Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: August 2, 2016

Business & Politics

Tolko adjusts Lavington mill operations

By Jennifer Smith
Vernon Morning Star
July 31, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Tolko’s Lavington operation is dusting off some old regulations to carve out the clear picture of current day operations. An Environmental Protection Notice has been filed due to a change in conditions and emissions reduction from the Jeffers Drive planer mill which is looking to amend its permit. “Last year, Tolko received a temporary authorization from the BC MOE (Ministry of Environment) to implement some environmental improvements at the Tolko Lavington sawmill related to the commitments made as part of the Lavington pellet project,” said Michael Towers, Tolko’s manager of energy supply and systems. The changes outlined in the amendment represent a significant reduction in the total emissions from Tolko, according to the application made in 2015.

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Catalyst Paper shuts down PM 9 at Powell River

EUWID
August 1, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Catalyst Paper’s magazine paper machine PM 9 at the Powell River mill will not restart operations. The company has decided to permanently shut down the machine which was already idle. Catalyst Paper has announced the permanent shutdown of PM 9 at its Powell River mill in British Columbia, Canada. The machine has been idle since December 2014, according to the company. The Powell River mill used to have three paper machines with a combined capacity of 469,000 tpy of SC paper and newsprint. Two machines are now left at the site and Catalyst Paper puts the mill’s capacity at 350,000 tpy. 383 employees work at Powell River.

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Concerns over sawmill brought to council

Columbia Valley Pioneer
July 29, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Village of Radium Hot Springs council heard concerns from resident Chris Knight regarding Radium’s Canfor Mill at their July 20th council meeting. Having first addressed his concerns via email before presenting them in person at the meeting, Mr. Knight expressed dismay with the mill’s light pollution, dust, and excessive noise. “There are three issues: one is the noise. The noise is not the normal operating noise, it’s the noise that’s made when the equipment is not properly working and it’s a metal on metal noise,” Mr. Knight told The Pioneer after the meeting. It’s not the regular day-to-day operations noise that has him concerned, he said, it’s a distinctive low grinding noise that can be heard from early morning to late evening. With the mill operating from 5 a.m. to 3:30 a.m., operational noises commence just after the 5 a.m. start.

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Port Townsend Paper receives award for lowering emissions

Peninsula Daily News
July 31, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

PORT TOWNSEND –– Port Townsend Paper has earned an award for cutting its carbon dioxide emissions by 60 percent since 2005. The Northwest Pulp and Paper Association gave the paper mill the 2016 Environmental Excellence Award for its effort to reduce greenhouse gases. In 2005, 153,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide were released from the mill. That number has now dropped by 60 percent, to about 61,200 metric tons, said Kevin Scott, engineering and environmental manager, who expects the amount to continue to decrease. “We are very honored to get this award,” he said. “It’s a significant milestone for any industrial facility.”

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Feds designate $7.7 million in grants to support forest products industry

By Rachel Ohm
Portland Press Herald
July 29, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

ORONO — The formation of a team to help the state’s forest industry come up with a long-term economic plan, aided by nearly $8 million in grants, is just the start of continued investment in and development of the hard-hit industry, the state’s congressional delegation said Friday. U.S. Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, Angus King, I-Maine, and U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin, R-2nd District, joined a representative of the U.S. Department of Commerce Friday at a news conference Friday held at the University of Maine — the recipient of some of the $7.7 in grants announced during the event — to outline plans for the economic assessment team, which will tour the state next month. Officials also discussed the grants designed to bring the state’s forest products economy into a sustainable future.

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Alexander Lumber aquires Nagle Lumber

Lumber Building Materials Journal
August 1, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

AURORA IL. — Alexander Lumber, a privately held 125-year-old company
with 20 locations in Illinois and southern Wisconsin, announced today
the acquisition of Nagle Lumber Alexander LumberCompany in Iowa City,
Iowa. Nagle Lumber, founded in 1922 and an institution in the Iowa City
market, has been owned and managed since 1994 by Carlan Miller and Jeff
Maske. Nagle Lumber is a supplier of lumber, windows, millwork, cabinets
and decking to the Iowa City-area builders, contractors and landlords.

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Loggers will miss Concord Steam as a market for wood chips

Concord Monitor
July 30, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

There is one group that’s really going to miss Concord’s unique wood-powered steam heating system as it shuts down over the next year or two: Loggers. “It’s a link in the chain – and you know what happens when you take a link out,” said Marlo Herrick, who owns Hopkinton Forestry and LandClearing with her husband, David. Hopkinton Forestry is one of several land-clearing companies that for years has chipped low-grade wood like treetops and limbs at logging sites and sold the chips to Concord Steam, which burns around 50,000 tons of such chips each year to power the state’s only municipal district heating system. …But not for much longer. Concord Steam Corp., which has struggled with financial and equipment issues for years, recently agreed to be bought by Liberty Utilities for $1.9 million.

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Why $1.5 million for Maine’s forest products industry is just a start

By Darren Fishell,
Bangor Daily News
July 29, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

PORTLAND, Maine — Maine’s forest products industry has had a tough couple of decades. That’s why political officials gave such plaudits Friday to the U.S. Department of Commerce. The agency allocated $1.5 million to help Maine find a way forward for the industry, which has been hit from multiple sides. Numerous mill closures have highlighted headwinds for the industry, leaving mill workers to upend their lives either to stay in the industry or to find a way out. That leaves the money announced Friday with some big shoes to fill, particularly as Maine’s paper industry supplies about $226 million less in annual wages than it did fewer than 20 years ago. Paper’s economic weight has dwindled since 2000. Paper manufacturing payrolls made up about 4.5 percent of wages in the state in 2000, at about $636 million that year.

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New Waingawa log hub underpins regional growth and trade

By CentrePort
New Zealand Scoop
August 1, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

CentrePort has invested in a new regional hub in the Wairarapa. The Waingawa log hub, near Masterton, supports the fast growing and valuable forestry sector through a reliable and cost effective transport connection, ensuring exporters remain internationally competitive. Transport Minister Simon Bridges officially opened the venture this morning. The project is the result of a successful partnership between Wellington’s port company CentrePort, Forest Enterprises Limited and Farman Turkington Forestry with the support of KiwiRail. It is served by daily KiwiRail freight trains, connecting the Wairarapa region to CentrePort and to the world. The development follows a period of sustained growth for the log trade in the Lower North Island.

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Global hardwood chips prices at record low

IHB – The Timber Network
August 1, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

The prices for globally traded hardwood chips fell to a record low in May 2016, while softwood chip prices reached the highest level in seven months, according to the latest FOEX Chip Price Indexes. Global trade of hardwood chips have trended upward for six years and totaled almost 24 million tons in 2015. By far, the two largest wood chip-importing markets are Japan and China, both countries with limited forest resources to supply the pulp industry with sufficient wood fiber.

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Russia: Lumber production continues to increase

EUWID Wood Products and Panels
August 2, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Lumber production in Russia increased by 4.4% in June vis à vis the comparative month last year to some 2 m m³. According to the Russian statistics authority, Rosstat, production has been above the figures recorded for comparative months of the preceding year since February. In February and March increases of approximately 2% had been recorded. More significant increase rates were then recorded for April (+4%) and May (+7.5%).

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Is Conflict Brewing Between Mass Timber and Concrete?

By Marc Howe
Soureceable
August 2, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

Efforts to spur the use of mass timber products as a safe and sustainable building material for mid-rise construction projects is already meeting with concerted pushback from the concrete sector. Many engineering experts contend that recent technological advances have made mass timber products a safe and viable construction material for mid-rise buildings. This development promises to boost the use of timber for multi-storey projects in particular, and provide the construction industry with a sustainable, endlessly renewable building material. Some are concerned, however, that the promotion of mass timber as a sustainable construction product threatens to cut into the vast market share enjoyed by concrete, which has been the perennial material of choice for large-scale building projects since time immemorial.

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Full-sized replica of Noah’s Ark built by tiny Colorado company

By Danika Worthington
Denver Post
August 1, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

Colorado Timberframe employees worked 24 hours a day, six days a week for 11 months straight, cutting wood to build the largest freestanding timber-frame structure in the world: a life-size replica of Noah’s Ark, as described in the Bible. The crew sent 180 semi-trucks filled with timber components to Williamstown, Ky., where they oversaw construction of the Ark Encounter, a sister attraction to Answers In Genesis‘ Creation Museum about an hour away. “It was an amazing honor,” said Colorado Timberframe president Keenan Tompkins. “No one has done this before.” “Except for Noah,” joked Jason Schimpf, lead installer.

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National Building Museum exhibition to demonstrate timber benefits

Civil + Structural Engineer
August 1, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

Washington, D.C. — This fall, the National Building Museum will challenge the notion that wood is an antiquated building material when it opens Timber City. The new exhibition will demonstrate the wide range of benefits offered by cutting-edge methods of timber construction, including surprising strength, fire resistance, sustainability, and beauty. The exhibition will open September 17, 2016 and run through May 21, 2017. Timber City will illustrate the value of timber as a modern, strong, and versatile building material through featured projects. …the exhibition will examine the recent boom in timber construction worldwide and highlight U.S.-based projects, including the two competition winners of the recent Tall Wood Building Prize, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

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University of Massachusetts wood construction expertixe has Canadian roots

By Peter Kenter
Daily Commercial News
July 29, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

The Integrated Design Building at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst (UMass) is showing Americans how to build with mass timber—with a little help from Canadian experts. It’s also breaking records by featuring what’s believed to be the largest installation of wood-concrete composite floors in North America. …But Clouston [associate professor, Building and Construction Technology at UMass] had a secret weapon, earning her engineering degree at the University of British Columbia where she studied under experts well versed in wood construction. Following a series of presentations …campus planners agreed to produce a cost analysis comparing Type 2B unprotected steel with heavy timber. …The project received technical support from Wood WORKS!, a campaign by the Canadian Wood Council and US Wood Products Council to promote the use of wood in commercial, industrial and institutional construction.

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Critic questions building method;Clemson says it must follow code

by Mike Eads
Greenville Online
July 31, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

CLEMSON — There is an on-going disagreement about whether wood frame construction should be allowed for the taller apartment buildings popping up around Clemson. Local construction engineer and critic Derek Hodgin says the city shouldn’t allow it. But city officials say state law prevents them from denying developers that option. Hodgin said the solution would be for city officials to require concrete and/or steel construction for such multistory projects. He said wood frames are more susceptible to gravity, water intrusion and weathering over time. That, in turn, could lead to ugly buildings that suffer from more and quicker degradation of roofs, interior walls and exterior brick, stucco and other facings.

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Forestry

Some old-growth logging is necessary

by Bob Matters, chairman, United Steelworkers Wood Council
Victoria Times Colonist
July 29, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Re: “Forestry workers, environmentalists call for ban on log exports,” July 22. It is important that the voice of B.C. forest workers who actually log and work in sawmills is heard. With respect to the organization quoted, the United Steelworkers represents loggers and the majority of unionized sawmill workers in B.C. USW has long advocated for significant reductions in log exports…. The discussion of “logging old-growth forests” reveals the real agenda of some of the groups interviewed, re-writing history and eroding the working forest and land-use plans that were established through extensive debate, consultation and compromise. It’s a short-sighted perspective that fails to see the forest for the trees or to value forestry communities.

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3 trees infected with Dutch Elm Disease in east Regina

Disease likely spread by elm firewood coming into city
CBC News
July 29, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The City of Regina destroyed three trees infected with Dutch Elm Disease so far this summer. The elms were in the Wood Meadows neighbourhood in Regina’s east end. The infected trees were all within a block of each other. Russel Eirich, the manager of forestry, pest control and horticulture for the City of Regina, says the disease was likely spread by careless campers. “We think it has a little more to do with elm firewood coming into town,” Eirich said. “They brought the disease in that way and the beetles went to another tree.” It is illegal to transport, buy or store elm firewood in Saskatchewan. Eirich also pointed out pruning trees between April and September is prohibited by provincial legislation, as the sap from fresh cuts can attract the beetles.

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New soil cell technology aims to grow big trees in Edmonton’s tight spaces

Edmonton Journal
August 1, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Life can be nasty, brutish and short for Edmonton’s street trees, stuck growing in small tree pits between a sidewalk and a heavily-compacted road. Starved of space to spread their roots, 85 trees on 124 Street died in the past three years alone, 40 per cent of the tree canopy. The others are scrawny. Planted years ago, they still give almost no shade or any of the other benefits that come with a mature canopy such as cleaner air, increased oxygen and reduced stormwater runoff. Fortunately, new technology is starting to make a difference elsewhere. Small plastic tables stacked underground and filled with good, un-compacted soil can give the trees the space they need, even under the sidewalk or parking space. Edmonton made a new commitment this spring to at least triple the amount of soil it requires for street trees in city projects.

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Irresistible aroma responsible for mountain pine beetle attacks, suggests Calgary research

By Bill Graveland
Canadian Press in the CBC News
July 29, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Research suggests pine trees with strong natural defences are their own worst enemy when it comes to the destructive mountain pine beetle. Although the sap produced by the lodgepole pine is toxic to the beetles, the smell of the sap can attract large numbers of the tiny bugs that can collectively end up killing a tree. Prof. Mary Reid, a University of Calgary researcher, says toxic chemicals in the resin within a healthy pine can ward off a few beetles, but not a swarm. “They are effective, but it could be that because they’re also attractive that there can be enough beetles that can pour into that tree and kill the tree even though the individual beetles don’t really do that well,” Reid said.

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Critics, industry respond to glyphosate report

By Shane Fowler,
CBC News
July 29, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

The release of a much anticipated report on the controversial herbicide glyphosate has drawn contradictory responses from industry and critics. …However, that conclusion is not a satisfying one for several environmental groups. “There are more socially responsible ways of doing silviculture in our forestry industry,” said Tracy Glynn, forest campaign director for the Conservation Council of New Brunswick. …The province’s largest forester, J.D. Irving, offered a limited response on the reports findings. “JDI values the opinion of scientific experts on this issue,” wrote company spokesperson Mary Keith.

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Glyphosate report shows no increased health risk: Dr. Jennifer Russell

Environmental activists had been calling for release of long-awaited report for more than 7 months
CBC News
July 29, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

The provincial government has released its long-awaited report on the use of glyphosate and it says there is “no increased risk for New Brunswickers exposed to glyphosate.” Dr. Jennifer Russell, the acting chief medical officer of health, said in a written statement the government acknowledges that “some uncertainty about glyphosate exists.” But based on its review, she said exposures here “are similar to or less than elsewhere.” Russell said no additional actions are required to protect human health as rules for glyphosate use are more stringent in New Brunswick. …Russell found no risk to human health by the region’s biggest user, the New Brunswick forestry industry, which accounts for 61 per cent of the
glyphosate used in the province and is the the second biggest per capita user of glyphosate in the forestry sector in Canada,after Ontario

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State forestry industry shines despite report, expert says

Pine Bluff Commercial
July 29, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

A federal Bureau of Economic Analysis report showing Arkansas having the nation’s fastest growing gross domestic product has led to some head-scratching among economists, but there’s little doubt that forestry is an upward mover in the state’s economy, said economist Matthew Pelkki. Pelkki, is associate director of the Arkansas Forest Resources Center and professor within the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture and is based at the University of Arkansas at Monticello. Pelkki is also the George H. Clippert Endowed Chair within UAM’s School of Forestry and Natural Resources….If Arkansas’s gross state product is roughly $130 billion, a 3.9
percent annual rate for the first quarter would mean about a $1.3
billion actual rise in its first quarter GDP.

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Huge sawdust dump fire in Siberia will burn for years

Digital Journal
July 31, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Environmentalists fear that world’s largest sawdust dump, which is burning since 2013 in Irkutsk region of Siberia will continue burning for the next few years with truckloads of sawdust waste being added each day into the mountain of sawdust. The mountain of sawdust measuring more than 25 acres in size is located in the Ust-Kutsky district of Irkutsk region in Eastern Siberia. The Trans-Siberian Forest company, which manages the site is depositing 70 cubic meters (2,500 cubic feet) of sawdust waste each day to the 2 million cubic meters (70 million cubic feet) dump literally adding fuel to the fire.

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3,000-year-old tree found in China

Tribune India
July 31, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A rare Chinese yew tree, believed to be about 3,000 years old, was discovered in Jilin province, authorities said on Sunday. The living tree, located in Huanggou Forest, is more than 40 metres tall and has a diameter of 1.68 metres, Xinhua news agency quoted Yang Yongsheng, head of the forest administration, as saying. The tree was among the more than 30 Chinese yew trees discovered earlier this week in the forest. Called a “living fossil” of the plant world, the Chinese yew has existed for 2.5 million years. Since many of the trees have been harvested to extract taxol, used to treat cancer, the species is now under first-grade national protection for endangered plants. END OF STORY

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Australian forestry learns from Oregon

PRWire
August 1, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Australian forest and forest products innovation tour of the Oregon forest sector. Lynea Advisory, in association with Oregon State University, Oregon Wood Innovation Center and the Institute of Foresters of Australia conducted a forest and forest products innovation tour of the Oregon forest sector this July. Lyndall Bull from Lynea advisory who led the tour said, ‘This 7-night tour focused on innovative techniques and approaches and fostered the love of timber and forests that is shared by foresters worldwide.’ ‘Site visits included engineered wood products, bioenergy producers, softwood lumber, secondary manufacturing and plantations, providing enormous opportunities for Australian forest experts to exchange knowledge with their US counterparts. Forests cover over 30.5 million acres of Oregon, accounting for almost half of the state, and provides over 58 000 living wage jobs.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Can a house where wood is burned for heat really be called green?

By Lloyd Alter
TreeHugger
August 1, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada

After writing From the straw bale wrap to the lime plaster finishes, this cottage is as green as it gets there was a huge pushback from commenters who complained about the use of wood for heating. “…as green as it gets”? I would like to respectfully disagree. It’s unfortunate that “renewable” is now equated with “clean”, “green”, “healthy”, and “good-for-the-planet”. Yes, wood is renewable, but burning it as fuel has none of these positive attributes. And that was the one respectfully disagreeing. TreeHugger has never been in the “renewable is green” camp, complaining forever about biofuels and yes, biomass heating. But this is different. It is an issue we have looked at in TreeHugger before, asking Is burning wood for heat really green?, where I concluded that it really isn’t. Yet lots of very green people do, including Alex Wilson, founder of BuildingGreen, who knows more about the subject than anyone I know. So let’s look at the issue in terms of this particular house.

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Commission to study Maine’s biomass industry to meet in August

By Katie Fletcher
Biomass Magazine
July 29, 2016
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

A commission put together by Maine legislature to study economic, environmental and energy benefits of Maine’s biomass industry is scheduled to hold its first meeting Aug. 2. The commission is required to report the results of its study and any recommendations for implemented legislation by the end of the year. This past April, Maine enacted a resolve establishing the 13-member commission. Members include two from the Senate and three from the House of Representatives. Four members are appointed by the president of the Senate, including a commercial wood harvester who supplies biomass, a representative of the biomass electric industry, a representative of a sawmill located in the state and a scientist from the University of Maine who studies forest health and silviculture.

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Forest Fires

Wildfire risk creeping back up in B.C. as warm weather continues

By Chad Pawson
CBC News
July 30, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

During the summer of 2015, it seemed there were reports every week of wildfires burning in the province or warnings about how to prevent them. So far, the summer of 2016 has been cooler and less smokey, but that could begin to change as hot weather has arrived throughout much of the province and wildfire danger is again creeping up. “One careless mistake with a campfire or an improperly discarded cigarette could spark a serious wildfire and threaten B.C. communities and resources,” said Steve Thomson, the province’s forestry minister in a release on Friday. “Play it safe this weekend and follow the rules. Remember that campfires must be completely extinguished and the ashes must be cold to the touch before you leave the area.”

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Okanagan Landing brush fire in mop-up stage; evacuation order rescinded

Vernon Morning Star
July 31, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

UPDATED 10:50 A.M. – A helicopter has been dumping water on hot spots Sunday morning as flare-ups from the fire have been occurring. The evacuation order put in place for the Okanagan Landing wildfire Saturday night for about 60 residents of Adventure Bay was rescinded Sunday morning. Fire broke out sometime after 8:30 p.m. Saturday on a hill near the Tavistock development above Tronson Road. “The roads are all open and displaced residents are being advised they can return home,” said Vernon Fire Rescue Services Chief Keith Green at 7:15 a.m. Sunday. The fire was a Rank 3 (in severity from 1 to 5) and ground crews from B.C. Wildfire Service were brought in to help Vernon Fire Rescue crews.

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Three fires found in Olympic National Park after lightning strikes last week — Corrected

Peninsula Daily News
July 29, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

OLYMPIC NATIONAL PARK — Last week’s lightning has sparked three small wildfires in the national park. All were discovered this week after a series of storms last Thursday, July 21, that led to more than 400 lightning strikes over the Olympic Mountains, said Barb Maynes, Olympic National Park spokeswoman.The largest one, the Godkin Fire in the Elwha River Valley, had grown to 40 acres by Thursday, Maynes said.It was discovered near the confluence of Godkin Creek and the Elwha River in the geographic center of the park late Monday. At that time, it covered about 7 acres. It is about 15 miles south of Hurricane Ridge. Smoke may be visible from the Ridge, Maynes said.

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Pioneer Fire now 16,000 acres; new fire restrictions kick in Monday

Idaho Statesman
July 29, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

Overnight winds pushed the Pioneer Fire eastward in the Boise National Forest, increasing the fire’s size by more than 3,000 acres early Friday. As the total acreage increased to 16,204 (more than 25 square miles), the estimated level of containment, previously 35 percent, decreased to 27 percent by Friday afternoon.Crews wrapped five of the six Idaho City backcountry yurts — the sixth, Rocky Ridge, is now considered out of danger — with fire-repellent material and did the same with the Beaver Creek Cabin managed by the U.S. Forest Service. Flames reached the Beaver Creek Cabin and damaged its porch, but the structure survived, Forest Service spokeswoman Susan Blake said.

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Crater Lake wildfire grows to 150 acres, officials say

The Oregonian
July 30, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

A wildfire burning just west of Crater Lake has tripled in size, to nearly 150 acres, federal forestry officials said Saturday. The Bybee Fire in Crater Lake National Park prompted officials to close the Pacific Crest and Lightning Springs trails on Friday, though the park itself remains open. The blaze, which has been burning since Thursday afternoon, is about 5 percent contained, according to Lisa Swinney, a public affairs specialist for the U.S. Forest Service. Investigators have not determined an official cause, but suspect an escaped campfire, she said Saturday in a news release.

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Deadly Soberanes fire north of Big Sur grows to 40,000 acres

Los Angeles Times
July 31, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

The deadly wildfire raging north of Big Sur continued to grow in size on Sunday and has now burned 40,000 acres and destroyed nearly 70 structures. About 5,300 firefighters are battling the Soberanes fire, which is now just 18% contained, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. Since it began July 22, the fire has also claimed the life of a bulldozer operator. Pushed by strong southerly winds, the blaze has shifted away from coastal homes and is moving southeast into the heart of the Los Padres National Forest, said Maria Lara, spokeswoman for Cal Fire. “It’s good in a way, but it means there will be more acreage burning,” Lara said.

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Hundreds evacuated as fire south of Hamilton rages

By Perry Backus and Chelsea Davis
The Billings Gazette
July 31, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: US West

HAMILTON — Bitterroot National Forest spokesman: ‘This is the one we didn’t want to happen’. A minimum of 500 homes are under orders to evacuate due to a fast-moving fire southwest of Hamilton that has already claimed a number of structures. “We’re just trying to get people out of the way now,” said Bitterroot National Forest spokesman Tod McKay. “We can rebuild homes. We need to get people out of this area.” The fire started about 1 mile up Roaring Lion Road near a national forest trailhead. “It was first noticed probably at about 2 p.m., and by a quarter to 3 it was encroaching on homes,” said Ravalli County Sheriff Chris Hoffman said. “We skipped stage one evacuations and went immediately to stage two, which is ‘get out of here.’”

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Montana Firefighters Battling Roaring Lion Fire

By Corky Siemaszko
NBC News
August 1, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

Wildfires raged Monday in a rugged corner of Montana known as Roaring Lion as firefighters struggled to douse the flames. Some 200 homes have already been evacuated and at least a dozen were destroyed as wildfires consumed more than 3,500 acres some six miles southwest of Hamilton, Montana, officials said. “We’re just trying to get people out of the way now,” Bitterroot National Forest spokesman Tod McKay told the local Ravalli Republic newspaper. “We can rebuild homes. We need to get people out of this area.”

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Lightning-Caused Fires Burn Atop The Rim

Payson Roundup
July 29, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

Several lightning-caused fires continue to burn atop the Rim, but the Coconino National Forest fire crews are mostly letting them burn within defined areas, taking advantage of damp, monsoon conditions to use the forest to thin rather than destroy the forest. The Coconino Forest put out the following update on Friday morning: Fire managers on Coconino National Forest are using several lightning-caused fires to benefit the landscape by allowing them to burn in confined areas that have not seen fire in decades. The fires will consume heavy fuel accumulation—dead vegetation on the forest floor—which will cultivate healthier wildlife habitat by breaking down dead underbrush and releasing nutrients into the soil so new vegetation can thrive.

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Wildfires burn in 7 Western states, prompt evacuations

Associated Press in The Helene Independent Record
August 2, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

Wildfires are burning in seven Western U.S. states, from California’s famed Big Sur region to tribal towns and hamlets near Reno, Nevada. More than a dozen homes were destroyed in Montana, and evacuations were ordered in Nevada, Oregon and Wyoming. Firefighters were trying to stop a Washington blaze from reaching a thickly forested security zone at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation. …Higher humidity and lower temperatures on Monday helped firefighters battle a destructive wildfire that has scorched more than 63 square miles near the scenic Big Sur coast, while firefighters in Central California faced blistering heat as they worked to contain a blaze that burned rural homes and forced hundreds of evacuations near the small Fresno County town of Prather. …A southwest Idaho wildfire burning timber in rugged terrain and pushed by winds grew to 60 square miles Monday.

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Ten-acre South Tamarack fire burning north of St. Regis

The Missoulian
July 30, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

Two Hotshot crews are fighting a 10-acre fire about six miles north of St. Regis, according to the U.S. Forest Service. The lightning-caused South Tamarack fire, burning in heavy blow-down timber in the Superior Ranger District, caused a smoke plume visible from St. Regis and Interstate 90, according to a Forest Service release. In addition to the Hotshots, two single-engine air tankers, two helicopters, two engines and a hand crew fought the blaze, and another Hotshot crew was on its way Friday.

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Large forest fire rages on Greek island of Evia for 3rd day

Associated Press in The Idaho Statesman
August 1, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: International

ATHENS, Greece Nearly 200 firefighters, assisted by water-dropping aircraft, fire engines and volunteers, fought Monday to tame a large forest fire that raged through the Greek island of Evia for three days. No injuries were reported, but a village, a monastery and a small hotel were evacuated, while the blaze threatened the small seaside town of Limni overnight. The hotel was destroyed, along with a holiday home, a restaurant and a couple of outhouses. A ferry boat remained on standby, together with dozens of pleasure craft and fishing boats to evacuate Limni if necessary, but a change in the direction of the wind turned the flames away. The fire department said the front near Limni was showing signs of abating late Monday, but another one remained in full development elsewhere.

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