Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: October 15, 2018

Today’s Takeaway

Declining lumber prices, rising construction costs, timber theft and more…

The Tree Frog Forestry News
October 15, 2018
Category: Today's Takeaway

Interfor plans to cut production in the BC Interior due to declining lumber prices and rising log costs; Santa Fe construction costs keep rising; timber theft is a growing problem on Vancouver Island; and cross laminated timber use is allowed in the UK despite combustible cladding ban.

In Forestry news: BC Woodlot awards go to the Thompson family, Charles Bloom Secondary School and Saulteau First Nations; a UBC conference touts the climate change credentials of urban forests; an Ontario forest is at risk due to the departure of a single bald eagle; a new Council is formed to help address Canada’s plant health risks; and forestry practices are good for Washington state.

Finally, Pakistan’s 10 billing tree tsunami is already taking root.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Business & Politics

Plunging lumber prices hurt B.C. business

Canadian Press in 100 Mile Free Press
October 12, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Interfor Corp. plans to cut production by about 20 per cent across its sawmills in the B.C. Interior as it faces declining lumber prices and higher log costs. The Vancouver-based company said Friday that the scale-back is a temporary measure planned for the fourth quarter. The cuts will be achieved through reduced operating days and extended weekends and holiday breaks spread across its three mills in the Interior, said chief financial officer Martin Juravsky. “We’re trying to do it as smooth as possible under the circumstances from an employee perspective.” The pullback comes as lumber prices for Western softwood have plunged from over US$650 per thousand board feet in June to under US$400 as concerns mount about the U.S. housing market. The higher lumber prices had insulated mill operators like Interfor from rising log costs brought on by higher stumpage fees and other pressures, said Juravsky.

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Tolko chips in for trades

By Darren Handschuh
Castanet
October 13, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Nemo Des Mazes prefers working with her hands and building things rather than sitting in a classroom. So when the chance came for the 16 year old to take part in the Youth Trades Explorer Sampler at Okanagan College, she eagerly signed up. The program gives high school students an opportunity to discover trades as a career with hands-on technical training in six fields including plumbing, carpentry and electrical. The program, a partnership between School District 22 and the college, is not only attracting students, it’s also garnered the interest and support of a local employer. Tolko Industries has donated $11,000, plus in-kind support, toward the training at Okanagan College. “We are passionate about youth and this fits with our long-term strategy to build our workforce and our communities,” said Tanya Wick, Tolko’s vice-president, people and services.

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New construction costs keep rising

By Melissa Pippin-Carson and Roger Carson
The Santa Fe New Mexican
October 13, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

With an improving economy and the recession in the rear-view mirror, it seems like a great time for the new-home construction industry. …A healthy, balanced market has about six months of inventory available, but most all the major markets are well below that. …A best-case scenario is largely dependent on new home construction. …With demand strong and supply low, home prices continued to increase. …At some point, there will be an affordability crisis and people will simply not buy. …The real problem is not simply adding inventory, but building homes that people can afford. …While some industries celebrated the Trump administration tariffs, the construction industry is not so bullish. One third of the dimensional framing lumber comes from Canada, and the tariff on Canadian lumber imports has caused prices to rise.

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Norbord officials talk state of timber industry

The Times News
October 13, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

LaFAYETTE — At Thursday evening’s annual meeting, the Chambers County Forestry Landowners heard from a Norbord official on how things have gone at the Barton Mill plant since its return to production, and heard an analysis from local forester T.R. Clark on whether it’s better for a landowner to plant pine or hardwood. Mike Ellington, a lead person for forming and the press, talked about the production process at the local mill.. …“It was tough when the recession hit in 2008,” Ellington said. “We’re now trying to build a more diverse consumer market than before.” …The economy has improved since then, the building industry has rebounded and prices have stabilized for OSB.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Combustible cladding ‘ban’ – what do we really know?

By Ella Jessel
The Architect’s Journal
October 15, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

A fire chief recently described his shock on realising Grenfell Tower’s concrete core was not ‘protecting itself’ from the blaze. …Now – 15 months after the tragedy – the government has announced a ‘ban’ on the deadly combustible panels widely blamed for helping spread the fire that claimed the lives of 72 people. …But critics claim this fails to deliver the ‘outright ban’ on combustibles that campaigners have fought for. The RIBA described the ban as ‘not an adequate response to the tragic loss of life’. …Anthony Thistleton, of cross-laminated timber (CLT) specialist practice Waugh Thistleton, warned earlier this year that the government’s proposal to ban combustibles in the ‘complete wall assembly’, including the inner leaf, insulation and the façade, could ‘spell the end’ of CLT construction in the UK. …But the industry has interpreted the government’s latest iteration of the ban – as applying to ‘external walls’ – in a positive light. 

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Hyne Timber to expand its glue laminated timber capability in Maryborough, Queensland

Lesprom
October 12, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Hyne Timber has announced a significant expansion to its Glue Laminated Timber (GLT) manufacturing capability in Maryborough, Queensland. Construction of the new plant is expected to commence within a matter of weeks, as the company says in the press release received by Lesprom Network. The new state-of-the-art manufacturing plant will accompany the existing plant in Maryborough’s Industrial Estate which is now in its 40th year of production. Recruitment of a range of specialist roles will commence well ahead of plant commissioning, with more operational and specialist jobs created as production scales up. The announcement also presents research and development opportunities for new, innovative products and solutions which wouldn’t have otherwise been commercially viable. A comprehensive research and development initiative is also underway with the support of research partner, the University of Queensland Centre for Future Timber Structures.

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Forestry

Canadian Plant Health Council launched

By The Canadian Food Inspection Agency
Cision Newswire
October 12, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

OTTAWA – Collaboration between Canadian governments, industry, academia and other partners in plant health is essential to protect our resources from new and emerging risks, drive innovation and ensure that Canadian industry remains competitive and sustainable. Plant health partners in Canada are pleased to announce the establishment of the Canadian Plant Health Council – fulfilling a multi-partner commitment to collaboratively implement the Plant and Animal Health Strategy for Canada. The Council will address priorities for the plant health sector, working together on preventive approaches and activities to protect forests, agriculture and other plants from pests, diseases and other risks. “…Canada Wood Group is confident that the new …Council provides a mechanism to quickly address plant health risks, safeguard our natural resources and ensuring long term economic benefits to all Canadians,” said Barry Ford, General Manager, Canada Wood.

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Kwiakah First Nation to be featured in German documentary

By Mike Davies
Campbell River Mirror
October 13, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The second smallest First Nation in all of B.C. – the 22-member Kwiakah First Nation – and its goal of encouraging responsible forestry practices on its land will be featured in an upcoming German documentary on internationally-renowned and New York Times bestselling author Peter Wohlleben. Wohlleben has authored numerous books on forest management and ecology, developing a passion for forests back in the early 1980s and working as a professional ranger and forester since his graduation from forestry school in 1987. His 2015 book …The Hidden Life of Trees: What they Feel, How they Communicate – Discoveries from a Secret World would go on to have an English translation published the following year… And when director Jörg Adolph and producer Friedrich Oetker of Constantin Film approached him to make a documentary of he and his work, he jumped aboard.

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Thompson family receives minister’s award

By Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
Government of British Columbia
October 14, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Todd Thompson and his mother, Joan Thompson, are being recognized by the Province through the Minister’s Award for Innovation and Excellence in Woodlot Management for the Coast. “The Thompsons have created value out of their sustainable, small-scale forestry operation — one that exceeds social and environmental requirements and focuses on the Port Alberni community,” said Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. “I congratulate them on their environmentally conscious and community-minded approach.” Originally a Port Alberni-area homestead for the family in the mid-1800s, the multigenerational woodlot run by the Thompsons has been in operation since Todd’s father, Art, started it as one of the original farm woodlots in 1951.

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Saulteau First Nations receive minister’s award

By Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
Government of British Columbia
October 14, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Saulteau First Nations are being recognized by the Province through the Minister’s Award for Innovation and Excellence in Woodlot Management for the North. “Saulteau First Nations have clearly shown innovation and strong, sound forest management,” said Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. “Their consideration for wildlife and non-timber values, while maintaining high woodlot productivity, is a job well done.” Operated by John Stokmans, the stand density and productivity of the woodlot is above average and achieved without using herbicides. Saulteau First Nations have held the woodlot since 1990. “Despite many silvicultural difficulties and other arduous challenges, Saulteau First Nations and John Stokmans have persevered and managed a woodlot that is a model for others to follow,” said Scott Fraser, Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation.

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Okanagan high school praised for innovative forestry program

The Kelowna Daily Courier
October 14, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

An Okanagan high school has been recognized for its innovative forestry program, judged best in the province. For 45 years, Charles Bloom Secondary in Lumby has run a hands-on course teaching students about all aspects of forestry. … Students have managed a provincially-assigned woodlot since 2002, harvesting the trees to provide revenue to help run the program. “Congratulations to Charles Bloom Secondary for leading the pack, and kudos to Martin Tooms, the teacher who is the driving force behind the program,” said Jeff Beale of the Federation of B.C. Woodlot Associations. The province has given a grant of $5,000 to Charles Bloom Secondary. “I’m encouraged by the work that Charles Bloom Secondary school is doing to prepare the next generation of forestry workers,” says forests minister Doug Donaldson.

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Timber theft a growing problem on Vancouver Island, ministry says

CBC News
October 11, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Tree poaching — illegally cutting and selling timber from Crown lands — is a growing problem on Vancouver Island, according to the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. Luke Clarke, a natural resource officer with the ministry, says his team has identified a number of thefts on southern Vancouver Island where towns and cities are close to forested areas. “We’re finding that timber thieves are fairly lazy people, ” Clarke said. “They want [the logs] to fall right onto the road. You’re going to see stumps covered up with moss if you’re driving on forest service roads in many of these areas with the intent of covering up their tracks.” Clarke said the stumps and fallen logs are creating major safety concerns for people working, walking or riding in the forest. In addition, logs are being taken from highly sensitive ecological areas.

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The never-ending fight to save one Ontario forest

By Jon Thompson
TVO.org
October 12, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

MACHIN — For years, a single bald eagle kept loggers out of the Farabout Peninsula. A 1,084 hectare piece of land that juts into Eagle Lake, the peninsula is home to thousands of trees — white cedar, black spruce, bur oak, and others….However, several years ago, an eagle’s nest was discovered in a tree on the isthmus that connects Farabout to the mainland. Since the bald eagle is a protected species, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry prohibited development within 200 metres of the nest. That made building a road through the isthmus impossible. …But the tree that held the eagle’s nest has died, and the bird has apparently moved on — leaving the area unprotected. Soon, consultations will begin for the 2021-2031 Forest Management Plan, and those hoping to safeguard the forest from logging are preparing to fight for the Farabout Peninsula again.

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Comment on forest plan wraps up, but some residents say better notification needed

By Tom Kuglin
The Helena Independent Record
October 14, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The U.S. Forest Service should do more to contact landowners most affected by major decisions, some area residents and landowners are saying after recently learning of the development of a new forest plan for the Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest. The Forest Service closed public comment Oct. 9 on its draft forest plan and related environmental analysis. In 2015 the Forest Service began meetings on updating forest plans from 1986 for the newly combined 2.9 million-acre Helena-Lewis and Clark. The plan is an overarching document that dictates standards and guidelines for various uses and activities across the forest and is expected to drive management for the next 15 years.

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Logs flow from Elliston-area timber project as legal appeal looms

By Tom Kuglin
Helena Independent Record
October 13, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The deep rumble of diesel engines were cut by the high-pitched rip of a chainsaw and the thud of wood on the ground. The team from Thomas Bros Logging worked in tandem, the skidder delivering logs where the delimber picked up trees up to three at a time, knocked the limbs to the ground and quickly cut them to length. Once cut, the machine swung logs onto stacks of firewood, saw logs, post logs or logs for home construction. Thomas Bros has spent the recent weeks logging a 78-acre timber sale as part of the 5,700-acre Telegraph Vegetation Project located about 5 miles south of Elliston. In the bottom of the valley flows Telegraph Creek, passing by several houses wholly surrounded by national forest before connecting to the Little Blackfoot River. …The sale is one specially limited to small businesses.

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Statewide forestry skills competition changing with times

By Jennifer Moody
Associated Press in The Albany Democrat-Herald
October 12, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Kindra Gross & Caleb Rich

SCIO, Ore. — Kaitlyn Kastet was able to pull herself a good 15 feet up the trunk of the Douglas fir behind Scio High School, but then wasn’t sure what to do next.Arbor climb judge Douglas Livengood indicated the knotted rope holding the Corvallis High School sophomore and showed her where to pull to let herself down. Kastet gave the rope an experimental tug and slid gracefully to the ground, sliding off the harness for teammate McKenna Mulvey to take a turn.The Corvallis girls were at Scio on Thursday for their first try at the high school’s annual forestry competition, which drew close to 200 students from around Oregon. Scio has been holding the competition since 1976, but Corvallis hasn’t had a forestry program, at least not in recent years.

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Old-Growth Forests May Help Songbirds Cope With Warming Climate

By Jes Burns
National Public Radio
October 14, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Hankyu Kim

Each spring, songbirds migrate thousands of miles to breed in Oregon’s Cascade Mountains. Deep in a forest, Oregon State University researcher Hankyu Kim feels he has gotten inside the head of one species, the hermit warbler. …Kim and his colleagues are developing a new experiment, trying to track the movements of hermit warblers through the forest. Learning how they move could help explain how bird species are dealing with rising temperatures and climate change. “We have these long-term population monitoring routes across the Northwest. And a surprising number of species are declining,” says Oregon State professor Matt Betts. “Actually, more than about half of the species that live in a forest like this are in decline.” Rising temperatures can shrink where some birds can live and where they can find food.

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Forestry 101: How current forest practices impact the future for the better

By Washington Forest Protection Association
The Seattle Times
October 12, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Called both a science and an art by those in the profession, silviculture is the practice of growing, managing and protecting healthy and sustainable forests. While growing trees may seem straightforward at first glance, sustainable forestry practices are actually very complex and require patience, foresight and maintaining close attention to the entire landscape – not only the trees growing on it. In addition to taking inventory of mature timber and growing stock, identifying stands and putting infrastructure in place, foresters also adhere to strict forest practice rules, regulations and best management practices. …Current forestry practices utilize science-based research to continually improve the management process. Foresters employ a variety of scientists, including hydrologists, wildlife biologists, geomorphologists and dendrologists. These are experts in a range of disciplines — silviculture, wildlife, soils, geology, disease, tree physiology — as well as in all aspects of forest management and harvesting.

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Building better forests

By Brad Piehl & Howard Hallman, Forest Health Task Force
Summit Daily
October 12, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The U.S. Forest Service has a tough job. They are under-staffed, under-funded and lacking in resources — yet we expect them to keep our forests beautiful, healthy, safe, open for recreation and protected against numerous threats. Above all else we expect the Forest Service to save us from wildfires that threaten our homes and communities. So far, so good — as we have recently experienced, the Forest Service working closely with local agencies, is very good at fighting wildfires. …The Forest Health Task Force meets monthly to discuss the future of Summit County’s forests. We are always looking for fresh perspectives. Our group includes members of the federal and state forest services, county government, environmental and industry groups, and most importantly regular citizens, many of whom volunteer to monitor forest conditions. Our mission is to connect communities and forest through public participation, education and citizen science.

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In Pakistan, an ambitious effort to plant 10 billion trees takes root

By Pamela Constable
The Washington Post
October 14, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: International

When Mohammed Riasat, a government forest service officer, peers up at the majestic ridges around him, he sees small miracles others might miss: a few dozen pine seedlings that have sprouted in rocky, near-vertical cliffs or a grove of healthy young eucalyptus trees, planted on a patch of terrain that had been eroding after years of illegal use. …Two years ago, that struggling effort got a huge boost. Imran Khan, then a politician whose party governed the province, launched a program dubbed the “Billion Tree Tsunami.” Eventually, hundreds of thousands of trees were planted across the region, timber smuggling was virtually wiped out, and a cottage industry of backyard nurseries flourished.  …Today, Khan is Pakistan’s prime minister, and his new government is aiming to replicate that success nationwide, this time with a “10 Billion Tree Tsunami.” 

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Urban forests key to managing climate change, UBC conference hears

By Brian Minter
The Vancouver Sun
October 12, 2018
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada, Canada West

The largest international conference on urban forestry recently took place in Vancouver. Over 700 urban greening experts from across the globe came together to share their expertise on this rapidly-growing and critically-important discipline. Three associations — Trees Canada (a not-for-profit charity dedicated to planting and nurturing trees), the Pacific Northwest Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture (PNW-ISA) and UBC’s International Urban Tree Diversity Conference — combined their resources at this groundbreaking event. UBC is emerging as a leader in urban forestry education under the leadership of Dr. Cecil Konijnendijk, a world-renowned professor of urban forestry. …The purpose of the conference was to explore the significance of tree diversity in nature and the role of various species to improve urban forests and to make cities more adaptable to the ongoing effects of climate change.

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