Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: May 8, 2019

Today’s Takeaway

Lumber prices bounce on US construction spending, employment

The Tree Frog Forestry News
May 8, 2019
Category: Today's Takeaway

North American softwood lumber prices bounced moderately on news of US construction spending and especially construction employment. In other Business news: an explainer on US-China trade talks; the NAFTA tribunal arguments focus on which time period to consider; Nova Scotia truckers demonstrate their support for Northern Pulp; and grant announcements abound by the US Forest Service and the US Endowment for Forestry and Communities.

In Forestry/Climate news: Canada’s forests are no longer the CO2 vacuums they used to be; Alaska’s massive old-growth timber sale faces a lawsuit; California’s forest carbon offsets fall short of cap-and-trade goals; the debate over BC’s wolf kill program is fraught; and more on the UN biodiversity report and habitat loss.

Finally, substance abuse in the sawmill and [??] suspected substance abuse on the highway.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog News

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Froggy Foibles

QEW driver caught on video with car doors open, carting load of wood

By Adam Carter
CBC News
May 7, 2019
Category: Froggy Foibles
Region: Canada East, Canada

A baffling display of driving was caught on video late last week, with a driver carting a load of wood on the QEW with the rear doors of their car wide open. In a video posted on Facebook by David Fafinski, the driver can be seen on the highway near the Red Hill Valley Parkway, heading toward the Burlington Skyway bridge. In addition to the open back doors poking into adjoining lanes, the car’s trunk is also propped open, with what looks like a piece of furniture sticking out. OPP Sgt. Kerry Schmidt told CBC News that he saw the video for the first time Tuesday morning.  “That’s an unsafe vehicle there. Doors open — who knows what could come flying out of there,” he said. “That’s not anything you ever expect to see on the highway. “It’s just straight out ridiculous.”

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Business & Politics

Softwood Lumber Prices Bounce Somewhat, US Construction Spending and Employment Jump: May 2019

Madison’s Lumber Reporter
May 7, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

Wholesaler (net FOB sawmill) prices of green Douglas fir 2x10s #2&Btr skyrocketed last week, up +$55 or +16%, to U.S. $355 mfbm as other — more standard — North American construction framing softwood lumber prices either stayed flat or bounced moderately as buyers and sellers came to some agreement on the supply-demand balance. The very latest data, out this week, show U.S. construction spending and especially construction employment up significantly. Latest update from producers is that recent log cost increases in the Pacific Northwest requires similar rises in manufactured lumber prices. Shrewd readers will know to immediately watch 5+ and low-rise commercial building starts, as Douglas fir 2×10 prices is heavily used in this U.S. real estate sector. While no one was celebrating sales volumes last week, the resurgence of demand and plumper sawmill order files were encouraging. 

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Canadians tell NAFTA tribunal that U.S. softwood lumber tariffs are a misuse of punitive duties

By Adrian Morrow
The Canadian Press in The Globe and Mail
May 7, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

The Canadian government and lumber industry argued on Tuesday that American forestry companies have not been hurt by imports from north of the border, as Ottawa tried to persuade an international trade tribunal to lift punitive Trump administration tariffs. At a hearing by a trade panel under Chapter 19 of the North American free-trade agreement, lawyers for the Canadian industry and federal government said U.S. lumber producers were doing just fine before the tariffs were imposed – and certainly did not need any protection from Canadian competition. …The ITC and U.S. industry countered that Canadian competition had pushed lumber prices down and taken a bite out of American companies’ market share. Lisa Wang… pointed to numbers that showed U.S. companies’ piece of the pie fell by 3.87 per cent from 2014 to 2016, while Canadian companies’ share rose by 3.35 per cent. …Much of Tuesday’s hearing revolved around arguments over which time period to consider when looking at whether the U.S. industry was hurt by Canadian competition. [A Globe and Mail subscription is required to read the full story]

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Ontario government invests in Ben Hokum & Son sawmill

Lesprom Network
May 7, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada
Ontario government is investing $5.5 million over five years in Ben Hokum & Son Ltd sawmill, helping the lumber producer protect over 100 jobs, create at least five new jobs and purchase new technologies to optimize its business. These investments are expected to result in a significant jump in domestic sales as well as exports. “Ben Hokum & Son Ltd is an Ontario success story and I am pleased to see how this business supports local employment and the economy,” said John Yakabuski, Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry. “When an independent sawmill is succeeding, so do the harvesters it buys from and the manufacturers it sells by-products to. This was not just an investment in Ben Hokum & Son Ltd, but an investment in this community and the forestry sector as a whole.”

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Truckers to conduct rally alongside Hwy 104 near Truro in support of pulp mill

By Harry Sullivan
The Truro Daily
May 7, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

TRURO, N.S. — As many as 100 truckers are expected to park their rigs on both sides of Highway 104 near Truro Thursday afternoon. The action is aimed at sending a message to the Nova Scotia government about the importance of the province’s forestry industry in an effort to give Northern Pulp more time to work towards a solution to replacing Boat Harbour as a disposal site for its waste effluent. “It’s more of a support rally,” said spokesperson Jeff Black, of J.C. Black Trucking Ltd. “…for Northern Pulp to keep working until they get everything straightened out.” …Black, however, said the truckers, many of whom are heavily involved in the forest industry, want the government to relax its deadline until to give the mill time to develop a workable and environmentally safe solution. … “And it’s a very serious matter, without that extension the mill could shut down and it may not possibly start again.”

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Explainer: How U.S.-China talks differ from any other trade deal

By David Lawder
Reuters
May 7, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, International

WASHINGTON — Chinese Vice Premier Liu He goes to Washington for trade talks on Thursday and Friday, setting up a last-ditch bid for progress toward a deal that would avoid a sharp increase in tariffs on Chinese goods ordered by U.S. President Donald Trump. U.S. officials have accused China of reneging in the past week on substantial commitments made during months of negotiations to end their trade war, prompting Trump to set a new deadline to raise tariffs. …Differences over the enforcement mechanism for a trade deal and a timeline for tariff removal have been sticking points. …Many free trade deals have built-in dispute settlement mechanisms…Canada, for example, has brought challenges to U.S. anti-subsidy duties on softwood lumber before panels set up under NAFTA’s Chapter 19. …President Trump frequently threatened to quit NAFTA during negotiations last year… any move to quit NAFTA is likely to draw a court challenge.

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Forest Service announces 2019 Wood Innovation Grant Awards Reducing wildfire risk and supporting healthy forests with our public partners

By US Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service
EIN Newsdesk
May 7, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

Public–private partnerships spearheaded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service create jobs, support fire-safe communities, restore healthy forest conditions, and spur environmentally sound innovation. Today, the Forest Service awarded over $8.9 million through the Wood Innovations Grant program. Thirty-nine business, university, nonprofit and tribal partners in 20 states are matching the grants with an additional $8.8 million. …Of the 41 projects selected, 29 focus upon expanding markets for wood products and 12 seek to increase markets for wood energy. Some projects involve the design of new mass timber buildings, such as a courthouse and K‒12 schools, while others explore using mass timber in high velocity hurricane zones. Additional projects will help fuel small-scale, combined heat and power projects and biochar market development.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

American Wood Council Launches Fire Service Advisory Council

American Wood Council
May 7, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

LEESBURG, VA. – The American Wood Council (AWC) has launched its Fire Service Advisory Council, a national group of fire service experts that will provide AWC and the wood products industry with broad-based advice and guidance on fire safety strategies and tactics regarding wood construction, wood products, and the wood product industry’s engagement with the fire service. The Fire Service Advisory Council provides the opportunity for a productive dialogue with the nation’s Fire Service to address reducing fires in wood construction. The Fire Service Advisory Council is also intended to help identify effective training materials for the Fire Service and enhance the relationship between the Fire Service and wood products industry. The first Fire Service Advisory Council conference call took place on April 30th. This will be followed by a fall in-person meeting during which AWC and the Fire Service Advisory Council will solidify an action plan to drive council activities into 2020 and beyond.  

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American Wood Council relaunches WoodAware as a resource for Fire Service

American Wood Council
May 6, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

LEESBURG, VA. – The American Wood Council this week relaunched WoodAware (www.woodaware.info), an informational website on wood construction for the fire service. New additions to the WoodAware site include a section on the International Code Council (ICC) tall mass timber code changes recently approved for inclusion in the 2021 ICC building codes. WoodAware aims to educate the fire service on traditional and engineered wood products used in residential and non-residential construction. The website provides extensive information on fire safety and testing, along with examples of typical wood construction in all types of structures the fire service may encounter. WoodAware also provides the fire service with a detailed guide explaining all of the newly-approved tall mass timber code changes. “It is vital that firefighters educate themselves on all construction materials and methods of construction,” said AWC Fire Service Relations Manager Ray O’Brocki.

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Innovation to help builders do more with less

By Josh Kulla
The Daily Journal of Commerce Oregon
May 7, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

With the ongoing shortage of skilled labor showing little signs of abatement, contractors are eagerly seeking ways to increase efficiency. This is one reason why the use of panelized wood-framed wall systems and other methods of prefabrication are gaining popularity. …“There is a lot of automation and digitization of building information with BIM, so that’s a factor,” said Mike Steffen, director of innovation for Walsh Construction. “But the big factor that’s leading to its use now is the shortage of labor.”…One of the advantages of prefabrication is the reduction in the amount of on-site work required. By using three-dimensional digital models based on engineering and design documents, virtually any part of a project can then be shared with trade partners; then those aspects where prefabrication makes financial and practical sense can be tackled.

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Forestry

Kill this seal to save a whale? Why the debate over animal culls has become so fraught

By Wanlee Li
The Star Vancouver
May 7, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

VANCOUVER—The newborn caribou… is one of dozens born in BC’s Peace region last spring as part of a conservation effort meant to bring back a handful of southern mountain caribou herds from the brink of extinction. And it’s working, said Hilty, chief scientist at Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative. …The B.C. government’s recovery plan includes protecting caribou mothers in pens during the calving season. It also includes a more controversial element — killing wolves. In 2015, the province announced a wolf cull… to kill wolves from helicopters. More than 700 wolves have been killed to date, according to the Ministry of Forests. Sara Dubois, a conservationist biologist at the University of British Columbia, believes the cull is ill-advised because it’s a “knee-jerk” reaction. The issue divides scientists and animal lovers alike.

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Prospect of lower lumber cut in the air

By Blair McBride
Burns Lake District News
May 8, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Forestry has been top of mind among Burns Lake residents for the past week as the government has started its public comment period on the Lakes Timber Supply Area (TSA). On April 29 the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development (FLNRORD) released its Lakes TSA Timber Supply Analysis Discussion Paper. It followed that up with an open house… …rumours began circulating …that the Annual Allowable Cut (AAC) would be reduced by half and lead to numerous job losses among residents working in forestry. Two sentences in the discussion paper summary are the likely source of the rumours …But that doesn’t mean the AAC will be reduced by half, as Diane Nicholls, the new provincial chief forester told Lakes District News. “The determination hasn’t been made yet. What we’ve produced is a model that shows – based on the inventory and based on assumptions – this is what it could be,” she said.

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Cowichan Valley MLA takes NDP to task over old growth logging

By Sharon Vanhouwe
My Cowichan Valley Now
May 7, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Cowichan Valley MLA is calling on the province to protect the old growth forest on Vancouver Island. Sonia Furstenau told the Legislature we are in a climate emergency and she asked how the NDP government how it justifies the continued logging of old growth. “Here in B.C., this government is continuing to facilitate the logging of old growth forests. B.C.’s old growth has incredible ecological value and it is globally rare. We have already logged 90 per cent of the high productivity old growth on Vancouver Island and we are actively continuing to log these ancient forests with no end in sight. We have a moral responsibility to leave our children a healthy environment.” She asked the Legislature when will this government make protecting old growth a priority. 

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Agriculture and Forestry minister Devin Dreeshen talks to students on Alberta Forest Week

By Mamta Lulla
Red Deer Advocate
May 7, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Innisfail-Sylvan Lake MLA Devin Dreeshen mingled with central Alberta students to talk about the importance of the province’s forests. The agriculture and forestry minister was in Innisfail to kick off Alberta Forest Week, May 5 to 11. “Our government was elected on three main priorities: getting Albertans back to work, making life better for Albertans, and standing up for Alberta. “Alberta Forest Week embodies all three of these priorities,” he said in a statement. Forest companies in Alberta develop 200-year plans that demonstrate a commitment to managing forested land for future generations, he explained. “These are multi-generational plans that require our youth to carry these commitments forward and ensure wildlife habitats, recreation opportunities and well-paying jobs are preserved for generations to come.”

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Chambers warn of job loss due to backcountry closures for caribou

By Jim Elliot
Vernon Morning Star
May 7, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Columbia-Shuswap chambers of commerce are uniting to request action ensuring local economies will not be harmed by mountain caribou protection plans. The plans, currently in a draft state, might result in the closure of some backcountry areas to human use. …According to the chambers, the closure of backcountry areas would lead to significant economic loss for the communities they represent. The release from the chambers states that lost employment in the tourism, forestry and energy sectors could displace people from the communities. …The chambers of commerce are imploring the public to become informed on the issue of the caribou recovery plans and sign an online petition at www.change.org. The provincial government is also collecting public input through an online feedback form which can be accessed online.

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UBC Okanagan researcher joins team to protect B.C. forested watersheds

By Raven Nyman
Vernon Morning Star
May 7, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

B.C.’s forests and watersheds have taken a beating over the past few years. Wildfires, floods, landslides and pests such as the Mountain Pine Beetle have all had significant environmental and socio-economic impacts on communities across the province. A new initiative from the Interior University Research Coalition (IURC)—the Disaster Prevention, Response, Recovery and Resilience (Disaster PR3) fund—is helping researchers explore the impacts of these forest disturbances. The goal of the coalition is to amplify research that addresses the new realities faced by communities in B.C.’s Interior, where researchers are on the front lines of disaster events. Faculty and students at UBC’s Okanagan campus, Thompson Rivers University and the University of Northern British Columbia—which together make up the IURC—are collaborating on three research projects that will examine natural disturbances and their impacts on various watershed processes in forests, hillside slopes and crown land.

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Conference 2019 Pigeonhole Questions Answered

College of Applied Biology
May 6, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

During the 2019 Conference on April 5, we received many great questions through the Pigeonhole Live Q&A platform. Our speakers worked their way through a few of the questions, but many more went unanswered. We followed up with a few of the speakers to try and sort through some of the lingering questions, and we’ll catalogue their responses here: One of the most engaging panels during the conference was Session 1: Defining Public Interest: What are we protecting? The nature of the question was addressed from both general and specific perspectives, including this question about wildfires: The use of glycophosphate spraying of Aspen and othe non-economically viable timber is perpetuating the spread of wildfires. When will this conflict of interest be addressed? We asked Kevin Kriese, Chair, Forest Practices Board take this one on…

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Foresters address competing objectives in forest management

By Doug Diaczuk
The Thunder Bay News Watch
May 7, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

THUNDER BAY – The ways to manage forests is just as diverse as the vegetation within and foresters from across the province are gathering in Thunder Bay to discuss how to address competing objectives by getting out into the woods and seeing plans and planting in action. …The Ontario Professional Foresters Association is hosting its 2019 conference and general meeting in Thunder Bay this week, which included a tour of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry Spacing Trial at the Natural Resource Centre on the 25th Side Road. More than 125 foresters from across the province registered for the conference and the theme this year is the realities of foresters managing competition objectives.

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Nine grants totaling more than $1.5 million to protect America’s watersheds

US Endowment for Forestry and Communities
May 8, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

The Healthy Watersheds Consortium Grant Program’s fourth year of awards further accelerates the pace of proactive watershed protection in the U.S., benefitting drinking water supplies, freshwater systems, and floodplains. The program supports working forest and ranchland protection, innovative finance in collaboration with water utilities, and capacity for local and regional watershed groups. New themes this year include collaborations with Soil and Water Conservation Districts, support for community forests, and Sentinel Landscape Partnerships.  The nine awards total $1.52 million and will benefit organizations and partnerships in eight states. The Heathy Watersheds Consortium Grant Program was conceived by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Office of Water (EPA) and launched in late 2015. EPA co-funds the program with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the U. S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (Endowment), which manages the partnership.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration’s Massive Old-growth Timber Sale in Alaska National Forest

Center for Biological Diversity
May 7, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

JUNEAU, Alaska— Eight conservation groups sued the Trump administration today to stop its authorization of the largest logging project in the national forest system in a generation, including thousands of acres of old-growth timber in the Tongass National Forest. Today’s lawsuit says the U.S. Forest Service is violating the National Environmental Policy Act and failing to comply with the agency’s own management plan for the Tongass. The massive old-growth and second-growth logging project in America’s largest and wildest national forest will harm habitat and wildlife, hurt the region’s growing tourism industry and reduce people’s outdoor recreational opportunities. …“The uninformed approach by the Forest Service — approving this mammoth sale before even figuring out the details — is blatantly unlawful,” said Earthjustice attorney Tom Waldo. “This throwback to an old way of doing business is unacceptable and contrary to decades of court decisions.”

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The future of Washington’s small forestland

By TJ Martinell
The Lens
May 7, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A new study authorized by the state legislature will determine how much small forestland remains in Washington state, along with ways to encourage the industry. While an official figure doesn’t exist … much of that land in recent decades has been converted into other uses. One theme dominating the annual meeting of the Washington Farm Forestry Association (WFFA) was how to stop – and even reverse – that trend. “If we want to keep them forested and sustainably managed for generations to come, then we need to make sure their owners can make sound investments with sustainable financial returns,” U.S. Forest Service President Vicki Christiansen said at the summit. Christiansen is the former Washington state forester; she worked for the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) for almost 30 years. WFFA estimates around 3.7-4 million acres of Washington’s 22 million acres of forestland is owned by small forestland owners…

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Hip-hop forestry with Thomas Easley

By Marshall Lee Weimer
Great Lakes Echo
May 7, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Thomas Easley

Worried some of his natural resources students were falling behind, Thomas RaShad Easley searched for an incentive to encourage them to improve their grades. “Why did you sign up for this class here?” he asked. “They said, ‘Well, we heard you rapped.’” Easley found his incentive: Get your grades up, he told students, and he’d get them studio time so they could perform hip-hop like him. With that in mind, the students’ grades quickly recovered. It’s a lesson that has served him well today as the assistant dean of diversity and inclusion at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. …Recently he spoke at Michigan State University about what works and doesn’t work when recruiting youth and how everyone can promote inclusion in natural resources management.

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Startling UN biodiversity report is a reminder of the risks Canada faces

By Nicole Mortillaro
CBC News
May 7, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Canada, the second-largest country in the world and home to a large assortment of species, is experiencing many of the effects of habitat and species loss highlighted Monday in the UN’s first comprehensive report on biodiversity, and experts say that’s a concern. Extinction looms over one million species of plants and animals worldwide, scientists said. …According to the Canadian Wildlife Federation, of the roughly 1.8 million identified animal species in the world (it’s estimated there could be between five and 20 million species), 140,000 live in Canada, half of which are unidentified. …One of the primary reasons, said Emily Giles, co-author of that report and WWF senior species specialist, is habitat loss. …While Monday’s report from the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services is alarming, it’s not all doom and gloom.

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A message for the minister

Briony Penn, author and environmental activist
Focus on Victoria
May 3, 2019
Category: Forestry

THE GOVERNMENT’S DECISION on the future of our last ancient forests has been made. Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forest, Lands, Natural Resource Operations (and now) Rural Development, pronounced in the Legislature on March 28, 2019: “There will be no moratorium on old-growth logging.”  …Donaldson was invited to … a dialogue hosted by the Northwest Institute, a research non-profit of coastal First Nations, environmental leaders and scientists that aims to “promote cooperation among communities and initiate model projects—all towards the goals of environmental conservation and sustainable use of natural resources.” …Chief amongst the recommendations was that planning around forests should be locally based, and incorporate long-term cultural knowledge with scientific data. The science would provide long-term projections of the landscape—as ecosystems die, change, or shift north and upwards with warming temperatures.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Canada’s forests haven’t absorbed more carbon than they’ve released since 2001

By Sarah Lawrnuik
The Narwhal
May 7, 2019
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada

Ted Hogg… doesn’t take long before he sees examples of the damage…› the deaths he’s already witnessing from climate change. …Hogg is a research scientist with the Canadian Forest Service. For years, some Canadians have hid behind the myth that the country isn’t a net emitter of greenhouse gas emissions because of the presence of such vast forests working as our personal atmosphere vacuums. …But that is no longer the case. …The biggest cause of this shift is what Natural Resources Canada terms “natural disturbances”  — fires, pests, disease and increased mortality. “So we try to figure out ways that we can store the carbon longer,” said Carolyn Smyth, a research scientist with the Pacific Forestry Centre. Smyth and her colleagues are looking at ways to mitigate emissions from managed forests. “In some cases that might be putting the carbon into wood products that we use to build houses, that we use for paper, and for many other uses.”

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Environmental lawyer meets northern B.C. politicians to discuss climate change

Canadian Press in the National Post
May 7, 2019
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada, Canada West

Andrew Gage

WILLIAMS LAKE, B.C. — A lawyer specializing in environmental issues is meeting with politicians from across northern and central British Columbia to discuss the costs of climate change. Andrew Gage, a lawyer with West Coast Environmental Law, is in Williams Lake to attend the meeting of the North Central Local Government Association, which represents elected officials across the region. A statement from West Coast Environmental Law says Gage wants to hear firsthand about how wildfires and other climate-related impacts have affected northern communities, and how local communities are handling those costs. The environment group has received mixed response to its proposal that communities across B.C. identify and plan for the costs of climate change, and to try to recover some of those costs from fossil fuel companies.

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New paper: State’s cap-and-trade program is falling short of goals

By Will Kane
University of California, Berkeley
May 7, 2019
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

California regulators are overestimating the impact the state’s cap-and-trade system is having on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new policy brief from a researcher at UC Berkeley’s Center for Environmental Public Policy. …Barbara Haya argues that the California Air Resources Board has made rosy assumptions about a program protecting forests that may only have accomplished 18% of the emission reductions it claims have been made. The discrepancy could be as much as 80 million tons of carbon dioxide since 2013, which is equivalent to more than the total annual emissions from California’s entire electricity sector. …At issue is California’s U.S. Forest Projects offset protocol, an incentive program designed by the state to encourage forestland owners across the country to manage forests in ways that increase the amount of carbon stored in them.

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Health & Safety

Valid Manufacturing among industrial park innovators

By Jim Cooperman
Salmon Arm Observer
May 7, 2019
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

…Valid Manufacturing began as a standard, sheet metal and electrical integration shop that produced electrical boxes and cabinets primarily for streets and highways.  …New products are being developed at Valid thanks to their well-funded research and development department… A few years ago, they met with the BC Forestry Council and inquired what was the most serious problem in the industry. Some of the most frequent injuries occur when chip truck drivers are covering their trucks with the tarps needed to keep the chips from flying out. Valid took on the challenge to build an automatic system to accomplish this task, which included designing an arm that had to defy gravity to reach out far enough to accomplish the job. They are now field testing the prototype …with the hope that… trailers on the road in B.C. will be equipped with this high-tech device that will cut down on injuries.

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Dealing with Substance Abuse… In The Sawmill

By Tony Kryzanowski
Logging and Sawmilling Journal
May 7, 2019
Category: Health & Safety

Substance use, where an employee is under the influence of alcohol, prescription, or other drugs, has been identified as the number one health and safety risk by sawmill representatives taking part in a series of workplace risk assessment workshops hosted over the past two years by Ontario’s Workplace Safety North. Initially, representatives identified over 80 potential health and safety risks and then narrowed it down to the top 10. Dr. Sujoy Dey, Corporate Risk Officer with the Ontario Ministry of Labor and a risk assessment expert, emphasized that the issue is substance ‘use’, not necessarily ‘abuse’. The other top 10 health and safety risks identified by the Ontario sawmill representatives were training issues; improper equipment lock-out; inexperienced new and young workers; distractions while working; slips, trips and falls; occupational disease such as hearing loss; job and family-related stress; working at heights; and, dangers working around mobile equipment.

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