Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: April 3, 2017

Today’s Takeaway

Repatriating the oaks of Vimy Ridge

Tree Frog Forestry News
April 3, 2017
Category: Today's Takeaway

The anniversary of the battle of Vimy Ridge—the event that came to symbolize Canada’s coming of age as a nation—is being celebrated this week, as is “one man’s mission to restore a natural treasure to the battlefield” by repatriating some of the giant oaks (from acorns a soldier took home and grew into a forest of oak trees). For the record, the battle lasted only four days, but 3,600 Canadian soldiers died and 7,000 were wounded. 

Wood Resources Int. reports that global softwood lumber trade increased 12% year-over-year to reach a new record-high of 121 million cu.ft. in 2016. The report states that “while it’s no surprise that China is a major driver for the dramatic rise in lumber shipments worldwide the past seven years, the U.S. has actually increased softwood lumber imports the most”.

On the bioenergy front, a Virginia initiative that could result in a conversion to natural gas and less reliance on wood products would “cripple the logging industry, given the millions invested in equipment to support these facilities“, said Scott Dane of the Associated Contract Loggers and Truckers of Minnesota. In Canada, Gordon Murray of the Wood Pellet Association says “it’s a little embarrassing that we have to export about 88% of our production to Europe and Asia when we still consume 40 million tons of coal a year for power”.

Finally, Sandy and Kelly will be reporting live from the Council of Forest Industries annual convention this week in Vancouver, so keep your eyes on this page (and our Twitter feed) for live updates!

–Tree Frog Editors

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Forestry

The oaks of Vimy: One man’s mission to restore a natural treasure to the battlefield

By Havard Gould
CBC News
April 2, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

Tree-planting project traces roots back to Canadian soldier’s handful of acorns in 1917. Unexploded shells, an outbreak of a tree-killing disease in Europe and even pesky Canadian squirrels have failed to defeat Monty McDonald. McDonald, 72, remains determined to fulfil his dream of building a living memorial of oak trees at Vimy Ridge to honour Canadians who fought there 100 years ago. “I have done half a billion dollars’ worth of projects and this is the most frustrating,” said McDonald, who used to work in the petrochemical industry. “More setbacks, more unknowns than any project I have had.” There have been so many issues that time has run out; The trees won’t be planted in France for the centenary of the battle as first planned.

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Seeking input for the B.C. boreal caribou recovery plan

By the Ministry of Environment
Government of British Columbia
March 31, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West


The Province is looking for public comment on an updated B.C. boreal caribou implementation plan (BCIP) that was originally completed in 2011. Until May 31, 2017, the public can visit the website to share their thoughts on the new implementation plan for the boreal caribou in British Columbia. This species has been experiencing population declines over the past 17 years. The general public, First Nations, local government and stakeholders are encouraged to provide feedback which will be considered in finalizing the plan. The 2011 plan was designed to slow the rate of decline of caribou populations, while research and monitoring was done to determine the best options for recovering the species.

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Forestry Challenges and Positives to Be Focus of COFI Convention

By Elaine Macdonald-Meisner
250 News
April 2, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Prince George, BC.- This week, forestry is the focus as the Council of Forest Industries (COFI) holds its annual convention in Vancouver and there is plenty to discuss. There is no doubt, these are challenging times for forestry with the Softwood Lumber Agreement up in the air, duties and tarriffs about to be levelled and reductions to the annual allowable cut yet to be announced. COFI President Susan Yurkovich says while there are challenges, there are also opportunities “Our plan for the convention is to talk about the challenges we are facing, but also to talk about the great things that are happening.” Those great things she says, include the move to taller buildings made of wood, innovation , good markets, including in the U.S and the opportunities in China as well as those presented by working with First Nations. The annual allowable cut is going to be reduced from the high rates of harvesting seen during the Mountain Pine Beetle epidemic. There are 140 communities across B.C. who rely on forestry as their economic driver.   

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New community forest likely for area near Likely, Big Lake

By the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations
Government of British Columbia
April 1, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Opportunities for increased local forest stewardship near Likely and Big Lake, east of Williams Lake, could become reality following an invitation from Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Steve Thomson to the Likely-Xat??ll Community Forest and Big Lake Community Association to apply for a community forest agreement. The invitation to apply is for approximately 20,000 cubic metres of allowable annual cut over a 25-year term, providing 10,000 cubic metres to each partner that could be combined and used jointly in a partnership for the benefit of the local area. The partnership will need to submit an application, including a management plan to the ministry’s district manager for approval prior to the community forest agreement being issued. 

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Failing slopes foil rebuilding efforts after Fort McMurray wildfire

By David Thurton
CBC News
April 2, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Grigory Litvinov and his wife bought their first home ever in Fort McMurray in 2016. Thirty-three days later it burned to the ground in the devastating May wildfire. “I still had boxes in the garage,” Litvinov said, standing in his muddy lot. “It was our first home. A lot of dreams and wishes went up in smoke.” Now, 11 months later Litvinov has learned he cannot begin rebuilding because with all the trees gone, the slope behind his lot is failing. The municipality is worried slope movement could damage newly built homes or worse, days of torrential rainfall could result in a catastrophic landslide.

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NDP’s Charlie Angus hoping to bring fresh attitude to federal leadership race

By Spencer Sterritt
Nanaimo News Now
March 31, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

NANAIMO — Federal NDP leadership hopeful Charlie Angus revealed his approach to running the party during a visit to Nanaimo on Friday. He regaled several dozen supporters at the MGM restaurant before listening to their thoughts and concerns. He said the enthusiasm from Nanaimo and B.C. crowds is encouraging because it means people want to be engaged in politics. “They want to talk about the raw log exports, they want to talk about the fact communities are not able to develop the way they should be able to,” he said.

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Likely-Xat’sull and Big Lake invited to apply for community forest partnership

Williams Lake Tribune
April 1, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Ministry of Forests Steve Thomson is inviting the Likely-Xat’sull Community Forest and Big Lake Community Association to apply for a community forest agreement. Thomson said the invitation to apply is for approximately 20,000 cubic metres of allowable annual cut over a 25-year term, providing 10,000 cubic metres to each partner that could be combined and used jointly in a partnership for the benefit of the local area. “A successful application by these two partners would help stimulate the local economy, bringing benefits and opportunity to community members,” Thomson said in a press release Saturday. “This new community forest would align with our goal through the forest sector agenda to help keep resource-dependent communities and First Nations strong and stable.”

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Guelph Arboretum’s living gene bank saving rare trees from extinction

By David DiCenzo
Guelph Mercury
April 2, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

The cherry birch is one of the most endangered woody tree species in Canada with an estimated five naturally-occurring plants known to exist in Ontario. That’s a paltry number. But there is actually a lessened chance of this botanical beauty dying out, thanks in large part to an innovative program at the University of Guelph. The Arboretum’s living gene bank, which began operation in the mid 1970s, is helping to spare rare trees like the cherry birch from extinction in Canada. You’ve heard the term buy local. Well, the Arboretum is coining a new one – “grow local.” “We’ve gone around to different populations in the last three or four decades and collected seeds from all of the rare plants that grow here (in Ontario),” says Chris Earley, the Arboretum’s interpretive biologist and education co-ordinator. “We propagate these seeds that are the same genetically as what has always grown in the province.

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The Black Hills National Forest: Pine beetle epidemic is over

By Mark Watson
Black Hills Pioneer
April 1, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

SPEARFISH — The Black Hills National Forest released its 2016 forest health report Friday and it indicates that the epidemic of the mountain pine beetle that ravaged much of the Black Hills is now over. Scott Jacobson, public affairs officer for the Black Hills National Forest, said there are some hot pockets of beetle activity, including near Deadwood, the northwest corner of the forest, and areas southeast of Custer, but overall the forest is in “good shape.” “I am thankful the hard work by our Forest Service employees, our partners, and conservation leaders has paid off,” said Mark Van Every, Black Hills National Forest supervisor. 

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A new momentum to retain Elliott State Forest arrives just in time

By the Editorial Board
The Oregonian
April 1, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The newfound willingness by Oregon Treasurer Tobias Read to help find a way to keep the Elliott State Forest in public ownership carries enormous promise for present and future generations of Oregonians. What was to have been a sell-off of the forest to raise cash for Oregon schools now becomes a money puzzle for the Legislature, however, soon to debate buying most or all of the forest and ensuring payment to the state’s Common School Fund for the loss of Elliott’s dwindling logging revenues. … In joining Brown as one of two keep-the-Elliott votes on the land board, he makes probable the best of all outcomes: The Elliott State Forest will remain in public hands. In reversing himself, he not only throws the matter back to the Legislature but re-enters the graces of Oregon’s conservation community, which mobilized mightily for the Elliott.

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Forestry Choices on the Key

By Sara Thompson
Key Peninsula News
March 31, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Trees and the timber industry are integral to Washington state and Key Peninsula history. Forests protect from erosion; are critical to reducing carbon dioxide in the fight against global warming; and provide habitat for insects, birds, reptiles, amphibians and mammals. Trees also provide lumber, paper and byproducts that make their way into such things as turpentine, chewing gum, nail polish, cleaning solutions and rayon. In a recent interview with KP News, associate professor Kevin Zobrist of the extension forestry program at Washington State University described how a forest starts and develops in Western Washington.

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Forestry program warrants attention

By the Editorial Board
Niagra Gazette
April 1, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

…When it comes to issues regarding forestry, for municipalities like Niagara Falls, it’s often a tough call as to how best to allocate resources. The size of the city’s forestry crew has been scaled back significantly over the years, another victim of rising costs and seemingly ever-present budgetary cutbacks. As a result, the city is unable to cover as much territory as efficiently as it once did. Trees grow and grow and grow. …In our area, there’s now another issue with which to contend, the threat of the Emerald Ash Borer, the little beetle that has taken such a big bite out of so many trees across the region. Forestry may not be as high on the priority list when compared to some other community services, but it is important.

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Forest fragmentation may be releasing much more carbon than we think

By Morgan Erickson-Davis
Mongabay
March 31, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The earth’s forests have been broken into around 50 million fragments, the edges of which add up to a length that would make it a third of the way to the sun and which increase annual tropical deforestation carbon emissions by 31 percent. This, according to a new study published recently in Nature Communications that reveals forest fragmentation may be much more destructive than previously thought… But how fragmentation affects carbon emissions is something that scientists haven’t been able to grasp – until now. Enter researchers with the Helmholtz Center for Environmental Research and the University of Maryland. They drew on previous studies that showed tree mortality in tropical forests was affected significantly by where they trees were, with trees on the edges of forests having double the chances of dying in a given year.

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‘We need more trees’

By Mark Peters
The Gisborne Herald
March 31, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International

AGRICULTURE needs to reduce its stock numbers and increase its forest cover, New Zealand Forest Owners’ Association president Peter Clark said last night at a presentation about forestry opportunities and advantages. Climate change and a call for carbon neutrality in New Zealand, as well as forestry’s significant contribution to the country’s GDP, were key points in Mr Clark’s talk at the Growing Your Future presentation. “We need more trees,” he said. Deforestation of 100,000 hectares over the past 20 years, mostly to make way for more dairy cows, and low levels of new planting, had frustrated people in the forestry industry. “The forestry sector is a major export earner and employer in New Zealand but within the sector we have been frustrated by the lack of understanding of the contribution it makes to our GDP.”

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50 years later, Commonwealth Forestry Conference returns to India

By Seema Sharmal
Times of India
April 2, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International

DEHRADUN: Thirty-nine Commonwealth member countries are going deliberate on some of the grave issues affecting climate and green cover at the nineteenth Commonwealth Forestry Conference to be held at Forest Research Institute (FRI) here from April 3 onwards. The conference was last held in India almost 50 years ago, in 1968, in New Delhi. Some 500 participants, including experts, scientists, forest officials and NGOs from India and member countries, are going to make 360 presentations on climate change, forest fire, community participation and ways to improve forest productivity and green cover during the course of the five-day long event, said sources.

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Company & Business News

Global Softwood Exports Rising

By Wood Resources International
Building-Products.com
March 31, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: United States

Global softwood lumber trade increased 12% year-over-year to reach a new record-high of 121 million cu. ft. in 2016, according to Wood Resources International. Since the global financial recession in 2009, there has been a steady climb in international trade of lumber, with shipments the past seven years increasing as much as 66%. While it’s no surprise that China is a major driver for the dramatic rise in lumber shipments worldwide the past seven years, it is interesting to note that the U.S. has actually increased softwood lumber imports more than China…China imported record high volumes of softwood lumber in 2016, with import volumes in the fourth quarter up about 20% compared to the year earlier…Japanese softwood lumber imports in 2016 were the highest they have been in three years as total wood demand in the country picked up 3.6% from 2015.

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As paper mills die, here’s how Maine’s loggers hope to survive

By Darren Fishell
Bangor Daily News
April 3, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: US East, United States


HALLOWELL, Maine — Picture logging trucks lined up single-file on Interstate 95 from Houlton down to West Palm Beach. The annual drop in Maine wood demand since 2014 would fill that imaginary 1,770-mile caravan. The loss equals about 350 fewer truckloads of wood a day, every day of the year. That drop is one sign of the hit Maine’s forest products industry has taken in recent years, as certain paper products stare down declining demand and biomass electricity generation struggles to compete with low oil and natural gas prices. But industry experts also see opportunity in that 3.8 million ton drop in annual wood demand. …Charlotte Mace, executive director of the trade group Bio-based Maine, is working with the University of Maine in Orono to help make the business case for a range of new forest product businesses, including plastics, chemicals and fuel.

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Park Rapids lumber mill catches fire

Park Rapids Enterprise
April 1, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: US East, United States

The Park Rapids Fire Department responded to a fire Wednesday afternoon at A&C Lumber Inc., owned by Jon Cordahl, located on County Road 18, just east of County Road 4. The PRFD received mutual aid from the Nevis Fire Department, the Hubbard County Sheriff’s Department and Hubbard First Response and Rescue. DNR Forestry also responded to the scene. There were no injuries sustained in the incident, but there was significant property damage as well as damage to some equipment. According to Assistant Fire Chief Terry Long, the call was received at approximately 4:30 p.m., shortly after the fire started at the lumber mill. Long speculated that the fire began around the power unit for the sawmill.

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Seedling sales put gloss on forestry

By Sally Rae
New Zealand Herald
April 3, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: International

An increase in seedling sales is a positive sign the forestry industry is gearing up for increased production, Forest Owners Association chief executive David Rhodes says. A Ministry for Primary Industries survey of all 28 New Zealand commercial forest nurseries showed stock sales in 2016 for planting this year were 52.2million seedlings, compared with 49.5million the year before. A recent ANZ Agri-Focus report said a 5% decline in New Zealand’s overall plantation area during the past decade was leading many industry participants to worry about the long-term supply of wood beyond 2030. It was described as an ”unloved” investment class among many landowners, despite the industry experiencing a period of strong returns.

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Seeing the wood for the trees is vital for timber exporters

By Neil Kerrigan
Irish Independent
April 2, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: International

Forestry is unique – the more economic activity, the greater the environmental benefit. More forests, managed responsibly, provide more habitats for flora and fauna and more potential for recreation. Increased sales of wood translate to more rural jobs and more carbon locked up. Wood from sustainably-managed forests has the lowest carbon footprint of any major building material – including steel, brick and concrete. The Irish forest industry estimates that it supports around 12,000 jobs and contributes €2.3bn a year to the economy. This is through a supply chain that comprises three critical, interdependent links: the forest and afforestation process, the conversion process (harvesting, sawmilling and boardmilling) and the final end market, where the products are exported and sold. It all starts with the identification of suitable land for planting.

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Heyfield timber mill: Time to face forest facts

By Nick Legge, former forestry lecturer & Victorian Government policy adviser. He is also member of the Rubicon Forest Protection Group
Weekly Times Now
April 2, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: International

THE people of the Latrobe Valley are right to be dismayed by the looming fate of the Australian Sustainable Hardwoods mill at Heyfield. Gippsland has long been the centre of the hardwood timber industry in Victoria, and the hardwood timber industry has long played a major part in Gippsland’s development and in its prosperity. The jobs that the ASH mill and the value-added downstream industries provide are a huge asset in farming communities subject to the vagaries of world markets and of the weather. The closure of Hazelwood makes such jobs even more valuable. So every avenue must be explored to save jobs as the State Government has clearly been endeavouring to do. However as Matt Ruchel of the Forest Industry Taskforce has said, Victoria’s ash forests — the predominant source of timber for sawmilling — are no magic pudding.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Green Heat in the Great White North

By Ron Kotrba
Biomass Magazine
March 13, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada

Last year, Canada produced 2.7 million tons of wood pellets from more than 40 mills, but the cold, northern nation with a reputation of environmental stewardship only consumed about 200,000 tons for its own grand heating needs, with another 100,000 tons used in the domestic power market. The remaining 2.4 million tons of wood pellets produced in 2016 was shipped to Asia and Europe.  “Quite frankly, it’s a little embarrassing that we have to export to Europe and Asia when our own power plants and heating systems here use coal, natural gas, oil and propane,” says Gordon Murray, executive director of the Wood Pellet Association of Canada. “It seems crazy that we have a huge demand potential for wood pellets, and if we as a nation did convert, we could use every wood pellet we produce here in Canada. But thus far, we haven’t had that political will.” Murray says Canada consumes 40 million tons of coal a year for power. “If you took just a small percentage of that and converted it to wood pellets, it’d be a boon for our industry,” he says. 

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Liquid fuel: nature’s energy powerhouse

By Roopa Rakshit is a PhD candidate, Faculty of Natural Resources Management, Lakehead University. 
The Chronicle Journal
April 2, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada East, Canada

…The emerging technologies that convert forest biomass, residues and forestry assortments like sawdust and shavings, fuel logs, early thinnings, hog fuel and pulpwood, into liquid fuels and chemicals under the “bio refining” concept is gaining momentum. The approach is renewable and helps in moving away from a hydrocarbon (coal, oil, natural gas) economy to a more sustainable, carbohydrate- (fuels and chemicals from biomass) based future that minimizes greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The factors that drive the development of this liquid biofuel market are the fluctuation of the petroleum crude prices and the ongoing environmental damage caused by fossil fuels. Many countries have made it mandatory to blend a stipulated quantity of bioethanol and biodiesel with petrol (gas) and diesel, respectively. The blending requirement in Canada is an average of 5 per cent ethanol to gasoline.

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Wolcott named to DOE’s, USDA’s biomass research panel

By Robert Strenge
Washington State University
March 30, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

PULLMAN, Wash. – Michael Wolcott, Washington State University Regents Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, has been named to the Biomass Research and Development Technical Advisory Committee, which advises both the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Energy. Comprised of representatives primarily from academia and industry, the 30-member committee is charged with advising both the U.S Secretary of Energy and the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture on issues related to advancing bioenergy technologies. …“As a lifelong researcher in converting biomass to useful materials, I am very pleased to have an opportunity to be advising the Secretaries of Energy and Agriculture on research priorities in this program,” Wolcott said. “This is a wonderful opportunity for me to learn as well as to give back.”

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As Legislature aims for lower rates, loggers worry effort will break them

By Jerry Burnes
Mesabi Daily News
April 2, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

VIRGINIA — A series of bills in the Legislature is aiming to renegotiate biomass agreements with the Laurentian Energy Authority, Benson Power and Xcel Energy that could result in a conversion to natural gas and less reliance on wood products at the sites. The intended end result is lower natural gas and steam prices for Virginia and Hibbing residents, whose cities co-own the LEA, but advocates for the state’s loggers say the effort could cripple its industry. …“Loggers have invested millions of dollars in equipment to support these facilities with biomass from logging operations based on the projected and contracted 20-year life of the program,” said Scott Dane, executive director of the Associated Contract Loggers and Truckers of Minnesota.

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Sci-fi forest tracks carbon impact

By Roger Harrabin
BBC News
April 3, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International


An industrial-scale experiment in a Staffordshire forest will help fill gaps in knowledge about climate change. The project has created an outdoor laboratory by encircling trees with 25m masts gushing high levels of carbon dioxide. The site is surrounded by a 3m anti-climb fence, and silvery tubes snake along the forest floor in what looks like a sci-fi alien invasion. The scientists behind the experiment want to find how forests will respond to the levels of carbon dioxide expected in the atmosphere by the middle of the 21st Century. …The role of plants in taking up CO2 is one of the known unknowns in climatology. CO2 is a plant fertiliser and researchers think that as levels increase the trees will fix more of it into their trunks, roots and organic matter in the earth.

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Speaking for the trees

By Colin Campbell-Hunt, emeritus professor, CSAFE Centre for Sustainability, University of Otago
Otago Daily Times
April 3, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

We humans have become very good at pumping carbon into the atmosphere, and thence the oceans. To avoid disrupting a balance that has persisted for at least the last 600,000 years, it would help if something — or some creature — would absorb at least some of this carbon. That creature is of course a tree. …We have been slow to realise how important trees are to our future wellbeing. Instead of expanding the world’s forests, we have been cutting them down faster than we have been planting them, reducing the amount of carbon they absorb. And less carbon absorbed has the same effect on the amount of carbon in the atmosphere as more carbon emitted. …But for the world as a whole, we are still cutting forests down faster than we are planting them. At the rate we are going it will be decades before the world’s forests start to absorb more carbon than they lose.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Tilt-up concrete goes residential in Ontario’s first site-cast project

By Peter Kenter
Daily Commercial News
March 31, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

Len Overbeek, co-founder of TiltWall Ontario Inc. is a big fan of the phrase “if you want something done right, do it yourself.” He’s currently building the province’s first site-cast residential project in Woodstock—for himself. “Tilt-up residential construction is fairly popular in the US, particularly along the West Coast and into British Columbia, but it still hasn’t caught on in Ontario,” says Overbeek. “Traditional wood-frame construction still rules. Building my own house in site-cast tilt-up was something I’ve dreamed about since I started the company”… When completed, he estimates that the house will have taken about four months to build, a schedule comparable to a wood-frame house. “Building a similar house with tilt-up would cost about 10 to 15 per cent more than traditional construction.

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One of a kind lumber from recovered Flathead Lake logs

By Jenny Kunka
Great Falls Tribune
March 31, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

From the 1880s to the early 1900s, the logging trade was booming in northwestern Montana. Trees cut in northwest Montana’s forests were floated down the Swan and Flathead Rivers and then milled by lumber mills set up along Flathead Lake. The trees were old growth, mostly pine and larch used by the Great Northern Railroad and sold around the country. Jim Cancroft, senior forester for Northwest Management Inc. explained that during the process of floating the logs to mills on Flathead Lake, some of the logs sank to the bottom of the lake and remained there for the next 80 to 100 years. Northwest Management is a natural resource consulting company that was, for many years, involved in salvaging the sunken logs for the DeVoe Family who held the rights to these sunken timbers. …Now after more than 100-years an exclusive opportunity has been provided for the recovery of these magnificent timbers for a second life. The wood from these trees was where the name Flathead Lake Historic Timber came from.”

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Fire resistant concrete researchers look for backers

By Ian Harvey
Daily Commercial News
March 31, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Researchers at a Swiss institution have come up with an innovative mix for high-performance, self-consolidating concrete (HPSCC) which is not only fire resistant but is also less prone to shrinkage… It’s an important development because in striving for sustainability in pre-cast concrete design, the trend has been to use less cement in thin-walled structural elements with HPSCC, usually with carbon fibre reinforced plastic. There’s only one problem: while the structures are sound, when exposed to fire directly or heat, they tend to explosively spall and then, ultimately, fail. Just as wood crackles as it burns in a chimney or campfire, when concrete is exposed to fire it chips and flakes — a process known as spalling.

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Wood based water filter offers emergency solution

By Tim Sandle
Digital Journal
April 2, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Stockholm – Wood extracted from the forests of Scandinavia provides a solution to not having clean water in areas where there are no clean eater sources or filters. Applications include parts of the developing world and refugee camps. The new wood-based filter has, in laboratory studies, good bacterial retentive properties meaning that it can produce purified water of a low microbial cell count. The filter has been developed by technologists from the KTH Royal Institute of Technology. The filter has been manufactured from wood cellulose, in the form of antibacterial fibers, together with a positively-charged polymer. This is created by the wood fibers being dunked into a polymer solution. The positive charge functions to trap bacteria (which are negatively charged) from samples of water passed through the matrix. Once attached the natural antibacterial properties of the wood kill the bound organisms. 

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