tanker fleet, recently arrived from Chilliwack for the season, was doing routine manoeuvres, said Max Birkner, fire information officer for Kamloops Fire Centre. The fire hazard rating in the region remains moderate to high and campfires are still permitted despite an early season for wildfires in northern B.C. and Alberta. “There are very hot temperatures, yesterday, today and tomorrow, but it is going to cool down later in the week,” Birkner said. Sunday’s high of 35.6 C broke the previous record for June 5, 35 C, set in 1957. Monday, June 6, is forecast to come close to that and could break another record. Daytime highs will drop gradually after that to 21 C Friday and there is a 40 percent chance of rain Saturday.

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LETTER: Wildfire control policies troubling

Letter by G.L. Benwell
Nelson Star
June 7, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

Over the past number of years BC and other western provinces have experienced a number of serious wildfires which have caused considerable damage and losses to community infrastructure and forest resources. There appears to be a tendency to blame this situation on global warming, which is highly subjective, however one must reflect on deeper issues. The recent disaster in Fort McMurray is a classic example and may well foretell future occurrences of a similar nature. To date and to my knowledge there has been no information released regarding initial action on this incident other than it was reported at 4 p.m.

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2 wildfires visible from Highway 3 near Grand Forks, B.C.

CBC News
June 7, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

Two wildfires burning in B.C.;s southern Interior temporarily closed Highway 3 between Christina Lake and Grand Forks Tuesday afternoon. The fires are not threatening any structures or communities, but are highly visible from the highway, which remains on single-lane alternating traffic. Airtankers, a helicopter, and seven B.C. Wildfire Service personnel are working with Grand Forks Fire and Rescue on a 20-hectare wildfire in the Gilpin area, east of Grand Forks.

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Extreme wildfire risk returns to wide area of Saskatchewan

Much of province, and Alberta, is back in fire risk red zone, federal map says
CBC News
June 7, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

What a difference a week makes — when it comes to the risk of forest fires. Natural Resources Canada’s latest fire danger map shows a large red zone — meaning extreme fire risk — over a large portion of Saskatchewan. It’s a big change from a week ago when, following days of rain, there were virtually no areas of extreme risk. Many parts of the province are expected to see temperatures in 30s Wednesday and Thursday before the weather turns cooler. According to the Saskatchewan government, there were 12 wildfires burning in the province yesterday, including two new ones.

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Forest fires: how fast will they burn? ‘Burn trials’ underway near Oliver

Global Newswire
June 7, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

The B.C. Wildfire Service is deliberately setting small fires near Oliver, to see how fast they burn. They’re called ‘burn trials’ and are done to assess the current wildfire situation and see what fuel is on the forest floor. “This low-intensity fire will be studied to assess fire behaviour potential related to a specific fuel type,” said fire information officer Melissa Klassen in a news release. “This information helps the BC Wildfire Service determine the fire risk in a given area.”

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Northwestern Ontario fire activity under control, according to province

CTV News
June 7, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

No new fires have occurred in northwestern Ontario as of Tuesday, according to the provinces Aviation, Forest Fire and Emergency Services. Except for Kenora, the Fort Frances district and areas in the far north – where there is a moderate fire hazard – the rest of the region has a low fire risk. The fire management group said all active fires in the region are now under control.

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Ashland watershed fire quickly snuffed by logging contractor

The Mail Tribune
June 7, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

A half-acre fire possibly caused by a camper in the Ashland watershed this morning was quickly snuffed with the help of a logging contractor. The fire at the end of Granite Street, on Forest Road 2060, sent a column of smoke into the sky. Personnel from Ashland Fire & Rescue, Jackson County Fire District 5, Oregon Department of Forestry and the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest fought the fire with the help of water drops from Timberline Helicopters, the Ashland Forest Resiliency project logging contractor. A tent was located within the fire’s perimeter and lightning was not recorded in that area over the last few days, an Ashland Fire & Rescue news release said.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Canada’s North Is Going Green Because Of Climate Change: NASA Study

Huffington Post
June 7, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada

Climate change has caused almost a third of the land cover in Canada and Alaska to go green, according to a NASA study. Using 87,000 satellite images, researchers found there was extensive greening, or vegetation growth, between 1984 and 2012 in the western Alaska tundra and along the north and northeastern coast of Canada. In the April report, NASA researchers say the most intensive greening was observed in Quebec and Labrador. It’s an “unmistakable” trend, researchers wrote. The study also found that the warmer climate was affecting the Boreal regions in Canada and Alaska. In those areas, researchers found an opposite effect: browning.

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Making the Case for Innovation in Forestry

250 News
June 8, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada, Canada West

Prince George, B.C.- There is great potential for new wood fibre products and growing markets in non-traditional product areas says Derek Nighbor, CEO of the Forest Products Association of Canada and the potential can be realized with some support from the senior levels of Government. He says from bio-energy to taller buildings made of wood, and even real wooden consoles for Lincolns, there are numerous opportunities. Nighbor is outlining some of those opportunities to a meeting of Canada’s Ministers of Forests in Dawson City, Yukon today. The whole idea of forestry innovation aligns with the Federal Government’s thinking on climate change says Nighbor “Innovation in the forest sector really does help contribute to the whole issues of climate change. The intersection of innovation and climate change presents a very powerful opportunity for the Canadian forest product sector.”

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Graanul Invest buys Belgium’s Langerlo plant

Argus Media
June 7, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Europe’s largest wood pellet producer Estonia’s Graanul Invest has bought the 556MW Langerlo power plant and plans to convert it to burn biomass by the second half of 2017. The plant, located in Flanders, Belgium, will use 1.8mn t/yr of wood pellets once converted. The company is still considering its supply options and is likely to secure part of Langerlo’s supply from the market. US pellet producer Enviva had previously signed a 10-year supply agreement for 450,000mn t/yr of wood pellets to be delivered to the plant from 2017 and that is still an option, Graanul Invest said. Graanul Invest has a pellet production capacity of around 2.3mn t/yr in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, and although a proportion of its output is contracted the firm would not need to build further production capacity to supply the plant, it said.

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Forest fires and logging threaten India’s progress on climate goals

High temperatures and low rainfall are driving greater losses of forest
Trust.org
June 7, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

India – Since the end of April, fires in parts of India’s northern states of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh have destroyed or damaged 26,000 hectares of forests, and killed three people, officials say. The forest fires, touched off by timber smugglers, poachers and farmers, have been a particular problem this year as a result of high temperatures and low rainfall, experts say. Nationwide, the country is losing an average of a million hectares to fires each year, according to a 2014 report from the government’s National Institute of Disaster Management. The losses, combined with those from surging illegal logging, mean India has lost 2,511 square kilometres of dense and moderately dense forest since 2013, according to the Environment Ministry’s 2015 Forest Survey of India report. That loss is a significant worry for a country trying to dramatically reduce its climate-changing emissions. 

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General

Mitigating forest mismanagement with 3D mapping

June 8, 2016
Category: Uncategorised

35 % of Europe is covered by mountains, many of which are blanketed by dense forests. For the many Europeans who live in these mountainous areas, the forest and the land are often the main sources of income, thus representing an important economic resource. Unfortunately, these same regions are all-too-often victims of mismanagement and deforestation – with significant economic consequences for local communities. To mitigate against this trend, the SLOPE project aims to improve the long-term management and sustainability of Europe’s mountains and forests by providing local communities and forest administrations more precise knowledge about forest ecosystems.

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