Tree Frog Forestry News

Region Archives: United States

Business & Politics

Roofing Manufacturers File Suit Over U.S.-Canada Lumber Clash

Roofing Contractor
November 15, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

A trade group has taken its beef with new U.S. duties on Canadian cedar shakes and shingles to the next level and filed a lawsuit at the Court of International Trade. Duties went up as much as 18 percent earlier this year on shakes and shingles produced in Canada and exported to the U.S. Globeinvestor.com reported in June that Canadian makers of cedar shakes and shingles have been forced to scale back and even close mills as a result of the new tariffs. The newly formed Shake and Shingle Alliance trade group…had been trying to make the case that the products are thin enough to warrant tariff exemptions. The U.S. Commerce Dept. ruled in September that isn’t the case. The alliance took its argument to the Court of International Trade with the Nov. 8 filing of its lawsuit. Bloomberg Tax was the first to report on the suit and has posted a copy of the filing here.

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Prices for construction materials mixed in October

By Michael Rudy
Multi-housing News
November 15, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released its producer price index report for October. It showed that overall prices for processed goods for intermediate demand were up by 0.8 percent from September after two months of no change. Prices in October were 5.9 percent higher than a year earlier, in line with the rise seen last month. …The chart illustrates the price changes for softwood lumber, OSB and soft plywood over the past year and a half relative to their prices in January, 2017. It shows that these lumber prices are well off their recent peaks. The chart also makes clear that the large percentage decline in the price of OSB on a year-over-year basis listed in the above table is as much due to the spike in its price a year ago as it is to the recent drop in its price.

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Forest Service chief vows to rid agency of sexual harassment

By Juliet Linderman
The Associated Press in the Miami Herald
November 15, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

Vicki Christiansen

Amid scrutiny stemming from fresh revelations of rampant discrimination, bullying, retaliation and sexual misconduct at the U.S. Forest Service, the agency’s new chief pledged Thursday that she will “do everything in my power to put us on a path to no harassment.” Vicki Christiansen acknowledged to a congressional panel that the Forest Service is in need of a culture change. She pledged to enact new systems and overhaul existing processes to ensure a safe and functional work environment. …Christiansen on Thursday discussed progress made, and laid out her plans to further reform the agency. She said the agency has updated its anti-harassment policy and hired outside contractors to investigate allegations of sexual harassment. Additionally, Christiansen said the agency has created a Work Environment and Performance Office and plans to establish a victim advocacy and support structure.

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Beetle-killed timber presents business opportunities across Colorado Rockies

By Deepan Dutta
Steamboat Pilot & Today
November 17, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

FRISCO — The mountain pine beetle has devastated one-fifth of Colorado forestland over the past couple of decades, but the lumber and alternative energy industries have been able to make good use of the wood from these blighted forests. Routt, Eagle, Grand and Summit counties were among the hardest hit, with thousands of acres of forest wiped out. The Colorado State Forest Service estimates the mountain pine beetle epidemic killed 3.4 million acres of forest across the state. That’s about 800 million dead trees that are potential fuel for the next wildfire. “These dead trees have provided a large supply of available timber that these local mills,” Granby District forester Ryan McNertney said.

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Boise Cascade will lay off 56

By Johnny Whitfield
The Courier-Times
November 17, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

Just weeks removed from the joyous announcement of a new manufacturing facility planned for Person County, another company has announced it will layoff more than half its workforce. Boise Cascade has said it will close one of its two Roxboro divisions, resulting in the layoff of 56 workers in the laminated veneer lumber division. In a press release posted on the company’s website, CEO Tom Corrick said efforts to control expenses in that division had failed. “Unfortunately, despite great effort by the team, we have been unable to reduce manufacturing costs to an acceptable level,” Corrick said. The company will end its laminated veneer lumber production operation Dec. 31.

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Georgia-Pacific Completes $100-Million Lumber Production Facility In Talladega, Alabama

The Virginian-Pilot
November 15, 2018
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

TALLADEGA, Ala. — Today, Georgia-Pacific celebrated the official start of production at its newest lumber facility in Talladega, Alabama. The $100-million, 300,000-square-foot, technologically advanced plant took nine months to complete. The plant currently employs more than 130 full-time employees and will generate an estimated $5 million in annual payroll. …”Georgia-Pacific’s new lumber facility in Talladega is the company’s eighth location in the state, which further shows that Alabama is a great place to do business,” Governor Ivey said. “Our amiable business climate and unparalleled workforce are why notable companies like Georgia-Pacific continue to do business in our great state.” …The Talladega plant is the first of three new lumber production facilities Georgia-Pacific will be opening in the Southeast by the end of 2019.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Two Sides Recognizes America Recycles Day

By Two Sides North America
What They Think
November 15, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

November 15th is America Recycles Day. It serves as a reminder of the importance of recycling, the positive impact recycling can have on our landfills, and how much the recycling infrastructure has evolved over the last few decades in the U.S. Paper is one of the most recycled products in the world. Since the American Forest and Paper Association (AF&PA) began tracking paper recycling in North America in 1990, the recovery rate has nearly doubled. According to the AF&PA, the U.S. paper recovery rates have grown from 33.5% in 1990 to 65.8% in 2017, with a goal to reach 70% by 2020. Because of additional recycling, the amount of paper products diverted to landfills has decreased over 38% in the past ten years from 36 million tons in 2007 to about 22 million tons in 2017. In 2014, paper and packaging accounted for nearly 75% of all products recycled in the U.S. – more than glass, steel, aluminum, and plastics combined.

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Prefabrication: The Future of Multifamily and Commercial Construction

By Think Wood
Global Newswire
November 14, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

Washington, DC — As the nationwide labor shortage intensifies and building material costs continue to inflate, Think Wood recognizes the need for building owners and developers to maintain the viability of projects. Prefabricated wood buildings—which are no longer limited to single-family housing and smaller temporary workspaces—offer an innovative solution with a multitude of benefits, including process efficiency, a controlled environment, greater return on investment, material efficiency and reduced waste. Collectively, these benefits can help meet the value and performance demands from owners, designers and developers. …Using prefabricated wood construction enabled the impressive framing time MOTO exhibited, which can equate to reduced labor dependency and overall construction costs when compared to other common worksite construction methods.

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A Mass Timber Tower Rises in Portland

By Will Macht
Urban Land
November 19, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

Until recently, buildings taller than five stories had to be constructed of steel or reinforced concrete, both of which require about 80 percent more energy to produce and represent about 200 percent more greenhouse gas emissions than cross-laminated timber (CLT), a new engineered wood product. Portland developer Ben Kaiser of the Kaiser Group recently completed the tallest American CLT mass timber building—an eight-story, 16-unit condominium/retail tower on an 8,470-square-foot (787 sq m) lot. …The building is called Carbon 12 for the most common carbon isotope the engineered wood sequesters, and for the building’s address at 12 NE Fremont Street in Portland. …Carbon 12 is designed, metaphorically, like a tree. Its roots are a forest of steel piles driven 45 feet (14 m) deep into the ground… The piles support a three-dimensional grid of glulam posts and beams onto which CLT panels measuring 37 by 11 feet (3 by 11 m) are lifted and locked into place.

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Ashlander helps mill rise from the ashes

By Maureen Flanagan Battistella
Ashland Daily Tidings
November 17, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

Thanks in part to an Ashlander’s help, the rebuild and restoration of the 1872 Butte Creek Mill is on time and under budget… Massive 30- and 40-foot fir timbers tower over the footprint of the mill, an exquisite example of timber framing. “It’s a really important project because it’s preserving the history of timber framing in our area,” explained Ian Dilworth with Treeborn Timbercraft of Ashland. “There are not a lot of structures that are built like this mill was built and are still around, so it’s great to be able to build it back the way it was.” The Butte Creek Mill in Eagle Point was destroyed by fire in December 2015, but some of the foundation structures remain, and some of the old, burned beams were still in place. Dilworth used these old beams to understand how the original timber members were joined together, matching original construction to new work.

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Could this building material save California homes from future infernos?

The Real Deal – Real Estate News
November 18, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West

A futuristic building material is being touted by its manufacturer as the environmentally friendly and fire-resistant material California needs for a sustainable future. RSG 3-D is a “cementitious sandwich panel” system with no combustible materials that can be subject to an open flame for two hours before catching fire, according to CNBC. The building material could allow houses to fare better than the state’s widespread wood-frame homes now burning across northern California in the latest wave of deadly wildfires. The panels are made of a polystyrene core, sandwiched between a steel wire grid frame that penetrates through the core. …Construction company Hutter Pioneer is building with the materials currently and its COO Geoffrey Evancic claimed the system is also superior to wood in terms of energy efficiency. 

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Freres Lumber’s massive plywood panels selected for Oregon State lab

By Robert Dalheim
Woodworking Network
November 15, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West
LYONS, Ore. Freres Lumber’s massive plywood panels will be used in the new A.A. “Red” Emmerson Advanced Wood Products Laboratory at Oregon State University. MPP is being used for both interior and exterior walls of the lab as well as roofing in the George W. Peavy Forest Science Center.  “This is our largest commercial project to-date, and we are thrilled to showcase the strength, versatility, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness of MPP in this premier project at OSU,” said Tyler Freres, vice president of sales for Freres Lumber Co. “Partnering with Oregon State has been such a positive experience from research and development, to the final shipment of MPP to OSU.”

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Dunwoody puts 6-month hold on multi-unit construction

By Dyana Bagby
Reporter Newspapers
November 19, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

A six-month moratorium on multi-unit building applications, permits and construction is now in effect as city officials say they need time to review the city’s fire safety codes and ordinances. It’s unclear how the moratorium will affect Grubb Properties’ proposed 20-acre mixed-use development in Perimeter Center that includes 900 condominiums… The moratorium comes after House Bill 876, dubbed the “wood bill,” went into effect on July 1. The bill prohibits local governments from banning wood-framed buildings that otherwise meet state building and fire codes. The new law erased Dunwoody’s 2014 ordinance that required commercial, office, apartment or condominium buildings more than three stories tall to be framed with noncombustible materials, such as metal or concrete. …Councilmember Terry Nall, who spearheaded the 2014 ordinance to prohibit wood-framed buildings over three stories tall, said in a written statement the moratorium is not tied to the “wood bill” or any possible future development.

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Sweeney Joins In Support of Fire Safety Measure

InsiderNJ
November 14, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

Steve Sweeney

Atlantic City – Senate President Steve Sweeney joined with public officials, labor leaders and fire safety professionals today in support of legislation that would change the fire code to help protect residents and firefighters from the dangers of large-scale fires in light-frame residential properties. The bill, S-1261/A-135, sponsored by Senator Brian Stack and Senator Linda Greenstein, would establish several construction code requirements and a fire watch requirement to help limit the spread of fires in larger light-frame residential buildings. “We want to make fire safety a priority in New Jersey to prevent against the vulnerabilities of combustible materials that can allow fires to spread rapidly,” said Senator Sweeney… The bill would strengthen firewall standards in all new multi-family construction. It would prohibit lightweight wood construction, which uses prefabricated wood structures, on buildings over three stories.

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To reduce fires, proposed New Jersey law targets building construction with cheap wood

By David Matthau
New Jersey 101.5 FM Radio
November 14, 2018
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

It’s happening more and more in New Jersey. A building catches fire and by the time firefighters arrive, the structure is either completely engulfed in flames or it’s already burnt to the ground. Now, efforts are moving forward to address the root cause of the problem. Legislation has been introduced in the state Senate and Assembly that would change several construction codes and require more steel, concrete and fire-resistant wood be used instead of just lightweight wood and other combustible materials when larger apartment buildings and structures are constructed. Experts agree this would significantly slow the spread of any fire. Ed Donnelly, the president of the New Jersey Firefighters Mutual Benevolent Association, said this is really an issue of common sense. …He explained when buildings made of lightweight wood and pre-fabricated material catch fire, flames race through the entire structure and the building will rapidly collapse.

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Forestry

New SFI Board Members Will Enhance SFI’s Leadership Work

By Sustainable Forestry Initiative
Global Newswire
November 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, United States

OTTAWA and WASHINGTON — The Sustainable Forestry Initiative is pleased to announce the election of four new members to its board of directors: Lillian “Ebonie” Alexander, Executive Director, Black Family Land Trust; Kevin Edgson, President and CEO, EACOM Timber Corporation; Brent Keefer, President, Hancock Timber Resource Group; and Dan Lambe, President, Arbor Day Foundation. …“These four board members join us at a critical juncture given SFI’s current work to set our strategic direction for the next five years. I’m… confident that their diverse experience and leadership skills will bring fresh perspective to SFI’s future plans,” said Mark Rodgers, President and CEO, Habitat for Humanity Canada and Chair of the SFI Board of Directors.

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Project Learning Tree Curriculum Wins Teachers’ Choice Award Special 25% Discount To Be Offered for the Holidays

By Sustainable Forestry Initiative Inc.
Globe Newswire
November 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, United States

WASHINGTON and OTTAWA — Project Learning Tree’s (PLT) Energy in Ecosystems curriculum for grades 3-5 has been selected a Learning Magazine 2019 Teachers’ Choice Award (TCA) for the Classroom winner. Winners… were selected by a nationwide panel of teacher-judges… PLT is an initiative of the Sustainable Forestry Initiative. “The Energy in Ecosystems by Project Learning Tree is a fantastic online resource for students in grades 3-5,” said one teacher…. “…my favorite parts: it’s all online, it is super engaging, targets the NGSS standards which are how my school’s science standards are aligned, and it also integrates the Common Core standards for English and Math.” PLT’s Energy in Ecosystems e-unit https://www.plt.org/energy-ecosystems-unit consists of six activities for elementary students… Students focus on forests—one of the largest and most complex types of ecosystems—and come to understand ways that plants and animals are connected to each other.

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Forest Fires

By Gene Wengert, President, The Wood Doctor’s Rx, LLC
Submitted Editorial
November 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

We have all heard about the terrible forest fires in the West in the past few years, and especially the “Camp” fire in November 2018.  Let’s look at forest fires from a forestry point of view. But before beginning, we do want to voice our cares and concerns for those who lost family and friends and to those that lost homes, belongings and a lifetime of irreplaceable items in the Camp Fire and all wildfires. A forest fire needs a source of ignition. needs fuel and needs oxygen.  The ignition source is often cloud-to-ground lightning strikes, but human activities do causes many fires.  The fuel source is wood, leaves, needles and understory grow including brush and grass. The speed of burning and the speed of expansion of a forest fire into new fuels depends to a large extent on the presence of oxygen.  In turn, this means the wind speed is a huge factor in the life of a fire, as the wind brings in oxygen, as well as carries burning embers into new fuel sources.

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How climate change is fueling California’s wildfires

By Mario Picazo, Meteorologist
The Weather Network
November 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

California has been burning more than ever since the turn of the century. Thirteen of the state’s twenty hottest fires have occurred since 2000 as increasing temperatures push up the frequency and severity of wildfires. …Adding up the acreage affected by the flames from 2013 through this time in 2018, we get an overwhelming figure somewhere close to 5.4 million acres. So considering California is roughly 100 million acres in size, that means 5.4 per cent of the state’s surface has seen some form of fire over the past 5 years. …A recent U.S. Government report prepared by leading climate and forest experts explores the interactions between climate change and forests. The main concluding remarks emphasize how climate change is increasing the vulnerability of many U.S. forests through fire, insect infestations, drought and disease outbreaks.

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Measures aimed at reducing fire intensity in Southern Oregon’s Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest

The Associated Press in the Statesman Journal
November 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

MEDFORD, Oregon — The U.S. Forest Service plans to propose measures for southern Oregon aimed at reducing the size and intensity of wildfires and creating healthier forests better able to withstand the hotter, drier conditions brought by climate change. The Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest plan would include a mix of commercial logging and brush removal on 22,000 acres of Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management lands, the Mail Tribune reported Sunday. It would include nearly 5,000 acres of prescribed fire and using fire to maintain up to 13,000 acres of previously burned areas. …”The objective is to make the watershed more resilient to disturbances like fire, insects and climate change,” said Don Boucher, the forest’s district ecologist and main architect of the plan. The environmental assessment will be up for public comment for a month.

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Trump, Touring Fire Ruins in California, Repeats Disputed Claim on Forest Management

By Thomas Fuller
The New York Times
November 17, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

PARADISE, Calif. — President Trump walked through the ashes of the Northern California town of Paradise on Saturday, promising to help the state recover but repeating his disputed view that forest management was to blame for the fire, the most destructive in California’s history. The president, expressing shock at the scale of the devastation and praising the efforts of emergency workers, offered much more conciliatory words than he had used a week earlier when he accused state officials of mismanaging California’s forests and threatened to withhold financial assistance. …Mr. Trump repeated his view on Saturday that forest management — the partial clearing and cleaning of brush from forests — was partly to blame for the string of immense and deadly wildfires in recent years. …The death toll of the Camp Fire, now at 76, has climbed steadily as a team of more than 500 specialists searches for human remains.

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Trump’s claim of poor California forest management rings true — to a degree

By Phillip Matier and Andrew Ross
The San Francisco Chronicle
November 18, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

“A century of mismanaging Sierra Nevada forests has brought an unprecedented environmental catastrophe that impacts all Californians.” That’s not a tweet from President Trump, but the opening line of a February report by California’s Little Hoover Commission investigating fire danger in the state. “The immediate crisis is visible to anyone who has traveled recently in the Sierra Nevada, especially in its southern range,” Commission Chairman Pedro Navawrote in the cover letter for “Fire on the Mountain,” an 82-page report. The report outlines factors that have led to the current forest crisis, including years of poor or nonexistent management policies, and the recent drought and a beetle infestation that killed an estimated 129 million trees across the state — trees that could go up in flames. Still, Nava was a bit taken aback by Trump’s Nov. 10 tweet blaming the state’s “gross mismanagement” for the fires.

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Why we’re trying to lift the ‘Roadless Rule’

By Heidi Hansen, deputy commissioner, Alaska Department of Natural Resources
Anchorage Daily News
November 17, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

From the North Slope to the Panhandle, and the Interior to the Peninsula, rural Alaskans are prioritizing their access – to each other, the rest of Alaska and the world.Cost is often the limiting factor. But not always. Many community leaders want to improve access without jeopardizing the unique character and resources of their communities. It’s literally a fight for survival for some small communities. For others, it’s part of a long-term plan to become more sustainable.One of the regions where the state of Alaska is working with local communities and stakeholders to increase rural access and connectivity is Southeast Alaska, where the U.S. Forest Service is taking a fresh look at how it manages roadless areas in the Tongass National Forest.

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Pacific Northwest woodlands will be less vulnerable to drought, fire than Rocky Mountain, Sierra forests

By Steve Lundeberg
Oregon State University
November 16, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Forests in the Pacific Northwest will be less vulnerable to drought and fire over the next three decades than those in the Rocky Mountains and Sierra Nevada, computer modeling by researchers in Oregon State University’s College of Forestry shows. The findings, published today in Global Change Biology, represent an important tool for scientists and land managers because woodlands throughout the western United States are under increasing stress from accelerated rates of drought-related mortality related to global, human-caused climate change. Also, the Northwest’s hemlock, Douglas-fir and redwood forests have tremendous potential to counteract climate change via their carbon-sequestration abilities, meaning policies that promote stewardship of those forests is critical, the scientists say.

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California fire has claimed 63 as missing list grows to 631

By Paul Elias and Kathleen Ronayne
The Associated Press
November 16, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

MAGALIA, Calif. (AP) — At least 63 are now dead from a Northern California wildfire, and officials say they have a missing persons list with 631 names on it in an ever-evolving accounting of the missing after the nation’s deadliest wildfire in a century. …Authorities were making the list public so people could see if they were on it and let authorities know they were safe, Honea said. …On Thursday, firefighters reported progress in battling the nearly 220-square-mile blaze that displaced 52,000 people and destroyed more than 9,500 homes. It was 40 percent contained, fire officials said. 

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Catastrophic wildfires and climate change lead to growing acceptance of ‘pyrosilviculture’

By University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources
YubaNet
November 15, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

For millennia, fires periodically burned through California forests, thinning trees, reducing shrubbery and clearing out downed branches and debris. Without periodic fire, the forests became more dense, with spaces between large trees filling in with a thick carpet of duff, seedlings and shrubs. As a result, today’s forests are prone to more intense and damaging fires… These fires are … threatening large swaths of forest, towns, and even urban areas. …Making peace with fire and turning it into a useful tool, rather than a raging threat, was the objective of an October meeting in Shaver Lake of UC Cooperative Extension forestry and natural resources scientists, Southern California Edison forest managers, CALFIRE officials and U.S. Forest Service representatives. The event also raised awareness of “pyrosilviculture,” a new forest management term coined by UC fire scientist Rob York to emphasize the importance of fire in silviculture, the management of forests for wood.

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As wildfires grow deadlier, officials search for solutions

By Matthew Brown and Ellen Knickmeyer
The Associated Press
November 14, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

BILLINGS, Montana — Creating fire buffers between housing and dry brush, burying spark-prone power lines and lighting more controlled burns to keep vegetation in check could give people a better chance of surviving wildfires, according to experts searching for ways to reduce growing death tolls from increasingly severe blazes in California and across the U.S. West. Western wildfires have grown ever more lethal, a grim reality that’s been driven by more housing developments sprawling into the most fire-prone grasslands and brushy canyons, experts say. Many of the ranchers and farmers who once managed those landscapes are gone, leaving neglected terrain that has grown thick with vegetation that can explode into flames when sparked. …However, most of California’s deadly fires of recent years have been in grasslands and brushy chaparral, Keeley said. “Most destructive fires are not in the forest. Thinning isn’t going to change anything,” he said.

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Old growth trees cut in violation of 4FRI mission

By Scott Buffon
Arizona Daily Sun
November 14, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

The Four Forest Restoration Initiative has been spent years strengthening and supporting the public’s faith in their mission to cut down trees across northern Arizona, or what they call their “social license.” But the United States Forest Service made a decision out at the West Escudilla Project to cut down over 1,300 trees that were more than 150 years old, fearing an infestation of an invasive dwarf mistletoe. In response to the action, the 4FRI stakeholders released a letter, calling the treatment “inconsistent” with their current practices. “Members of the 4FRI [stakeholders group] have spent nearly two decades building the social license that made landscape-scale restoration a reality on Arizona national forests,” according to the stakeholder letter. “There is broad stakeholder consensus and science support for retraining old-growth trees, including wildlife habitat, increased genetic diversity, and potential increased fire and climate resiliency.”

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Humboldt State University to acquire 884-acre forest for research purposes

The Times-Standard
November 14, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Humboldt State University is on the verge of receiving an 884-acre forest near campus, which will be used for research and field experiences. The effort is possible due to a generous donation from R.H. Emmerson & Son LLC, as well as major grants from state and federal agencies. …The area includes extensive stands of second-growth Redwoods as well as old-growth Cedar. It is important habitat for a variety of species including northern spotted owl, bald eagle, Pacific fisher, and red-legged frog, and it is important for the health of downstream species including coho salmon and chinook. Once HSUreceives the property, it will be permanently protected from conversion to any non-forestry uses.

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Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest Sells Most Timber For Harvest Since Early 1990s

By Danielle Kaeding
Wisconsin Public Radio News
November 19, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Timber sales on the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest have increased for the sixth year in a row. The forest sold 128.7 million board feet of timber this past fiscal year. Forest Supervisor Paul Strong said that’s the most timber sold on the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest since the early 1990s. The forest has been able to sell more stands of timber for harvest through an agreement with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources under the Good Neighbor Authority, which allows the state to conduct management of national forest land. “They’ve been a steady partner delivering their share of this program for the last three years,” Strong said. The state sold 30.7 million board feet under the agreement, said Jeffrey Olsen, national forest specialist in the Good Neighbor Authority program with the DNR.

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Timber industry suffering after Hurricane Michael

By Shelly Campbell
WJHG-TV
November 15, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

JACKSON COUNTY, Fla.- You could say Kim Barber comes by the timber industry naturally. “We moved up here from south Florida in ’95,” Kim said. “My family, we own Chipola Timberland.” The family owns roughly 7,000 acres of trees–many of which are now on the ground after Hurricane Michael. “I’m still hoping I’m in a dream and I’m going to wake up in the morning and everything’s going to be back to normal, but it hasn’t happened yet, so I guess this is the new normal,” Kim said. Each year, the Barbers clear cut and replant, but recent heavy rains have also posed challenges. 

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Forestry work at Sparta Mountain to begin after Thanksgiving

By Bruce Scruton
The New Jersey Herald
November 15, 2018
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

HARDYSTON — Forestry work is scheduled to begin on a section of the Sparta Mountain Wildlife Management Area in the area between Lake Gerard and Tamarak Lake. …The area to be worked will be about 17 acres in what is designated as Stand 33 in the forestry management plan approved for the wildlife management area in March 2017 after more than two years of controversy. …About a quarter of the existing trees in the 17 acres of work will be cut or girdled and left as standing dead wood. …According to the DEP, no heavy machinery or chemicals will be used, and none of the cut trees will be removed or sold. There have been signs of beech bark disease, and the forestry work may include treatments to slow the spread of the condition. …The New Jersey Sierra Club accused the DEP of a sort of “bait-and-switch.”

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Part of the Answer to Climate Change May Be America’s Trees and Dirt, Scientists Say

By Brad Plumer
New York Times
November 14, 2018
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

WASHINGTON — When people think of potential solutions to global warming, they tend to visualize technologies like solar panels or electric cars. A new study published on Wednesday, however, found that better management of forests, grasslands and soils in the United States could offset as much as 21 percent of the country’s annual greenhouse gas emissions. At the high end of the projections, that would be roughly equivalent to taking every single car and truck in the country off the road. The paper, published in the journal Science Advances, identified a number of promising strategies, like replanting trees on degraded lands, changing logging practices to better protect existing forests and sequestering more carbon in farmland soils through new agricultural techniques.

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What climate change will do to the forests

By Ryan Cooper
The Week Magazine
November 15, 2018
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

At the beginning of October, California’s fire season was already threatening to be the worst on record. …The total from the first nine months of 2018 alone was considerably more than the 506,000 acres that had burned on state land in all of 2017, which was itself more than twice as much as burned in 2016. …One slim hope for the rest of the year was that fall rains might keep California’s trees and vegetation relatively moist. But the rains did not come. …Climate change will have two contradictory effects on forests, William Anderegg, a climate scientist at the University of Utah who specializes in tree biology, told The Week. On the one hand, some of its effects will stimulate forest growth. …But on the other hand, a warmer world would also harm forests because it means more drought, more fires, and more insect infestations.

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Study: NW Forests Will Weather Climate Change Better Than Others In The West

By Jes Burns
Oregon Public Broadcasting
November 19, 2018
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

Climate change is expected to increase drought and wildfire vulnerability in forests across the West. But new research out of Oregon State University shows that some places will fare better than others. The Douglas fir forests of western Oregon and Washington are among the least susceptible to drought and fire over the next thirty years. …Other forests types are in for a much more volatile future. This includes the forests east of Warm Springs, in north-central Oregon, which are expected to suffer drought. Wildfire vulnerability is high in the Klamath Siskiyou Mountains of southwest Oregon, as well as across the border from Hood River in Washington. Fire vulnerability is elevated in California’s Sierra Nevada, too. …Buotte says the research does not predict fire or drought severity — just whether or not a specific forest in a specific location will experience drought or fire.

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Study finds healthy group of polar bears in sea near Alaska

Associated Press in Vancouver Sun
November 15, 2018
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States, US West

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The first formal count of polar bears in waters between the United States and Russia indicates they’re doing better than some of their cousins elsewhere. Polar bears are listed as a threatened species because of diminished sea ice due to climate change. But university and federal researchers estimate a healthy and abundant population of nearly 3,000 animals in the Chukchi Sea off Alaska’s northwest coast, according to a study published in Scientific Reports. “In the near-term, it’s absolutely good news,” said lead author Eric Regehr, … University of Washington’s Polar Science Center. In the longer term, it doesn’t mean the Chukchi Sea bear population will not be affected. “Polar bears need ice to hunt seals, and the ice is projected to decline until the underlying problem of climate change is addressed,” Regehr said.

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Fighting Climate Change Could Make New Hampshire Forests More Profitable

By Annie Ropeik
New Hampshire Public Radio
November 19, 2018
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

New research suggests New Hampshire forests could help store more climate-warming carbon dioxide while growing higher-value trees. The study, from Clark University and the Nature Conservancy, says better land management – especially reforestation – could store up to a fifth of America’s climate-warming carbon emissions.  The U.S. emitted about 5.8 billion tons of carbon in 2016. That carbon builds up in the atmosphere and leads to slow but steady warming that drives sea level rise, more extreme weather and other harmful effects of climate change. But trees can also store that carbon, preventing it from concentrating in the atmosphere. UNH forestry professor John Gunn says for New Hampshire’s forests to contribute more, landowners will need incentives to grow longer-lived, higher-quality trees.

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Health & Safety

Hornbeck man killed in job related accident

KTBS News
November 18, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: US East, United States

FLORIEN, LA – A Hornbeck man died early Sunday morning in a job-related accident at Boise Cascade in Florien. The victim, 24-year-old Tory L. Rainer, was pronounced dead in the scene despite life-saving efforts, Deputy Coroner Ron Rivers said. An autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of death. Rivers said the accident happened shortly after Rainer clocked in at 3 a.m. He headed to his assigned work area, which was down for maintenance, and began helping co-workers with changing out a lathe blade. That’s when the lathe swung down and pinned Rainer. Employees hoisted the lathe off Rainer and began CPR. They continued until paramedics arrived. Death was called on the scene, Rivers said. 

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Fatality under investigation at Boise Cascade plywood manufacturing facility

By Boise Cascade
Global Newswire
November 19, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: US East, United States

BOISE, Idaho – Boise Cascade is working with local authorities to investigate a fatal accident that occurred at the company’s plywood manufacturing operation in Florien, Louisiana. At approximately 3:20 a.m. on November 18th, an employee was performing maintenance repair on a piece of equipment. The details surrounding how the accident occurred is under investigation. …”We are saddened to report this tragic accident,” said Larry Hataway, Southern Region Human Resources Manager. “We offer our deepest condolences to his loved ones. Counseling and support resources will be made available to his coworkers.” The Florien location employs approximately 420 people. Occupational Safety and Health Administration has been notified of the incident. Boise Cascade has suspended operations at the site until further notice.

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With workplace fatalities up, BOCES buckles down on safety with ‘model’ forestry program

By Colleen Wilson
The Journal News
November 14, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: US East, United States

The first thing John Madden shows his urban forestry students is how to properly adjust a hard hat and how to identify a worn one that could get a worker hurt. “There’s so few highly-skilled young people coming out to get into the industry and these industries are so dangerous, so without any skills it’s very easy to get seriously injured,” he said. Madden oversees the Urban Forestry and Arboriculture Career and Technical Education program offered at Putnam/Northern Westchester (PNW) BOCES. The program has been around for 50 years but is getting new notice. Last month, a state agency recognized the program as a statewide model for other technical education programs.

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