Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: August 4, 2017

Today’s Takeaway

Concrete association misleads on CLT safety

Tree Frog Forestry News
August 4, 2017
Category: Today's Takeaway

The Carolina Ready Mixed Concrete Association is “spreading misinformation about CLT and fire safety”, which is “dangerous and does not serve the public interest”, says Clemson University’s Dr. Patricia Layton. “Interestingly”, she muses, “representatives from the association were present and witnessed the promising [fire test] results”. Meanwhile, Lloyd Alter writes in the Treehugger that “all the international design sites are gaga over an 18 storey CLT tower proposed for Toronto”.

Using tactics from Trump’s ‘The Art of the Deal’ [we suspect], the US lumber industry is downplaying expectations an agreement is imminent with comments such as “we’re not willing to sacrifice and settle for a bad agreement just to avoid a fight in NAFTA.”

Forest fire news remains grim with headlines such as “City sits on a ticking time bomb of West Arm Provincial Park forest” in Nelson BC and “fire danger reaches critical stage with no relief in sight”, in Missoula, Montana.

Finally, a new report focused on tropical deforestation highlights the 447 companies who “have made commitments to root out the deforestation in their supply chains”, while a New Zealand group has launched a global reforestation project to “counteract negative effects caused by the Trump administration’s dismantling of Obama-era climate policy”

The Tree Frog News Editors are off on Monday due to the stat holiday. Back Tuesday.

— Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Froggy Foibles

Kevin Costner series ‘Yellowstone’ seeks extras in Missoula, Hamilton

Missoulian
August 3, 2017
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: United States, US West

Open casting calls for background extras for a new TV series, “Yellowstone” will be held in Missoula and Hamilton this weekend. “Yellowstone,” starring Kevin Costner, follows “the Dutton family, led by John Dutton, who controls the largest contiguous ranch in the United States, under constant attack by those it borders — land developers, an Indian reservation and America’s first national park,” according to a news release. “It is an intense study of a violent world far from media scrutiny — where land grabs make developers billions, and politicians are bought and sold by the world’s largest oil and lumber companies.”

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Forestry

Protecting the caribou or saving jobs? Governments facing dilemmas and deadlines

By Stuart Thomson
National Post
August 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

An October deadline is fast-approaching for provincial action plans to protect 51 caribou ranges across Canada and governments at all levels are striving to strike a balance between protecting the herds and preserving jobs in industries already beset by problems. With only months to go, a massively complicated ecosystem to consider and a multi-jurisdictional process for creating the plans, local officials and industry players are starting to feel the pressure. …The law demands the caribou ranges contain 65 per cent undisturbed land, but Rennie says Woodlands County, in some spots, has a 95 per cent disturbance rate due to industrial activity. Keeping that land undisturbed could mean blocking off squares of land used by forestry or energy companies or that could be home to future development.

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A future with more fires

By Nicholas Johansen
Castanet
August 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The first half of B.C.’s summer has been filled with wildfires, and as the climate continues to change, things could get a lot worse. In B.C. alone, 501 wildfires larger than 0.1 hectares have burned as of Wednesday, burning an estimated 426,000 hectares – the third worst fire season on record. …Dr. John Innes, dean of UBC Vancouver’s Faculty of Forestry, conducted a study on the impact of climate change on wildfires in the Kelowna area back in 2007. “What we’ve seen and what we’re predicting is that the fire season is going to get longer at either end … and we are also seeing increased severity being predicted, so the fires will burn hotter,” Dr. Innes said. “That was about 10 years ago we did that and we predicted exactly whats happening.” Dr. Innes says that while the weather’s impact on wildfires fluctuates from year to year, there has been a trend of longer and more intense fire seasons since his study 10 years ago.

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MLA calls for backcountry closure

By Carolyn Grant
Revelstoke Review
August 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Columbia River-Revelstoke MLA Doug Clovechok, and his colleague Tom Shypitka from Kootenay East, think we have reached critical mass in this region in terms of fire danger. They are requesting that the Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations immediately shut down the backcountry to recreational users. “We are requesting they shut down the backcountry right away, before the long weekend,” Clovechok said Thursday morning. …Alberta will not be allowing ATVs in the backcountry this weekend. Clovechok, however, wants to go further. …Clovechok is not requesting the backcountry be closed to industrial use. “Loggers are on the logging roads and they are prepared. They carry fire extinguishers and other equipment.”

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Firefighter killed in Lolo Peak accident was experienced Hotshot

By Rob Chaney
The Missoulian
August 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

For the second time in two weeks, western Montana wildland firefighters returned to work on Thursday knowing one of their own died in action. The Hotshot firefighter killed in a tree-felling accident on the Lolo Peak fire Wednesday was 29-year-old Brent M. Witham of Mentone, California, according to the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office. Witham was given CPR on the scene of the accident and airlifted to a Missoula hospital, but could not be revived. He was a member of the Vista Grande Hotshot crew based in Idyllwild, California, serving with 374 fellow firefighters in the mountains 10 miles southwest of Lolo.

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Timber town: analysis of the forest industry

By Frances Vinall
Tumut and Adelong Times
August 4, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A new, in-depth study of the region’s forest industry has concluded that half of all employed people in the Snowy Valleys are reliant on the sector to survive. The study, undertaken by the University of Canberra, the NSW Department of Industry, the Softwood Working Group (SWG), and Forest and Wood Products Australia, found that 18 per cent of workers in the Tumut and Tumbarumba regions are directly employed in the industry. It then found that for every one person directly employed, 2.8 jobs were created, through “production-induced and consumption induced effects.” In fact, $115 million in wages alone is paid to South West Slopes residents in a given year, which is then typically spent elsewhere in the region.

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Jokowi slams lack of reforms in forestry

The New Paper
August 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International

JAKARTA: Indonesian President Joko Widodo, popularly known as Jokowi, criticised the lack of progress in reforming the country’s forestry sector on Wednesday, calling for better management that benefits both the environment and the economy. Mr Joko, who studied forestry in his university days, said there has to be “corrective action” to make breakthroughs. “For a long time now, I’m sorry to say, our forest management has been a monotonous routine. There have been no breakthroughs,” he said during a belated commemoration of Environment Day at the Environment and Forestry Ministry. Mr Joko also kicked off the ministry’s national working meeting, which gathers ministers, lawmakers and NGOs to discuss issues ranging from forests to climate change.

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Forest Fires

New Zealand firefighters to help combat Canadian wildfires

By Fire and Emergency NZ
Scoop Independent News
August 3, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada

Fire and Emergency New Zealand is deploying firefighters and incident management specialists to help contain wildfires raging in Canada. National Manager Rural Kevin O’Connor said 80 people drawn from Fire and Emergency NZ, the Department of Conservation, and Forestry contractors would fly to Vancouver from Auckland to start what is expected to be a five-week deployment in the province of British Columbia. …”Canada is close to exhausting all available wildfire management resources within their country. 

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Harrop fire grows to 1,500 hectares

By Bill Metcalfe
Nelson Star
August 3, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Harrop fire had grown to 1,500 hectares as of noon on Thursday, with crews focusing on the south flank of the blaze. There are 33 firefighters with heavy equipment and three helicopters working the fire, according to a report from the Southeast Fire Centre. The Harrop Creek forest service road meanwhile is closed. The RCMP has not responded to the Star’s calls about the investigation into the recent theft of fire pumps and hoses. The incident caused a barrage of anger on social media. “I was aghast,” regional director Ramona Faust told the Star, “because you would need to know that road. You would have to know where you were going.”

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B.C. wildfire season worst since 1958

Canadian Press in the CBC News
August 3, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

British Columbia is experiencing its most destructive wildfire season in 60 years. Kevin Skrepnek of the B.C. Wildfire Service says 4,910 square kilometres of forest, brush and grassland have been torched, making this year the second worst in recorded history in terms of land lost. …Skrepnek says a forecast change in weather is expected to shift wind patterns and cut back the smoky haze that has settled over much of B.C.’s coast in recent days. There are currently 6,700 people under evacuation order and another 24,800 under evacuation alert in the province due to the wildfires.

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City sits on a ticking time bomb of West Arm Provincial Park forest

By Timothy Schafer
The Nelson Daily
August 3, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

The possibility of an evacuation in Nelson this summer due to the threat of wildfire is very real, with the city situated next to arguably one of the greatest fire risks in the province. …The forest is a ticking time bomb of our own making, with acres of long-protected wilderness contributing to huge tracts of undisturbed but combustible deadfall. …In December Bruce Blackwell of B.A. Blackwell and Associates Ltd. — a wildfire protection plan consulting company — said Nelson could be the next Fort McMurray if the risk of wildfire in the surrounding forest and the park was not reduced significantly in the near future. At the time, Blackwell said the city had the unenviable distinction of being in the top 10 of the most fire-prone communities in B.C. and Alberta, according to his estimation.

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B.C. wildfire roundup: latest news, interactive map, fire danger, air quality

Victoria Times Colonist
August 3, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

British Columbia is experiencing its most destructive wildfire season in 60 years. Kevin Skrepnek of the B.C. Wildfire Service says 4,910 square kilometres of forest, brush and grassland have been torched, making this year the second worst in recorded history in terms of land lost. Skrepnek says it is too early to tell whether this year will surpass the 1958 season, when wildfires engulfed more than 8,500 square kilometres. 

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New Brunswick government orders forestry restrictions due to fire risk

Canadian Press in The Chronicle Herald
August 3, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

FREDERICTON — New Brunswick is bone dry, and the government is restricting forestry operations because of the fire risk. Energy and Resource Development Minister Rick Doucet says the forest fire hazard in the province is the highest in 20 years. He has issued a ministerial order under the Forest Fires Act to limit forestry operations. The restrictions include no harvesting, forwarding, site preparation or pre-commercial thinning between the hours of 12 p.m. and 8 p.m. for all operations with two or more people or operations using mechanical equipment.

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Fire danger reaches critical stage with no relief in sight

by Even Byron
Missoulian
August 3, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

As somber crews returned to fight the Lolo Peak fire Thursday, they encountered extreme fire danger levels. Those conditions — critically dry fuels, hot temperatures, low humidity, dry lightning and gusty winds — are expected to continue into the weekend. The last measurable precipitation in the area was on June 27, according to the National Weather Service in Missoula, making July the driest since records began in 1893. …While firefighters got a brief respite from high heat Thursday, many communities dealt with choking smoke Thursday morning. And with a shift in the winds, more smoke may be on the way from fires in Washington and British Columbia.

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Whitewater Fire triples to 4500 acres, Mount Jefferson Wilderness closed

By Zach Urness
Statesman Journal
August 3, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

DETROIT — The Whitewater Fire exploded for the second straight day, tripling in size to 4,570 acres in the Mount Jefferson Wilderness. Hot weather and high winds pushed the fire within four miles of State Highway 22 and rained ash and smoke on nearby Detroit. The fire is expected to continue to grow, possibly rapidly, with little relief from temperatures in sight. No evacuations are currently planned, but more trail and road closures are expected in coming days, including on the Pacific Crest Trail.

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Company & Business News

Trump on Canada: “We don’t even think about them”. That’s a good thing for CAD.

By Adam Button
Forex Live
August 3, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, United States

Early this year, some of the details of Trump’s initial calls with foreign leaders leaked out, now the entire transcripts are doing the rounds. They offer plenty of interesting nuggets and one is on Canada. Trump was speaking with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto who made a reference to the three countries in NAFTA. “Well, Canada is no problem – do not worry about Canada, do not even think about them,” Trump said. “That is a separate thing and they are fine and we have had a very fair relationship with Canada. …Later this year, Trump shifted and put tariffs on Canadian lumber and made some noise about dairy but it doesn’t sound like he wants to pick a big fight on the Northern front.

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Canada Lumber Production Exports; US Consumption, Imports & Log Exports: May 2017

August 4, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, United States

US Coniferous Sawn Wood Imports: May 2017—According to the latest figures from the US Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agriculture Service, for January to May 2017 the USA imported US$2,235 billion of softwood lumber from the World, which amounts to a 17 per cent increase from the first five months of the previous year, when it was US$1,858 billion. …Canada Coniferous Sawn Wood Exports: May 2017—Looked at another way, the latest Statistics Canada data shows that Canada exported C$4,538 billion of softwood lumber to the World in January to May 2017, which amounts to a 13 per cent increase over the same time last year when it was C$3,954.Exports of Canadian softwood lumber to the USA for the first five months of this year were up 14 per cent, to C$3,420 from C$2,949 for January to May 2016.

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U.S. lumber mill owners say ‘no hurry’ to reach deal with Canada

By David Lawder and Lesley Wroughton
Reuters
August 3, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, United States

WASHINGTON – U.S. lumber mill owners said on Thursday they were “in no hurry” to reach a softwood lumber deal with Canada that fails to limit Canadian producers’ share of the U.S. market to a strict percentage. The owners of four lumber mills told Reuters that talks to end a decades-old dispute with Canada should stay on a separate track from negotiations to modernize the North American Free Trade Agreement that are due to start on Aug. 16. “We’re in no hurry to settle for a bad agreement,” said Steven Swanson, president of Swanson Group Inc in Glendale, Oregon. “We’re not willing to sacrifice and settle for a bad agreement just to avoid a fight in NAFTA.”

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Why Canada and the U.S. Must Solve the Lumber Dispute

Bloomberg
August 2, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, United States

[This is a video story – to watch the full story, please click the Read More link below] Former U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman explains why Canada and the U.S. must find a solution to the softwood lumber dispute and how it will shape Nafta talks come August 16th.

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BC wildfires cause lumber prices to rise in Lethbridge

By Elaine Van Rootselaar
Global News
August 4, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, Canada West

The wildfires continue to burn in British Columbia and it’s more than just smoky air that’s affecting southern Alberta. Tom Nixon, owner of Logic Lumber in Lethbridge, has noticed a shortened supply of lumber is driving up prices. “Mills are running out of log decks, so there’s no trees to get the lumber out of and shipment is a big big problem… on the trucking end.” The wildfires have been raging in B.C. since April, destroying over 400,000 hectares of forest, closing roads, and logging companies have been forced to reassign logging equipment to firefighting and prevention. Market analysts say it has interrupted especially the supply of structural wood panels, like plywood and oriented strand board (OSB), causing prices on those products to shoot up to more than 30 per cent higher than mid-2016 prices. Russel Taylor at International Wood Products in Vancouver, says it’s one more blow to an already volatile market.

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Both Central Okanagan MLAs named to Liberal shadow cabinet

By Alistair Waters
Kelowna Capital News
August 3, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, Canada West

Norm Letnick and Steve Thompson are named to critics roles, with Thomson doing double duty. …MLA, Kelowna-Mission’s Steve Thomson, was tabbed for double duty in the shadow cabinet—named as both the citizens’ services critic and one of two Liberal trade critics. Thomson, the province’s former forest, lands and natural resource operations minister, was front and centre on many trade initiatives when the Liberal were in power. …For Thomson, like Letnick one of several former cabinet ministers now serving as Opposition critics, the trade role is an important one. He shares it roll with Teresa Wat, a former B.C. international trade minister.

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Tolko to put High Prairie OSB works into service

EUWID Wood Products and Panels
August 3, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, Canada West

Canadian Tolko Industries has given more concrete shape to the planned reopening of the works in High Prairie, Alberta, that had been shut down in February 2008. According to a decision published on 20 June 2017, production at the facility geared to an annual capacity of 640m sqft per year (3/8” basis) is to be resumed and the beginning of 2018. 

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Interfor Reports Q2’17 Results

By Interfor
Marketwired
August 3, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER — Interfor Corp recorded net earnings in Q2’17 of $24.5 million, or $0.35 per share, compared to $19.7 million, or $0.28 per share in Q1’17 and $23.2 million, or $0.33 per share in Q2’16. Adjusted net earnings (which takes into account the effects of share-based compensation expense and non-recurring items) in Q2’17 were $28.7 million or $0.41 per share, compared to $22.7 million, or $0.32 per share in Q1’17 and $17.5 million, or $0.25 per share in Q2’16.

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Somass Mill union says lack of fibre not the reason for closure

Alberni Valley News
August 3, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, Canada West

The union that represents Somass Sawmill is not buying Western Forest Product’s excuse that lack of fibre supply is the reason for the Port Alberni mill’s indefinite closure. The United Steelworkers Local 1-1937, which represents forest workers in the Alberni Valley, said in a press release sent out Tuesday, Aug. 1 that the union “has serious concerns” over the continued reduction in milling capacity on the BC coast while log exports continue to rise. More than 100 mills have closed since 2001 and the latest closure shows the continued effects of poor forest policy of the previous BC Liberal government, according to Port Alberni vice president Norm MacLeod.

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Safety is no accident at pellet terminal

Terrace Standard
August 3, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, Canada West

Safety saves sickness, suffering and sadness and for the team at Westview Wood Pellet Terminal, it’s a priority. Pinnacle Renewable Energy, which owns the terminal issued a statement congratulating the employees for passing the 1,200 day (3.2 years) mark without a day lost due to an accident. “This is an impressive achievement,” said Eugene Lupynis, director of marine logistics with Pinnacle. “A milestone such as this is a resounding testament to the dedication of the employees who work within the facility.” [End of story]

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Resolute CEO Says U.S. Lumber Duties Won’t Hurt Future Earnings

By Natalie Wong
Bloomberg
August 4, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada East, Canada

Resolute Forest Products Inc. is confident that U.S. import duties on softwood lumber won’t impact its future earnings because the Canadian company expects to be reimbursed for the levies paid. Resolute, the world’s biggest newsprint maker, has paid $43 million as a result of the trade spat with the U.S., Chief Executive Officer Richard Garneau said in a phone interview Thursday. …Garneau has opted to treat the duty payments as deposits, meaning that the costs won’t affect its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization. …Lumber duties won’t just affect Canadian employees in the forestry industry– it’ll cost millions of jobs in the U.S. homebuilding industry too, Resolute says. For every $1,000 increase in the price of a home, around 153,000 households are priced out of the market for a median-price new home, according to Washington-based National Association of Home Builders.

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U.S. lumber industry says it won’t accept Canada’s latest softwood proposal

Business News Network
August 3, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: United States

The U.S. lumber industry says it won’t accept the latest Canadian government proposal for a deal on softwood lumber, downplaying expectations any agreement is imminent. Canada’s ambassador to Washington said in an interview this week the sides are close to an agreement on a deal that would cap Canada’s share of the U.S. lumber market at 30 per cent, but remained at odds over what will happen if U.S. producers can’t fulfill their 70 per cent share. The comments by David MacNaughton to The Canadian Press news agency come as U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross pushes to reach a deal ahead of North American Free Trade Agreement talks due to begin Aug. 16. U.S. industry, however, must approve any deal and is signaling there is nothing imminent.

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Promotion and New Hires Expand Endowment’s Capacity

U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities
August 1, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: United States

The U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (Endowment) today announced staffing changes to expand the organization’s capacity and enhance sustainability to serve its dual mission of keeping working forests as forests and advancing family-wage jobs in rural, forest-rich communities. “As we enter our second decade of service as the nation’s largest public charity addressing the forest sector space, we remain among the most leanly-staffed organizations of our peer group,” said Endowment President & CEO Carlton Owen. “We’ve worked hard to develop a partnership and leverage model that directs the lion’s share of our financial resources to advance our work on the ground. These changes will slightly increase staffing to position us well for the future.”

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Raute receives order worth EUR 11 million to USA

Wood & Panel
July 31, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: United States, US West

Raute Corporation has received an order worth over EUR 11 million for an LVL layup line for Roseburg Forest Products, Inc. (RFP) of Roseburg, Oregon, USA. The present order received by Raute consists of a very high capacity LVL layup line. The line will be delivered to RFP’s new LVL mill in Chester, South Carolina, USA late 2018. The capacity of RFP’s new LVL mill will be 285,000 m3 per year and will be one of the largest capacity single LVL lines in the world. The equipment will be engineered and produced in Raute’s North American unit in Delta, Vancouver area, Canada. The cooperation between RFP and Raute has continued for many years. Raute has delivered projects of various sizes to RFP’s plywood and LVL mills. The largest project was RFP’s first LVL line in Roseburg, Oregon, USA delivered in the year 2000.

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Fire crews respond to Weyerhaeuser blaze

By Zack Hale
The Longview Daily News
August 3, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: United States, US West

Local firefighters responded to the Weyerhaeuser mill early Thursday morning after a conveyor belt about 50 feet above the ground caught fire. …The cause of the fire is under investigation, said Longview Fire Chief Phil Jurmu. Jurmu said most belt fires are typically the result of high levels of friction, which can ignite sawdust chips. The elevated conveyor system initially made it difficult to for crews to get to the fire, Jurmu said. …Damage to the machinery was minimal, officials said

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China-Australia wood products trade increased by 17%

IHB – The Timber Network
August 4, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: International

In the first half of 2017 the value of wood products trade between China and Australia rose 17% to US$1,680 million from the same period of 2016, says ITTO in its latest report. Of the total, the value of China’s wood products imports from Australia increased by 23% to US$790 million. The value of log and waste paper imports rose 47% and 41% respectively. The Chinese wood products exports to Australia increased by 12% in value terms, up to US$890 million. The value of China’s plywood exports to Australia grew 36%. More than 50% of China’s wood product exports to Australia were of wooden furniture and seats and the value of China’s wooden furniture and seat exports increased 11% to US$466 million.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

‘Trump Forest’ Created To Offset President’s ‘Monumental Stupidity’ On Climate Change

By Hayley Miller
Huffington Post
August 3, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

President Donald Trump’s name has been slapped on yet another organization. But unlike Trump Hotels, Trump Steaks and Trump Vodka, money invested in “Trump Forest” won’t land in his piggy bank. In April, three environmental activists in New Zealand launched the global reforestation project in an effort to counteract negative effects caused by the Trump administration’s dismantling of Obama-era climate policy. Dr. Daniel Price, Adrien Taylor and Jeff Willis, all in their 20s, said they felt compelled to act after Trump signed an executive order in March that essentially prioritized the fossil fuel industry over the environment. “We wanted something tangible that people could do that would actually have a physical impact on what the U.S. government is doing,” Price, a climate scientist and glaciologist, told HuffPost.  

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Great collaboration between companies and governments necessary to enhance climate action, report finds

By Mike Gaworecki
Mongabay
August 3, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

A new report that looks at the collaborative efforts of private sector and government actors to halt deforestation in two key tropical forest nations could have lessons for countries around the world. The report, released by the NGOs Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) and Forest Trends (FT) last week, consists of case studies on how companies are working with the governments of Brazil and Indonesia, which together accounted for nearly 40 percent of total tropical deforestation in 2014. According to research released earlier this year by Forest Trends’ Supply Change initiative, as of March 2017 some 447 companies had made 760 commitments to root out the deforestation in their supply chains linked to four globally traded agricultural commodities that are responsible for the majority of tropical forest destruction: cattle, palm oil, soy, and wood products (including timber and pulp).

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

FraserWood innovates with high-end timber products

By Maria Church
Wood Business
August 3, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

Just off the winding Sea to Sky Highway running along the coast from Vancouver to Whistler, B.C., the unique wooden architecture of the Squamish Adventure Centre beckons tourists to stop in. …The company behind the eye-catching structure is Squamish’s own FraserWood Industries.  FraserWood opened its doors to Canadian Forest Industries in early April to show us how they turn cants into strong and beautiful custom timber products at their facility in Squamish, B.C. …Almost all of FraserWood’s business is custom orders – from full timber-frame homes to masterfully designed mantles. Ninety per cent of the fibre that passes through is Douglas fir with the rest a mix of red cedar, yellow cedar and hemlock. Their main supplier is Andersen Pacific Forest Products, a specialty sawmill in Maple Ridge, B.C.

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“Tree Tower” Made Entirely From Cross-Laminated Timber Proposed In Toronto

The Urban Developer
August 4, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

Environmentally-conscious “vertical forest” buildings are a phenomenon that is catching on in many cities around the globe. …Architecture firm Penda, in collaboration with building solutions company “Tmber”, have proposed a new residential building in Toronto, “Tree Tower Toronto”. The building attempts to take the environmentally-conscious approach to the next level by creating a modular structure made from cross-laminated timber (CLT). …“The construction industry consumes 40% world resources and is a major cause of pollution and related health concerns. We intend to change that,” Tmber said. “CLT is a great material to manufacturer residential units off-site and assemble on site. “This provides less waste and a precise, high-detailed manufacturing process. It also decreases the time required or energy used on-site. The key to inspired modular projects is their connection to nature.

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Tree-covered timber tower proposed for Toronto

By Lloyd Alter
TreeHugger
August 3, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

All the international design sites are gaga over a new tower proposed for Toronto. From London, Dezeen writes Penda proposes Toronto Tree Tower built from cross-laminated timber modules. From Milan, Designboom titles its post penda + tmber proposal for a timber tower bridges the gap between nature and culture. From (I think) New York, Inhabitat sez Trees to grow on the balconies of Penda’s timber high-rise in Toronto. From Toronto- crickets? According to Dezeen, which appears to be the original source of the story, it’s designed by PENDA, an interdisciplinary firm based in Austria and Beijing, and is being developed by a Canadian company named Tmber. It’s 18 storeys of modular cross-laminated timber construction, which might be a challenge when the Ontario Building Code limits wood to six storeys. 

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Fire testing

Letter by Dr. Patricia A. Layton – Director, Wood Utilization + Design Institute, Clemson University
Charleston Post Courier
August 3, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

A recent letter, “Do more testing,” from the Carolina Ready Mixed Concrete Association calls for fire tests of mass-timber construction panels, which have already been completed. In addition to years of testing that have taken place in Canada and overseas, five additional fire tests were completed on cross-laminated timber (CLT). Interestingly, representatives from the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association were present and witnessed the promising results. In conjunction with the International Code Council, American Wood Council and U.S. Forest Service Forest Products Laboratory, the five tests were completed on a full-scale, multi-story mass timber apartment building in May and June of this year. The tests ranged from unsprinklered to sprinklered, exposed CLT and CLT covered with gypsum wallboard. The results of each test showed CLT, even when exposed, maintained fire resistance.

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Dual Boston Blazes Prompt a New Look at Construction Risks

By Insurance Law360
JD Supra
August 3, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

In recent weeks, massive conflagrations destroyed two Boston-area residential developments in the midst of construction — one in the city’s Ashmont neighborhood in Dorchester, the other in Waltham, a small but bustling city in the heart of Massachusetts’ technology corridor. While details continue to emerge about the two fires, the similarities between them are striking. Both fires struck as the unoccupied, multi-unit properties neared completion. Both fires intensified quickly, consuming the lightweight (primarily wood) construction materials used in each project. Both properties were in compliance with applicable building codes at the time of the fires. Neither building had a sprinkler system that was online at the time of the fires.

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CRE Hypes Safety Of Wood-Frame Construction In Wake Of National Fires

By Cameron Sperance
Bisnow Boston
August 3, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

A wave of fires at wood-frame multifamily construction sites across the United States has critics calling for tighter building codes, but developers stress too much regulation could negatively impact affordable housing. “We’re going to stop housing in greater Boston if you stop wood-frame construction,” Nickerson Real Estate Partners founder and principal Lisa Nickerson said. Developers say wood-frame construction lowers costs on a project and increases their ability to offer tenants lower rents, but fires at the construction sites have brought their safety into question. …Berkadia, Nickerson and their fellow panelists at Bisnow’s Boston Multifamily Growth & Expansion event Wednesday emphasized how the fires were not a sign wood-frame buildings were more dangerous to live in than concrete or steel-frame structures. Fire officials echo the sentiment, saying once sheetrock, smoke detectors and fire sprinklers are installed, the buildings are as safe to live in as any other type of construction. 

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