Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: November 15, 2017

Today’s Takeaway

Canada takes softwood lumber dispute to NAFTA appeal panel

The Tree Frog Forestry News
November 15, 2017
Category: Today's Takeaway

On the eve of NAFTA talks in Mexico, Canada is employing one of the most contentious elements of NAFTA—the Chapter 19 dispute panels—in its softwood lumber dispute with the US. A sample of the boundless coverage includes the Canadian Press (Mia Rabson), Globe and Mail (Brent Jang), Bloomberg (Josh Wingrove) and the Whitecourt Star (Marcia Love). A related story by Tom Fletcher (BC Local News) links the lumber dispute to BC’s  latest trade effort in Asia.

Forestry and fire news includes the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre receiving a grant to “standardize first response teams”; Northwest forests are reported as “denser and more vulnerable to fire“; and fuel reduction efforts “may not save places from wildfire“.

Michael Green keynoted the jam-packed wood solutions conference in Vancouver yesterday. Other conference speakers highlighted mass timber in the UK and in Penticton BC; while StructureCraft unveiled its leap into dowel-laminated timber in Abbotsford BC.

Finally, former APA president Dennis Hardman was honoured by his peers with an award for his “lifetime of leadership and outstanding contribution to the industry”. Congratulations Dennis!

— Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Special Feature

Dennis Hardman Named Bronson Lewis Award Winner

APA – The Engineered Wood Association
November 13, 2017
Category: Special Feature
Region: United States

Dennis Hardman (center)

Dennis Hardman, former president of APA – The Engineered Wood Association and longtime leader in the engineered wood industry, was honored with the Bronson J. Lewis Award at the APA Annual Meeting in Long Beach, California. …The annual award is named after the late Bronson Lewis, who served for 24 years as secretary and then executive vice president of APA. The award recognizes individuals for their lifetime leadership and outstanding contribution to the industry. Hardman is recognized for his many contributions to the industry and his leadership of APA. His long career with APA began in 1981… From 2005 until his retirement in 2013, he served as president and worked with the Board of Trustees, making difficult decisions that would ultimately allow the Association to survive and rebound from the crushing recession. …He holds a journalism degree from the University of Oregon.

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Forestry

New techniques may reduce spread of mountain pine beetle

By Marcia Love
Whitecourt Star
November 14, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A change-up in the bait and spacing of trees used to capture mountain pine beetle could help to reduce the pest’s destructive path across forests in Western Canada. Researchers at the University of Alberta (UofA) discovered they could catch more of the beetles by tweaking existing bait and altering the spacing of trees baited to catch them.  …While there are two types of chemicals that can be used in bait to attract beetles to a tree, only one type is typically used in bait. But Klutsch’s research doubled up, including both types of chemical in the bait.But Klutsch’s research doubled up, including both types of chemical in the bait. “We added both (chemicals) along with the mountain pine beetle pheromone, and that led to greater catches of mountain pine beetle,” Klutsch said.

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Is B.C. ready for the next wildfires?

By Tracy Sherlock
National Observer
November 14, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Lori Daniels

The Province of British Columbia apparently knew what to do to lessen the intensity of wildfires by 2017. The reports they’d commissioned in 2003, after the catastrophic Kelowna wildfires, were explicit, but the recommendations were costly….The government followed the suggestions, but only on about a tenth of the area in B.C. which the report had recommended should receive fire-prevention treatment. Now, B.C.’s forests minister Doug Donaldson is determined to do better, he told National Observer in an interview last week. But with a budget of $140 million to spend over the next three years on fire prevention in the province, some say the money won’t be enough to protect B.C’s communities from the next big burn. Lori Daniels, a forest ecology professor at the University of British Columbia, is one of those who is skeptical the money will be close to enough.

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Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre to receive $1.5M

By Grace Kennedy
BC Local News
November 14, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Carla Qualtrough

The Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre (CIFFC) will receive close to $1.5 million in federal funding to support the standardization of first response teams, Minister of Public Services and Procurement Carla Qualtrough announced Tuesday afternoon. “This project will provide the tools and training our search and rescue agencies need to better work together when they respond to fires anywhere in Canada,” Qualtrough said, speaking on behalf of Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Ralph Goodale. The CIFFC is responsible for coordinating wildland fire-control services for all of the provinces, territories and the federal fire management agencies. It also often coordinates the sharing of resources with the United States and other countries.

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Alien invader threatening to devastate Sarnia’s oak trees

By George Mathewson
The Sarnia Journal
November 14, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

City forestry staff are bracing for the arrival of an invasive species that could spell big trouble for thousands of Sarnia’s most beautiful trees. Oak wilt is a lethal fungal disease, one similar to the Dutch elm disease that wiped out most of the continent’s American elm trees. It blocks the tree’s vascular system, preventing it from taking in food and water. Wilting starts at the top, works its way down, and within just weeks or months a large and otherwise healthy oak tree is dead. This devastating disease has been heading slowly northward through the eastern U.S. Though it hasn’t been confirmed in Canada yet it has reached St. Clair County in Michigan, just across the river, and Belle Island in the Detroit River. 

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Northwest forests are becoming denser and more vulnerable to fire

By Matthew Reilly
College of Forestry – Oregon State University
November 14, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

CORVALLIS, Ore. — While large fires have had dramatic impacts in some Pacific Northwest forests, only about 10 percent of the forested lands in the eastern Cascades have burned in the last 30 years, and young trees and dense forests are continuing to grow at a rate that outstrips losses from disturbance. As a result, many forests across this region are becoming denser. Efforts to reduce their vulnerability to future high-severity fires — through tree thinning, prescribed burning and harvesting — have had little overall effect on forest structural conditions across the region as whole. Those are among the results of a comprehensive analysis of forest structure and biodiversity based on satellite imagery and on-the-ground field work in the eastern Cascades of Washington, Oregon and Northern California from 1985 to 2010.

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Fuel reduction may not save places from wildfire

By George Wuerthner, ecologist
The Bend Bulletin
November 14, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The tragic deaths, loss of thousands of homes, and the displacement of even greater numbers of people in Santa Rosa, California, and elsewhere from wildfire offer some lessons that all Westerners, and especially those in Central Oregon, need to consider. The fires in California were driven by drought, low humidity, an extended period of hot temperatures and, most importantly, wind. Climate/wildfire research reveals that climate/weather is the driving force in large wildfires, not fuels.  …We, living in Central Oregon, may be deluded into believing recent fuel-reduction projects will save communities like Bend, Sisters and Sunriver. Not only will most of these fuel reductions fail, there is a growing body of evidence that finds “active management” often increases fire severity, partly because grass, shrubs and small trees quickly fill fuel treatments with flashy fuels.

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Salvageable timber found in Brian Head Fire burn scar

By D.J. Bolerjack
KUTV.com
November 14, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Brian Head, Utah — Need fire wood? It’s been a pleasant surprise to many that some of the more than 70,000 acres that burned during the Brian Head Fire has salvageable wood. But how much of it can actually be used? 2News found out. The answer is, between 150 to an estimated 600 acres of timber is OK to de-bark, cut, split and package. Eric Taylor with the National Forest Service said this wood left over will likely be used for firewood. But before anyone can use this lumber Taylor said the wood needs to be collected off the burn scar floor, quickly. “The quicker we can get to it the better, before it starts to rot,” Taylor said. It only takes a few weeks to start the rotting process.

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‘It has no protections’: scientists fight for wildfire-burned land amid logging threat

By Matt Krupnick
The Guardian
November 15, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Chad Hanson

Less than a mile from Yosemite national park, Chad Hanson is wading through a sea of knee-high conifers that have burst from the ashes of the vast 2013 Rim fire. The US Forest Service essentially says the baby trees don’t exist. The agency says that “catastrophic” fires have “devastated” parts of the forest, painting an eerie picture of swaths of blackened tree trunks like something out of a Tim Burton film. But the vibrant green pines, firs and cedars surrounding Hanson among the patches burned during California’s third-largest wildfire tell a different story. Hanson, a California fire ecologist, is on a mission to stop the forest service from expanding its clear-cutting of trees in snag forest, the name for the burned areas.

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West Virginia forestry chief against agency transfer

Associated Press in The News Tribune
November 14, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

The director of the West Virginia Division of Forestry says the division shouldn’t be transferred to the Department of Agriculture, a move promoted by that agency’s commissioner. Forestry Director Barry Cook told legislators at interim meetings Tuesday that the division should remain under the Department of Commerce, which oversees agencies related to economic development. Cook is quoted by the Charleston Gazette-Mail as saying his division is “an economic driver for the state.” Pendleton County Democratic Delegate Isaac Sponaugle says he’s concerned that foresters would become will-and-pleasure employees under the Department of Agriculture. Currently they have civil service protection.

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Great Forest National Park proposal: Fight begins in forest

By Ricky Muir
The Weekly Times, Australia
November 14, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Ricky Muir

THE words “native timber industry” should not be words frowned upon, yet with relentless misinformation campaigns, outright lies and targeting of voters in the inner city, it seems they are. The irony is that if we were to stop all native timber harvesting in Australia today, harvesting which is done at world’s best practice standards, we would simply pass on native timber harvesting to other countries and end up buying products harvested under less-restricted guidelines. The real words that are a threat to our forests, wildlife, rural and regional communities, industries and hobbies supported by our vast state forests, are “Green ideology”. The State Government’s Great Forest National Park proposal is more than just a threat to Victoria’s well regulated, sustainable timber industry. It is a threat to regional communities and outdoors recreation.

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Logging in native forests: court to hear challenge to historic ‘peace deal’

By Michael Slezak
The Guardian
November 15, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Exemptions allowing logging to occur in Australia’s native forests without approval under federal environmental law are being challenged in court as lawyers claim the agreements creating them are not being adhered to in an area of Victoria. The case, brought by Environmental Justice Australia (EJA) on behalf of Friends of Leadbeater’s Possum, could have national implications, with other groups raising similar concerns around the country. …An EJA lawyer, Danya Jacobs, said the case asked the court to prohibit logging at 34 sites where Greater gliders and Leadbeater’s possums live, unless federal environment laws were complied with. “The native forest logging industry has operated as if it’s exempt from federal environment law for almost 20 years, on the basis of agreements that have not been complied with,” Jacobs said.

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Company & Business News

Canada Launches Nafta Challenge of Lumber Duties on Eve of Talks

By Josh Wingrove and Jen Skerritt
Bloomberg Politics
November 14, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, United States

Canada is using a trade deal Donald Trump has threatened to scrap to formally challenge a U.S. decision to slap duties on softwood lumber. Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland announced Tuesday the request for a dispute panel review under the North American Free Trade Agreement. The challenge is being led by government as well as several provinces and lumber companies including West Fraser Timber Co. and Canfor Corp. …Freeland, in a statement released by her office Tuesday, called the duties “unfair, unwarranted and deeply troubling” for Canadians, echoing previous statements on the lingering dispute. …The fifth round of Nafta talks begins Wednesday in Mexico City, and the Trump administration has already proposed eliminating the Chapter 19 dispute panels being used in this challenge from the agreement.

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Canada takes softwood lumber dispute with U.S. to NAFTA appeal panel

By Mia Rabson
The Canadian Press in The Montreal Gazette
November 14, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, United States

OTTAWA — Canada is turning to the North American Free Trade Agreement in its bid to stop U.S. duties on Canadian softwood lumber. A letter from a Canadian lawyer was hand-delivered Tuesday to the American NAFTA secretariat in Washington, requesting a panel review “in regard to the final determination of the U.S. Department of Commerce in the countervailing duty investigation of softwood lumber from Canada.” …Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr has repeatedly said Canada has every reason to believe it would prevail in such a challenge again. …However, until Tuesday it wasn’t clear whether Canada would take that route again in the midst of difficult NAFTA renegotiations, particularly given the American objective to eliminate Chapter 19 altogether.

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U.S. softwood lumber duties will be fought, federal and provincial governments say

By Marcia Love
The Whitecourt Star
November 14, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, United States

Both federal and provincial government officials say they will continue to stand up for the lumber industry and fight protectionist trade measures following the United States Department of Commerce’s announcement on softwood lumber duties earlier this month. …”Personally, I’m angry and frustrated that the Americans have yet again taken this tact. This is the fifth time that we’re going to argue the Softwood Lumber Agreement,” said Oneil Carlier, Alberta Agriculture and Forestry Minister and Whitecourt-Ste. Anne MLA. “We’re going to win in the long run, but we’re going to have to put up a fight and we will.” Deron Bilous, Alberta Economic Development and Trade Minister, stated he was confident that this dispute would be ruled in Canada’s favour but that the forestry industry would be “in for a rough ride” until then.

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Canada mounts Chapter 19 NAFTA challenge on softwood lumber duties

By Brent Jang
The Globe and Mail
November 14, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, United States

Canada is taking its lumber fight against the United States to one of the most contentious elements of NAFTA – Chapter 19, which sets up trade panels to settle disputes. Ottawa filed its request on Tuesday for a binational panel under the North American free-trade agreement to strike down the United States’s punitive tariffs on Canadian softwood. The move comes as Canada takes an increasingly hardball approach to NAFTA renegotiations and just one day before talks resume in Mexico City. Chapter 19 is one of the key sticking points in NAFTA talks: The Trump administration wants to abolish the panels while Canada has vowed never to give them up. Ottawa is keen to keep Chapter 19 – and invoke the panel in the current softwood dispute – because Canada has previously emerged victorious when appealing its case through NAFTA in the long-running lumber battle.

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U.S. lumber dispute drives B.C.’s latest trade effort in Asia

By Tom Fletcher
BC Local News in the Columbia Valley Pioneer
November 14, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada, Canada West

Doug Donaldson

With no end in sight to the latest anti-trade action by the U.S. softwood lumber industry, the annual B.C. wood products trade mission to Asia this week takes on a new urgency. Forest Minister Doug Donaldson’s first trip landed in Shanghai on the weekend, with more than 30 forest products executives, making it the largest so far from B.C. Stops in China include Changzhou, Suzhou and Nanjing, capital of Jiangsu province, where the Chinese government is conducting a pilot project to use wood frame and wood hybrid construction in its massive urbanization program. The Jiangsu project uses wood roof trusses and wood infill walls for concrete buildings, to make them more earthquake resistant and cut down the use of concrete that adds to China’s choking urban smog and greenhouse gas emissions.

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Report no secret: Domtar

BY CARL CLUTCHEY
The Chronicle Journal
November 14, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada East, Canada

Domtar says it has been forthcoming about mercury-contamination issues in the vicinity of its Dryden pulp mill as recently as last summer, contrary to some recent media and First Nation reports. And both the province and Grassy Narrows First Nation have been kept informed, it says. The company responded Monday to a Grassy Narrows news release which claimed that both Domtar and the government kept the band in the dark about possible contaminated soil under the mill site. …“The ‘confidential industry report’ is actually a report that was commissioned by Domtar to support the province in meeting its responsibilities for managing mercury contamination on the site, and includes a collection of historical sampling data from the Dryden mill’s archives,” company spokesman Kathy Wholley said in an email.

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Grassy Narrows chief urges Trudeau to confront mercury contamination crisis

By Kristy Kirkup
Canadian Press in the Globe and Mail
November 14, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada East, Canada

Justin Trudeau

Ontario took another step Tuesday on the long road towards cleaning up mercury contamination upstream from the Grassy Narrows First Nation – a community that also wants the federal Liberal government to help generations of residents deal with the toxic aftermath. Chief Simon Fobister cheered the Ontario government for a fiscal update that sets in motion a previously announced plan to put $85-million towards cleaning up the mess left behind by a paper mill that dumped the neurotoxin into the Wabigoon River in the 1960s. Now, Fobister is setting his sights on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government, which he’s been pressing to build a facility he calls a “mercury home” in the community so three generations of locals can get treatment for the effects of mercury poisoning closer to home. 

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Grassy Narrows upset over lack of information; Chief says it’s ‘treachery’ that government didn’t share Domtar contamination report

BY Carl Clutchey
The Chronicle Journal
November 15, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada East, Canada

The province admitted in the legislature Tuesday that it had received an updated Domtar report about mercury contamination at the company’s Dryden’ pulp mill last fall, but didn’t say why it apparently didn’t share the report’s contents with Grassy Narrows First Nation. Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation Minister David Zimmer confirmed the province received the report in September 2016, but stopped short of addressing Grassy Narrows’ concerns that it had been left in the dark about contamination under the mill site. … That didn’t cut the mustard with NDP MPP Sarah Campbell (Kenora-Rainy River). 

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Stella-Jones sales fall on dampened revenues in railroad ties

By Bill Esler
Woodworking Network
November 14, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: Canada East, Canada
MONTREAL, P.Q. – Stella-Jones Inc. said growth in telephone poles and residential construction lumber sales led to growth in the latest quarter, offsetting declines in its railroad ties business. “Stella-Jones’ growing reach in the utility pole and residential lumber markets led to solid sales growth in these product categories during the third quarter, more than offsetting the effect of lower year-over-year pricing in the railway tie product category,” said Brian McManus, Chief Executive Officer. Sales reached $517.6 million, up one percent.

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Department of Commerce: China is dumping hardwood plywood

By Powell Slaughter
Furniture Today
November 14, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: United States

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Department of Commerce has made a final determination that China is dumping hardwood plywood in the U.S. market. In an announcement Monday, the Commerce Dept. determined that exporters from China sold hardwood plywood products in the United States at 183.36% less than fair value.  Commerce also determined that China is providing unfair subsidies to its producers of hardwood plywood products at rates ranging from 22.98% to 194.9%. The Commerce Dept. found that dumping has occurred by mandatory respondents Shandong Dongfang Bayley Wood Co. Ltd., and Linyi Chengen Import and Export Co. Ltd. at a margin of 183.36%.

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Weyerhaeuser appoints Devin Stockfish as SVP, Timberlands

Lesprom
November 14, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: United States, US West

Devin Stockfish


Weyerhaeuser appoints Devin Stockfish as senior vice president, Timberlands, effective January 1, 2018. Devin will replace Rhonda Hunter, who has elected to retire after 30 years with the company. Devin Stockfish is vice president of Weyerhaeuser’s Western Timberlands business. Prior to that role he was senior vice president, general counsel for the company. He joined Weyerhaeuser in 2013. “Devin is a skilled and respected leader with a proven ability to deliver results,” says Doyle R. Simons, president and CEO.

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Court says size of 2x4s isn’t misleading, but class action plaintiffs appealing to Seventh Circuit

By Sara McCleary
Legal News Line
November 14, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: US East, United States

CHICAGO – Two plaintiffs who accused a hardware store chain of violating the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act (ICFA) have appealed a trial court’s dismissal of their claims. Michael Fuchs and Vladislav Krasilnikov, who brought the suit against Menard Inc. individually and as a potential class action submitted their notice on Oct. 30 that they would appeal the decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. The decision they’re appealing was filed on Sept. 29 by Judge Edmond E. Chang of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division. At that time, the court dismissed the complaint with prejudice, as the plaintiffs had already amended their complaint once and had not asked to do so again.

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Southwood Fibre’s woodchip export proposal ‘missing link’ for Tasmania’s southern forests

By Damian McIntyre
ABC News, Australia
November 15, 2017
Category: Company & Business News
Region: International

A proposed $42 million export facility for woodchips in southern Tasmania is the missing link in the rebuilding of the sector, the forest industry has said. Southwood Fibre has lodged a development application with the Huon Valley Council for the facility at Strathblane, near Dover, which could create 145 jobs. Currently bulk wood products from the state’s south are trucked to an export facility at Bell Bay in northern Tasmania, where the product is processed and shipped to export markets. The proposal would see Southwood Fibre process certified plantation forests at the existing Southwood processing facility before being transported on forestry roads to a purpose built loading facility at Strathblane, and then packed into vessels for export. The chief executive of Southwood Fibre, James Neville-Smith, said it could generate $55 million of economic activity every year.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

WSU Study: Climate Change Will Mean More Landslides on Logged Land

The Centralia Chronicle
November 14, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

Decreased slope stability from logging combined with increased rainfall from climate change will mean more landslides in the future, according to a Washington State University study. The study, published in Engineering Geology, was modeled after clearcuts on the Olympic Peninsula and based off of the predicted climate of the year 2045. It forecasted that there is likely to be an increase between 7 and 11 percent of areas that are highly vulnerable to landslide events. Researchers noted that those findings are applicable to the Cascade Mountain Range as well. … “Logged landscapes become more susceptible to landslide activity under climate change,” said Jennifer Adam, an associate professor of civil and environmental engineering and associate director of the State of Washington Water Research Center, in the release.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

StructureCraft expands B.C.’s base for engineered timber production with new plant

By Derrick Penner
Vancouver Sun
November 14, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada

Lucus Epp

StructureCraft built its business designing and constructing beautiful timber buildings, but is now taking a bigger leap into manufacturing its own engineered wood material, which it unveiled Tuesday at a major conference on wood design in Vancouver. StructureCraft has always made its own custom-designed components, such as the unique wood-wave panels in the Richmond Olympic speedskating oval or the distinctive roof trusses of the Guildford Aquatic Centre in Surrey. The idea of manufacturing more of a mass-produced product, in this case dowel-laminated timber, was to expand the business with a more consistent stream of revenue, said Lucas Epp, engineering and 3D manager at StructureCraft. …“Getting into dowel-laminated timber is a big deal for our company,” said Epp, who is the son of StructureCraft co-founder Gerald Epp, who is one of B.C.’s pioneers in modern mass-timber construction. StructureCraft is holding an official grand opening Thursday.

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Town Centre tribulations

ML Burke
The Delta Optimist
November 15, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

The City of Delta’s Chief Administrative Officer George Harvie, said “The community in Tsawwassen is supportive of a re-build of the Town Centre and other areas that are aging. We just have to do it right.” …I asked an established architect-planner about wood-frame versus concrete construction. His response: “In many ways six-storey wood-frame construction is superior to concrete. It’s significantly less expensive, around $75 per sq. ft. less, plus wood frame buildings generally resist earthquake forces better than any other form of construction.“Wood construction, using a renewable resource, is much more environmentally sensitive than concrete, where the production of steel and Portland cement are very energy consuming. …“Same with fire safety. There are a number of requirements for six-storey wood-frame buildings that are additional to what is required for more traditional four-storey construction that ensure fire safety. 

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China’s focus on green building opens opportunities for B.C. wood products

By Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
Government of BC
November 15, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

British Columbia’s largest-ever forestry trade mission to Asia has focused on strengthening ties with the powerhouse economy in China and further diversification of markets for the province’s high-value wood products. The China leg of the trip concluded with four stops in Jiangsu Province following participation in the third-annual Sino-Canada wood conference in Shanghai. “This trade mission is a key way for our new government to help strengthen B.C.’s rural economies and protect family-supporting forestry jobs,” said Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development Minister Doug Donaldson, who is leading his first trade mission. “I’ve been encouraged to hear that government officials, builders and developers in China want to continue our favourable trade relationship in wood products.”

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BLOG: Leading the Way – Mass Timber in the UK, why and how

Journal of Commerce
November 14, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

David Lomax

David Lomax, the senior associate at UK-based architecture firm Waugh Thistleton Architects, gave attendees of the recent Wood Solutions Conference held in Vancouver a look at some of the mass timber projects putting the United Kingdom on the map as a wood construction innovator.  Lomax said his firm are first and foremost architects, and their work isn’t just about sustainability or “more stuff stuck on the outside of the building.” Rather the firm concentrates on timber buildings first and foremost to address the current housing shortage in the United Kingdom. The houses that are available are not affordable, he said and “not only do we have to do more stuff, we have to do it differently.” …The solution, Lomax said, is to build in timber and build off-site. Reducing reliance on tradespeople and using machines in dry, clean environments, which then makes construction a desirable profession, would be a way forward that utilizes timber as a key component.

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Mass Timber use for the Penticton Lakeside Resort

Journal of Commerce
November 14, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

HDR CEI Architecture associate Robert Cesnik and Greyback Construction’s Mike Symonds encapsulated their experiences building the Penticton Lakeside Resort’s west wing in Penticton, B.C. to attendees of the Wood Solutions Fair, held recently in Vancouver. Cesnik said mass timber was the chosen material for the project because of its carbon sequestration ability. The hotel also created an opportunity for Okanagan firms to develop an expertise in mass timber construction, and current projects include wineries made of cross-laminated timber (CLT), office buildings and residential structures. Design of the Lakeside Resort, Cesnik said, began in the client’s mind as a concrete building. … “But switching to mass timber, the weight was such that we didn’t need to use piles, so there was an initial savings to the project,” Cesnik said.

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Michael Green keynotes jam-packed wood solutions conference

By Kelly McCloskey
Tree Frog Forestry News
November 15, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

Architect, wood promoter extraordinaire and keynote speaker, Michael Green inspired 670 wood construction and design professionals with his ‘tall wood journey’ at a Wood Solutions conference in Vancouver, BC., which he described as a “story about climate change, renewables, urban development and sociatal health and wellbeing”. Green emphasized BC’s leadership in wood innovation, crediting BC Wood WORKS! specifically for his own enlightenment and transformation some 13 or 14 years ago. Green noted that despite the significant progress made by early adopters, “it’s not enough” and he expressed dismay that firms like his are now securing more Tall Wood business in the US and Europe than in BC.

In his view, “we need factory built buildings with automobile assembly line-like processes—but with technology that allows every car produced to be unique”. According to Green, “the means to propel this change is a world-wide, open-access, online education system”. Not surprisingly, Michael is also part of the solution in this regard given his leadership in the creation of a nonprofit organization called TOE (Timber Online Education), and he’s working on his second  Tall Wood Buildings book.

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Seminar suggests changing the fabric of cities by building on existing structures

By Don Procter
Daily Commercial News
November 15, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

As city populations around the world expand at unprecedented rates, a corps of urban thinkers is examining how to add density by building on top of existing buildings, rather than rebuilding cities from scratch. About 25 per cent of the existing buildings, which are mostly masonry structures, in London, England can support additional floors comprised of such lightweight wood products as laminated veneer lumber (LVL), Mike Kane told delegates during a seminar at the Toronto Wood Solutions Fair recently. Kane, a director of London-based KMK Architects Ltd., said tracts of long-established neighbourhoods largely made up of council (public) housing in London proposed to be demolished could be saved by adding wood storeys.

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The skyscrapers of the future could be built with the garbage of today

By Nexus Media
Popular Science
November 14, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

The home of the future won’t look like The Jetsons. …it will be made largely from wood and used materials, like recycled cement and carpet. …Producers are looking to construct large buildings, even skyscrapers, out of wood. Trees soak up carbon from the atmosphere and store it in their leaves and branches. A wooden building locks away the carbon indefinitely. So long as forests are replenished, and producers don’t burn too much coal, oil or natural gas in the shipping and manufacture of wood parts, it’s a win for the climate. “We know we’re getting denser, and we don’t want to increase sprawl by having only low buildings,” Beardsley said.

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How mass timber could transform our cities (really)

By Matt Shaw
The Architect’s Newspaper
November 14, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Mass timber is having its Maison Dom-Ino moment. At the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale, a curious structure sat on the grass near the international pavilion in the Giardini. It was an engineered timber version of Le Corbusier’s Maison Dom-Ino, the seminal, prototypical reinforced concrete project, which was celebrating its 100th birthday. …The choice of timber in this case is an interesting one, as mass timber seems to be today’s material that looks promising for the future, much like steel and concrete did in the 20th century. As outlined in this issue, timber has a litany of benefits including carbon sequestration, lower embodied energy than steel and concrete, psychological benefits for inhabitants, less construction noise in tight urban sites, easier on-site construction in general, and many other positive aspects. It would reorient wood from light-frame suburban development toward mid-rise dense urban development.

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