Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: January 7, 2019

Today’s Takeaway

The battle lines are drawn as Northern Pulp fights for its future

The Tree Frog Forestry News
January 7, 2019
Category: Today's Takeaway

In todays news: Northern Pulp readies its plan for a new effluent system; Western Forest Products pursues reconciliation in BC’s Alberni Valley; Vancouver’s old growth lumber gets a new lease on life; Trump’s executive order may see logging in National Parks; and silvopasture (cows and trees) can mitigate climate change.

For those who extended their Christmas break, a few of the headlines from last week include: the NY Times on the decision to allow 18 storey wood buildings; the Wall Street Journal on lumber’s price collapse; the Canadian Press on Canada’s changing forests; Macleans on Canada’s species [most] at risk in 2019; and the Economist on the importance of building with wood. Also: FEA Wood Markets outlook for 2019; Frank Dottori’s retirement; and the passing of BC’s John Russell PhD, RPF. 

Finally, the Tree Frog News supporter roll-over date is February 1, 2019. As our longtime readers know, we exist solely because of the generosity of our sponsors and our “frog-friends”. Bottom line, if you like the service—you can ensure we continue via our Friend of the Frog donations page. Your small contribution truly makes a difference!

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Business & Politics

Forest sector will fight for Northern Pulp

By Jim Vibert
Cape Breton Post
January 4, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

The battle lines are drawn, but the battle is not yet joined. When Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil conceded in year-end interviews that the future of Northern Pulp’s Pictou County mill is very much in doubt, his words didn’t surprise the province’s forestry sector, but they still sent a shiver down its collective spine. …The province’s politically potent forestry sector won’t sit idly by and allow that mill to close. Northern Pulp is expected to submit its plan for a new effluent treatment system — replacing the infamous Boat Harbour facility — to the provincial Environment Department for assessment by the end of this month. …In Halifax, the forestry sector has powerful friends in the financial sector, in the big law firms and among the economic elite who’ve always had the ear of premiers and are accustomed to being heard.

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Bright outlook for radiata pine earnings

By Andrea Fox
New Zealand Herald
January 7, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Built-in colour could be the next big export and interior decor thing for New Zealand radiata pine as scientists eye markets for their technology breakthrough. Crown research institute Scion has developed “full thickness” colour technology which fixes non-leaching dyes in the sustainably-grown timber, offering an alternative to painting and staining. Scion wood and fibre science leader Doug Gaunt said the breakthrough is that the technology colours every fibre in a piece of timber, whereas attempts by others have produced patchy, inconsistent results. Not only can we put away the paintbrush, but built-in colour means if the wood gets scratched or dented the colour isn’t lost. “But the big one is if you machine the timber, the colour is still there. It offers flexibility,” said Gaunt. The new technology also ticks the sustainability box.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Demolished houses turned into roadbeds, fuel and furniture

By Randy Shore
The Vancouver Sun
January 5, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

The cabinetry and wood details in Adam Corneil’s renovations have a decidedly rustic feel, because the wood he uses can be 50 or even 100 years old. His renovation firm, Naturally Crafted, builds homes and furniture using wood reclaimed from demolitions. …Vancouver’s new bylaw also sets new deconstruction standards for homes built before 1910 and heritage-listed homes, which would see about half the wood from each home recovered and reused. …Companies like UnBuilders mine older homes for character pieces such as windows, doors and fancy trim, and the rarest prize of all: old growth wood. The framing and shiplap in pre-1910 homes is full of rock hard old-growth fir, which is in high demand for high-end remodelling and, of course, furniture building. …The City of Vancouver is keen to establish a market for the wood and other valuable materials harvested under the green demolition program.

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Missoula business turns old fence posts, pallets and beetle-killed pine into sustainable wood products

By David Erickson
The Missoulian
January 6, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

Ryan Palma

Old oak fence posts from a horse pasture in the southern United States, beetle-killed pine trees from near Missoula and unused wood shipping pallets from Kalispell will soon be on their way to a Mennonite community in western Montana for a new lease on life. There, they’ll be milled down into flooring, wall paneling and all sorts of reclaimed wood products and shipped across the country. That all happens thanks to Sustainable Lumber Co. of Missoula, a company started by Ryan Palma to reuse wood that might otherwise go to waste. …“I’ve had this idea of Montana-grown products,” he said. “I think people in the lumber industry honestly are the biggest tree-huggers. We really are. We want our forests to be clean and not burned up, so it’s always kind of big a part of what I loved.”

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Fall River firefighters describe ‘nightmare scenario’ surrounding apartment fire

By Amanda Burke
The Herald News
January 7, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

FALL RIVER, MASS — It was unprecedented, even for seasoned veterans of the busy Fall River Fire Department. …“This thing ruptured the main natural gas feed and caught fire,” said Capt. Neil Furtado. This thing was a car. …Firefighters on Engine 6 were the first to arrive on scene, four minutes after the initial 911 call came in at 9:43 a.m., said Furtado. That’s just under the span of time it takes for truss connector plates to fail. But under high heat of a fire, those connectors can expand and fall away, increasing the risk of collapse, according to Fire Inspector Todd Young. …Among the factors that made fighting the fire so difficult, said Furtado, was the construction method used. “Lightweight truss construction makes it quicker to construct, way faster — but way more dangerous for us under fire conditions.

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Students eager to know about wood without trees

By Avneet Kaur
The Tribune India
January 7, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

INDIA – Can wood be made without tree really? This was the question being asked from almost every student who visited the stall of the Central Building Research Institute (CBRl), Roorkee, which displayed the sample of wood made using natural fiber derived from agricultural waste such as husk and straws in combination with recycled plastics during an expo of the Indian Science Congress at the LPU. …Amit Prakash of the CBRI said: “Our technology for wood without trees is a step towards saving forests. Natural wood is replaced by manufacturing rice husk plastic wood.” Companies had manufactured door/window frames using this technology. The material has wood like surface appearance, having features of replacement to natural wood, meeting requirements of the National Building Code, he said.

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Forestry

Logging madness continues

By Briony Penn
Focus on Victoria
January 5, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Briony Penn

…Nothing has changed since the BC Liberals left in their wake vast clearcuts, gutted rural communities, and species on the edge of extinction in our deregulated, corporate-controlled public forests. It doesn’t matter who you talk to: unions, First Nations, rural politicians, enviros or insider scientists, the prognosis is that nothing has changed with the rate of mowing down what’s left of our ancient forests since the NDP picked up the reigns in May 2017. The Chief Forester, Diane Nicholls, is the same; the latest unsustainable Annual Allowable Cut that she is setting remains the same. The empty Ministry of Forests offices and lack of anybody on the ground monitoring the forests is the same. The legislation (or lack thereof) is the same. The silent renewal of Tree Farm Licences over vast areas of public forest with no public consultation is the same. The number of raw logs leaving our shores is the same.

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Island Voices: Reconciliation, revitalization of the forest sector in the Alberni Valley

By Robert J. Dennis Sr., chief councillor, Tliishin (Derek Peters), Tayii Haw’ilth (head chief), Huu-ay-aht First Nations, Don Demens is the president/CEO, Western Forest Products Inc.
Victoria Times Colonist
January 6, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Don Demens, Derek Peters, Robert Dennis Sr., Scott Fraser.

In early 2018, Western Forest Products Inc. and Huu-ay-aht First Nations signed the Reconciliation Protocol Agreement to advance a shared vision of reconciliation and revitalization of the forest sector in the Alberni Valley. In August, we built upon that agreement by announcing our commitment to explore potential alternative ownership structures in Huu-ay-aht’s hahouthlee (traditional territories).  Last month, Huu-ay-aht and Western took a historic leap toward reconciliation by announcing an agreement to form a new limited partnership — in which Huu-ay-aht will purchase a seven per cent interest — to operate tree farm licence 44. For Huu-ay-aht, this is an important milestone to increase Huu-ay-aht participation in the co-management of timber-harvesting operations within the hahouthlee.  …For many years, Western and Huu-ay-aht have shared a unique business relationship and have collaborated on a series of forestry agreements to enhance Huu-ay-aht’s involvement in the forest sector

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New Executive Order Could Open Forests In National Parks To Logging

By Kurt Repanshek
The National Parks Traveler
January 6, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

An executive order in the Federal Register is somewhat open-ended in directing the Interior and Agriculture departments to actively manage forests to reduce the risk of wildfires. Conservationists are concerned how the order could either directly or indirectly affect lands within the National Park System. …Specific to the Interior Department, the presidential order directs it to reduce fuel loads on 750,000 acres of DOI lands, address another 500,000 acres “to protect water quality and mitigate severe flooding and erosion risks arising from forest fires,” and treat 750,000 more acres for native and invasive species. It also directs the department to maintain “public roads needed to provide access for emergency services and restoration work…President Trump’s order… gives the two departments until March 31 to “identify salvage and log recovery options from lands damaged by fire during the 2017 and 2018 fire seasons, insects, or disease.”

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Aerial Study Discovers Dead, Dying Trees in Arizona Forests

By Mark Richardson
Public News Service
January 7, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — The latest assessment of forests across Arizona showed unexpectedly large areas of dead or dying trees. Aerial surveys conducted by the U.S. Forest Service in mid-2018 found about 1.7 million acres of ponderosa pine, piñon, and juniper trees with yellowing, red or brown needles. Forest Service officials attribute the problem to increased stress due to extended drought and other effects of climate change. Sandy Bahr, executive director of the Grand Canyon Chapter of the Sierra Club, said another factor is that elected officials refuse to deal with climate change. “In Arizona, one of the things that we’ve asked the governor, ‘Hey we need a plan. We don’t have a plan,’” Bahr said. “We don’t have a plan for reducing emissions, and we don’t have a plan for dealing with the many issues that we’re seeing.”

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Why are we still logging our forests?

By Roy Keene, Oregon forest consultant and private forest broker
Oregon Mail Tribune
January 6, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Roy Keene

Anyone who accepts true science realizes that today’s big forest fires are driven far more by climate warming than by a lack of “active forest management” as claimed in previous editorial opinions. Active forest management, more honestly called “logging,” has always been the timber industry’s cure-all for every perceived problem in our forests. Until science confirmed the amazing diversity and value of our old forests, they were deemed to be “decadent,” badly in need of logging and replacement with more efficient tree farms. …To me, as a timber cruiser and broker who’s tracked timber data and sale prices for decades, it’s obvious why industry preaches logging for all that ails our forests. They make grossly unfair profits from logging public timber sales… …After 45 years of observing and evaluating federal logging, contemplating today’s climate science and considering what’s fair for all of us, I wonder — why are we still logging our woods?

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Logger sees forest for the trees

Mail Tribune
January 4, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Dave Wilkerson

Eagle Point logger Dave Wilkerson of Dave Wilkerson Logging LLC has been chosen as 2018 Operator of the Year for the Southern Oregon Area. The Oregon Board of Forestry honors loggers who protect natural resources at a level that goes above and beyond requirements of the Oregon Forest Practices Act while they are logging or doing other timber-related work. Wilkerson earned the Southern Oregon Operator of the Year award for safely harvesting a highly visible tract at the entrance to the city of Butte Falls. The tract, amid powerlines and busy pedestrian and road traffic, contained a fish-bearing stream. It took extra effort from Wilkerson to harvest near the stream in a manner that protected a buffer zone along the waterway. He also was able to selectively log the tract while protecting younger trees, helping keep the site’s aesthetic appeal for area residents.

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Why Mount Jumbo won’t be logged anytime soon

By Adelyn Baxter
KTOO.org
January 4, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority board approved its largest land exchange to date Thursday. Through the deal, up to 40,000 acres of land in and around Southeast communities will change hands between the Trust and the U.S. Forest Service. The land exchange is the culmination of more than a decade of work by stakeholders and took acts of both Congress and the Alaska Legislature to make it happen. Once all is said and done, about 18,000 acres of land owned by the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority will be swapped for roughly 20,000 acres of U.S. Forest Service land. The Mental Health Trust owns land all over Alaska, and its goal is to use them to generate money to pay for services for beneficiaries. Often, that means earning funds through logging and mining. But some of the trust’s lands in Southeast border residential neighborhoods and sites for outdoor recreation.

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Forestry owners to wear greater compliance costs

By Tracy Neal
Radio New Zealand
January 5, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Owners of forestry blocks more than a hectare in size might soon be up for thousands of dollars in extra costs to harvest their trees. The introduction of new National Environment Standards for plantation forestry has altered how councils monitor forestry-based activities, and their impact on the environment. Tasman mayor Richard Kempthorne says the council is among others around the country now responsible for monitoring permitted activities that address forestry-related earthworks, (stream) crossings, quarrying and harvesting. It is currently consulting the public on its own tailored proposal, which includes charges of $650 per inspection before, during and after each harvest, and $120 for each test of stream water. The new standard applies to forest blocks of more than one hectare, and allows councils to charge once it has fixed fees.

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Bushfires across Victoria could burn for weeks

By Rachael Dexter, Liam Mannix, Rachel Wells
Sydney Morning Herald
January 5, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Firefighters will use a brief reprieve from the hot weather to try to get on top of a major bushfire in Gippsland – before temperatures start to rise again. The bushfire at Rosedale, suspected to be deliberately lit, ripped through more than 10,000 hectares of scrub and forest before it was brought under control about 2.30am Saturday. After a cool change following one of the hottest days in years on Friday, the mercury is forecast to rise to 31 degrees on Tuesday. Another cool front will  bring relief Wednesday and Thursday with temperatures of 23 and 25 degrees. But the fire, which is burning through a state park and pine plantation, could take weeks to extinguish. Gippsland will get a week of cool weather, before the temperature starts to get into the 30s next weekend. Firefighters hope to have it well under control by then.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Silvopasture Can Mitigate Climate Change. Will U.S. Farmers Take it Seriously?

By Lela Nargi
Civil Eats
January 7, 2019
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

Steve Gabriel is an agroforestry specialist at Cornell University’s Small Farms Program. He’s also the author of the book on silvopasture, a farming technique that’s touted as a way to sequester carbon by growing trees in livestock pastures. Trees absorb and sequester large amounts of carbon over time; they’re rendered even more powerful when they’re used in concert with grazing and planted on “marginal” land that isn’t great for growing crops—what Gabriel calls the “funky edges” around, say, healthy woodlands. On the heels of the latest, dire, National Climate Assessment, ag-based climate solutions such as silvopasture could provide much-needed climate benefits—if they can be scaled up.

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