Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: August 9, 2016

Business & Politics

Canadian lumber riding housing boom

By Jen Skerritt
Bloomberg in The Journal Gazette
August 7, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

With Americans buying more new homes than at any time since the recession, the cost of the wood used to build them is getting a lot more expensive. Lumber prices are off to their biggest rally in more than a decade, touching a 19-month high in late July as demand increased from builders. But almost a third of all wood used in U.S. homes comes from the world’s top exporter, Canada, where surging shipments have compounded a trade dispute and increased the chances of import tariffs that may top 30 percent. That spells trouble for producers including West Fraser Timber Co. and Canfor Corp.

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Sumitomo buys major equity in Aussie home-building company

By Melissa Coade
Lawyers Weekly
August 9, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

The wholly owned Australian subsidiary of the Japanese group has grown its stake in the custom home market, acquiring more than half of Wisdom Properties. …Sumitomo Forestry Australia (Sumitomo) has successfully acquired 51 per cent of the Wisdom group. Wisdom Properties began trading as Wisdom Homes in 1999, initially offering building home and land packages. Today the Wisdom group has more than 150 employees and includes the Wisdom Landscapes, Inspire Homes and My Home Central businesses. Sumitomo’s new stake in Wisdom places the company in a good position to consider moving into the residential landscaping business and taking that business into other states.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Build with Strength: Safety Must Come First in Second City

PR Newsire
August 8, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

CHICAGO, — Build with Strength, a coalition of the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association (NRMCA), continues to stress the importance of safety when it comes to new and existing construction projects. As the coalition focuses on the City of Chicago, surrounding suburbs, and the Midwest in general, they are stressing the durability and resilience of concrete when it comes to fire, wind, and rot. …Build with Strength is asking Chicago developers, investors, builders, architects and consumers to watch their new video on the safety benefits associated with concrete construction and the limitations of buildings built with wood and wood products. The video features Jon Narva of the National Association of State Fire Marshalls, who notes “it’s just not worth a firefighter’s life to go into a building that might collapse on them.”

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Forestry

Protecting our old growth

by Louise Taylor
Whistler Question
August 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Have you noticed the constant stream of logging trucks thundering along Pemberton Meadows Road before heading south on Highway 99? I am guessing the logging companies are logging old growth trees judging by their impressive girths and the number of mature trees in the Meager Creek area. These trees are NOT being sent to mills in B.C., but shipped off as raw logs. The sheer stupidity of logging and shipping unprocessed old growth and mature trees boggles the mind given how few jobs this supports and the vital role that these trees play in storing carbon and maintaining healthy ecosystems. According to Statistics Canada, in B.C., one full-time, year-round job requires 1,312 cubic metres (almost 33 logging trucks) while each of those cubic metres contributes only $233 on average to the provincial economy.

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Cumberland Community Forest Society one step closer to forest purchase

By Erin Haluschak
Comox Valley Record
August 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Forty hectares have never looked so good. At the end of June, the Cumberland Community Forest Society (CCFS) took a huge leap forward in their goal of purchasing, protecting and restoring the Cumberland forest that borders the village. Thanks to a $100,000 grant from Mountain Equipment Co-op, the society was able to purchase the area known as Space Nugget from Hancock Timber Resource Group, and now it is focusing on three additional parcels of land as part of ‘Phase Two.’ “We knew we were close (to our goal), so we started our application fresh to MEC,” explained CCFS co-ordinator Meaghan Cursons. “They came in and helped us close the gap, and we did it all with no debt.”

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Renowned scientist joins fight against Emerald Ash Borers

City of Thunder Bay Media Release
Thunder Bay News Watch
August 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Federal support is on the way as the City continues to detect, monitor and manage the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) in Thunder Bay. Dr. Krista Ryall is a Forest Ecological Entomologist with Natural Resources Canada – Canadian Forest Service and specializes in the study of insect pests and how to minimize their impact on forest resources. Over the next two days, Dr. Ryall will join City and Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry staff to analyze insect and bark samples from municipal trees. Her research will investigate how the insect’s behaviour in a colder, northern climate compares to that of beetles found in southern Ontario. In addition, she will explore the efficacy of branch sampling, a technique she pioneered to enhance EAB detection, in a colder environment.

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Drought Conditions Slow the Growth of Douglas Fir Trees Across the West

By Kat Kerlin
University of California, Davis
August 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Whether growing along the rim of the Grand Canyon or living in the mist with California’s coastal redwoods, Douglas fir trees are consistently sensitive to drought conditions that occur throughout the species’ range in the United States, according to a study led by a researcher at the University of California, Davis. The study, published Aug. 8 in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, provides direct evidence of the negative impact of water stress on forest ecosystems. It also pinpointed which conditions are causing low growth among Douglas fir trees. “Warm, dry conditions can push these trees beyond their threshold of tolerance,” said lead author Christina Restaino, a postdoctoral researcher in the UC Davis Department of Environmental Science and Policy.

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Asian Gypsy moths threaten Savannah trees

By Asli Shebe
Savannah College of Art and Design
August 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Walking around or driving through Savannah, you may have noticed—in the past year—triangular green boxes hanging from trees all over the city. Those little green envelope-like boxes may be key to saving Savannah’s signature oak-tree canopy. State of Georgia researchers have placed nearly 1,000 of the boxes all over Savannah to catch Asian Gypsy Moth, an invasive species that is known to devour tree foliage. “In August of 2015 we caught one male, dead Asian Gypsy Moth in a trap,” said Chip Bates, forest health coordinator for the Georgia Forestry Commission. Though harmless to human health, officials are worried that if established in Savannah, the moth could kill off trees and harm the region’s bustling tourism and forestry industries.

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Alumna Launches Career with Saws and Llamas

State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry
August 8, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Lauren Bartl FNRM ’15 thought she was headed to Colorado to spend the summer working indoors at visitors center when an injury to a co-worker nudged Bartl into a job that has her working outside and living in a tent for days at a time. And she likes it. “I like getting home and deserving my shower. I’m definitely in better shape than I was two months ago. It’s kind of nice to know I can do all this work at this altitude,” she said. Bartl is a U.S. Forest Service (USFS) forestry technician/recreation based in Granby, Colorado, just west of Rocky Mountain National Park. She spends her days at altitudes around 9,000 feet, maintaining 320 miles of hiking trails – cutting fallen trees, clearing trails of debris and improving drainage. Damage caused to lodgepole pines by the mountain pine beetle is a particular problem.

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NJ’s state tree threatened by fatal fungus

New Jersey 101.5 FM Radio
August 9, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

A tree-killing fungus has been on New Jersey’s radar for years, given its presence in neighboring states. But now it’s too close for comfort, and state officials are keeping an eye out for signs that it’s made its way to the Garden State. Last week, officials in New York confirmed a breakout of oak wilt disease on Long Island. “Long Island, being so much closer than other detections, definitely heightens our awareness,” said Rosa Yoo of the New Jersey Forest Service within the state Department of Environmental Protection. Oak wilt has never been detected in New Jersey. But it can be spread by insects, as well as the transport of wood from one location to another, as the fungus can stay alive in dead wood for several months.

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Forest Fires

Nova Scotia restricts forest access amid ‘high’ risk of more wildfires: minister

Canadian Press in the Chronicle Herald
August 8, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

HALIFAX — As crews battle three wildfires in western Nova Scotia, the province is restricting activity within forests in a bid to keep more bone-dry woods from going up in flames. “We can manage the fires we’ve got. If we get many more, it’s going to cause great concern for us,” Natural Resources Minister Lloyd Hines said Monday, who warned the risk of more fires is “high.” Restrictions on hiking, camping fishing, use of off-highway vehicles, and certain commercial activities will come into effect at noon on Tuesday. “The primary objective here … is to enlist the public’s help in trying to reduce the risk,” Hines said in an interview. “The reality is, most of the fires we’re aware of that start in the province start with human activity.”

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Forest fires continue to burn in western Nova Scotia

By Elizabeth McMillan
CBC News
August 8, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

Extremely dry conditions and gusting winds have forced the province to pull crews out of a growing forest fire in western Nova Scotia. A fire near Seven Mile Lake in Annapolis County has burned about 140 hectares since last week and is still considered out of control. “I think it has increased a little bit but they’re not sure how much,” Department of National Resources forest spokesman Jim Rudderham said later Monday afternoon. “But the crews were removed for safety.”

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Seven Mile Lake forest fire still growing, Highway 8 still closed Monday near Keji

Cape Breton Post
August 8, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

DIGBY, NS – Annapolis Royal fire Chief Malcolm Francis says firefighters working the Seven Mile Lake fire expect to lose ground over the next couple days. “The weather hasn’t been favourable and it grew yesterday by 40 per cent,” he said. “The weather doesn’t look favourable at all. They are calling for winds at 40 kmh today and as you know wind is not good for a fire. “They’re giving a slim chance of showers but showers is no good to us.” Francis says his firefighters are getting tired from a weekend of firefighting in hot dry conditions.

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Fire hazard ‘moderate’ across northwest says MNRF

CBC News
August 8, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

Ministry ‘carefully watching’ situation due to continued hot, dry weather in region. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry says the fire hazard is moderate across most of the Northwest, with only pockets of high hazard. But the ministry says it’s carefully watching the situation because of the continued hot dry weather in the region. Jonathon Scott, fire information officer in Dryden, said the trend will continue. “The warm weather will increase the fire hazard,” Scott said, “and we are projecting by the end of today, the eastern portion of the northwest region will be in a high fire hazard.”

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Growing forest fire near Seven Mile Lake has crews assessing approach

Heavy smoke from the fire interfering with visibility on Highway 8 near Maitland Bridge
CBC News
August 9, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

Nova Scotia is assessing whether to send ground crews back to tackle a 140-hectare fire that is still considered out of control in Annapolis County. The crews that had been trying to contain the fire near Seven Mile Lake were pulled out of the area on Monday due to the extremely dry conditions and gusting winds. Seven water bombers had spent the day dousing the fire from above in an effort to make it easier for the ground crews to work in the area. Thick smoke from the fire was interfering with visibility on Highway 8 near Maitland Bridge. The highway was closed overnight and the Department of Natural Resources has not said whether the road will reopen Tuesday.

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Whit Fire containment at 65 percent; Buffalo Bill reservoir reopens

The Billings Gazette
August 8, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

A wildfire burning near Cody, Wyo., has grown in acreage, but firefighters have improved containment of the blaze. The Whit Fire was estimated at 12,240 acres Monday morning, up about 2,000 from Sunday. But officials have lifted evacuation notices for the area and reported the fire as 65-percent contained. A Sunday thunderstorm brought moisture to the area, which aided crews working to build lines around the fire, according to a release from the Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team. The Buffalo Bill Reservoir was reopened to the public on Monday after being closed on Friday. There were 717 people fighting the fire on Monday.

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Nearly 10 square miles burn in latest California wildfire

Associated Press in The Idaho Statesman
August 8, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

CRESTLINE, Calif. Smoke plumes roiling from flaming ridges of the San Bernardino Mountains blew all the way across the Mojave Desert to Las Vegas as California’s latest big wildfire forced the evacuation of hundreds of homes and threatened thousands more. Hundreds of firefighters, aided by 16 aircraft, battled flames that spread across nearly 10 square miles on the northern side of the rugged mountain range east of Los Angeles. People in some 375 homes were ordered to evacuate, San Bernardino County sheriff and U.S. Forest Service officials told the Los Angeles Times. About 5,000 more homes were advised that they may want to evacuate, authorities said.

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Maine forest rangers battling three wildfires

Bangor Daily News
August 8, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: US East, United States

BANGOR, Maine — Maine Forest Service rangers are battling three wildfires, each of them in remote locations, a district ranger said late Monday afternoon. One of the fires is near the top of Big Boardman Mountain in Township A, Range 11 WELS, District Ranger Joe Mints said. It has been contained to about 3 acres. Another is on an island in Upper Lead Mountain Pond, Mints said. He said 3 to 4 acres are affected and that rangers reached it by boat and have it about 25 percent contained. Rangers also are on their way to a third forest fire, this one in Township 4, Range 9 NWT, also known as Seboeis Plantation, Mints said.

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Size of Siberian Wildfires Remain in Question

By Brittany Patterson
News Deeply
August 8, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: International

CLIMATEWIRE – Large wildfires are a natural process in some of Siberia’s forest ecosystems, but warmer temperatures and drier conditions may be leading to larger and more ferocious burns that could threaten the forests’ ability to regenerate. While the United States watches the fire season heat up in the West, on the other side of the world, Siberian wildfires are scorching forests and sending up smoke plumes visible from space. But read the official Russian fire data and the numbers tell a very different story. According to a bulletin released on July 28, the Russian Federal Agency for Forestry reports that there have been 103 forest fires covering 13,935 hectares across Russia, to date.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Giving carbon credit where credit isn’t due

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

Somewhere on Haida Gwaii is a stand of trees soaking up carbon dioxide, although calculating just how much is something of an arcane accounting science. They’re also soaking up millions of dollars – money taken from school districts, hospitals and universities in the form of carbon offsets. That is now easier to calculate, thanks to improved transparency in the B.C. government’s Carbon Neutral Government reporting, although it’s hard to say who the money is going to. … But when the data is “normalized for weather,” the public sector generated more GHGs in 2015 and 2014 than it did in 2013, according to Hadi Dowlatabadi, a University of BC professor and research chairman for applied mathematics and integrated assessment of climate change.

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