Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: March 18, 2014

Business & Politics

Interfor Workers in Castlegar/Grand Forks Ratify Five-year Deal

Castlegar Source
March 17, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

A meeting in Castlegar Monday saw Interfor workers vote overwhelmingly in favour of a new five-year deal, according to a press release issued this morning: Following four days of bargaining in late February with INTERFOR for members at the Castlegar and Grand Forks Sawmills, USW Local 1-405 and 1-423 announced today that the members have ratified a new five-year collective agreement. The new agreement included some major improvements for the unionized workers at the mills, including a 13-per-cent wage increase over the life of the agreement; $3,400 in bonuses over the five-year term…

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B.C. transportation minister appeals to Ottawa to end truckers’ dispute with Port Metro Vancouver

Post Media
March 17, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

B.C.’s Transportation Minister Todd Stone will appeal to federal and Port Metro Vancouver officials Monday in hopes of resolving a dispute between the port and container truck drivers that he said is compromising the B.C. economy. Stone said he planned to speak with both federal Transport Minister Lisa Raitt and Infrastructure Minister Denny Lebel to encourage them to consider all options. He noted the provincial government has no jurisdiction to legislate an end to the dispute because the port is federally regulated.

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Interfor Completes Acquisition of Tolleson

Marketwired
March 17, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

INTERNATIONAL FOREST PRODUCTS LIMITED announced today it has completed the acquisition of Tolleson Lumber Company of Perry, Georgia, from Ilim Timber Continental, SA. 
Immediately following the closing, Paul Herbert, who retired recently as the CEO of Ilim Group, a company indirectly affiliated with Ilim Timber, was appointed to Interfor’s Board of Directors. Mr. Herbert will stand for election as a director of the Company at Interfor’s Annual General Meeting in May. 

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Canada Pulp Mills May Halt Operations Amid Port Truck Strike

Bloomberg News
March 17, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Pulp mills in northern Alberta may be forced to suspend operations as early as this week because a labor dispute by truckers at Canada’s largest port is causing lumber to pile up. The strike has stopped products from reaching Port Metro Vancouver, said James Gorman, chief executive officer of the Council of Forest Industries, an industry group that represents companies doing business in British Columbia. About 2,000 trucks move items to and from the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s facility, which handled 135 million tons of cargo in 2013, up 9 percent from a year earlier, according to its website.

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Canfor mill closes in Quesnel

HQ Prince George
March 17, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Monday is the day roughly 200 Canfor mill workers in Quesnel have been dreading. This as the mill is finally closing its doors. Quesnel Mayor Mary Sjostrom admits it’s a tough day and says the impact will be significant on the local economy though she says it’s too early to predict how damaging it will be. She estimates of the 200 job losses over 60 workers plan to retire in Quesnel, another 75 will stay to find work, close to 40 have requested transfers to other cities while close to 20 workers have not decided what they will do.

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WorkSafeBC claims clash with internal documents

by Gordon Hoekstra
Vancouver Sun
March 16, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

WorkSafeBC has had special constables with the power to investigate fatalities since 2007 and expanded the program in 2013, according to an internal document obtained by The Vancouver Sun. The information in the company news document — “Constables among us” — appears to contradict information WorkSafeBC provided Wednesday to The Vancouver Sun that said special constable status only applied to fraud investigations. Special constables must be trained how to conduct interviews and seize evidence so it can stand up in court, issues at the heart of the Crown’s rejection of charges in January in the deadly Babine Forest Products dust-fuelled explosion two years ago.

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Reality Check: US Lumber Prices Await Signal from Housing Mkt

MNI News
March 17, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

PHILADELPHIA – U.S. lumber prices showed little movement in early 2014 at levels below last year’s highs as the construction industry stalled in frigid conditions, and dealers wait for any signs of a sustained increase in the annual rate of housing starts, lumber industry participants told MNI. The framing lumber composite price, an industry benchmark quoted by Random Lengths, an industry publication, stood at $387 per thousand board feet on March 14, little changed from $388 in the week of March 7, but well below $432 a year earlier. 

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US company eyes $1.7bn Aussie timber

Dow Jones Newswires
March 18, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

Not long ago overseas forestry companies were snapping up businesses and entire timber districts in Australia with the glee of mythical lumberjack Paul Bunyan. Now San Francisco-based New Forests is planning a new wave of deals, targeting up to $1.7 billion of Australia’s state-owned pine forests ahead of an expected surge in demand from China and the US. The company said Monday that it had closed a new $707 million investment fund for timber assets in Australia and New Zealand. 

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Mexican cartels diversifying from drugs into mining, logging and extortion

Associated Press
March 17, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

LAZARO CARDENAS, Mexico — Forget crystal meth. The pseudo-religious Knights Templar drug cartel in western Mexico has diversified to the point that drug trafficking doesn’t even rank among its top sources of income. The cartel counts illegal mining, logging and extortion as its biggest moneymakers, said Alfredo Castillo, the Mexican government’s special envoy sent to restore the rule of law in Michoacan, the state controlled by the Knights Templar the last several years.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

British Columbia Wood Provides Backdrop for Community Theatre at TED2014 Conference

Marketwired
March 17, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

The community stage for the sold-out TED2014 conference in Vancouver highlights the finest BC wood from Interfor mills, and the work of award-winning Vancouver architect Michael Green. The stage will be home to talks by more than 50 popular past TED speakers invited back to share updates on their work, as well as those given by this year’s TED Fellows. The backdrop for the community theatre is a five-metre (16-foot) high wall of 400 interlinking planter boxes made with BC Hem-Fir and Cedar lumber donated by Interfor from its mills in Castlegar and Maple Ridge.

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Federal government throws support behind wooden skyscrapers

The Oregonian
March 18, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

The federal government is promoting an alternative building material for skyscrapers that’s as strong as steel or concrete, but with a smaller price tag and environmental footprint. This miracle product? It’s wood. Some architects and engineers say new wood products make it possible to build wooden structures much taller than previously considered safe. Now the U.S. Department of Agriculture is throwing its weight behind those emerging technologies. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack will announce at the White House today his department would put funding toward training architects and engineers in using for taller construction.

Press Release from the USDA

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Forestry

MaryAnne Arcand Passes Away

250 News
March 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Prince George, B.C.- She was known as the “Bulldozer” the one who would press forward for a cause and she didn’t let anyone, or anything, stand in her way. MaryAnne Arcand passed away today, succumbing to an illness which first surfaced last fall. She passed away at the Prince George Hospice House, surrounded by family. She was 59. With the Central Interior Logging Association for the past five years, she was most recently the Executive Director of that Association.

Safety Champion MaryAnne Arcand dies from The Prince George Citizen
MaryAnne Arcand, One Hell of a Woman from from The 250 News

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Trial set for contempt case against Perry Ridge protesters

Nelson Star
March 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Two people arrested earlier this month for blocking a Slocan Valley logging road are now facing charges of contempt of court. The accused — Marilyn James and her son Dennis Zarelli, both of the Sinixt Nation — were scheduled to appear at BC Supreme Court in Nelson this morning. However, when their case was called before Justice Mark McEwan, only James was present. A man standing in for Zarelli, who asked to be called Justin, explained that his friend was unable to attend court because his wife had recently died.

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Nature Conservancy gets donation of N.S. land with old growth forest

Chronicle Herald
March 18, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

HALIFAX — About 150 hectares of land that contains an old growth forest and a special habitat for at-risk birds in Nova Scotia is being donated to the Nature Conservancy of Canada. The group says the land in the Long Tusket Lake area also has wetland suitable for waterfowl nesting and almost two kilometres of lakeshore. The group says the stands of red spruce, white pine and red maple are home to uncommon and at-risk birds, like the Canada warbler, chimney swift and common nighthawk.

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Greenpeace activists scale cross atop Mount Royal

Montreal Gazette
March 18, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

MONTREAL — Protesters from Greenpeace scaled the cross atop Mount Royal Tuesday morning and hung a large vertical banner that said “Justice?” The climbers in red jumpsuits reached the top of the iconic structure before 7 a.m. as police cordoned off the area from curious joggers and dog walkers. A second banner “Défondons la forêt” was unfurled shortly after 7 a.m. A spokesperson for Greenpeace said the group is concerned about logging and clearing in the boreal forest. Firefighters are on site in case the activists need help, but in the past Greenpeace has shown it has some skilled climbers in its midst.

Greenpeace dresses Mount Royal Cross with banners from CBC News

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Congress studies new way to fund massive wildfires

Missoulian
March 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

BOISE, Idaho — A bipartisan effort underway in Congress would change the way the country pays to fight catastrophic wildfires, tapping natural disaster funds instead of money intended for fire prevention, lawmakers from Oregon and Idaho said Monday. In the past, as fire seasons have progressed, money set aside for forest thinning and other fire prevention efforts has been syphoned to pay for battling the biggest blazes. “And then, of course, the problem gets worse,” said Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, who met with lawmakers to discuss the proposed budget reform.

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Probe hits radio station’s handling of story

AZ Daily Sun
March 16, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A report from the ombudsman’s office at the Corporation for Public Broadcasting was released last week, questioning the editorial independence of National Public Radio affiliate KNAU from its home university in killing a story. The investigation, titled “Conflicts at KNAU,” examines a now-departed station general manager’s motivation for killing a controversial news series focusing on deep-seated problems with the $280 million U.S. Forest Service contract for the Four Forests Restoration Initiative. The report investigated the timing of a $10,000 donation to KNAU from a university research institute with ties to the 4FRI contractors.

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There’s green in New Hampshire’s forest

March 18, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Every New Hampshire resident knows that fall foliage is a major tourist attraction for the state, but how much revenue does it and other forest-based economic activities actually pull in? According to a 2013 study conducted by the New Hampshire-based North East State Foresters Association and the Northern Forest Center, also headquartered in the Granite State, leaf-peeping accounts for nearly half, or 47 percent, of the $1.4 billion that New Hampshire rakes in annually from the forest-based recreation economy. According to the report, all forest-based industries contribute $3.8 billion to New Hampshire’s economy.

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State plan to increase timber harvesting on public lands hits resistance

BDN Maine
March 17, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

AUGUSTA, Maine — A plan within the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry to markedly increase timber harvesting limits on publicly owned lands has caused concern among environmentalists who say the increase is unsustainable. Department spokesman John Bott confirmed Monday that the department has internally agreed to increase the timber harvesting limit on public lands from last year’s ceiling of 115,000 cords per acre per year to 141,000 cords in the current fiscal year, 160,000 cords in 2015 and 180,000 cords in 2016. The limit would remain at 180,000 cords per acre per year for 20 years thereafter as long as periodic evaluation of the plan deems it appropriate.

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There’s green in New Hampshire’s forest

March 18, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

Every New Hampshire resident knows that fall foliage is a major tourist attraction for the state, but how much revenue does it and other forest-based economic activities actually pull in? According to a 2013 study conducted by the New Hampshire-based North East State Foresters Association and the Northern Forest Center, also headquartered in the Granite State, leaf-peeping accounts for nearly half, or 47 percent, of the $1.4 billion that New Hampshire rakes in annually from the forest-based recreation economy. According to the report, all forest-based industries contribute $3.8 billion to New Hampshire’s economy.

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Hodgman tells green groups: back off

The Sydney Morning Herald
March 18, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Tasmania’s incoming premier Will Hodgman is demanding green groups accept the Liberal party has a mandate to reboot the state’s logging industry. Mr Hodgman has used his first media conference since his election on Saturday to declare environmentalists will no longer hold Tasmania “to ransom”. “I would hope that the environmental movement accepts the will of the people, accept that there is a new way of doing business when it comes to our forest industry, accept that the Liberal party and new government will not be held to ransom by a minority group,” the premier-elect told reporters in Hobart on Tuesday.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Discovery of smallest tree gives clues about climate change

The Westmorland Gazette
March 17, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

THE discovery of the Lake District’s smallest tree could help monitor climate change. Since the start of its search in 2012, Cumbria Wildlife Trust has mapped the location of the dwarf willow to 54 Wainwright summits. Mike Douglas, the trust’s upland plant expert, said: “Although records provided a good basis for our survey, this is the first time that anyone has attempted to quantify and map the whereabouts of dwarf willow. “Our volunteers have found it down to an altitude of 535 metres on Buck-barrow, an outlying fell to the south west of the Lakes, and on the summit of Scafell Pike.”

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