Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: April 20, 2018

Today’s Takeaway

Earth Day 2018 to be celebrated by one-billion people in 192 countries

The Tree Frog Forestry News
April 20, 2018
Category: Today's Takeaway

After nearly half century, Earth Day (this Sunday)—celebrated by more than 192 countries—is considered the world’s largest secular holiday. In related news: the USDA says urban America is losing 36 million trees a year; and the New York Times features the importance of intact forest landscapes in the Amazon.

Companies in the news include:

  • West Fraser CEO Ted Seraphim to retire in 2019, Ray Ferris to take the helm
  • Pinnacle pellets secures longterm contract with a Japanese conglomerate
  • Unifor calls for federal action on behalf of five Canadian paper mills
  • Corner Brook Pulp and Paper re: US tariffs and changing contractors

In Wood Product news: a manufacturing glitch is blamed for the CLT panel failure in Oregon; a six-storey wood frame construction fire burns in Saskatchewan; and the University of Northern BC is recognized for heating its building with wood pellets.  

Finally, Penn State forestry and nursing students team up for a real-world forest trauma exercise.

–Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Business & Politics

Regional District of Mount Waddington and Western Forest Products working together to mend relationship

By Tyson Whitney
BC Local News
April 19, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Port McNeill Mayor Shirley Ackland was pleased to announce that the Regional District of Mount Waddington (RDMW) and Western Forest Products (WFP) are working together to mend fences. The issues between the two have been dominating local media for the past few months, with the RDMW taking WFP to task on two different occasions for its business practices, most notably the closure of the 100-year-old Englewood logging train in Woss. Ackland spoke at Port McNeill’s last council meeting on April 16, stating she has recently had a conversation with WFP. “Many of you have seen in the newspaper over the last few months that we have had a couple of issues, and we have come together to try and figure out the best way to find solutions around (the issues).”

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Pinnacle pellets to feed hungry Japanese biomass industry

By Marc Fawcett-Atkinson
The Terrace Standard
April 19, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Rob McCurdy

A lot more wood is about to pass through Prince Rupert — as pellets. On Friday, the company that owns Westview pellet terminal, Pinnacle Renewable Energy Group, announced they have finalised a contract to sell 70,000 metric tonnes of wood pellets annually to a Japanese conglomerate, Ube Industries Ltd., by the end of 2019. “Japan has made a strong commitment to decarbonization, and biomass is posed to become an increasingly important part of the country’s energy mix,” said Robert McCurdy, Pinnacle’s CEO. The long-term take-or-pay contract guarantees Pinnacle Renewable Energy Group will receive payment for its pellets — even if future demand decreases in Japan.

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B.C. forestry roundtable calls on Trudeau to act

Unifor Press Release
Cision Newswire
April 19, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA – A forestry roundtable convened to deal with the crisis caused by U.S. tariffs on five Canadian paper mills has resolved to protect affected communities and recruit the federal government to fight back. “President Trump’s tariffs on paper mills are grossly unfair and may cause several mill closures,” said Scott Doherty, Executive Assistant to the Unifor National President, who was at the meeting. …Attended by Premier John Horgan, Unifor and industry representatives, area mayors, and the Public and Private Workers of Canada, the roundtable discussed strategies for assisting workers, their community, and the industry during legal challenges later this year.

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West Fraser Senior Leadership Transition Plan

West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd.
April 19, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Ray Ferris

West Fraser announced today Ted Seraphim’s plan to retire as Chief Executive Officer at the end of the second quarter of 2019. West Fraser also announced today the appointment of Ray Ferris, Executive Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer, as President and Chief Operating Officer effective immediately. Ray will be appointed Chief Executive Officer upon Ted’s retirement next year. Hank Ketcham, Chairman of West Fraser’s Board of Directors, said: “This is an important step in the implementation of our CEO succession plan. Ray has worked closely with Ted for many years and has demonstrated tremendous leadership in executing our operating and capital plans.” Ted Seraphim added: “His leadership, experience and proven commitment to people, safety, operational excellence and maintaining our culture will continue to drive our Company forward. I know that I speak on behalf of all our employees in saying how pleased we are that Ray will be our next CEO.”

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When corporate welfare backfires

By Brian Jones
The Telegram
April 20, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Some Newfoundlanders might have wondered why the provincial government is shelling out $700,000, with more to come, to fight a legal battle on behalf of a pulp and paper company. Premier Dwight Ball says the government is supporting the forest industry and saving jobs by opposing tariffs imposed by the U.S. Stop right there. Back up a bit. Try to find a rationale for why a government should pay for the private battles of a corporation. Corporate welfare has become so entrenched in Canadian culture that politicians don’t even recognize when they’re giving it. …That new tariff could cost Corner Brook Pulp and Paper, and its parent company Kruger Inc., $30 million per year. …Maybe Ball is right that … the government should get in the game … help the company out … except that the U.S. government says it is imposing the new taxes, in part, because of the government assistance…

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White River sawmill making major upgrades

Northern Ontario Business
April 19, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

White River Forest Products is making more than $9.5 million in upgrades and creating new jobs at its sawmill near the north shore of Lake Superior. The money is geared toward new product development which requires additional debarking and drying capacity, and sawline modifications, including residual handling. The province contributed $1.9 million through its Jobs and Prosperity Fund but the bulk of the investment is coming from White River Forest Products. “We’re happy to be one of the first company to receive monies from this fund,” said company president-CEO Frank Dottori in an April 19 news release.

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Corner Brook Pulp and Paper cuts ties with South Brook harvesting contractor

By Cory Hurley
The Telegram
April 19, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

A week after learning Corner Brook Pulp and Paper was cutting its ties with his company, Milton Elliott says he is just starting to sleep again. The pain of the decision and anxiety over Arthur Fowlow Ltd. employees’ futures has not lessened for the South Brook-based company’s office manager however. Corner Brook Pulp and Paper cut ties with Arthur Fowlow Ltd. on April 10. The business relationship dates back to 1974 when Corner Brook Pulp and Paper was its predecessor, Bowater Newfoundland. …Elliott said …It was suspected there would be some quota reductions throughout the industry, but he expected it to be evenly distributed among all logging contractors. …Corner Brook Pulp and Paper says the decision will improve the competitiveness and efficiency of its woodland operations. The strategic initiative reduces its wood procurement costs, which it reports as the highest in North America.

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House farm bill forestry title potentially disastrous for national forests

The Wilderness Society
April 19, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States
Following is a quick summary and analysis of federal forest management provisions in the Forestry Title of H.R. 2, the Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018. The bill was introduced by Republican members of the House Agriculture Committee on April 12 and was approved, without forestry amendments, by the Committee in a party-line vote on April 18.  Since 2015, House Republicans have been promoting highly controversial legislation, sponsored by Congressman Westerman of Arkansas, called the “Resilient Federal Forests Act”.  Many conservationists and others have strongly opposed the Westerman bill because it would undermine bedrock environmental laws and take away opportunities for public involvement.

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Pleasant River Lumber awarded $4.2M grant for $12M project — carrying out $20M expansion between two mills

By Stuart Hedstrom
Piscataquis Observer
April 19, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

DOVER-FOXCROFT — The Maine Technology Institute (MTI) recently awarded a $4,226,000 challenge grant from the Maine Technology Asset Fund 2.0 program to the Pleasant River Lumber Company. The $4.2 million will be used toward a $12 million expansion at Pleasant River Lumber’s mill on the Milo Road and a larger $20 million initiative between the Dover-Foxcroft location and the company’s Moose River Mill in Jackman. …“Basically we are going to add 50 percent to our operating capacity in Dover,” Pleasant River Lumber Co-President Jason Brochu said. He said this expansion will lead to the creation of about 70 more jobs at the facility, a sharp increase of over 75 percent from the current figure of around 90 employees. …Pleasant River Lumber Company officials say the combined production of the two mills will grow from 180,000,000 Mbf to 300,000,000 Mbf — a 60 percent increase.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Major structure fire at Saskatoon hotel construction site

By Adam MacVicar and David Giles
Global News
April 18, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

Massive flames, billowing smoke and even multiple explosions could be seen at a hotel under construction on Wednesday morning. …“The fire started on the upper floors, the upper half of the building, on what we would consider the west-side of the tower portion of the structure,” Saskatoon Fire Department assistant chief Wayne Rodger said. …This is a unique site in Saskatoon, as it’s one of the first six-storey wood frame structures since changes to the National Building Code of Canada in 2015. “The 2015 codes introduced new requirements to allow for six-storey wood frame construction; with that included provisions as well in the fire code with respect to fire safety at construction sites,” Kara Fagnou, director of building standards for the City of Saskatoon, said.

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UNBC recognized as one of Canada’s Greenest Employers

By Stuart Neatby
The Prince George Citizen
April 19, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

Fresh off of its recognition as one of Canada’s Top 100 Employers, UNBC has been named one of Canada’s greenest employers by Mediacorp Canada. …This year marks the seventh consecutive year that UNBC has been recognized by the award. …”The ethos of sustainability permeates our campuses as our passionate faculty, students and staff collaborate every day to discover green solutions and explore environmentally friendly opportunities,” said UNBC President Daniel Weeks in a media statement. …The university was recognized specifically for its LEED Platinum certified bioenergy plant, which heats most buildings on the Prince George campus through the use of wood pellets.

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Work to resume on Peavy project

By Bennett Hall
Corvallis Gazette-Times
April 19, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

Oregon State University is pointing to a manufacturing glitch as the culprit in the failure of a cross-laminated timber panel in a campus construction project last month but says the problem has been fixed and installation of CLT panels will resume in the next few weeks. A 4-foot-by-20-foot section of subflooring gave way and fell … when the CLT panel reportedly delaminated at one end. …On Thursday, the university announced that an evaluation of the manufacturing process showed the DR Johnson plant in Riddle had used preheated wood in assembling some of the panels for the project. That resulted in premature curing of the adhesive and poor bonding between the layers, ultimately causing one panel to fail. …An American Plywood Association statement issued last week said the problem was introduced by a process change and that DR Johnson has now corrected the issue and implemented additional quality controls.

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The triangular wooden tower in Vancouver that will smash a world record

By Elicia Murray
Domain Australia
April 20, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

When the Japanese architect Shigeru Ban was named recipient of the 2014 Pritzker Prize, the jury praised his experimental approach and his humanitarian designs. … Four years on and Ban is once again at the vanguard of architectural design, this time with a new residential tower in the upmarket Vancouver neighbourhood of Coal Harbour. Terrace House is billed as the world’s tallest hybrid timber structure, having received building approval to deliver 20 residences (priced from $CA3 million, or about $3.06 million) in a striking 19-storey building. …As impressive as the concrete base of Ban’s design appears, it is the upper levels that are earning Terrace House a place in the record books. The top seven storeys will use exposed mass timber structural beams and columns with composite timber and concrete floors connected to a concrete core.

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Forestry

Court to rule on Husby injunction against protest at Collison Point

By Andrew Hudson
Haida Gwaii Observer
April 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A B.C. Supreme Court judge will soon decide whether to grant an injunction against the protest at Collison Point / St’alaa Kun. Husby Forest Products filed for the injunction on April 11, noting that its work at Collison is legal, and that the now five-week blockade has caused layoffs, costs, and could soon lead to spoiled seedlings if its treeplanting contractor is unable to work. Husby also told the court some of the protestors have brandished guns and hunting knives, and intimidated and engaged in threatening behaviour towards Husby staff and contractors. “Attempts at negotiating a resolution to the blockade, some of which have involved Husby, the Council of the Haida Nation and the provincial government have not been successful,” the company said in its notice of civil claim.

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Wildfire mitigation around city won’t come cheap: report

By Trevor Crawley
Cranbrook Daily Townsman
April 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A 48,000 hectare buffer around the City of Cranbrook will greatly reduce wildfire risk, but come with a hefty bill, however, there are opportunities for cost recovery, according to a report. Authored by Robert Gray and Geoff Byford, the report notes that the total cost of treating the identified area around the city is estimated at $28 million,adding that the volume and value of the merchantable wood in the study area is insufficient to cover the total project costs. That figure rises when it comes to carrying out prescribed burning operations in Crown Land within the study area, which is estimated in excess of $40 million. …“The volume and value of merchantable wood in the study area is insufficient to cover the cost of harvest operations, stumpage, biomass treatment and post-harvest hazardous rules treatment,” reads the report.

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New Woss Forestry Program up and running

By Hanna Petersen
The North Island Gazette
April 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The new 12-week Fundamentals of Forestry Program in Woss is officially up and running. “It ’s now operational – we have 12 students attending class in Woss,” said Manager of Economic Development Pat English at the Regional District of Mount Waddington’s April 17 Board of Directors meeting. …The Fundamental’s of Forestry program, which runs from April 16 to July 8, received 30 applications for the 12 available spots. “Based on the level of interests that we had – we are already planning for a second course to be held in the spring of 2019,” said English.

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Terra Nova National Park added to Google Street View

The Telegram
April 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

TERRA NOVA NATIONAL PARK, NL – You can now virtually experience the beautiful scenery at Terra Nova National Park thanks to Google Street View. Google is celebrating Earth Day on April 22 this year by releasing seven all-new sets of imagery of Parks Canada’s places, one of them being Terra Nova National Park. It includes the park’s many trails such as Outport Trail, Coastal Trail, Goowiddy Path Trail and Ochre Hill Trail. Google Street View shows 360-degree panorama images of a location. Since 2013, 167 Parks Canada’s locations have been documented. It’s hoped the initiative will encourage more Canadians to visit their national parks and historical places.

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Cities and communities in the US losing 36 million trees a year

USDA Forest Service
Science Daily
April 18, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Scientists with the USDA Forest Service estimate that between 2009 and 2014, tree cover in the Nation’s urban/community areas declined by 0.7 percent, which translates to losing an estimated 36 million trees or approximately 175,000 acres of tree cover annually. Pavement and other impervious cover increased at a rate of about 167,000 acres a year during the same period, according to research by USDA Forest Service scientists. Nationally, urban/community tree cover declined from 42.9 percent to 42.2 percent. Twenty-three states had a statistically significant decrease in tree cover, with a total of 45 states showing a net decline. …The study by Dave Nowak and Eric Greenfield of the USDA Forest Service’s Northern Research Station, “Declining urban and community tree cover in the United States,” was published in the journal Urban Forestry and Urban Greening.

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Earth Day 2018: A people-powered movement (Part 1)

By Daisy Simmons
Yale Climate Connections
April 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Forty-eight years ago this month, some 20 million people gathered in cities and towns across the U.S., holding teach-ins, handing out daisies, burying caskets full of trash, parading nets of dead fish, and more. …The actions of that single day helped usher in a new era of cultural awareness about the environment, heightening the national focus on a unifying domestic issue after years of divisive and often toxic debate over the Vietnam War. …Nearly a half century later, April 22 is now generally considered the world’s largest secular holiday, with the organizing group, the Earth Day Network, now expecting more than one-billion people in 192 countries to this year celebrate. …The American Forest and Paper Association, the Washington Post called the millennial celebration “a bona fide mainstream extravaganza.”

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South Selkirk mountain caribou herd possibly extinct

By Eli Francovich
The Spokesman-Review
April 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The South Selkirk mountain caribou herd may be extinct after aerial surveys found only three remaining animals. “The Selkirk mountains are still going to be a big wild cool place but we have lost something, some piece of that system,” said Bart George, a wildlife biologist for the Kalispel Tribe. “They’re an animal that’s been there for 70,000 years. It’s a big deal.” Kalilspel Tribal biologists conducted two aerial surveys in March, finding only three female caribou. Last year there were about a dozen of the endangered animals. The three female caribou spotted were collared. Less than 10 years ago there were about 50 animals in the herd.

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Washington, Idaho Embrace Chance to Help Manage Federal Forests

By Doug Nadvornick
Spokane Public Radio
April 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

In 2014, the new Farm Bill allowed the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management to work with states to do watershed restoration and other work on federal land, particularly in areas where the work is needed but the agencies don’t have the money to do it. The program is called Good Neighbor Authority. Washington and Idaho have embraced it. Peg Polichio is a facilitator for Good Neighbor Authority projects for the Idaho Department of Lands, “The states want to be involved with helping out on the federal lands in their particular states, maybe add some capacity, maybe have some qualities they can bring to the table as partners to help the federal government.” …The goal is that Good Neighbor Authority projects be self-sustaining. Dollars from timber sales are to be invested into new projects, especially those that wouldn’t be possible for years without a new infusion of money.

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Forestry issues a dividing line for state House candidates

By Jack Heffernan
The Daily Astorian
April 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Opinions on forest management among the Democratic candidates for state House District 32 appear, in some ways, to be as different as two sides of a timber line. Clatsop County and local school districts haul in more than $20 million a year from timber harvests. The revenue has led to debates over how to balance the economic reliance on timber with environmental protection. While Tim Josi is generally supportive of modern timber harvesting practices, Tiffiny Mitchell and — to a lesser extent — John Orr have called for changes. Discussions at the state and county levels lately have revolved around a $1.4 billion lawsuit in which counties are suing the state, claiming the Department of Forestry has not held up its agreement to maximize timber harvests.

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Montana names new boss at Missoula-based Forestry Division

The Missoula Current
April 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Sonya Germann

The Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation this week named Sonya Germann as head of the agency’s Forestry Division, citing her decades-long experience in the field. Sue Clark, who served as acting administrator of the division for the past year, has been named deputy administrator. “Following a national search, I’m pleased to announce that Sonya will lead our largest division,” DNRC Director John Tubbs said in a statement. …A native of Ennis, Germann started with DNRC in 2004 as a part-time employee in the Forestry Division’s seedling nursery. In 2007, she was hired full-time as a planner in the Trust Lands Division’s Forest Management Bureau. She was promoted to chief of that bureau in 2012. 

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This unique restoration project has been successful. Will the state expand it?

New Jersey Real-Time News
April 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Like a Phoenix rising from the ashes, bobwhite quail are slowly returning to New Jersey. The birds, sometimes called a firebird because of their dependence on occasional fires to reset their grassland habitat, were once an iconic keystone species in the Pinelands. Their presence filled a key niche in the delicate ecosystem, and their abundant numbers meant good hunting for generations of New Jersey outdoorsmen. …A partnership between non-profit New Jersey Audubon, the state Division of Fish and Wildlife, and private landowners at Pine Island Cranberry, the quail restoration effort is proving to be one of the most successful conservation projects in New Jersey. …John Parke attributed the success of the project to the forestry work done by Pine Island Cranberry. Parke said that active forest management has created pristine habitat for the new quail to live in, providing the birds with food to eat and protection from predators.

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‘Magic’ mushrooms to boost Caledonian Forest restoration

By Ilona Amos
The Scotsman
April 20, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A “magic” mushroom mixture is being used in an innovative new plan to speed up revival of the ancient Caledonian Forest in the Scottish Highlands. Conservationists from Trees for Life aim to harness the power of local fungi to boost growth of native woodland at the charity’s Dundreggan estate in Glenmoriston, near Loch Ness. Experts will add a special mix of spores… into the soil when growing seedlings in Dundreggan’s tree nursery and planting saplings on the hills this spring. It’s hoped the move will improve growth, reduce the need for artificial fertilisers and help the young trees to better withstand tough growing conditions and attacks from pests. …But in severely deforested areas such as the Highlands, forests still containing healthy populations of these mushrooms are rare, small or fragmented – often separated by massive swathes of farmland and moorland.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

How Big Forests Solve Global Problems

By Thomas Lovejoy and John Reid
The New York Times
April 19, 2018
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Sit on a log by the Madidi River in Bolivia at dusk and you can hear what an Amazon forest should sound like. …This is what scientists call an “intact forest landscape.” …Because of their size, these areas have maintained all their native plant and animal life and biophysical processes. …In the tropics, intact forests hold 40 percent of the aboveground forest carbon even though they make up only 20 of those latitudes’ forests. And intact forests have been shown recently to absorb enough carbon to offset many Amazon countries’ (like Peru) total emissions. When forests become fragmented, edge effects (forest damage at created edges), drying and fire cause over 150 million tons of annual emissions — more than result from outright deforestation. …How will we pay for a future with forest wilderness? Part of the answer lies in programs to avert climate change.

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Health & Safety

Unsafe bridges among multiple safety issues found on government-run forestry roads

By Andrew Kurjata
CBC News
April 19, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

Multiple safety concerns have been identified by B.C.’s Forest Practices Board on forestry roads and bridges in northwestern B.C., including unsafe river crossings and poor maintenance that caused a landslide. Director of audits Chris Mosher said the findings were “concerning” and the number of issues identified was unusual, though not unheard of, in the history of the board’s randomly selected audits of forest areas. The two-year audit focused on the Bulkley Timber Supply Area, which is managed by the government-run B.C. Timber Sales (BCTS). …Among the problems were six bridges with structural safety issues, poor culvert installation and road maintenance that “was not up to current standards.” …The audit also found companies operating in the region were not properly conducting fire hazard assessments after logging an area.

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Trauma exercise helps forestry, nursing students practice treatment

By Jennifer Fitch
Herald Mail Media
April 19, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: US East, United States

…It might have appeared as though a forester suffered a serious injury in Michaux State Forest on Thursday, but the convincingly real situation was a training scenario for Penn State Mont Alto students and local emergency responders. …Twelve Penn State Mont Alto forestry students participated in the early stage of an emergency simulation Thursday. They provided first aid to not only the mannequin that was pinned under a fallen tree, but also to a student who — in a surprise coordinated with faculty — acted as though he fell and shattered his knee. Nursing students took over the patients’ care when they were removed from the woods… Craig Houghton, program coordinator for forest technology, said the idea of holding an annual training exercise developed a few years ago as the college prepared for a summer session in which students would be in the woods for hours at a time.

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