Tree Frog Forestry News

Monthly Archives: March 2019

Today’s Takeaway

Plague-like fungus, not deforestation, greatest threat to frogs

The Tree Frog Forestry News
March 29, 2019
Category: Today's Takeaway

Researches say a plague-like fungus—transported via trade in pet amphibians—is responsible for most frog extinctions, but some species are on the rebound due to adaptations and possibly climate change. In related news: BC’s caribou recovery plan is panned for ignoring community viability and its short consultation process; as is New Zealand’s reliance on trees to meet its CO2 reduction obligations.

In other news: a decision is expected today on the future of Northern Pulp’s Pictou mill; wildfire headlines and actions in Washington, Oregon and California; and awards and recognitions for John Brink (Brink Forest Products), Amy Johnson (Canfor) and North Carolina Senator Deanna Ballard.

Finally, climbing the world’s tallest tree via a human dash-cam.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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US launches trade investigation against China over cabinetry

The Tree Frog Forestry News
March 28, 2019
Category: Today's Takeaway

The US launched yet another trade investigation claiming China is subsidizing their wooden cabinetry exports. In related news: Roseburg denies knowledge of illegal timber imports via a China-based company. In other Business news: BC wood shipments are mixed in January; Ontario may free up wood for Fort Frances mill; Tolko upgrades its mill in Armstrong; and timber industry contributions in Oregon spur a call for campaign finance reform.

In Wood Product news: Timber towers are trending in Toronto, Maine seeks a mass timber demonstration building; California Redwood’s LCA is updated; AWC applauds Utah’s support of mass timber; and Chicago’s new airport terminal will include extensive use of wood.

Finally, Douglas fir beetles in Oregon, Gypsy moths in Vancouver and caribou plans near Revelstoke, BC.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Special Feature

The Plague Killing Frogs Everywhere Is Far Worse Than Scientists Thought

By Carl Zimmer
The New York Times
March 28, 2019
Category: Special Feature
Region: United States

On Thursday, 41 scientists published the first worldwide analysis of a fungal outbreak that’s been wiping out frogs for decades. …The researchers conclude that populations of more than 500 species of amphibians have declined significantly because of the outbreak — including at least 90 species presumed to have gone extinct. …The losses were puzzling, because the frogs were living in pristine habitats, unharmed by pollution or deforestation. In the late 1990s, researchers discovered Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis — Bd. …The fungus turned up in other countries — probably via the international trade in pet amphibians. …Certain factors once thought to account for the decimation of frog populations — like climate change and deforestation — are not the greatest threats, the scientists found.  …Today, 39 percent of the species that suffered population declines are still declining. Twelve percent are showing signs of recovery.

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A Few Species of Frogs That Vanished May Be on the Rebound

By Carl Zimmer
The New York Times
March 29, 2019
Category: Special Feature
Region: United States

In 2013, two biologists named Jamie Voyles and Corinne L. Richards-Zawacki spent weeks slogging up and down mountainsides in Panama. …In front of them sat the object of their quest: a single gold-and-black frog. …“They used to be so abundant …But in recent years… they couldn’t find any. …As had frogs around the world. Dr. Voyles and other frog researchers found that many of the dead frogs were covered with the same aggressive skin fungus, known as Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis or Bd. …Now scientists are trying to figure out what accounts for these rebounds. Dr. Voyles published evidence suggesting that the frogs have gained potent defenses in their skin against the fungus. …Even climate change may be temporarily helping some frogs withstand the fungus.

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Business & Politics

University of Norther BC announces recipients of honorary degrees

By Ethan Ready
My Prince George Now
March 28, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

John Brink

The University of Northern British Columbia announced that Brink, along with Dr. Jo-ann Archibald, would be recipients of the school’s honorary degrees during the 2019 convocation ceremony on May 31. Brinks, a forestry industry pioneer, and philanthropist in Prince George, and Archibald, an indigenous educator, researcher, and scholar, will receive honorary Doctor of Laws degrees. … Brink is the Chief Executive Officer of Brink Forest Products, the largest secondary wood manufacturing company in Canada and 13th largest forest company in British Columbia. In 1975, Brink established his business after immigrating to Canada from Holland a decade prior. “Arriving in Canada in 1965 at the age of 24, I had a dream of building a sawmill,” said Brink. “I had one suitcase, the clothing on my back and $25.47 in my pocket.

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BC manufacturing shipments rebound

By Bryan Yu
Business in Vancouver
March 28, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Bryan Yu

B.C. manufacturing shipments showed life in January with the first gain since June 2018. Factories’ sales rose 2.4% from December to a seasonally adjusted $4.66 billion. …Growth in manufacturing is expected to be mild. …Forestry needs stronger demand for housing both domestically and abroad, which is not forthcoming. …Aligning with manufacturing trends, B.C.’s forestry sector slowed in late 2018. …Sawmill manufacturing sales fell 3.3% to $7.86 billion. However, the decline was offset by stronger sales in veneer and engineered wood products (up 22%) and other wood products (up 8.6%). Total wood product manufacturing rose 3.3% to $12.6 billion. Shipments of paper products were robust with growth of 20.4% in 2018. …Factors dragging on lumber demand include subdued U.S. housing starts, deterioration in global growth, specifically in China, and reallocation of demand in some countries.

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Catalyst sale saves jobs, protects worker pensions

By Nicholas Simons
The Powell River Peak
March 28, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Nicholas Simons

Many people breathed a sigh of relief when it was announced that Paper Excellence… finalized the purchase of Catalyst Paper Corporation in Powell River. …There wasn’t the same confidence a year ago, when many were questioning its future. The threat was to jobs as well as pensions. …In July, the Pensions Benefit Standards Regulations were amended to give Catalyst a longer period to pay off its 2012 pension funding shortfall. … The changes also guaranteed that if Catalyst declared bankruptcy or sold its three BC mills, that the remainder of the 2012 outstanding obligation would be funded immediately. …If the conditions of the Pension Regulation are not met for any reason, this unconditional guarantee will become payable by Paper Excellence and its subsidiary.

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Decision today on Northern Pulp mill’s contentious plan to pump waste water into Strait

Canadian Press in The Globe and Mail
March 29, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Nova Scotia Environment Minister Margaret Miller is expected to release her decision today on the environmental assessment of the Northern Pulp mill’s proposed effluent treatment facility. Miller’s decision comes after a 30-day public comment period for the controversial project that includes a new, 15.5-kilometre-long pipeline that will carry millions of litres of treated waste water to the Northumberland Strait. Miller says the decision is one of the biggest she’s had to make during her time in government. The minister says she has reviewed more than 1,700 pages of environmental assessment documents submitted by the mill as well as 918 online submissions by the public.

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Decision Friday on N.S. mill’s contentious plan to pump wastewater into Strait

Canadian Press in the Calgary Herald
March 28, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

HALIFAX — Nova Scotia’s Liberal government is poised to make one of its most important decisions since coming to power — one that could ultimately decide the future of the Northern Pulp mill in Pictou County. Environment Minister Margaret Miller said she will release her decision Friday on the environmental assessment of the mill’s proposed effluent treatment facility. The decision follows a 30-day public comment period for the controversial project that includes a new, 15.5-kilometre-long pipeline that will carry millions of litres of treated wastewater to the Northumberland Strait. Miller said the decision on the company’s proposal is one of the biggest she’s had to make during her time in government and it’s weighed on her. “I would have to be inhuman for it not to,” she said. “You know how this could impact people. I have read from some people how much the mill means to them and from others who want the mill closed.”

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Province may free up wood if Fort Frances mill sold

Northern Ontario Business
March 27, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

The provincial government won’t guarantee wood supply to Fort Frances unless a new owner is in place at the former pulp and paper mill. Natural Resources and Forestry Minister John Yakabuski said in the Ontario Legislature, March 26, that the availability of Crown fibre allocation will be considered for a potential operator should a property sale with Resolute Forest Products go through. “The reality is that we must wait until such time as there is a purchase for the mill in Fort Frances before we can discuss the issue of wood supply for any mill.” …“The issue in the Crossroute Forest… wood allocation …is being used in other mills,” said Yakabuski. “[If] someone is prepared to operate the Fort Frances mill, we would relook at that allocation.” Yakabuski is [speaking to] forest industry stakeholders [across Ontario] as part of a provincial review of the sector.

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US launches another trade investigation against China over cabinetry

Associated Free Press in France 24
March 28, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, International

Washington launched yet another trade investigation against China on Wednesday, claiming the country dumps wooden cabinetry into the US market, competing unfairly with domestic producers. The US Commerce Department said Chinese producers receive “unfair subsidies” and the products range from 177 to 262 percent below their value. If the department determines that the complaint from the American Kitchen Cabinet Alliance is valid, it could impose massive tariffs on the goods to compensate for the artificially low price. However, that decision would be reviewed by the autonomous International Trade Commission. The process could take several months to reach a final decision.

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Campaign finance reform more crucial than ever

By the Editorial Board
The Mail Tribune
March 28, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

We wrote in this space Feb. 1 that Oregon should set limits on campaign contributions to candidates. We still think so… The Oregonian’s series described a current system that sets no limits at all on contributions — one of only five states in the country where that is true. Corporations and industry groups in particular have taken full advantage of that. …The timber industry gave more money to winning candidates per capita, per lawmaker and in total dollars in Oregon than anywhere else. Lawmakers will say that campaign contributions don’t guarantee they will vote with the industries that bankroll their campaigns. But The Oregonian’s reporting makes a strong case that the dollars have an effect. Despite its reputation as a green state that values the environment, Oregon has weakened environmental protections.

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Roseburg Forest Products denies blame in illegal timber practices report on Congo Basin

By Jenelle Polcyn
The News Review
March 27, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

Roseburg Forest Products has been accused of “negligent sourcing” after an investigation determined some of the company’s suppliers had illegally logged okoume wood in the Congo Basin rainforest. …The Homeland Security Investigations department… is investigating whether two Pacific Northwest companies harvested okoume timber in the Republic of Congo and Gabon in Western Africa illegally in participation with a China-based company. Roseburg Forest Products is one of the major buyers from both importers. The company said… it fully supports the investigation into the allegations and “wholly denies any knowledge of or complicity with the alleged actions.” “Roseburg  proactively engaged third-party experts DoubleHelix Tracking Technologies to evaluate the importers’ compliance and perform onsite, in-person audits of their supply chains. …Although the results of both audits were favorable… it appears that the audits were unable to detect the importers’ specific alleged illegal activities,” said Rebecca Taylor.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Our tall wood building project, The Arbour, wins 2 international awards

George Brown College
March 28, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

Our upcoming tall wood building The Arbour continues to generate excitement a year after the project was announced. The plan and concept for our sustainable building recently won two prestigious awards celebrating future projects.  The Arbour won the Sustainability Prize at the 2019 Architectural Review Future Project Awards in Cannes, France on March 13—an event that celebrates excellence in unbuilt or incomplete projects around the world.  The Arbour was also recognized with a 2018 Rethinking the Future Award in the Institutional Concept category.  Rethinking the Future is an international organization that serves as “a hub for architecture and design” that envisions a future where architects and designers aim to meet human needs in a sustainable way. 

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Timber towers trending in Toronto

By Lloyd Alter
Treehugger
March 27, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

Every few months, members of the green building community get together on Toronto’s Wade Avenue for High Performance Design Meets Boots on the Ground. In not too long we will be looking at a big green building, 77 Wade Avenue, designed by Bogdan Newman Caranci. …Structurecraft in British Columbia has developed concrete composites where their dowel-laminated timber and the concrete topping work together to make a strong composite floor; 77 Wade may be similar to this. Is it more efficient than a steel deck or concrete building, when it gets this hybridized? I am not so sure, but it’s great marketing. …Everybody is competing to build the tallest wood building, but this is the kind that makes the most sense: 8 storeys is still tall for wood but not too tall for a building. …We need more of this.

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The Malibu House That Was Prepared for One of the State’s Worst Wildfires

By Jim Carlton
The Wall Street Journal
March 28, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

The hillsides surrounding his home had been consumed by a wildfire moving at breakneck speed. …The next day, Mr. Vogt emerged with minor burns. His house—the only home in the Malibu neighborhood left standing—sustained a little smoke damage. The Spanish-style house was built with every feasible fire safe feature Mr. Vogt could think of, including concrete-and-steel walls, rooftop ember guards and heat resistant windows. …Mr. Vogt stands at the vanguard of a movement toward making homes more fire safe in the West’s increasingly combustible wild lands. …The dramatic increase in big fires… has prompted calls by state and federal officials to increase thinning of forest areas. It has also triggered action to address another factor behind the growing property damage: the vulnerability of homes themselves, such as by being situated too close to vegetation and by being constructed from too many flammable materials like wood. [to access the full story a WSJ subscription is required]

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American Wood Council applauds Utah’s recognition of tall mass timber

American Wood Council
March 27, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

LEESBURG, VA. – American Wood Council (AWC) President and CEO Robert Glowinski issued a statement following the Governor’s signature on legislation to require the state’s Uniform Building Code Commission to recommend building standards for use of mass timber in residential and commercial building construction. The Utah House of Representatives passed the bill (H.B. 142) on February 12th and the Senate passed it on February 22nd. It was signed into law by Governor Herbert on March 22nd. “…The actions by the Utah Governor and State Legislature is the next step in helping jump-start mass timber construction in the state. AWC applauds Governor Herbert, Representative Casey Snider and Senator David Hinkins who sponsored the bill, and state legislators for recognizing the significant environmental benefits that accrue from greater wood product use and helping pioneer better places for us to live and work.

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Redwood Getting Updated Life Cycle Assessment

By Charlie Jourdain
The Merchant Magazine
March 28, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

Today, many building products boast about their environmental benefits. Relatively few, however, back up such claims with scientific evidence. For decades, the California redwood industry has supported its claims with scientific data. … The study found that the production of redwood decking (as opposed to the production of wood plastic composite and vinyl decking products, which increase carbon output into the atmosphere) absorbs carbon dioxide from the atmosphere storing or sequestering it in the wood fiber. This reduces the potential for global warming. …The study, Comparative Life Cycle Assessment of Redwood Decking, was conducted by the Consortium for Research on Renewable Industrial Material (CORRIM). …The American Wood Council, which published the initial Environmental Products Declaration for redwood decking, will use the new Life Cycle Assessment study to publish a revised EPD.

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Team Led by Jeanne Gang Chosen to Design New O’Hare Global Terminal

Associated Press in wttw
March 28, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

CHICAGO — A team of architects led by Jeanne Gang has been chosen to design a $2.2 billion global terminal at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, officials announced Wednesday. Studio ORD, which includes Gang’s Studio Gang and other firms, will be in charge of designing the 2.2 million-square-foot facility. The terminal will be the centerpiece of an $8.5 billion airport expansion and modernization. The team’s design features soaring roofs, lots of inside greenery and extensive use of natural wood. “I think we’re making an incredible statement of architectural excellence that speaks not only to our architectural legacy but our architectural future,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

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Forestry

Forest genomics : from science to practice

FPInnovations Blog
March 27, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

FPInnovations and its partners are proud to introduce the FastTRAC project, a forest genomics research project. To learn more about this innovative project, we invite you to take a virtual tour that will allow you to understand the production of spruce seedlings from genomic selection and the operational gains achieved as well as the research behind the innovation. This tour contains six panoramic stations (360-degree images that can be moved horizontally and vertically), 35 vignettes (tooltips), and 9 video clips. Genomic selection is the latest technology added to the suite of conventional methods for tree improvement. It provides an analysis of genomic profiles to enable determination at a young age of the future value individual trees obtained through breeding. Such analysis supports the selection of the best individuals for particular traits.

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UBC Graduate Student Meike Siegner completes report on community forest management

British Columbia Community Forest Association
March 28, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

UBC Graduate Student Meike Siegner has completed her report to BC Community Forest Association as part of her doctoral research in the Faculty of Forestry. “This report is written to inform about the diverse work of community forest managers in BC and seeks to inspire readers that want to learn more about effective leadership in community-based social enterprises. Drawing from a qualitative study on managerial decision-making in community forests in BC, this report will grant readers insight into the nature and scope of the managerial role in these organizations, and how management can effectively balance business and community goals and values. Decision-makers at the local and provincial level can learn about the experiences of community forest managers in engaging with this new form of forest tenure.

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Just five weeks to talk caribou during public consult

By Austin Cozicar
The Dawson Creek Mirror
March 28, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

When the provincial and federal governments unveiled caribou draft agreements, locals in Dawson with a stake in the equation were still digesting the information. …Kathleen Connolly, with the Concerned Citizens for Caribou Recovery noted some concerns with the transparency. …“we’ve got barely over a month to respond,” she says. …Peace River South MLA Mike Bernier criticized the timeline. …“They’re making it look like it’s a done deal. …“They say they won’t impact any existing mines, but we know there’s places around Chetwynd and definitely Tumbler Ridge that are trying to re-open or known areas that want to expand. For forestry, if we don’t have access to timber supply, what does that mean for Canfor and West Fraser in Chetwynd? I mean they’ve already told us they’re right on the edge, and any change to their business case might affect them staying open.”

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More than meets the eye in province’s draft caribou agreements

By Evan Saugstad
The Alaska Highway News
March 28, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

… the BC government released its “draft” strategy and agreements for the protection of caribou. …Our government just short-circuited the process by excluding most of the area’s population from participating in decision-making processes that will affect us, our livelihoods, and potentially, the viability of our communities. It’s difficult to know where to start this, as it has been all so wrong. Not wrong in the sense for the need to protect caribou. …This is about cramming caribou management down our throats under the guise of righting historical grievances. …This is about our governments quietly transfer their power and governing roles and responsibilities to one that favours one segment of the population over the rest. …These agreements do not use all available science. Nothing about the single largest cause of the collapse of these herds. …And, finally, what the heck is the rush… the current wolf kill and maternal penning program is increasing the caribou herds.

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Caribou plans could have big consequences for Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation

By Liam Harrap
Revelstoke Review
March 27, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

A local logging company said they want to be more involved with caribou recovery plans negotiations. The Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, which is owned by the City of Revelstoke, has a tree farm licence north of the city. The licence is 120,000 hectares in area. The caribou plans could have vast economical consequences. According Mike Copperthwaite, general manager, up to 90 per cent of their licence is technically in caribou habitat. Worst case scenario, said Copperthwaite, most of their licence would close, making it difficult to operate. Last year, the company provided the City of Revelstoke with $600,000 in dividends. And $300,000 the year prior. Of the 120,000 hectares, 8,000 has already been put aside for caribou. “We want to be a part of the solution,” said Copperthwaite. 

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Ground Truthing – Group plans to walk the woods; hopes observations, reports will save Crown forests

By Lawrence Powell
Cape Breton Post
March 27, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Bev Wigney

ROUND HILL, N.S. — Bev Wigney may be the last defence for publicly owned forests in Annapolis County. The Round Hill woman is hoping to form a group that will walk the Crown forests before decisions are made by government to harvest the trees and leave only eco-devastation. She’s a ‘ground-truther’ and through a Facebook group based in the Annapolis Royal area she has lots of friends who are willing to walk the woods with her. “The term (ground-truthing) is now used in many fields, but in this instance, it means going out to see what is actually at a site, and not just accepting what you see depicted on the various maps that display information on forest types, species, height, soil types,” Wigney said. …Wigney doesn’t know if ground-truthing will have any impact on government decision.

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Local officials weigh in on governor’s wildfire emergency declaration

By Davis Harper
The Calaveras Enterprise
March 29, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

ARNOLD, CALIFORNIA — Local efforts to reduce wildfire threats continue to move forward across the county, while many other projects are locked in environmental review stages. According to the agency’s tree mortality and fuel reduction update for February, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) has treated almost 70 acres across 11 projects in Calaveras and Tuolumne counties this year. …“We’re trying to take out the dead materials, snags and open the (canopy) so if we do get retardant in here (during a fire), the retardant actually hits the ground,” Rushdoony said. Brush will grow back in two to three years, and the area should be treated again within five years, Rushdoony said.

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With Tropical Forest Standard, California can think globally and act locally

By Richard Bloom and Stephan Schwartzman
Sacramento Bee
March 28, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Californians may not spend much time thinking about Brazil’s new leader Jair Bolsonaro, since there is plenty to worry about with our own president. But Bolsonaro has declared war on the forest and forest peoples of Brazil, and the Golden State is ideally positioned to counter his disastrous agenda. Our first step should be to endorse the Tropical Forest Standard proposed by the Air Resources Board. Indigenous people on the front lines deserve no less. Presidents Trump and Bolsonaro, who met at the White House last week, have much in common. In addition to the fear-mongering, racism, misogyny and affinity for conspiracy theories and urban legends over science, they also share an archaic early 1900s view of the environment and development. Under that view, a healthy environment and strong economy are incompatible.

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Invest now to protect our forests from the growing threat of wildfire

By Darcy Batura, The Nature Conservancy & Kevin Curfman, Washington Contract Firefighters
Seattle Times
March 28, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

…We can’t know for sure, but we do know what helps to prevent the most catastrophic damage from wildfires: Healthier, more resilient forests, well-informed communities taking action and better-equipped firefighters.  Under the leadership of Washington’s Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz, our Department of Natural Resources has an ambitious vision to fund this critical forest and community resilience work. It’s now up to the Legislature to provide the funding to make this vision a reality. A bill introduced in the Senate Thursday would generate $125 million per biennium for forest health and wildfire prevention, enabling investment at a scale to meet the problem. …The good news is that with proper funding, we can protect our forests — and the people who make their homes and livelihoods within them — from the risk of catastrophic fire.

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Observations on catastrophic wildfires and smoke

By Susan Wilson
The Bend Bulletin
March 27, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

BEND, OREGON — …Wildfires are occurring with increasing frequency, intensity and duration. Our choices are to do nothing or figure out a new course of proactive solutions. One consideration is to put out wildfires when they are small — thus reducing the occurrence of mega fires. …In Europe, Germany…rapid response means that wildfires are stopped before they become catastrophic. …When offensive fire suppression is combined with active forest management, wildfires can be reduced in number and intensity. …Canada implements a zone system around population areas surrounded by forest. The zone determines the level and intensity of forest management needed to protect people and sustain healthy forests. The zones also determine how and when fire suppression will be executed.

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The world’s tallest tree is higher than the Statue of Liberty

By Karen Graham
Digital Journal
March 28, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The world’s tallest tree is a redwood called Hyperion which towers above the ground in Redwood National Park, California. The Goliath was identified in 2006 and measures exactly 115.85 meters (379.7 feet tall and about 22 feet (7 meters) at its base. Around the world, there are claims to having the “oldest tree” in Europe or Australia to having the “tallest” of a particular species of tree, and it is always fun to learn more about these special, record-breakers among the three trillion trees currently alive in the world. Hyperion – the coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) in California was not discovered until 2006.  …During the Carter administration, the valley where Hyperion grows was seized by the government and added to Redwood National Park. Only 4 percent of the park’s historical redwoods have escaped logging. The exact location of Hyperion is kept in secret to prevent any damage to the tree from visitors.

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Cal Fire awards over $63 million in grants to projects aimed at promoting healthy forests

By Haleigh Pike
KRCRTV.com
March 27, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Cal Fire has awarded over $63 million in grants for 16 landscape-scale, regionally-based projects aimed at promoting health and resilient forests that protect and enhance forest carbon sequestration. The grants were awarded by Cal Fire’s Forest Health Program to affect private, state, and federal forestlands in 13 California counties. Cal Fire’s Forest Health program restores California’s forestlands through a suite of active management approaches including thinning of overly dense and, in some cases, pest-impacted forests; use of prescribed fire for ecological restoration and to reduce hazardous fuel loads; reforestation of forests diminished by fire, drought, insects and diseases; and capacity support for forest management, wood processing and biomass utilization.

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Oregon set to limit weedkiller linked to dead trees, but delays after pharmaceutical company asks

Associated Press in The Oregonian
March 27, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

BEND, Ore. — A statewide rule that would limit the use of a weedkiller linked to thousands of dead trees outside Sisters, Oregon, won’t be in place as early as state agriculture officials had hoped, following a surprise last-minute request from the company that produces it. The Bulletin reports the state agriculture agency announced Tuesday it will reopen its public comment period on a proposed rule that reduces where and when aminocyclopyrachlor, the active ingredient in the herbicide Perspective, may be used. The comment period will close April 5. The decision was made in response to a request to delay implementation from Bayer, the pharmaceutical company that produces Perspective, two days before the new rule was set to go into place. …Bayer called on ODA to postpone the rule for 90 days, in order to give the pharmaceutical company “sufficient time to provide additional facts, data and arguments” into the public record.

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Douglas fir beetles are a particular threat this year

The Columbia Press
March 27, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

OREGON — The heavy snow and wind this winter have knocked down many trees across the state, setting up perfect conditions for an outbreak of Douglas-fir beetle, the Oregon Department of Forestry warns. Land owners should act quickly to either remove downed or damaged trees or apply an insect pheromone to drive away the pest, ODF’s Forest Entomologist Christine Buhl said. While the beetle (Dendroctonus pseudotsugae) is native to the Northwest, its population can soar when living large-diameter Douglas fir trees are thrown to the ground. …Tell-tale signs of this beetle’s presence include frass, a sawdust-like material the beetle ejects from underneath the tree’s bark, Buhl said. “Before April, remove any downed Douglas-firs greater than 10 inches in diameter at a point about chest height,” she advised.

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North Carolina Christmas Tree Association presents award to Ballard

The Elkin Jonesville Tribune
March 27, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Deanna Ballard and Harry Yates

BOONE — State Sen. Deanna Ballard represents North Carolina’s 45th District, which is comprised of Alleghany, Ashe, Surry, Watauga and Wilkes counties. Ballard was recognized for her ongoing support of the Christmas Tree Industry. “The North Carolina Christmas Tree Association (NCCTA) values and appreciates Senator Ballard’s attentiveness to our industry’s needs, as well as her participation in our semi-annual meetings and farm visits. She has also participated in special events including Trees for Troops and the White House Tree Selection and presentation. She has been very supportive to our industry’s concerns and we recognize her efforts in assisting the Christmas Tree Industry and Agriculture,” said Harry Yates, NCCTA.

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Forestry company’s careful pine extraction wins environmental award

By Tim O’Connell
Stuff.co.nz
March 29, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Siobhan Allen

Forest management company Merrill and Ring have been acknowledged for going above and beyond to harvest pines at a sensitive Marlborough site. For its work around ecologically significant sites at the Branch River pine plantation in the Upper Wairau Valley, the company took out the forestry category at the 2019 Cawthron Marlborough Environment Awards last week. The biennial awards showcase businesses and community projects that protect and enhance the environment. As the property managers for the Branch River pine plantation property – on behalf of Australian landowners New Forests – Merrill and Ring’s Blenheim-based team have worked to ensure pine trees are being felled and extracted more carefully and tōtara seed is being collected from the native forest remnants and grown out to seedlings.

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Pierce County farm protecting Douglas fir trees in a unique way

By Alison Morrow
King 5 News
March 27, 2019
Category: Forestry

Keith Townsend

EATONVILLE, Wash. — A tree farm in Eatonville is experimenting with a unique way to guard its younger trees against hungry deer and elk. They’re using trees to protect trees. [In the past] the Townsend family protected their young Douglas fir trees with the traditional method of setting up nets as a physical barrier. …but it doesn’t always work well. [They are] testing a new process called “pair planting” to protect the young trees. The technique involves planting Sitka spruce trees next to the Douglas fir trees to act as a babysitter or watchdog. “The spruce has sharp needles on it. When the deer and elk try to browse on the tree, they’ll get a poke in the snout,” Townsend explained. …Townsend said using the trees is half the cost, with far less labor and monitoring. They believe it will take five years to see if the experiment works…

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

No hiding in the forests with climate change

By Brian Fallow
The New Zealand Herald
March 29, 2019
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

For too long, climate policy in New Zealand has been entangled in the net of “net” emissions. And the Government’s swift rejection this week of a key recommendation from the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, Simon Upton, suggests we will remain so ensnared. We have been complacent about relentless growth in emissions of carbon dioxide, and have met our international obligations, because they have been offset by the CO2 taken up by trees in an expanding forest estate. Policymakers have suffered from a kind of collective wilful blindness, an unwillingness to really confront the obvious fact that trees can only provide a temporary store of carbon before they are harvested or succumb to other risks like fire or pests and diseases. …One consequence of the big swings in afforestation rates since the 1990s is that in the coming decade, forests are due to flip from being a net sink to a net source of national greenhouse gas emissions.

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Health & Safety

BC Forest Safety News – April 2019

BC Forest Safety Council
March 27, 2019
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

Welcome to the April edition of Forest Safety News, covering news about safety topics in forestry. Competency-based assessment & training to best meet due diligence: The BC Forest Safety Council’s Director of Training and Program Development, Gerard Messier, provided an update at the 2019 TLA Convention and Trade Show on the competency-based assessment and training model being developed at the request of industry by the BCFSC. Free EHS Analytics Safety App and Dashboard demonstrated at the 2019 WFCA Convention and Trade Show: The BC Forest Safety Council, in conjunction with the BC SAFE Forestry Program Strategic Advisory Committee, has embarked on a new initiative to provide forestry and silviculture employers with an advanced electronic safety reporting system. If successful, the project will be extended to other subsectors in forestry if there is demand. 2019 update on WorkSafeBC’s Harvesting High Risk Strategy: WorkSafeBC is already more than a year into its 2018-2020 Forestry High Risk Strategy 

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Canfor’s Amy Johnson Named SC Safety Professional of the Year

By Carl Hamilton
Canfor Blog
March 19, 2019
Category: Health & Safety
Region: US East, United States

Amy Johnson

At Canfor, where safety is our number one priority, it gives me great pride to share that Amy Johnson, Safety Manager with our New South Express truck fleet, has been awarded South Carolina Safety Professional of the Year by the South Carolina Trucking Association (SCTA). Amy received this prestigious award as a motor carrier safety professional whose qualifications, safety programs and safety achievements were deemed most outstanding by the SCTA. What makes this recognition even more special is that Amy is the first woman to ever receive this award. In an industry where we are working to diversify our workforce, Amy’s award helps to demonstrate our industry is one that offers equal opportunity for both men and women to succeed.

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Firefighter in Texas killed in helicopter crash

By Bill Gabbert
Wildfire Today
March 27, 2019
Category: Health & Safety
Region: US East, United States

One firefighter was killed in the crash of a helicopter today while working on a prescribed fire in the Sam Houston National Forest about 30 miles southeast of College Station, Texas south of Highway 149. Sergeant Erik Burse with the Texas Department of Public Safety said the Eurocopter AS350 went down at about 2 p.m. with three people on board, a pilot and two firefighters. One of the firefighters was deceased on scene. The pilot and a second firefighter were transported to a hospital in stable condition after rescuers extracted them from the wreckage using jaws and air bags. The deceased firefighter was a U.S. Forest Service employee who, along with the other firefighter and the pilot, were on an aerial ignition mission. Their equipment was dropping plastic spheres that burst into flame after hitting the ground, helping to ignite the prescribed fire. No names have been released.

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