Tree Frog Forestry News

Region Archives: Canada East

Business & Politics

International trade dispute on softwood lumber strikes home

By Reg Clayton
The Kenora Daily Miner
September 19, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

The double edge sword of international trade struck home late last week. The announcement by Prendiville Industries of the temporary closure of the family-owned company’s Kenora Forest Products stud mill came as a shock to the community. The Prendivilles cited the soft market for softwood lumber both domestically and internationally as the reason for suspending operations as 95 percent of production is exported to the U.S. The loss of 115 mill jobs… will not only impact the company, it’s workers and their families but the city as well through the loss of tax revenue and spin-off benefits to the local economy in terms of jobs and related services. …Kenora MP Bob Nault… didn’t mince his words criticizing U.S. tariffs on Canadian lumber imports for imposing an unnecessary financial burden on domestic producers.

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Smell of gas in Westfort results in brief evacuations

By Doug Diaczuk
Thunder Bay News Watch
September 18, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

THUNDER BAY – An odd smell in the Westfort area resulted in the brief evacuation of several area schools and buildings, but there is no danger to the public say Thunder Bay Fire Rescue. On  Wednesday morning, Thunder Bay Fire Rescue received a series of calls for the smell of natural gas in the Westfort area. As a result, several schools in the area were evacuated …The cause of the smell was the release of gases following a computer malfunction in the boiler room in the craft mill at Resolute Forest Products, a spokesperson said.  Production in the craft mill was shut down for an hour while the problem was fixed. “They shut down the production of the gas and they had a wind change on them too, so it blew it right into town,” Hill said.

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First Nation says restarting Fort Frances mill could damage other operators

By Gary Rinne
The Thunder Bay News Watch
September 18, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

FORT FRANCES, Ontario — A crack has developed in the efforts of the Town of Fort Frances to present a united front as it tries to save the former Resolute paper mill. A letter from Rainy River First Nations to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry suggests restarting the mill would jeopardize the wood supply needed by numerous other operators. This echoes an argument previously made by Resolute, which has warned about a harmful  “domino effect” on its other mills and on other companies if any fibre is diverted from the Crossroute Forest. …Fort Frances Mayor June Caul said she was surprised to hear about his letter. “I was very taken aback and disappointed. When we had our public meeting, way back in February, he actually stood up and supported the mill starting up again,” Caul told Tbnewswatch in an interview.

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About 100 layoffs underway at Kenora, Ont., sawmill, Unifor says

CBC News
September 17, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

A spokesperson for the union representing workers at the sawmill in Kenora, Ont., says he hopes employees who are part of an ongoing staggered layoff will not be off the job for too long. Unifor national representative Steven Boon said about 100 employees of Kenora Forest Products’ operations …are in the process of being laid off. Boon said that’s due to a number of factors, including a drop in lumber prices within the past six months. …”Layoffs have already started but they’ll be staggered over the next two to three weeks as the sawmill consumes the rest of the logs in the yard,” he said. “The next two-to-three weeks, the mill should be down production-wise and then, right now, the plan is to have some people in shipping and a number of trades to continue at the plant and work on maintenance issues.”

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Court upholds ruling requiring consultation with Nova Scotia First Nation on pulp mill

By Keith Doucette
The Canadian News in CTV News
September 17, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

HALIFAX — Nova Scotia’s Appeal Court has upheld a lower court ruling that says the province must consult with a Mi’kmaq community about how public money is provided to the Northern Pulp mill’s effluent treatment plant. In a unanimous ruling issued Tuesday by a three-judge panel, Justice Joel E. Fichaud writes that the province’s funding agreements with the mill constitute government conduct with “a potential for adverse impact” on the Pictou Landing First Nation. Fichaud said that’s because the agreements and the funding they provide increase the likelihood the mill will discharge contaminants after the legislated Jan. 31 closure date of the current effluent treatment plant at Boat Harbour, N.S. He said the potential impacts are “more than inconsequential” and require the government to consult with the Mi’kmaq. …A spokeswoman… said the government is reviewing the Appeal Court decision.

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Fort Frances mill owner says it needs ‘hundreds of millions’ in repairs

By Gary Rinne
Thunder Bay News Watch
September 16, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

FORT FRANCES, Ont. —  Resolute Forest Products said it spent almost $35 million to maintain its Fort Frances mill in a “hot idle” state after it was shut down in 2014. Despite that, the new owner of the mill says the paper machine and other infrastructure is in a state of serious deterioration. …Justus Veldman of Riversedge Developments said it would take an investment of “hundreds of millions” of dollars to get the mill and its equipment back in shape. “Every single wire in the place has condensate in it, meaning it all needs to be done. Every electric motor, every pump, every switchgear, every transformer needs to be either replaced or redone,” he said. Damaged equipment, Veldman said, includes the papermaking machine which he described as “seized and rusty.” Fort Frances Mayor June Caul isn’t taking Veldman at his word.

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Kenora sawmill suspends production indefinitely

The Thunder Bay News Watch
September 16, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

KENORA, Ont. — Kenora Forest Products is blaming a weak lumber market and American lumber duties for the indefinite shutdown of its sawmill operations. The shutdown will begin on Sept. 23, affecting about 115 employees. In a statement, the company said “the decision to curtail the operations is primarily based on sustained weak domestic and global lumber markets which are having a detrimental impact across the forestry industry.” …Kenora Forest Products stated that it had deferred the shutdown as long as it could out of consideration for its workers. Manager Glen Hansson said “we are very confident and optimistic that this is short-term,” but added “the market is going to dictate that.” Hansson indicated that the market rebound will have to be significant, however. 

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CO2 solutions announces the filing of a notice of intention to make a proposal to its creditors under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act

By CO2 Solutions Inc.
Yahoo Finance
September 16, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

QUEBEC CITY – CO2 Solutions Inc. announced that it has filed a notice of intention to make a proposal pursuant to the provisions of Part III of the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act. The filing of the Notice follows the review of the Corporation’s strategic alternatives by a committee… of significant cost overruns in connection with the completion of the CO2 capture unit located at the pulp mill of Resolute Forest Products in Saint-Félicien, Québec. At the recommendation of the Special Committee, the board of directors of the Corporation determined it would be in the best interest of the Corporation and all of its stakeholders for the Corporation to seek protection from its creditors, given the Corporation’s current financial position.

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Province silent on implementing Lahey report without Northern Pulp

By Aaron Beswick
The Chronicle Herald
September 16, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

NOVA SCOTIA — A microcosm of what is supposed to be the future of forestry for this province envisioned by the much touted Lahey Report was happening south of Amherst. …So under Tupper’s direction the contractor was cutting the shorter lived species while leaving the best trees… to seed in below with an eye to a better forest in 30 years. The poor quality wood headed to Northern Pulp where it fetches $38 a tonne. It’s this type of harvest that the Lands and Forestry Department, based upon the recommendations of William Lahey’s review of Nova Scotia forestry practices, wants to see more of on Crown land in this province. …The hiccup in the greatest paradigm shift this province’s forestry industry has seen in a generation is whether there’s a market to drive this forestry work in the meantime. …So, what would no Northern Pulp mean for the implementation of the Lahey Report?

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Northern Pulp suppliers, Indigenous leadership talk closure over the kitchen table

By Aaron Beswick
The Chronicle Herald
September 13, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

After Paul had heard from Julia and her husband David, both forest technicians who rely on Northern Pulp, they in turn listened to what living beside the mill’s effluent for 52 years had meant for the Pictou Landing First Nation. They spent an entire day talking. …At day’s end, they didn’t agree on whether Northern Pulp should be granted an extension under the Boat Harbour Act. …And they didn’t agree on whether that proposed facility should be allowed to pump its treated effluent into the Northumberland Strait. But they did share a bond of mutual respect. Northern Pulp plans on submitting its focus report responses to the provincial Environment Department by month’s end. …If approved, the new facility could take 21 months to build.

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Curtailment at Kenora Forest Products Temporary – Bob Nault MP

Net News Ledger
September 13, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Bob Nault

KENORA – Bob Nault, Liberal Candidate for the Kenora riding, released the following statement regarding the temporary curtailment at Kenora Forest Products: “…Today, I’ve received word of a temporary curtailment at Kenora Forest Products. I would like to assure workers, as well as their families, that I stand with them. The Government of Canada will be there to support them through Employment Insurance. “This morning, I had a discussion with Maureen Prendiville, President of Prendiville Industries, who assured me that the temporary curtailment is due to soft market conditions and that we will work together to ensure that workers and their families have the support they need during this time. …Nault went on to say, “Despite the U.S. market’s dependence on imported lumber, over the past 25 years, the United States lumber industry has repeatedly sought U.S. government restrictions on Canadian softwood lumber imports. 

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With a new CEO at the helm, investors should consider this beaten-down TSX growth stock

By David Berman
The Globe and Mail
September 12, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Brian McManus, former CEO of Stella-Jones

Stella-Jones Inc. appointed Eric Vachon as its new chief executive on Thursday, removing some uncertainty that had been weighing on the stock over the past two months when the previous CEO announced he was stepping down. The best part of this leadership transition for investors: After a recent sell-off, the stock looks cheap. The Montreal-based company makes pressure-treated wood products largely used for railway ties and utility poles. …Stella-Jones is a growth stock that has been turning heads for years. It has been a steady acquirer, completing 19 takeovers in Canada and the United States since 2003, driving up annual sales fivefold since 2009. …Now, with Mr. Vachon – currently the chief financial officer at Stella-Jones after serving a number of roles at the company since his arrival in 2007 – set to replace Mr. McManus on Oct. 11, how should investors approach the stock? …But the long-term argument in favour of Stella-Jones rests on its fundamentals, which look solid.

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Terrace Bay mill bets heavily on the pulp market

By Gary Rinne
Thunder Bay News Watch
September 12, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

TERRACE BAY, Ont. — The operator of the pulp mill at Terrace Bay has quietly set aside its plan to convert the facility to produce dissolving grade pulp for manufacturing rayon. AV Terrace Bay’s parent company, India-based Aditya Birla Group, is betting that – at least for now – continuing to make northern bleached softwood kraft (NBSK) pulp is more likely to ensure the mill’s long-term stability. When it acquired the mill in 2012, Aditya Birla planned to spend $250 million over two years on a conversion from production of NBSK. But in a statement issued this week, the company said “given the current market conditions of dissolving grade pulp, there is no immediate plan to convert the mill.”  Nonetheless,  AV Terrace Bay is still spending significant sums on upgrades.

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$22 Million Investment Puts 1,000 Contracted Workers on the Job at Irving Pulp & Paper and Irving Tissue Mills in Saint John

J.D. Irving, Limited
September 12, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

SAINT JOHN, New Brunswick — Over 1,000 contractors from 45 companies from St. Stephen to Bathurst are on the job for 24/7 until September 17 as part of a $22 million investment on the west side of Saint John at Irving Tissue and Irving Pulp & Paper.  The pulp mill has been part of the Saint John community since 1893. Today, it is one of the longest running mills in Canada due largely to ongoing environmental improvements and equipment modernization. Anchoring these mills and the sawmills that provide the hardwood and softwood chips is a diverse, and sustainable wood resource where more wood is grown than is harvested every year. Today, the Saint John pulp mill is at the heart of a forest products value chain that sustains thousands of jobs across New Brunswick communities. 

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Comments on the CBC aired Documentary titled “The Mill “

By Don Wilson, Member of the Healthy Forest Coalition
The News
September 12, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

The CBC documentary titled “The Mill” is borrowed from Joan Baxter’s 2017 book of the same name. The big difference, however, is Baxter’s book has many pages of facts and figures while the doc has so few it is misleading.  Notably missing was how many millions of dollars were given, and more loaned, to Northern Pulp Mill over the most recent years. $6 million plus last year alone to cover the cost of preparing an environmental document – one that came up short on facts even though they had five years to research.  Also missing was the cost of somewhat cleaning up the years of pollution left at the Boat Harbour site. The federal government has allotted $100 million to that and the rest will come from all the province’s taxpayers no matter where they live and work .   In years past the many aeration pumps and installation of them was covered by provincial money. 

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Weston Forest Ranks No. 351 on the 2019 Growth 500

Weston Forest
September 11, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Mississauga, ON — Canadian Business and Maclean’s today ranked Weston Forest No. 351 on the annual Growth 500, the definitive ranking of Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies. Produced by Canada’s premier business and current affairs media brands, the Growth 500 ranks Canadian businesses on five-year revenue growth. Growth 500 winners are profiled in a special print issue of Canadian Business published with Maclean’s magazine and online at CanadianBusiness.com and Growth500.ca. Weston Forest made the 2019 Growth 500 list with five-year revenue growth of 199%. …“We are so proud of our highly motivated team that, for five consecutive years, has kept us on the list of Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies,” says Steve Rhone, President of Weston Forest. “This is an extraordinary result from an extraordinary group of people.”

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Fort Frances moves to seize paper mill equipment for unpaid taxes

By Gary Rinne
Northern Ontario Business
September 11, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

The Town of Fort Frances is trying to seize some heavy equipment belonging to the new owners of the former Resolute Forest Products sawmill in an effort to recover unpaid taxes. Town officials went to the mill on Tuesday, Sept. 10 to post notices of seizure. Mayor June Caul says Riversedge Developments currently owes the municipality about $437,000 in taxes on the various mill properties around town. “We haven’t seized the mill. We planned on seizing some of the rolling stock mainly, [which includes] Cats, trucks, forklift tractors and so on. There’s quite a few pieces of equipment out in the yard,” Caul told Tbnewswatch on Wednesday. The mayor said Riversedge moved two machines out of the yard last week, and the remaining equipment is lined up, apparently in preparation to be moved. Caul said the town acted on the advice of lawyers.

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Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry Says There’s Still a Long Way to go With Softwood Lumber Decision

My Bancroft Now
September 10, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry John Yakabuski says it’s an encouraging step, but there are steps still to go. The MPP for Renfrew-Nippising-Pembroke was referring to a decision by a North American Free Trade Agreement panel that found that Canadian softwood lumber imports were not hurting the American economy. However, Yakabuski said that the decision was a very small part of the dispute, and there was a long way to go before the dispute is settled. He did say that it was a step in the right direction and an encouraging sign. …He says he is hopeful and confident because Canada has been successful in challenging every decision the Americans have made on the softwood lumber dispute. Yakabuski also said he supports the federal government’s efforts to bring the dispute to an end.

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EACOM celebrates 70 years in Nairn Centre

By Molly Frommer
CTV News
September 8, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

The EACOM Sawmill in Nairn Centre, located about 50 kilometers southwest of Sudbury, celebrated a major milestone today. The Sawmill has been operating for 70 years now. Over that timeframe, the facility has been forced to adjust with the changing times and increased use of technology. “Making mining timbers for the mining industry and then ships for the pulp mill, that was started in 1920’s,” says Wade Zammit, EACOM Vice President. “So what’s changed? Everything’s changed! The way we operate in the forest has changed, the sustainability issues, the replanting responsibilities and environmental responsibilities.” Since 2015, EACOM has invested more than twelve million dollars into technology and equipment upgrades into the facility.

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With Boat Harbour closure looming, union awaits notice on impact for employees

By Brendan Ahern
The Chronicle Herald
September 5, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

PICTOU, N.S. — The union that represents Northern Pulp workers says it expects to receive notice by early January about how jobs will be impacted by a potential closure. The mill is legislated to stop operations at the Boat Harbour treatment facility at the end of January 2020. “The collective agreement requires the employer to give notice of a closure at the end of December if they’re going to close,” said Scott Doherty, executive assistant to Unifor national president Jerry Dias. “…we are expecting that they are going to give us that notice just because there’s no guarantee that they’re not going to have to shut down at some time in December or early January.” At a press conference Dias pointed to the results of a Unifor funded study that indicated 2,700 potential job losses in the Nova Scotia forestry sector if the mill were to close. Northern Pulp cannot operate without an effluent treatment facility.

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Business representatives, MLAs speak out against proposed heavy machinery tax

By Silas Brown
Global News
September 4, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

NEW BRUNSWICK — The committee on law amendments began a hearing Wednesday, which examines a proposal to remove tax exemptions from heavy machinery. Saint John Harbour MLA Gerry Lowe… brought forward the proposal. “I.. don’t think that heavy industry is paying its fair share in Saint John, and this will prove one way or the other but it still doesn’t mean the government will make a change,” he said. But the committee hearing had only just gotten underway when finance minister Ernie Steeves said that he does not support the proposal. …Currently Alberta is one of the few provinces to have some sort of machinery tax, but the main population centres of Edmonton and Calgary are exempt. …“At a certain point in time you reach a stage where you are anti-competitive…  you’re not going to move a pulp mill, so… you shut down,” said J.D. Irving’s Chris MacDonald.

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Sudbury-area lumber company establishing new plant

Northern Ontario Business
September 4, 2019
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

The expansion of sawmilling activities south of Sudbury will create new jobs and increase productivity, following a funding announcement from FedNor. Lahaie Lumber, which is located in the Municipality of French River about an hour south of Sudbury, is receiving a $775,000 repayable contribution from the federal funding agency. …the funds will be used to purchase equipment for a new sawmill currently under construction. With this expansion, Lahaie Lumber expects to double its current production capacity, enabling it to expand into new markets. Local and regional transportation and logging industries will also benefit from a higher volume of products produced and shipped from the mill, the release said. “We would like to thank the Government of Canada and FedNor for this investment. Our community and the region will certainly benefit from the growth of Lahaie Lumber Ltd.,” said Mike Lahaie, owner and president at Lahaie Lumber.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

How University is driving innovation, economic prosperity across Ontario

The Mirage News
September 18, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

Anne Koven

TORONTO, ONTARIO — It may be located far from Ontario’s northern forests, but the 14-storey, engineered wood-framed tower proposed for the University of Toronto’s St. George campus will help to propel mass timber construction in the province. …It’s just one example of how industries contributing to economic development across Ontario are benefiting from research and expertise at U of T. The project is expected to help “communities in northern Ontario find exciting new markets for their forest products,” said Anne Koven, director of Ontario’s Mass Timber Institute and adjunct professor in the forestry program at the John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design. The Academic Wood Tower is one project that will be highlighted in Sudbury this week at a roundtable on “Northern Ontario’s Innovation Ecosystem.”

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City urged to act on wooden structures

By Dave Flaherty
The Oshawa Express
September 17, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

A huge fire that caused $6 million in damage and displaced numerous residents clearly remains in the mind of the community. On June 9, the fire broke out at a four-storey wood structure that was under construction at 143 Bloor Street West. …Durham police continue to investigate the blaze but have yet to charge anyone. Shortly after, city council approved a motion petitioning the province to review its guidelines for fire safety during construction of five and six-storey wood structures. Oshawa also requests Ontario make these rules mandatory for all wood buildings with more than four storeys. The Oshawa Professional Fire Fighters Association (OPFFA) supported this resolution, and joined in the call to the province. …The city has yet to received formal response from the provincial government.

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Can Sidewalk Labs build the future of wood? We’ll see

By Alex Bozikovic
The Globe and Mail
September 13, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

…The Google sister company’s effort to build an entire urban neighbourhood out of “mass timber,” or engineered wood products, has been inching closer to reality since it was announced two years ago. …Wood is a central part of the Sidewalk Labs pitch in Toronto. The company’s effort to build an innovative urban neighbourhood has faced all sorts of complications; in particular, its ambitions to use “urban data” have raised privacy and intellectual property concerns. …So Sidewalk is shouting “Timber!” …It’s an exciting and ambitious vision. But it rests on a large assumption: that Sidewalk, essentially a startup company, is able to quickly design and build a production line that works technically and economically. …Mass timber holds much promise, and Sidewalk has hired some brilliant architects to take advantage of its possibilities. But what they’ll actually build is another question: one that’s exciting but, as yet, unresolved. [to access the full story a Globe & Mail subscription is required]

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Build with facts, not opinion

Letter by Michael ScSweeney, Cement Association of Canada
The Toronto Sun
September 4, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

Mike Yorke’s opinion piece about building with mass timber is simply that – an opinion (“Wood could be the future”). Facts tell a different story. Yorke, and he is not alone in doing this, heralds the 18-storey Brock Commons in B.C. as an example of a highrise building made “almost entirely from wood.” Not really. What he leaves out is that Brock Commons is a composite building, with a significant amount of reinforced concrete. …Without concrete, the building would not be able to support itself.  …A new study by the International Institute for Sustainable Development finds that up to 72% of carbon emissions from wood may not be accounted for in current Life-Cycle Assessments. When these emissions are considered, concrete’s embodied carbon footprint could be up to 6% less intensive than that of wood products.

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Use timber in large-scale building projects

By Mike Yorke, Carpenters’ District Council of Ontario
The Toronto Sun
September 2, 2019
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

Mike Yorke

Over the past few years, Canada has seen a rise in the use of timber as a construction material for large-scale building projects. Just a decade ago, many viewed timber as a poor alternative to more traditional materials like concrete and steel. …I have watched with excitement as those arguments have been proven wrong and attitudes have started to change. This shift has largely taken place thanks to a better understanding of mass timber and its new applications. …When I learned that Sidewalk Labs intended to make extensive use of tall timber in their Quayside development proposal, I was especially thrilled. …In my decades of experience in carpentry, I’ve seen a lot of new opportunities for our economy and our future, but none in my view have had the same potential as mass timber. It’s time for Toronto and Canada to seize that potential.

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Forestry

How a new tree movement is taking root across Canada

By Mark and Ben Cullen
The Toronto Star
September 20, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

…Fortunately for all of us, the value of trees is coming into focus, and sharper than ever. Science has proven the many benefits of planting trees and maintaining mature trees. According to a report on the Toronto’s Parks, Forestry and Recreation website, there are 10.2 million trees in the city, which provide 18,000 hectares of canopy cover. …The city is investing in community-led tree planting and stewardship on private land to help reach the 40 per cent target. …To achieve the canopy-cover goal, the Toronto city budget included planting costs for 120,307 trees planted in 2017, with 120,000 more in 2018 and another 120,000 this year and next. …Six years ago, a new not-for-profit organization was born from this column in the Toronto Star. …The coalition is called Trees For Life.

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Port Blandford mayor objects to province’s plans to use access road for forestry harvesting

By Jonathan Parsons
Cape Breton Post
September 16, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

PORT BLANDFORD, N.L. — Port Blandford Mayor Chad Holloway said the province’s most recent attempt to access nearby forest for harvesting is both against zoning regulations and dangerous on the highway through town. In an interview Holloway said he found out last month the department of fisheries and land resources wanted to approve harvesting activity in the area surrounding Port Blandford. The clearcutting debate has a storied history for the town. In the beginning of 2018, many residents of the area protested clearcutting and advocated the prevention of planned harvesting both inside and around Port Blandford boundaries. After many public consultations … the town of Port Blandford opted to rezone the areas within the town marked for cutting, and to prevent harvesters from using a resource road in the town to access the cabin country area near the outside of the town. It cited the road’s designated use did not allow for commercial forestry activity.

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TEK Elders, First Nations to take feds to court over forest spraying

By Tom Sasvari
Manitoulin Expositor
September 13, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

SAGAMOK – About 21 First Nations along the North Shore of Lake Huron (including those on Manitoulin Island) are set to take the federal government to court over aerial spraying on their lands, actions that they say negatively affect the environment and human health. The Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) Elders of Robinson Huron Treaty say that spraying is part of a bigger issue, in that First Nations are not consulted about activities taking place on their land. The elders say that violates the Robinson-Huron Treaty of 1850. “They are violating the treaties with spraying,” Ray Owl, spokesperson for the TEK Elders of Robinson-Huron Treaty territory told the Recorder. “We’ve been at this for five years, raising our concerns and have run out of avenues to be gentlemen on this issue. What we know is that what is going on is a treaty violation.” 

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More support needed for tree planting in Ontario

By Hilary Thomson
The North Grenville Times
September 11, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Canopy Growth announced a $100,000 donation to Forests Ontario last month to aid in the organization’s tree planting initiatives. However, Ed Patchell, CEO of the FFC, says it is not enough. The $100,000 donation will only help plant about 50,000 trees in Ontario, a small fraction of the Ontario government’s former goal of 3 million a year. According to Forests Ontario, experts have determined that a minimum 30% tree cover is needed to maintain a healthy and sustainable ecosystem. In some places in Ontario, the forest cover is as low as five per cent, which compromises the health of our ecosystems and their inhabitants.

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Our oldest, largest trees need heritage protections with some teeth

By Mark Cullen
The Toronto Star
September 13, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

There is a single best answer to the question: “What can we do about climate change?” And that is: plant trees. A new study was published in Science magazine this past July that revealed new data suggesting that if there was “one solution” to climate change, it would be to plant one trillion trees. The geographic area for a trillion trees covers an area roughly the size of continental U.S. and Russia, combined. This “one-solution” idea, obviously, only underscores the importance of trees among a long list of necessary measures. …So why aren’t we doing more to protect heritage trees? The good news: There is a heritage tree program in Ontario, managed by Forests Ontario in partnership with the Urban Forests Council.

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Province provides $2.4 million in Funding for Training in Forestry Sector

Sault Online
September 6, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Ontario’s Government is helping people across Northwestern Ontario prepare for successful careers in the forestry sector by partnering with employers and investing in publicy-funded access to skills training. Today, Ross Romano, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities, announced over $2.4 million in provincial funding for two innovative skills training projects. These training projects help get people working by providing them with the technical and job-ready skills they need. The training projects also help employers by providing sector-focused employment services, including job matching and placement, and post-employment retention services. “Our Government knows employers are looking for job-ready people to help fill vacancies in Northern Ontario,” said Minister Romano. …“Our government is committed to opening up the forestry sector to jobs and this funding will help the industry find the skilled workforce it needs to grow,” said John Yakabuski, Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry. 

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Council, minister clash over planned forestry road in Port Blandford

By Garrett Barry
CBC News
September 6, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Chad Holloway

A provincial government plan to truck logs out a Nalcor-built dirt road has Port Blandford’s town council threatening legal action — and has a government minister urging them to bring forward evidence. Newfoundland and Labrador’s Department of Fisheries and Land Resources has endorsed a commercial wood harvesting plan that would use a Nalcor access road to bring timber from two sites onto the Trans Canada-Highway. Chad Holloway, the mayor of Port Blandford, said the plan creates a dangerous, high-traffic intersection within his town boundaries; Fisheries and Land Resources Minister Gerry Byrne says it’s the exact same traffic that rolled without a hitch when Nalcor used the road to build the Labrador-Island Link.

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Ontario provides $2.4 million in funding for training in forestry sector

Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
Government of Ontario
September 6, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

THUNDER BAY — Ontario’s Government is helping people across Northwestern Ontario prepare for successful careers in the forestry sector by partnering with employers and investing in publicy-funded access to skills training. Ross Romano, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities, announced over $2.4 million in provincial funding for two innovative skills training projects. These training projects help get people working by providing them with the technical and job-ready skills they need. The training projects also help employers by providing sector-focused employment services, including job matching and placement, and post-employment retention services. …Confederation College is receiving $1,193,467 in funding to help 144 workers and people looking for jobs gain the skills and work experience needed by employers in Thunder Bay. 

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Forest spraying violates treaty: Elders

By Helen Morley
The Timmins Daily Press
September 5, 2019
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Art Pethategoose

Some 21 First Nations along the North Shore of Lake Huron are preparing to take the federal government to court over aerial spraying they say is harming the environment and human health. However, the Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) Elders of Robinson-Huron Treaty territory say the spraying is only part of a larger issue: that First Nations are not being consulted about activities taking place on their land. The elders say this violates the Robinson-Huron Treaty of 1850. …The TEK elders are now charging that the federal government has broken that agreement and that aerial spraying of Roundup, a glyphosate-based herbicide, illustrates the problem. …The elders are angry the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry has decided to grant forestry companies the right to spray clear-cut areas of northeastern Ontario without clearing it with First Nations.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Nova Scotia asking for input on carbon credit opportunities

By Stuart Peddle
The Telegram
September 19, 2019
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada East, Canada

Nova Scotia is looking for someone to study the potential in the province to generate carbon offset credits. …Jason Hollett… said the current cap and trade program covers about 80 per cent of all of the emissions in Nova Scotia in about 25 or 30 companies. “There’s potential to generate offsets that would… come from that 20 per cent,” Hollett said. …The RFP stipulates that a successful proponent’s study “will identify the sectors, project types, and protocols that are most viable in Nova Scotia, as well as identify risks and opportunities relating to offset projects.” …“One example you’ll often hear about is forestry,” said Meghan McMorris, community energy co-ordinator with the Ecology Action Centre. Planting trees instead of clearcutting works for carbon offset because large forests capture carbon as the trees grow.

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Canadian biomass event cancelled due to ‘political uncertainty’

Bioenergy Insight Magazine
September 13, 2019
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada East, Canada

The Biomass North Forum in Canada has been cancelled due to ‘political uncertainty’. The event in Ottawa that aimed to connect Canada’s bioeconomy had been due to take place from 17-19 September. According to organisers, the primary goals of the forum were to: strengthen and extend the sector network in the country, offer ‘meaningful content’ that improves stakeholders’ understanding and ability to participate in the emerging bioeconomy, connect Canadian businesses and communities with opportunities, communicate academic research with the businesses and communities that need to make informed decisions, inform policymakers about best practices and earn enough income to offset some of the company’s operational costs and to plan future events. Dawn Lambe, executive director of the Biomass North Development Centre, published a statement… explaining the decision.

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Health & Safety

Workplace accidents trending downwards in Nova Scotia

The Chronicle Herald
September 5, 2019
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada East, Canada

Fewer people are being hurt on the job in the residential construction industry, leading to lower workers’ compensation premiums. The industry rate in residential construction is set to decline by nine per cent in 2020, WCB Nova Scotia announced this week, as part of its release of 2020 employer rates for workplace injury insurance. Over the years, the construction community in Nova Scotia has made progress through education and training, thanks to safety association initiatives, access to resources and awareness campaigns, the board said in a news release. …“This is a step in the right direction for our members,” said Karen Slaunwhite, executive officer of Canadian Home Builders’ Association — Nova Scotia. …Other industries that have improved their safety and return-to-work records include logging and forestry.

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Resolute Employees Contribute to Important Research on Night Shift Worker Fatigue

By Resolute Forest Products
The Market Screener
September 5, 2019
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada East, Canada

Back in the early 2000s, the management team at Resolute’s La Doré (Quebec) sawmill noticed that the workers responsible for sorting lumber during the night shift were susceptible to making errors when they became drowsy. …Daniel Roy, Sylvain Bélanger and Dany Lamontagne became concerned about the workers’ safety and well-being. …Susanne Julien, a representative of the local health agency put them in touch with a research team from Laval University led by Dr. Marc Hébert, whose work focused on sleep disorders. Night-shift employees were invited to test a new device designed to adjust their biological clocks to the inversion of day and night. The lens of the device cut off blue light rays that are associated with daylight, thereby tricking the workers’ biological clocks into thinking it was nighttime and sending a signal to their brains that it was time to sleep.

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