Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: November 30, 2017

Today’s Takeaway

Financial assistance for BC wildfire ‘affectees’ may come with a ‘kick in the guts’

The Tree Frog Forestry News
November 30, 2017
Category: Today's Takeaway

While BC Forests Minister Doug Donaldson announced more funding to help businesses affected by this summer’s wildfire season, Ottawa wants to tax some land owners 50 per cent on what they might receive from salvage logging their decimated property. “The ultimate kick in the guts“.

In other Forestry news: BC forest companies speak to careful, sustainable logging in Nelson area watersheds; wildfires may have affected the migration patterns of some west coast birds; a specific fungus is seen as a potential solution to the emerald ash borer infestation; and lawmakers in Indianapolis propose set asides of 30 percent on Indiana’s old forests.

Finally, CWC is applauding the Ontario government’s decision to employ a life-cycle assessment approach for major infrastructure projects and in a new video, Domtar claims it can do in a few days what Mother Nature does in millions of years. 

— Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Froggy Foibles

‘Put in a friggin’ artificial tree’: Council told current street tree planting strategy wastes money

By Elise Stolte
Edmonton Journal
November 29, 2017
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: Canada, Canada West

Edmonton’s habit of planting street trees in small pits with no room to grow turns out to be a big waste of time and money. Without space to stretch their roots, most of Edmonton’s saplings planted along Jasper Avenue, Whyte Avenue and 124 Street sprout into teenagers but grow no further. They die, get torn out and a new sapling goes in to face exactly the same fate. “Put in a friggin’ artificial tree if you put it in knowing it’s got a limited life in front of it,” said Coun. Scott McKeen, after city officials outlined a possible new approach Wednesday. Officials estimate it would take an average $10,000 a tree, or a total of $72 million, to eventually replace all 8,000 street trees as they die.

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Business & Politics

US-Canada lumber dispute still smoldering

By Chris Gillis
American Shipper
November 29, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

The Canadian government has requested consultations with the United States at the World Trade Organization in an effort to counter the U.S. Commerce Department’s recent implementation of antidumping and countervailing duties on imports of Canadian softwood lumber. Global Affairs Canada called the U.S. imposition of these duties, which were announced early this month, “unfair, unwarranted and deeply troubling.” The Canadian ministry emphasized in a press statement on Tuesday that it will “forcefully defend Canada’s softwood lumber industry. We recently challenged the countervailing duties under Chapter 19 of the North American Free Trade Agreement, and today we are beginning litigation via the WTO.‎” …The decades-old U.S.-Canada lumber trade spat has also been a flash point during the current North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) renegotiation rounds.

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Northern BC Mayors Continue Softwood Message

By Cheryl Jahn
CKPG Today
November 28, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Northern BC mayors are redoubling their efforts to get the message out about the impacts of the protracted softwood lumber dispute on their communities. Mayor Lyn Hall called the group of mayors together when it became apparent it would be a longstanding dispute between Canada and the U.S. There have been meetings between the mayors and the Council of Forest Industries as well as the Union of BC Municipalities. …But now, one of the group’s members, Quesnel Mayor Bob Simpson says it’s time to get to the next level. He says the hope is to sit down with Premier John Horgan before the Christmas break to get that message uppermost into the Premier’s mind.

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Tolko sawmill employees updated on EI and training

By Monica Lamb-Yorski
BC Local News
November 29, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Tolko employees impacted by the Nov. 2 Lakeview fire were equipped with information about unemployment insurance and retraining opportunities at a union meeting held Tuesday in Williams Lake. About 50 people attended the information session … and heard from representatives from Service Canada, WorkBC and United Steelworkers Union Local 1-2017 vice-president Paul French. In advance of the meeting, employees had sent questions to the union’s project manager Terry Tate, and the Service Canada representative answered them all. …Tate told the Tribune Tuesday that of the 175 employees normally working at the mill, about 75 are not working. Tolko’s manager of external and stakeholder relations Tom Hoffman said Wednesday that crews are still pulling apart the areas damaged by the fire and the damage is still being assessed.

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City council heard about a proposed Air Permit amendment

By Ken Alexander
Quesnel Cariboo Observer
November 29, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

West Fraser Mills Ltd. is in the process of making a multi-million-dollar investment in the City of Quesnel, but it needs an Air Permit amendment. Quesnel Sawmill manager Chris Finch appeared before a council meeting on Nov. 21. He gave a presentation on the proposed West Fraser Quesnel Air Permit amendment and talked about what it would mean for the city’s air shed. Finch’s presentation was part of the public consultation process directed by the Environment Act. Quesnel Sawmill is seeking an Air Permit amendment because it is making changes to its processing equipment, and wants change its operation status from five to seven days a week.

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First Nations take ownership stake in Hornepayne sawmill, co-gen plant

Northern Ontario Business
November 29, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

An alliance of three First Nation communities in northeastern Ontario is taking a 30 per cent stake in a Hornepayne dimensional lumber mill and co-generation plant. The newly formed Northeast Superior First Nation Investment LP has finalized a deal to be a partner in Hornepayne Lumber and Hornepayne Power. The group is delivering a $4 million equity investment in the two ventures. The group consists of the Missanabie Cree, Chapleau Cree and Netamisakomik Anishinabek (Pic Mobert) First Nation. A memorandum of agreement was signed with the mill’s principal owner, Frank Dottori, back in July. The deal was finalized Nov. 29 at a ceremony in Hornepayne.  Dottori bought the former Haavaldsrud sawmill in a bankruptcy sale in 2016. The mill and co-generation plant shuttered operations in November 2015, throwing 146 people out of work. Production resumed last January. The operation employs 90 people.

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Softwood Lumber Market: Global Industry Analysis 2012 – 2016 and Opportunity Assessment; 2017 – 2027

Future Market Insights
November 29, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

Softwood Lumber market is heavily reliant on construction industry. As Softwood lumber is readily used as a building material in many constructional and interior designing projects, the softwood lumber market can be seen to have positive prospects for growth over the assessment period. Moreover, Softwood lumber is also used by many wood making professionals in furniture making and wood carving. This further increases the demand of softwood lumber thus promoting the expected stimulated growth of softwood lumber market in the coming years. Also, the use of softwood lumber is considered as environmental friendly as the softwood trees grow very fast as compared to hardwood trees. This increases the application of softwood timber in many industries as it can bypass the stringent government rules which would promote further augmentation of Softwood lumber market.

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Fruit Growers Supply shutters its Yreka saw mill

By David Smith
The Siskiyou Daily News
November 30, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

When the Yreka Planning Commission issued its decision approving Fruit Growers Supply’s planned saw mill in 2014, the decision was met with applause for what was hailed as the first new saw mill in California in decades. …On Monday, stories started to seep out that the mill was unexpectedly no longer in operation; and on Wednesday, FGS management confirmed that the decision had been made to shut down operations at the site. …Due to higher than expected input costs, as well as lower than expected productivity/material utilization levels, the mill was not economically viable.

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Logging company owner sentenced to prison for $83K theft

Associated Press in the Idaho Statesman
November 29, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

David Sigl

The former owner of an upstate New York logging company who stole more than $80,000 in workers’ compensation benefits has been sentenced to up to three years in prison. Fifty-six-year-old David Sigl, of Auburn, was sentenced Tuesday in Cayuga County Court to one to three years in prison and ordered to pay restitution. Sigl had previously pleaded guilty to charges including second-degree grand larceny, filing a false instrument and insurance fraud. Prosecutors say Sigl lied about an injury he said he sustained while working at a Syracuse construction firm in 2013.

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Northland forestry leaders welcome restrictions on foreigners

By Mike Dinsdale
New Zealand Herald
November 30, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Shane Jones and Brian Stanley

Northland and national forestry leaders have welcomed a government move to make foreign forestry investors commit to processing more wood in New Zealand. Forestry Minister Shane Jones made the announcement at a meeting of forestry industry leaders in Whangarei yesterday. Mr Jones said the move was all about creating more jobs and ensuring there was more value added to the country’s wood-processing sector. It would also go some way to helping the Government’s commitment to plant one billion trees in conjunction with private industry. He said overseas investment in forestry that brings genuine benefits to New Zealand’s economy and its environment will be welcomed. The inclusion of a Forestry Directive in the new Ministerial Directive Letter issued to the Overseas Investment Office (OIO), sets out the Government’s policy approach to overseas investment in sensitive New Zealand assets.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Canadian Wood Products Industry Supportive of Climate Change Considerations as part of Long-Term Infrastructure Plan for Ontario

By Natalie Tarini
Canadian Wood Council
November 30, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada

Etienne Lalonde

OTTAWA – The Canadian Wood Council applauds yesterday’s announcement by the Ministry of Infrastructure regarding a long-term infrastructure plan, focused on building Ontario up, that includes climate change considerations. This announcement aligns with the forest product sector’s ’30 by 30’ climate challenge – a commitment from the sector to help Canada remove 30 megatonnes of CO2 by the year 2030. …“The climate change considerations that form part of the Ministry of Infrastructure’s announcement are encouraging for the Ontario wood products industry,” says Etienne Lalonde, Vice-President of Market Development for the Canadian Wood Council. “Renewable wood products from sustainably managed Canadian forests help construction sector stakeholders achieve a balance between functionality and cost objectives, with the added bonus of reduced environmental impacts on the overall built environment.

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Forestry

BC Wildfire is hiring crew members for 2018

By Jessica Klymchuk
Kelowna Now
November 28, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Do you think you have what it takes to battle the blazes that devastated B.C.’s Interior this summer? BC Wildfire says it employs about 1,000 firefighters every year, and is currently accepting applications for the 2018 wildfire season. The essential work of firefighters was front and centre in July and August as B.C. faced its most devastating wildfire season on record. …BC Wildfire says the recruiting process can be lengthy. The application deadline is January 15th and, if recruits score well in the interview and fitness assessments, they can be accepted to boot camp, which takes place in Merritt in April. Only after that, in mid-May, will BC Wildfire make job offers. BC Wildfire says between 100 and 150 candidates are invited to boot camp every year, depending on the number of vacancies on fire crews.

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Bird migration patterns changing because of BC wildfires, rescue group suggests

By Cory Correia
CBC News
November 29, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

There is some unusual activity at Burnaby’s Wildlife Rescue Association of B.C., and the group says this year’s wildfires may be the cause.  Since August, the association has taken in 664 injured songbirds, 66 per cent more than last year’s total during the birds’ annual fall migration to the south. …Coleen Doucette, executive director of the rescue group said it’s likely the wildfires affected the migration patterns of some birds, pushing them to the coast, where they’ve been flying into windows and getting injured. In Delta, the Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society says it’s already seen 50 to 100 more injured birds of prey come in for treatment than last year. …Biologist Wendy Easton said more information is still coming in, so the jury is out on the correlation between wildfires and bird migration, as well as what this means for bird populations in the future.

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Ottawa adds ‘kick in guts’ to wildfire disaster for BC couple

By Tom Fletcher
BC Local News
November 29, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s pledge in July to help “every family” affected by the 2017 B.C. wildfires is a bitter memory for Larry and Diana Badke of 100 Mile House. Their 64-acre property was burned along with many others by the Gustafson wildfire. Despite Trudeau’s July 24 pledge to “stand with British Columbians every step of the way” with disaster assistance, the Badkes have been told they receive nothing, because they couldn’t get insurance for their retirement home and small ranch. “To make matters worse, the federal government thinks logging our burned timber is some sort of capital gain,” Larry Badke wrote in a letter to his MLA, Donna Barnett. “They will tax us [on] 50 per cent for what we manage to receive from logging our decimated property.”

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Businesses eligible for more wildfire financial assistance

CBC News
November 29, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The province has announced a second phase of funding to help businesses affected by this summer’s unprecedented wildfire season.  At its peak, more than 45,000 people were displaced from their homes, and a record number of hectares of land burned.  On Wednesday, Forests Minister Doug Donaldson announced that those impacted will now be able to apply for up to $18,500 in assistance. Non-profits will be eligible for up to $8,500. “Coming from a rural community myself I know that small businesses are often the economic backbone of rural communities, so today’s funding will help small businesses keep that important role,” said Donaldson at a news conference in Victoria. The Red Cross is managing the funds through the support to small business program.

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Bureaucratic log jam is real cause of danger

Letter by Bob Cole
Alberni Valley News
November 29, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

I would like to personally thank all the bureaucrats and company management that have once again allowed procedure to block logic and safety. After months of lack of and mis-communication, one plate was finally removed from the weir at the outlet of Sproat Lake on Nov. 6. …The first problem is this should have been done in mid-September. …The second problem is that with Catalyst, the two downstream First Nations, DFO, the Regional District and Island Timberlands involved, but not connected in any meaningful way, the sweep, which collects floating debris, logs, wharves, boats, windfalls and stumps from going down the river, was supposed to be cleaned out at the same time. It still hasn’t been done.

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Logging in watersheds — Nelson area logging companies weigh in

By Ken Kalesnikoff, Craig Upper, Justin Storm, Trevor Kanigan, Scott Weatherford
Nelson Star
November 29, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The issue of logging in watersheds is once again making headlines locally, mostly around plans to harvest timber in the Ymir watershed. As local businesses in the local forest industry, we appreciate and are listening to the concerns of the public on this issue. We agree that dialogue and conversation are needed, and we are hoping that this can be done with respectful conversation. We think it might be helpful for your readers to hear about the broader perspective on harvesting in watersheds generally. …Logging in watersheds has been carried out successfully and respectfully in our region for decades. As technical harvesting practices evolved, our companies (and the logging contractors who actually do the harvesting) evolved too. … This is our home, and we care deeply about doing the work we do — including harvesting in watersheds — carefully, sustainably, and to the high environmental standards we have in this province.

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Fungus serves as federal sidekick in fight to save forests

By Clothilde Goujard
National Observer
November 29, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Scientist Robert Lavallée

Thousands of small test tubes were set up in neatly organized rows in the cupboards of Armand Séguin’s laboratory. Soon, the scientist would be filling them up with sap squeezed from the bark of ash trees. Séguin has been studying cancer for more than two decades. Now he’s turned his expertise to stopping the spread of the destructive emerald ash borer, a green metallic-looking beetle that is smaller than a fingernail. The Laurentian Forestry Centre in Quebec City is one of five federal research hubs in Natural Resources Canada’s Canadian Forest Service. …Robert Lavallée, a scientist and an emerald ash borer specialist at the centre is working on a solution to fight the emerald ash borer in cities like Montreal, and in Ontario forests. A specific Canadian fungus had caught his attention — it could get inside the pest and kill it.

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Would you rather log a forest or watch it burn?

Letter by Tom Gookin
Modesto Bee
November 29, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

To have an intense conflagration you need all components of the fire triangle: air, ignition and fuel. Mother Nature controls the air and some of the ignition (lightning strikes). The rest of ignition is man-caused – careless smokers, power mowers, downed power lines, catalytic converters, etc. …Fifty years ago, all trees capable of falling on power lines were removed….Now trees are pruned around lines and unbalanced. Intense fires are caused by environmental negligence. Take a course in Benefit Analysis. You can save one owl by stopping timber sale, but you’ll burn up 100 owls by not thinning the forests. Stop water being drafted from streams to save one frog, but boil 100 frogs when the fire gets away. 

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Forest Service proposes logging in Bridgers and Bangtails

By Michael Wright
The Bozeman Daily Chronicle
November 30, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Forest officials are seeking public comment on a logging project in the Bridger and Bangtail mountains northeast of Bozeman. The Forest Service wants to cut down trees on about 2,300 acres in the Bridger Mountains north of Bridger Bowl Ski Area and in the Bangtail Mountains east of there. Forest officials have held public meetings and field trips to the area over the past few months. A full proposal was released Wednesday. The proposed project area begins about 13 miles northeast of Bozeman. It includes land near Battle Ridge Campground, Fairy Lake and on the slopes below Ross Pass. It also proposes work in the Bangtail Mountains, east of Grassy Mountain. The Forest Service’s proposal says the area is likely to be susceptible to tree-killing insect and disease outbreaks in the future.

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Kootenai salvage projects move forward

By Patrick Reilly
Daily Inter Lake
November 29, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The effort to salvage fire-scorched timber is advancing in Northwest Montana’s forests. Fire-burned trees, called “snags” when dead, can have 75 to 80 percent of living trees’ value. But if they’re left standing more than a year, damage from heat and bugs can render them worthless. The U.S. Forest Service is racing to complete the salvage process before that happens. “Our goal is to have sales completed by next summer with work completed by early fall,” Forest Service Deputy Incident Commander Steve Brown told the Daily Inter Lake. In a press release Wednesday, the agency’s Missoula office announced that salvage operations are currently planned on 11 Montana fire sites. Five of those — Caribou, Cub, Gibralter Ridge, West Fork and Moose Peak — are in Kootenai National Forest. 

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Arkansas State Forest Earns SFI Certification

Sustainable Forestry Initiative Press Release
November 30, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Joe Fox

Washington, DC — The Sustainable Forestry Initiative Inc. (SFI) is pleased to announce that Poison Springs State Forest, the Arkansas state forest managed by the Agriculture Department’s Forestry Commission, has earned certification to the SFI 2015-2019 Forest Management Standard through a rigorous third-party audit. Certifying to SFI sends a strong signal about Arkansas’s commitment to sustainable forest management, conservation, and economic opportunity for its citizens. “It shows we are working to ensure that our forests will remain healthy and productive for generations to come. Certification to SFI also boosts our competitive position in national and international markets because we can demonstrate that our forest products come from well-managed forests,” said Joe Fox, Arkansas’s State Forester.

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Yellowwood protests: How lawmakers are taking aim at logging in Indiana forests

By Emily Hopkins
Indianapolis Star
November 30, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

A handful of state politicians from both sides of the aisle say they plan to propose legislation that provides stricter rules for managing Indiana’s state forests. State Sen. Eric Bassler, R-Washington, told IndyStar that he is preparing to submit a bill that would set aside 30 percent of Indiana’s state forests as “old forest area” and prohibit the Department of Natural Resources from conducting or allowing timber management practices in the area. “I think that most people would tend to agree that if we’re going to have a set aside for an old growth area, that 100 percent doesn’t make sense, and I think most Hoosiers would say that 0 percent doesn’t make sense,” Bassler said. Previous iterations of the bill called for a 10 percent set aside, but Bassler said he is going to update the bill and ask for 30 percent.

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Beyond the cul-de-sacs, Chesterfield’s logging industry keeps trucking

BY Peter Galuszka
Chesterfield Observer
November 29, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

With rugged claws on its snout like those of a gigantic beetle, a “skidder” rumbles loudly as it tows cut trees on an 80-acre tract of forest just off Riverway Road in southwestern Chesterfield County. The skidder totes the lumber to another machine with a long, mechanical arm called a loader, which bundles up logs so they can be placed on one of several tractor-trailer rigs. The destinations are pulp mills in Hopewell and West Point owned by WestRock, a paper and packaging company. … “We’re the third largest industry in the state,” says Paul R. Howe, executive director of the Virginia Forestry Association. “We’re the quiet giant. Unless you live in a rural area, you don’t notice us,” he says. According to Virginia Tech, the commonwealth’s 15 million acres of forests support a $23 billion industry.

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Radar satellites able to measure water stress in trees

By Delft University of Technology
Phys.org
November 30, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International
Radar technology in space can be used to measure how ‘thirsty’ plants and crops are. This could play a key role in improving our understanding of how ecosystems and the water and carbon cycles interrelate. …Van Emmerik conducted research into precipitation, evaporation and ways of measuring plants’ thirst. His main focus was on the tropical rainforests. This is because they have an essential role to play in the Earth’s water, oxygen and carbon cycles. “If the Amazonian rainforest becomes increasingly drier, or is reduced in size because of deforestation, this will have an impact on the water and carbon cycles. That could contribute to climate change on Earth,” explains van Emmerik.

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Are ‘No deforestation’ commitments working?

By Catriona Croft-Cusworth
Center for International Forestry Research
November 30, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International

In 2014, many of the world’s major companies buying, trading or producing palm oil and pulp and paper made a joint commitment to stop clearing natural forests by 2020. As the deadline draws near, how are these ‘No deforestation’ commitments progressing, and what effect are they having on forests? Using LANDSAT satellite data to observe annual changes in forest area and annual expansion of industrial plantations, scientists at the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) are assessing the impact of corporate commitments to stop deforestation on the island of Borneo. …Our preliminary results from ongoing research suggest that recent corporate commitments to stop clearing forests in concessions of oil palm and pulpwood are associated with less conversion of forests to industrial plantations in Borneo, at least for oil palm and pulpwood.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Domtar Sustainability: Everything About Biomaterials Is Looking Up!

Domtar
November 29, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada East, Canada

Domtar Video

Before there was a word “biomaterials,” there were biomaterials. Plants and trees play a key role in the balance of the earth’s atmosphere—by converting carbon dioxide into oxygen. The earth’s atmosphere was once mostly composed of carbon dioxide, also known as CO2. Then plant life developed, and used the sun’s energy, the atmosphere’s CO2, and water to produce carbohydrates to feed itself. …At Domtar, we can do in a few days what Mother Nature does in millions of years. Meaning, we can essentially convert biomass into fossil fuels like oil. 

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