Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: March 28, 2018

Today’s Takeaway

Stories today on caribou, moose, trout, pine beetles… and craft beer

The Tree Frog Forestry News
March 28, 2018
Category: Today's Takeaway

BC’s Southern Caribou herd continues to decline in numbers; herbicides are being blamed for Moose deaths in the Prince George area; logging threatens a Tennessee trout stream; and the southern pine beetle is expanding its range northward towards Albany New York. In other news: New York’s Governor want to provide tax incentives to keep trees standing; and a comparison of the Finnish and Swedish forestry machine market.

 

Companies in the news include:

  • Tolko reopens shuttered OSB plant (after 8 years) in High Prairie
  • DLA Piper named one of BC’s Top Employers (again)
  • Fortress adds 5th digester, pulp production ramps up
  • EACOM supports families of workforce injuries

Finally, a Maine company has found a new way to combine two of the Frog’s passions – forest products and craft beer, in the form of beer coasters!

–Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Business & Politics

DLA Piper (Canada) LLP Named One of BC’s Top Employers for Eleventh Consecutive Year

By Tara Samuel
DLA Piper
February 22, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

DLA Piper (Canada) LLP is pleased to be recognized by BC’s Top Employers for the eleventh consecutive year. “It is an honour to have maintained this distinction for eleven consecutive years and is a reflection that our staff are our most treasured asset,” said Robert Seidel, Q.C., Canada Managing Partner, “We strongly believe that our employees are at the heart of each of our successes and we are fully committed to providing them with the best work environment possible.” DLA Piper Canada strives to provide its employees with a supportive, inclusive and motivating environment, with benefits such as in-house professional development programs, tuition contributions for external training programs and generous referral bonuses.

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Wood plant reopens in northern Alberta

By Gordon Kent
Edmonton Journal
March 27, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Brad Thorlakson

Tolko Industries Ltd. has reopened a long-dormant structural wood panelling plant in northern Alberta that’s eventually expected to provide 175 jobs, Economic Development Minister Deron Bilous said Tuesday. The company indefinitely shuttered its High Prairie oriented strand board mill in 2008. …One key reason for the move was the provincial government’s 2017 decision to extend the Vernon, B.C., company’s forest management agreement for five more years, Tolko president Brad Thorlakson said in a news release last June. But he also said markets were improving and there was optimism housing starts would maintain their upward momentum. “We are confident that current improvements in market conditions are sustainable.”

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Fortress Global announces commissioning of fifth digester at its dissolving pulp mill

By Fortress Global Enterprises Inc.
Cision Newswire
March 28, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER – Fortress Global Enterprises Inc. is pleased to announce that the Fortress Specialty Cellulose (FSC) mill has completed, on time and on budget, construction and commissioning of the fifth digester that was first announced in November 2016. Giovanni Iadeluca, President of FSC, commented: “This is an important milestone for the FSC mill. We successfully performed our first cook on March 27th. Our current annual production capacity is approximately 165,000 air dried metric tonnes (ADMT). We expect the fifth digester to incrementally increase our production capacity by 8,500 ADMT in 2018 and 17,000 ADMT in 2019. This will result in a material improvement to the FSC mill’s cost structure. We wish to thank our team at the FSC mill for their efforts in ensuring that the fifth digester was completed within the specified time frame and budget.”

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Despite not knowing proposed rate increase, NB Power’s rate hearing pushes on

By Robert Jones
CBC News
March 27, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Christopher Stewart

Ongoing secrecy around what insurance companies will pay NB Power for claims arising from the Point Lepreau nuclear plant refurbishment — and the effect that will have on power rates — threw the schedule of its ongoing marathon rate hearing into more turmoil Tuesday. The hearing is already four weeks behind schedule… and participants were divided on whether proceedings should be suspended again… “It does seem like things are taking a fairly hard right turn here,” said J.D. Irving Ltd. lawyer Christopher Stewart during a submission in favour of halting the hearing until next week when NB Power will unveil a new rate increase request based on its insurance windfall.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

New company plans to manufacture beer coasters in Maine

By Maine Coasters & Bio-Boards
Bangor Daily News
March 27, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

FALMOUTH — A new Maine company is launching an innovative product in two of the state’s largest industries: forest products and craft beer. Maine Coasters & Bio-Boards, founded by Falmouth native Kai Smith, is developing beverage coasters made from Maine softwood pulps as well as leftover or “spent” grain from local breweries. The company was recently awarded a $25,000 seed grant from the Maine Technology Institute to manufacture prototypes at the University of Maine Process Development Center – the state’s leading forestry lab located in Orono. …Upwards of 6 billion coasters are manufactured each year and rough estimates put the size of the market at around $500 million, with American craft beer representing the fastest growing segment. For comparison, Maine’s entire forest products industry is around $8.5 billion.

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Maine timber advocate pushes for high-rise buildings

By David Ade & Ashleigh N. DeLuca
Gray DC
March 27, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

WASHINGTON The roots of Maine’s timber industry are weakening with less demand for paper. Mindy Crandall, and assistant forestry professor at The University of Maine, said, “We lost about five pulp and paper mills in the span of 18 months, and that has a big impact on the industry.” Crandall said to survive the industry could branch out into skyscrapers… if the U.S. allows them to be made out of wood, like Canada and other European countries do. Crandall said, “If we can get some of these plants up and running in Maine, we’ve got the resource, we’ve got the workforce, and we’re really close to a big market for these types of structures.

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Will the Steel Tariffs Lead Us Towards Alternative, More Sustainable Building Materials?

By Rain Noe
Core77
March 27, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Most new construction in cities starts with steel. It remains to be seen if the upcoming steel tariffs will negatively impact the sector in terms of cost, but if it does, one side benefit might be renewed interest in a more sustainable alternative: Modular wood construction “The only way to make construction more sustainable is by building with wood on a global scale,” writes Metsä Wood, a supplier of engineered wood for construction and industrial applications. …The company hopes to change that with their Open Source Wood Initiative, which invites architects and engineers to contribute their know-how for creating modular wood components. The information will then be freely disseminated.

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Forestry

Federal government intervention on mountain caribou issue creates uncertainty, concern for stakeholders

By Melissa Jameson
Revelstoke Mountaineer
March 27, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

One of the only remaining subspecies to live in rugged, mountainous terrain, the future of the endangered Southern Mountain Caribou is uncertain. Efforts to promote sustainability and growth have largely been unsuccessful with Southern Mountain Caribou populations throughout B.C. continuing to experience declining herd numbers. This includes herds in the Revelstoke-Shuswap area. In an effort to support the survival and recovery of Southern Mountain Caribou, the provincial and federal governments are entering into a joint conservation agreement through the Species at Risk Act (SARA). Under section 11 of the act, a federal minister can exercise their power to enter into an agreement with another Canadian government, organization or person to enhance the survival chances of a species at risk. Currently in draft form, the implications of the Conservation Agreement for the Southern Mountain Caribou remain largely unknown. 

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Moose starving thanks to herbicide spraying, campaigner says

By Mark Nielsen
The Prince George Citizen
March 27, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The spraying of herbicide in forested areas is being blamed for the high rate of death by starvation for moose in the Prince George area. According to a 2017 study conducted on behalf of the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, starvation was the cause for four of the 10 collared cow moose that died in the Prince George South study area. James Steidle of Stop the Spray B.C. contends the study area is the most heavily sprayed in the province and the animals are being denied a key source of food as herbicide is used to eliminate deciduous trees like aspen, birch, and willow to create more room for spruce, pine and fir. … In a response, MFLRNO confirmed the number, but added tests are pending.

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We stood up for America’s wildest forests–but another big fight is on the horizon

The Wilderness Society – Blog
March 27, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Thanks to you, key senators stood up for our wild forests and blocked proposals that could have allowed reckless logging and road-building. …Congress has passed a bill to fund the federal government without proposals that could have introduced logging and road-building to millions of acres of America’s wildest forests. Key senators rejected “riders” offered by Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski that would have exempted Alaska’s two national forests, the Tongass National Forest and Chugach National Forest, from the 2001 Roadless Area Conservation Rule. Right off the bat, these riders could have introduced logging and road-building to nearly 15 million acres of pristine forest in America’s wildest frontier. …As is almost always the case, this threat isn’t quite dead—only deferred.

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Applauding forest management reforms

By Chuck Roady, Vice President, F.H. Stoltze Land and Lumber
Helena Independent Record
March 28, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Chuck Roady

With dysfunction in Washington, D.C., near an all-time high, it’s nice to see the Montana delegation help lead the way to a badly needed deal to help our federal forests. Last week, in spite of a four-inch “blizzard” in our nation’s Capitol, a deal was reached that will truly help Montana avoid another smoke-filled summer, and hopefully start bringing the health of our forests back from the brink. Working with colleagues from around the country, Sen. Jon Tester, Sen. Steve Daines, and Rep. Greg Gianforte helped broker a compromise which provides a sane solution to the “fire borrowing” problem that has bedeviled the Forest Service for more than a decade. Under the old rules, the Forest Service had to “steal/borrow” money from management accounts to help keep up with ever increasing fire suppression costs.

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Conservationists file lawsuit over logging plan near Polk County, Tenn., trout stream

By Ben Benton
The Chattanooga Times Free Press
March 26, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

A coalition of Tennessee conservation groups has filed a federal lawsuit alleging the U.S. Forest Service’s approval of a logging project in Polk County is endangering a sparkling trout stream. …The Forest Service wants to allow a timber sale on lands not far from the banks of Tumbling Creek as part of restoration efforts to replace non-characteristic trees logged from the land with trees characteristic to the area. The project area is about 3,700 acres, and timbering is proposed on more than 500 acres of it. …The Tennessee Chapter of the Sierra Club and Tennessee Heartwood have questioned the proposal of a 534-acre timbering project, known as the “Dinkey Sale,” for almost four years, pointing out potential soil erosion and compaction problems with their own analysis as well as evidence they say exists in the Forest Service’s own data and backs up conservation concerns.

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Don’t treat Indiana’s forests like a crop

Letter by Jeff Stant – Executive Director, Indiana Forest Alliance
Indianapolis Star
March 27, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

A recent article asks “Can cutting trees be good for Indiana forests?”  A more fundamental question is, “What is the purpose of our state forests?” When a private woodland owner in Indiana asks a forester how to manage a forest, the forester first asks the owner what the objectives are for that land.  The forester and owner then develop a plan to accomplish those objectives. …However, our state forests — owned by the public — serve other missions. The state should manage this sliver of forest that is public land (3 percent) for public needs like wilderness recreation and the protection of substantial deep-forest habitats for wildlife that isn’t provided elsewhere in Indiana. We don’t have state cornfields or state soybean fields. Why treat our state forests like cropland? 

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Destructive beetle found in the Pine Bush The Altamont Enterprise

The Altamont Enterprise
March 27, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

A beetle that poses a threat to pine forests was caught in a trap near Rapp Road, according to a press release from the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation; this is the farthest north the southern pine beetle has been confirmed. …The bark beetle, native to the southern United States, has steadily expanded its range north and west, most likely in response to climate change, the DEC says. Considered one of the most destructive forest pests in the United States, the southern pine beetle attacks several species of pine including pitch pine, an iconic species of the Pine Bush and other pine barrens throughout the state. Trees can die quickly from repeated beetle attacks, often succumbing within two to four months. …Despite these detections, infested trees have not yet been found north of Long Island. 

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Finnish forest machine market 2017 compared to the Swedish

Skogsforum Media AB
Forestry.com
March 28, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: International

…There are loads of similarities between Swedish and Finnish forestry, but when it comes to the machine market, there are vast differences. In the Finnish statistics harvesters are included, and it’s interesting to see how many harvesters are sold compared to forwarders. This is something we don’t know about the Swedish market. If you compare the forwarder markets of Finland and Sweden, the Swedish sales are 20-25% higher in terms of the number of machines sold. If you also take into account that, on average, forwarders sold in Sweden have a 13% greater load capacity, the total hauling capacity of the Swedish market is significantly higher. One of the most obvious differences is how the market shares are divided between various manufacturers.

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Victorian forestry deals extended to 2020

By Kath Sullivan
The Weekly Times, Australia
March 28, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: International

VICTORIA’s native timber industry has won a brief reprieve, with the State and Commonwealth agreeing to harvest native timber until March 2020. The Regional Forest Agreements (RFA) cover East Gippsland, North East and the Central Highlands and had been due to expire yesterday. Signed by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews yesterday, the new deals will now come into line with existing West Victoria and Gippsland RFAs due to expire in two years. The latest agreements fall short of the 20-year deals for which the RFAs were originally slated.

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Government to sign deal with Northland iwi to plant four million trees

By Jo Moir
Stuff.co.nz
March 28, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The Government is set to announce it’s struck a deal to plant four million trees on Ngāti Hine land in the far North. The Ngāti Hine Forestry Trust has about 5600 hectares of land centred around the small Northland towns of Moerewa and Kawakawa and its assets are valued at more than $28 million. It’s understood Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones will announce a deal between the Crown and the trust to plant about four million trees on 4000 hectares of land at a cost of at least $6 million to the Crown. …When Jones launched the Government’s one billion tree programme he said it would be a “big boost for the forestry sector and will create more jobs and training opportunities to provinces that have been doing it though for a while now”. 

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Another Voice: Reform forestry tax law to protect water, climate, and communities

By Peter Lehner
The Buffalo News
March 27, 2018
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

Andrew Cuomo

…New York has had a first-row seat to the devastating impacts that are caused by climate change. What many New Yorkers may not know is that New York’s vast forests have tremendous potential to be part of the solution to slow climate change. …As beneficial as our forests are, there is constant pressure to clear or cut them.  Over 75 percent of New York’s forestland is privately owned, and… property taxes play a central role when they make decisions on how to manage their land. Most landowners want to enhance wildlife habitat and protect water, but property taxes can make holding the land expensive. …But that could change soon. A new proposal by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo… could help… by offering incentives for landowners to manage their forests to enhance carbon storage.

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Health & Safety

EACOM steps up to promote workplace safety

EACOM Release
Timmins Today
March 27, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada East, Canada

EACOM Timber Corporation Timmins’ sawmill was the stage of a safety celebration Tuesday morning as leadership, staff and production crew gathered at a town hall meeting. Kevin Edgson, EACOM President and CEO, offered a $10,000 cheque to the Threads of Life local committee to support the organization’s flagship event – Steps for Life. This fun, 5km walk aims to educate the community about the devastating ripple effects of a workplace tragedy and how we can work together to prevent others being injured or killed on the job. …“Threads of Life is able to continue providing wisdom, guidance and peer support to families suffering from workplace injuries with donations such as these” stated Jeff Kiezer, Registration Lead at Threads of life.

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