Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: July 27, 2018

Today’s Takeaway

A new kind of seismic surveying offers promise for exploration without seismic lines

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 27, 2018
Category: Today's Takeaway

A new kind of seismic surveying offers promise for Alberta’s oil sands exploration without seismic lines, which is good news for the caribou. In other Forestry news: the USFS Chief plans to make it easier for all kinds of businesses to work with and on National Forests; the US debate over the size of its National Monuments is back in court; a Montana judge ruled against logging in threatened grizzly bear habitat; and the McBride Community Forest in BC is in trouble for logging part of a riparian reserve.

In other news: the US trade truce with Europe puts the focus back on NAFTA, as Mexico and Canada put up a united front for a three-way deal with no sunset clause. 

Finally, there aren’t enough trees in Phoenix to offset the “urban heat island” phenomenon, where temperatures rise due to heat-retaining asphalt and concrete.

–Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Business & Politics

Mexico, Canada stress common front on three-way NAFTA deal with no sunset clause

The Associated Press in The National Post
July 26, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

MEXICO CITY — Mexican and Canadian officials said Wednesday that talks on the North American Free Trade Agreement will remain a three-way negotiation, despite suggestions by U.S. President Donald Trump that he might pursue separate trade deals with both countries. Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray says “Canada and Mexico not only share geography, history and friendship, but also principles and common goals, and we are a team and act as a team.” Visiting Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland “Canada very much believes in NAFTA as a trilateral agreement.” …Freeland said Canada also opposes a “sunset” clause proposed by Trump that would allow countries to opt out of the pact every five years.

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Touting trade truce with Europe, U.S. turns attention back to NAFTA, China

Reuters in the Globe and Mail
July 26, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

The United States signalled on Thursday it is set to push ahead on trade talks with Canada and Mexico after agreeing to suspend hostilities over tariffs with Europe in a fragile deal that may clear the way for renewed pressure on China. A surprise deal struck on Wednesday will see Washington suspend the imposition of any new tariffs on the European Union, including a proposed 25 per cent levy on auto imports, and hold talks over tariffs on imports of European steel and aluminum. …One key aspect of the agreement, was that the two sides had agreed to work together to tackle China’s market abuses. …On the North American free-trade agreement talks with Canada and Mexico, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said he was “hopeful that we’ll have an agreement in principal in the near future.”

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First-ever NAWLA Regional Meeting in Minneapolis

North American Wholesale Lumber Association
July 27, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

Next month, you can participate in valuable networking opportunities & set the stage for new business at the first-ever Minneapolis Regional Meeting. Join NAWLA members & colleagues on Thursday, Aug. 23 for education and networking. The featured speaker is Dr. Jim Bowyer, Professor Emeritus, University of Minnesota Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering. This presentation will outline the essential nature of life cycle assessment, examine its application to evaluation of construction materials, and present the outcome of recent assessments. Part 2 of the event will look at the current political climate and how it affects our segment/marketplace. Discussion will address NAFTA, EU, Canada, Mexico, and tariffs.

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Norbord’s Barton Mill up and running strong

By Wayne Clark
The Valley Times-News
July 25, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

VALLEY ALABAMA — In addition to being a very good employer for Chambers County, the Norbord Barton Mill in Huguley is a major player in the production of oriented strand board, better known as OSB. … Jon Anderson, the local plant’s human resources director, was the guest speaker at Monday’s meeting of the Valley Lions Club and talked about the local plant and Norbord’s impact in the global wood products industry. Headquartered in Toronto, Canada, Norbord is the world’s largest producer of OSB. The company has 17 mills in the U.S. and Canada and three in Europe. Anderson posed a question for members of the club: “Why are we in Alabama?” There’s a simple answer – the abundance of Southern yellow pine. Of course, there’s also a good climate, a good workforce to recruit from, low taxes and regulations, and a good quality of life.

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New Zealand log market getting ‘nervy’ over US-China trade stoush

By Tina Morrison
Scoop Independent News
July 27, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

New Zealand’s booming export log market is starting to catch the jitters as concerns mount about the impact of US President Donald Trump’s trade war. Demand for New Zealand logs has been strong over recent years as local sawmills compete with the export market to source logs for local construction, at a time when demand in China has stepped up after Asia’s largest economy clamped down on the harvesting of its own forests and reduced tariffs on imported logs to meet demand in its local market. However, trade tensions between the US and China are creating nervousness in the market, as traders fear tariffs will hurt economic growth and dampen demand. “Positivity has permeated the industry, at least for those selling logs, for upwards of two-years,” AgriHQ analyst Reece Brick said in his latest monthly report on the forestry market.

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Global appetite for French timber

Timber Trades Journal
July 26, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

For the past year, the French economy has finally been sharing in the worldwide recovery and benefiting from trends that seeded first in the US before spreading globally. Consequently confidence has returned to French consumers and industry alike. But what has been driving the French lumber business has been first and foremost external factors. On the softwood side, France remains a net importer. Higher prices in the US and China, together with improved demand in the Netherlands and Germany have shifted many usual trade flows to new markets. So supply for once drifted lower than demand on the French market, allowing French sawmills to increase prices on January 1 and again in June. Demand remains especially strong in the packaging sector, where prices are almost at framework lumber price levels.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

100 Best Wood Architecture Projects in the US

Arch Daily
July 25, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

Considered one of the noblest building materials – and also a favorite of many global architects – wood delivers aesthetic, structural, and practical value in the most versatile of ways. Through different techniques, such as crafted or prefabricated wood, wooden construction remains relevant not only in the history but also in the forefront of architecture and design (thanks to new technologies that have expanded its possibilities). From temporary pavilions to single-family homes and multi-story, large-scale institutions, wood has shown its value at the same level as many other structural materials such as steel, brick, or even concrete. This is especially prominent in the United States, where renowned architects are using new techniques to advance the solutions that this material can provide. Also, new regulations are allowing architects to further explore the diversity and possibilities of building with wood. With the help of ThinkWood, we’ve gathered 100 examples of the best wood structures in the United States.

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Forestry

Quesnel council wants money to advance forestry think tank

By George Henderson
My Cariboo Now
July 25, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Bob Simpson

Quesnel City Council has endorsed an application to the BC Rural Dividend Fund for a quarter of a million dollars to further advance the work coming out of this year’s Forestry Think Tank in Quesnel. Mayor Bob Simpson says the money would be used to pay for two people. “So they’re re-thinking forest management, landscape level planning, coordinating all of the research activities necessary around that. That is in full flight, that project is advancing.” Simpson says all of that work is being done off the side of a desk right now. He says they need someone to own this project to make sure that everybody is delivering on what they need to deliver on, that meetings are facilitated and research is coordinated. Simpson says the second person would focus on the re-inventing of the forest sector to match the changing fibre coming off of the landbase.

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Community Forest infractions “embarrassing”

By Andru McCracken
The Rocky Mountain Goat
July 26, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The McBride Community Forest Corporation is in trouble again for logging practices done in 2015. “We got another charge from government for inappropriate activities,” said current MCFC manager Gene Runtz. “The community forest had cut in a riparian reserve.” …Runtz said the offence happened in 2015, under the jurisdiction of a previous Community Forest Manager and was reported to the authorities by the community forest. …“They logged just a small piece, under one tenth of a hectare,” said Runtz. “They didn’t realize it was in a reserve. It hadn’t been identified properly. It should have been identified.” …District Manager Huybers said the main thing is to prevent environmental damage and inform management practices so the offence doesn’t reoccur. …“Mistakes happen in the forest; some can be prevented. Others are more challenging to prevent 100% of the time,” said Huybers.

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New oilsands exploration tech leaves forest intact, to the relief of the caribou

By Dan Healing
The Canadian Press in the Calgary Herald
July 26, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

…Seismic surveying — the exploration activity that helps identify where to drill — can result in as much as 15 per cent of the forest being chopped down and mulched. But a new kind of seismic survey promises to leave only boot prints in the forest. And that’s good news for species such as the threatened woodland caribou that live alongside the oilsands industry in northern Alberta. …We don’t have to cut the forest down anymore,” said Allan Chatenay, co-owner of Explor Geophysical Ltd. and inventor of its PinPoint technology. …The next step will be a commercial-scale trial aimed at proving it can compete on cost as well as effectiveness. …By greatly increasing the number of lower powered seismic events and their recordings, and processing them using detailed GPS readings and exact timing, Chatenay says the survey results are just as detailed as traditional seismic.

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Court rules against logging project in northwestern Montana

Associated Press in The Missoulian
July 26, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

HELENA — A federal appeals court has ruled against a proposed logging project in Montana’s Kootenai National Forest. A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that the U.S. Forest Service improperly calculated whether the project would exceed limits set for road construction in threatened grizzly bear habitat. The judges sent the case back to U.S. District Judge Dana Christensen, who approved the East Reservoir logging project in 2016. The Alliance for the Wild Rockies sued in 2015 to block the 143-square-mile (370-square-kilometer) project on the east side of Lake Koocanusa. The environmental group argued the logging would harm the habitat of grizzly bears and other threatened species, such as bull trout and lynx.

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Trump administration backing Obama proclamation in Oregon

By Andrew Selsky
Associated Press in The Times and Democrat
July 26, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

SALEM, Ore. — A dispute over acts of Congress in 1906 and 1937 has put the Trump administration in court — and into the unusual position of supporting a proclamation by former President Barack Obama. Contrary to President Donald Trump’s numerous efforts to shred Obama’s legacy, U.S. Justice Department lawyers are in Obama’s corner as they defend his expansion of a national monument in Oregon. That puts the Trump administration in direct opposition with timber interests that Trump vowed to defend in a May 2016 campaign speech in Eugene, 110 miles south of Portland. However, that opposition may be temporary in a case full of ironic twists that centers on a unique habitat where three mountain ranges converge. It is home to more than 200 bird species, the imperiled Oregon spotted frog, deer, elk and many kinds of fish, including the endangered Lost River sucker. 

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Cook: ‘I loved every bit’ of logging career

By Mary Malone
Bonner County Daily Bee
July 25, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Doug Cook

PRIEST RIVER — “Insanity.” That might be the first word that comes to Doug Cook’s mind when asked what kept him in the timber industry for 50 years, but it was not his only answer. “I loved every bit of it,” Cook said. “I loved the years of logging and enjoyed the people I worked around and the people I worked for….” It was for that passion and dedication, as well as his extensive career in the local timber industry, that Cook was named this year’s Bull of the Woods by the Priest River Chamber of Commerce. …To receive the Bull of the Woods honor, nominees are required to have worked in some area of the timber industry for the majority or entirety of their career — Cook started at the age of 9.

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Forest project approved over logging concerns

By Seth Tupper
Rapid City Journal
July 27, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A project intended to make the Black Hills National Forest more resilient to natural threats has received final approval over the objections of some who say the project will result in over-logging. Mark Van Every, the forest supervisor, announced Monday that he has approved the Black Hills Resilient Landscapes Project.“With the mountain pine beetle epidemic now over,” he said in a written statement, “this project will allow us to begin management actions that will help get the forest back in line with the forest management goals and objectives.” The Norbeck Society, a local nonprofit conservation organization, criticized aspects of the project in a recent news release. …The project proposal had been under review since 2016 and has undergone some changes as a result of public input.

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Interim Spokane Forest Service chief says she will make it ‘easier for all kinds of businesses to work with and on the forest’

By Eli Francovich
The Spokesman-Review
July 26, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The head of the U.S. Forest Service, interim Chief Vicki Christiansen promised Tuesday that the way the Forest Service does business is going to change. “We have great opportunity and we have significant challenges and this is not going to be business as usual,” she said. Specifically, Christiansen said the permitting process for guides and other recreational services is going to get easier on National Forest Lands, and cooperative agreements between industry and the Forest Service are going to be more common. …Christiansen also mentioned a company that’s hoping to revolutionize construction. Katerra, a California-based company, creates cross-laminated timber and glulam. The products can replace concrete and steel in wooden high-rise buildings and parking garages. They also can be used for other applications, such as walls and flooring. …Katerra is planning to build a factory in Spokane Valley.

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Protesters stand at Monument Gate to prevent logging

KIEM-TV
July 26, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

MONUMENT RIDGE – Protesters gather to prevent the logging of the Monument Ridge area, West of Rio Dell. They believe logging of the area could cause harm to the Mattole River’s ancient forest. The logging company plans to harvest 250 acres of non-old growth trees. Their mission is defining and protecting groves and individual old growth tress. But the protesters don’t want loggers to touch anything past the gate. The Humboldt Redwood company told us they will take anyone on the property and show them what they have planned. They want it to be known they won’t be cutting down any old growth trees.

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West Virginia has more old-growth forest than once thought, group believes

By John McCoy
West Virginia Gazette
July 26, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

“Fifty inches in diameter,” Doug Wood said as he read the number off the tape measure. “That means this poplar tree is probably at least 200 years old, maybe 250. That puts it into the old-growth category.”Old growth? Wait a minute. For years, West Virginians have been told that the state’s only remaining old-growth forest tracts are in Cathedral State Park and the Monongahela National Forest’s Gaudineer Knob Scenic Area. Wood believes there are more old-growth stands scattered throughout the state, perhaps many more.“Based on criteria established by the U.S. Forest Service, there are plenty of places in West Virginia that qualify as secondary old-growth forest, where the forest has grown back up after being logged,” he said. “Several areas of secondary old growth have already been identified, and I’m convinced that more will be found.

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Lord of the forest: New Zealand’s most sacred tree is under threat from disease, but response is slow

By Matthew Hall
The Conversation
July 26, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Tāne Mahuta is Aotearoa New Zealand’s largest living being – but the 45m tall, 2,500-year-old kauri tree is under severe threat from a devastating disease. Nearly a decade after the discovery of kauri dieback disease, it is continuing to spread largely unchecked through the northern part of the North Island. Thousands of kauri trees have likely been infected and are now dead or dying. The Waipoua forest, home of Tāne Mahuta and many other majestic kauri, is reported to be one of the worst affected areas. For Māori, who trace their whakapapa (lineage) to the origins of the earth, Tāne Mahuta is kin. The threat of losing this tree should electrify the fight against kauri dieback. …Kauri dieback has been recorded metres from this ancient tree, despite the best efforts of a prevention programme that has been in place since 2009. 

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Forest Fires

16 of 49 Ontario forest fires not under control, officials say

CTV News
July 26, 2018
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

With the help of Mother Nature and friends as far as Mexico, firefighters in northeast Ontario extinguished seven fires in the area Wednesday. The number of active fires has dropped to 49, with 16 still not under control. “We are getting a little bit of a help from Mother Nature, especially in the northern areas,” said Shayne McCool, a fire information officer for the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry. Late Monday there were 55 active fires in the northeastern portion of the province and 21 were out of control. On Wednesday, two new fires popped up in the area near Hearst, Ont., and another near Longlac, Ont. But firefighters have been able to make progress in preventing further expansion of many of the fires partly in thanks to rain, cloud cover and humid weather, but also with help of more than 500 extra staff from out of the province.

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Two new forest fires confirmed in the region

Timmins Today
July 26, 2018
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

Two new forest fires were confirmed yesterday in the northeast region. According to Aviation, Forest Fire and Emergency Services (AFFES), Hearst 14 is one of the new fires. It is two-hectare fire located about 42 kilometres south of Hearst that is not yet under control. Yesterday crews used aerial suppression support to battle it. The other new fire is Wawa 11, which is southeast of Longlac and as of yesterday was being held at 0.1 hectares. Altogether, the AFFES says there are currently 50 active forest fires in the region. Of those, 16 are not under control, with 34 being held, under control or being observed. The province is continuing to receive support, including crews and equipment, from across Canada, the United States and Mexico….North Bay 42 is located north of Red Cedar Lake and is 350 hectares in size. North Bay 62 is located southwest of Hand Lake at 2,500 hectares. 

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Fatal wildfire rips through California towns; residents flee

By Jonathan J. Cooper and Amanda Lee Myers
Associated Press in the Longview Daily News
July 27, 2018
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

REDDING, Calif.  — An explosive wildfire tore through two small Northern California communities Thursday before reaching the city of Redding, killing a bulldozer operator on the fire lines, burning three firefighters, destroying dozens of homes and forcing thousands of terrified residents to flee. Flames swept through the communities of Shasta and Keswick before jumping the Sacramento River and reaching Redding, a city of about 92,000 people and the largest in the region.The so-called Carr Fire is “taking down everything in its path,”  said Scott McLean, a CalFire spokesman for the crews battling the blaze. “It’s just a wall of flames,” he said.Residents of western Redding who hadn’t been under evacuation orders were caught off guard and had to flee with little notice, causing miles-long traffic jams as flames turned the skies orange.

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Southern Oregon wildfires: Growth slows, but temperatures continue to soar

By David Davis and Zach Urness
Statesman Journal
July 25, 2018
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

A red flag warning has been issued for Southern Oregon, which could mean an active day of wildfires across the region.  Gusty winds, high temperatures and low humidity could bring a difficult day, fire officials said Thursday morning.   Triple digit temperatures and air quality alerts continued across southwestern Oregon Tuesday as nine large wildfires in the region continued to burn. Thick smoke is expected to continue to cloud the Rogue Valley for the rest of the week, bringing hazardous air quality to cities including Ashland, Medford and Grants Pass. Due to deteriorating air quality, officials recommended wearing a mask outdoors and said sensitive populations, such as small children and pregnant women, might consider leaving town. The good news is that crews are making progress in containing the blazes. That’s particularly true of the area’s two most dangerous fires — Taylor Creek near Grants Pass and Grave Creek near Wimer. 

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

As Phoenix sizzles, ‘urban island’ phenomenon compounds heat

By Anita Snow
Associated Press in AZ Family
July 26, 2018
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

Arizona’s largest city is an “urban heat island,” a phenomenon that pushes up temperatures in areas covered in heat-retaining asphalt and concrete. Phoenix on Wednesday recorded a sweltering 116 degrees (46 Celsius), setting a new high for the date. Phoenix officials say they are tackling urban warming, monitoring downtown temperatures, planting thousands of trees and capturing rainwater to cool off public spaces. …But climate specialists like Brian Stone, who runs the Georgia Institute of Technology’s Urban Climate Lab, said more is needed.  In urban heat islands, solar radiation and hot air from vehicles and buildings get trapped between high-rises. There aren’t enough trees to provide shade and evaporative cooling that can bring down temperatures. “We are working against a pronounced warming trend in large cities, and so it will require a substantial resurfacing of urban environments simply to slow the rate of warming,” Stone said.

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