Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: October 17, 2018

Today’s Takeaway

Unions and rare frogs put the brakes on forest sector activities

Tree Frog Forestry News
October 17, 2018
Category: Today's Takeaway

British Columbia’s interior forest sector has yet another hurdle to contend with. After summer fires and political face-offs, interior workers are on strike. Vice president of the Steelworkers union, Paul French said they are sending a “message to negotiators that employees are serious about their demands”. At Tolko’s Lakeview mill the strike affects about 50 employees. 

In the eastern US – forest workers are facing a very different challenge. A rare frog is the force behind a court case involving Weyerhaeuser and the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

But the news isn’t all doom and gloom, in Ontario an outdoor education teacher is responsible for planting 8,000 trees, as part of the Ontario government’s 50 Million Tree program; and Canfor is pleased to share their recent company and employee awards – congratulations!

–Sandy McKellar, Tree Frog Editor

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Business & Politics

Log shortage from forest fires sparks sawmill closure in Ladysmith

By Skye Ryan
Check News
October 16, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

All is quiet at the usually buzzing Western Forest Products Sawmill in Ladysmith. It has been shut down since Sept. 21 when a log shortage sparked by this summer’s wildfires emptied out all of its booms out front. “Well anytime you have guys out of work it’s not a good thing,” said Glenn Calder with the Public and Private Workers of Canada Union. “So hopefully we can get some wood in the water and get some guys back to work.” The smaller trees the Ladysmith mill processes are harvested mainly from the North Island, where a massive shut down of forest operations happened due to the dry, hot weather and forest fires that ravaged that region for months this summer. Even as recently as Sunday, a flare up from the massive Zeballos area fire had to be doused, many weeks after fire crews left town.

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Two Canfor Employees Receive Awards for Their Industry Excellence

By Kevin Horsnell, VP Woodlands
Canfor CEO Blog
October 15, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Carmen Augustine

Christine Taylor (with Alex Drummond)

At Canfor, we have a great team of people who bring so much value to their jobs every day. I’m very proud of two employees in our Canadian Woodlands group who were recognized at a national level for their professional and personal accomplishments, which are helping to drive the forest products industry forward. Carmen Augustine, a Forestry Supervisor in Mackenzie, made the Canadian Forest Industries’ (CFI) Top 10 under 40 list. …Christine Taylor, a Silviculture Supervisor in Prince George, was awarded the Canadian Institute of Forestry’s (CIF) Prince of Wales Award for Sustainable Forestry. …Congratulations to both Carmen and Christine for their well-deserved awards and recognition. The passion and commitment they both have for our industry positively impacts Canfor, their communities and our industry. Thank you Carmen and Christine for being such great examples of the future of forestry.

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CN Recognizes Canfor for Sustainability Leadership

By Mark Feldinger, Senior VP
Canfor CEO Blog
October 16, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

We are proud to once again be recognized by CN for our sustainability leadership under CN’s EcoConnexions Partnership Program. Each year, the CN EcoConnexions Partnership Program selects companies that are committed to reducing their carbon emissions and increase energy efficiency. This aligns with the central focus of CN’s sustainability objectives. Canfor is amongst a group of 40 CN customers and supply chain partners that received this important recognition. To further celebrate all CN EcoConnexions winners, CN planted 100,000 trees this spring in partnership with Trees Canada. This annual tradition has resulted in CN planting more than 1.8 million trees since 2012.

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Workers at BC Interior mill strike as negotiations resume in Kelowna

By Monica Lamb-Yorskiangie and Angie Mindus
The Terrace Standard
October 16, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

A couple dozen workers were on the picket line before the sun came up at 4 a.m. to send a message to negotiators that employees are serious about their demands, said Paul French, vice president of the Steelworkers union who was on site. …The strike comes the morning that negotiations are scheduled to continue at meetings in Kelowna between Interior Forest Labour Relations Association (IFLRA) and the Steelworkers union, after talks broke down with Council of Northern Interior Forest Industry Relations (Conifer) last week. Conifer executive director Michael Bryce, “We were in mediation up until Sept. 28”. “Conifer did make an offer of settlement to the union in mediation. “At the core was a five-year term with a two per cent wage increase in each year for the employees.

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Tolko Lakeview Division workers in Williams Lake on strike

By Kyle Balzer
My Prince George Now
October 16, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Tolko Lakeview Division employees, represented by United Steelworkers Local 1-2017, were on the picket lines bright and early this morning. “We set up picket lines to basically try to get negotiations to move faster than what they are,” said USW 1-2017 First Vice President Paul French. “The company seems to be adamant to take stuff away from the members and all we want to do is just get a fair agreement.” The strike at Lakeview affects about 50 employees and French says the contractors with the construction project are also affected. …As for if other mill employees represented by USW 1-2017 will be on strike, French says that will all depend on what will happen with negotiations in the south between the Steelworkers Union and Interior Forest Labour Relations Association (IFLRA).

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Lumber Liquidators settles in $36 million deal; saga concludes

By Robert Dalheim and Bill Esler
Woodworking Network
October 16, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

TOANO, Va. – The saga of hardwood flooring giant Lumber Liquidators finally has concluded this week. Lumber Liquidators will pay $36 million to settle a lawsuit filed on behalf of 760,000 customers who bought its Chinese-made laminate flooring between 2009 and 2015. Under the terms of the settlement, Lumber Liquidators will contribute $22 million in cash and provide $14 million in-store-credit vouchers for a total of $36 million to settle all claims brought on behalf of purchasers of the Chinese-manufactured laminate flooring it sold between January 1, 2009 and May 31, 2015.  “We are pleased to have entered into this MOU, and welcome it as an important step toward resolving this legacy issue and moving forward,”  said Dennis Knowles, Chief Executive Officer of Lumber Liquidators. The plaintiffs are largely homeowners who began ripping out their floors after CBS News 60 Minutes program did an expose on the flooring.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Wood at Work 2018 conference is like a TreeHugger reunion

By Lloyd Alter
Treehugger
October 16, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

So many of the people we talk about here are coming to talk timber and tall wood. Wood at Work 2018 is the fourth annual conference of global innovators linking the use of wood with urbanization, architecture, climate change, forestry and forest conservation. It’s taking place in Toronto on October 25 and 26 at the jazzy new Daniels Faculty of Architecture that is now housed in a building that was once a hospital, an insulin factory and an eye bank. TreeHugger has covered many of the speakers at this conference, some many times. Some of our favorites: Michael Green …Grace Jeffers …Donald Chong …John Patkau.

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Forestry

Website expands public review of Crown land-use applications

By the Ministry Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
BC Government
October 16, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A new government website improves access to information and public engagement on applications for Crown land use in B.C. Applications for Crown land use range from recreational to industrial use. Given that 94% of B.C.’s land base is considered Crown land, the public has an important say in how it is managed. The ministry sees over 3,500 applications for Crown land use posted each year. …Applications already open for commenting will complete their lifecycle on the site. Closed applications will remain as a public record. The new ARFD website will continue to evolve, and new information and features will be added regularly. To support continuous improvement, British Columbians are invited to provide their feedback about their experience using the website.

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A Teacher Marked by the Wild

By Forests Ontario
Cision Newswire
October 16, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

KING CITY, ON – Andrew MacMillan, an outdoor education teacher at King City’s Country Day School, facilitated the planting of more than 8,000 trees on the school’s property earlier this year. The planting was done through the Government of Ontario’s 50 Million Tree Program, which is run by non-profit organization Forests Ontario. Forests Ontario has recognized MacMillan as their newest Green Leader.  MacMillan (56), is passionate about getting kids outside, and it is something he has strived to achieve throughout his career. Inspired by Marked by the Wild, an anthology of literature about the Canadian wilderness that he says shaped him both as a person and as a teacher, MacMillan avidly promotes the physical and mental health benefits of time spent outdoors to his students and colleagues. …Rob Keen, CEO of Forests Ontario said, “instilling a passion for nature will lead some of these students to become future stewards of our natural resources.”

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Longleaf pine has rich history in Southwest Louisiana

By Austin Arabie
American Press
October 16, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

If you have been to Moss Bluff or other areas in northern Calcasieu Parish, or further north in Beauregard Parish, you may have noticed beautiful pine trees that look a bit different from the norm. Tall, straight pine trees marked by loose, scaly bark and few, if any, limbs near the ground are known as longleaf pines, and they are very special trees. Longleafs are set apart from other common Louisiana pines in our area such as loblolly or slash pine in several ways. As their name implies, longleaf needles — or leaves — are around 17 inches long, much longer than other common pines, and are arranged a little differently. The needles appear in tufts on the branches and the trees’ seed cones are much larger.

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Weyerhaeuser fight over federal frog habitat tag heard before U.S. Supreme Court

By J.D. Bailey
The Magnolia Banner
October 16, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

As the Supreme Court of the United States returned, one of the first issues heard during its new term involved a timber giant with a major presence in Columbia County, a rare frog, and a challenge of the U.S. Endangered Species Act of 1973. In the case, which has been appealed all the way to the high court since 2012, the Weyerhaeuser Company – owner and operator of a veneer plant in Emerson and a nursery in Magnolia – and a Louisiana landowner are at odds with the federal government over 1,544 acres in St. Tammany Parish involuntarily deemed a “critical habitat” for the endangered dusky gopher frog. …The seven-year-old case has been defeated in every lower court and ruled in favor of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. …With the oral argument portion now over, the court will reach its decision then opinions will be released.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Forest carbon stocks have been overestimated for 50 years

By CIRAD – Agricultural Research for Development
EurekAlert
October 16, 2018
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

It may be a small correction, but it is far from negligible as far as forest ecologists and carbon cycle specialists are concerned. The error lay in a formula established almost 50 years ago (in 1971) for calculating basic wood density. Given that basic density is used to assess the amount of carbon stored in a tree, the fact that the formula had to be corrected meant that forest carbon stocks may have been overestimated by 4 to 5%. “This new formula should enable us to determine more accurately the role of forests in the carbon cycle and the impact of deforestation on climate change” , says Ghislain Vieilledent, an ecologist with CIRAD who was the corresponding author of the work published in the journal American Journal of Botany on 16 October.

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