Tree Frog Forestry News

Monthly Archives: May 2014

Business & Politics

Rochon: U.S. housing sector still interesting to investors

Montreal Gazette
May 26, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

MONTREAL — This isn’t news to any of you: the housing industry in the United States was hit hard during the last recession. From the top of 2005 to the bottom of 2009, housing starts dropped from close to 2.2 million units to 500,000, a steep decline of 73 per cent. But in early 2012, the industry started to turn around. Housing starts reached 1.1 million last November but fell to 900,000 in early 2014. Bad weather was probably the main reason for the decline. So it was a tough first quarter for many construction-related companies.

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Alberta Forest Products Association appointed Paul Whittaker as President and CEO

Lesprom
May 22, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Board of Directors of the Alberta Forest Products Association (AFPA) appoints Paul Whittaker to the position of President and CEO, effective June 2, 2014, as AFPA said in the press release received by Lesprom Network. A highly experienced and well-regarded civil servant, Whittaker brings to the Association an extensive background in issues management, strategic planning and policy development. In his 31 year career with the Government of Alberta, Whittaker held progressively senior roles including his most recent positions as Deputy Minister of Municipal Affairs and President of the Alberta Housing

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Resolute Forest workers get four years of pay increases

CBC News
May 26, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

A union representing workers at Canada’s biggest forest products company has ratified a new four-year collective agreement covering approximately 2,000 employees at 11 of the company’s mills in Ontario and Quebec. A spokesperson for Unifor told CBC News the agreement includes wage increases of 2% each year. In a press release, the union also said the deal — approved by 86 per cent of workers — did not include economic concessions.

Resolute contract regains some of the ground lost by workers in 2010 from The Victoria Times Colonist

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Unifor members ratify collective agreement with Resolute Forest Products

Canadian Press
May 26, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

MONTREAL – Unionized employees at Resolute Forest Products in Ontario and Quebec have ratified a new four-year collective agreement with the newsprint, pulp and lumber producer. The agreement with Montreal-based Resolute (TSX:RFP) sets a pattern for negotiations by some 8,000 employees and other forestry companies in Eastern Canada represented by Unifor. The deal, which the union says doesn’t include any economic concessions, was approved by 86 per cent of workers who cast ballots over several weeks since a tentative deal was reached May 9.

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Resolute defends lawsuit against ‘biased’ forest audits at shareholders meeting

Canadian Press
May 23, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

MONTREAL – Resolute Forest Products has defended its decision to launch an unprecedented lawsuit against the group it contracted to conduct audits of its forestry operations in northern Ontario. Chief executive Richard Garneau told shareholders Friday at a meeting in St. Felicien, Que., that the company took the unusual step of suing Rainforest Alliance and obtaining a court order to seal a damning audit because he said it contains biased interpretations, errors and omissions…and a clear conflict of interest.

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Small contractors call for more access to Crown land

Chronicle Herald
May 22, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

For 66 years, Eugene Ingram has worked in the woods. And through all those years the Liverpool resident has prided himself on never needing to cut on Crown land. But this year, Ingram, 76, is concerned that without access to Crown land he won’t be able to meet the demands of his customers for firewood. “I have a lot of people calling me scared because they’re not going to get their wood,” said Ingram, who estimates he sells “a couple thousand cords of wood a year” to people, mostly in Queens County. …A big concern for Ingram is that some companies do have access to that
land. For example, the former power plant in Brooklyn, which is now a
biomass facility owned by Emera, has access, he said.

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New buyer emerges for Marathon Pulp

Northern Ontario Business
May 23, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

A new frontrunner has emerged as a potential purchaser of the former Marathon Pulp mill in northwestern Ontario. Reliance Developments Corporation has signed a letter of intent with Tembec to acquire the shuttered mill and its lakeside property. Green Investment Group Inc. (GIGI), an American redeveloper that was in the final stages of purchasing the mill, has “thrown in the towel” claiming the Ontario Ministry of Environment (MOE) put financial conditions on the sale that were too onerous.

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New Tacoma mill owner plans $60 million in improvements

The News Tribune
May 21, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

The new owner of one of Tacoma’s more prominent industries, the former Simpson paper mill, says it plans to spend $60 million or more in the next three years to improve the mill’s energy efficiency, reliability and aesthetics. RockTenn Co’s. James B. Porter, president of the company’s Paper Solutions division, said the company wants to make the mill, which operated for some three decades under Simpson’s ownership, better and more reliable.

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Applause as new sawmill approved by city

The Siskiyou Daily News
May 23, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

YREKA – The Yreka Planning Commission approved a conditional use permit and Mitigated Negative Declaration for Fruit Growers to allow for the construction, establishment and operation of a small-log sawmill Wednesday. With standing room only, the hall was full of support and applause for the new mill in Yreka. Fruit Growers President Mark Lindgren was impressed to see the crowd in complete support. “It’s overwhelming to see everyone come out,” he said.

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John Day Mill adding 20-30 jobs

Malheur Lumber Co. will add 20 to 30 jobs at its mill in John Day, Ore.
Capital Press
May 22, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US West

JOHN DAY, Ore. — Malheur Lumber Co. plans to add 20 to 30 jobs at its John Day mill, going beyond a single shift for the first time since 1998. Bruce Daucsavage, president of parent company Ochoco Lumber, said the expansion is due to the strong collaboration efforts and the launch of the 10-year stewardship contract on the Malheur National Forest. “This has really enlivened our opportunities for the future,” he said. It’s quite a turnaround, he acknowledged, from “the doldrums” of two years ago.

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Pine logs again sailing out of BR-area port

The Advocate
May 24, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

Pine logs are rolling onto ocean-going vessels anchored at Port Allen again. Amite-based Ralph Stewart Logging LLC this month stuffed 48,055 metric tons of Louisiana and Mississippi logs into The Marouli, a 623-foot-long, Panamanian-flagged, Greek-owned vessel. Deck hands weighed anchor last week and headed to a destination in China, said Jay Hardman, executive director of the Port of Greater Baton Rouge. All that wood was worth more than $2.5 million, according to an LSU forest economist.

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Latvia’s forest industry exports increase 14.5%

IHB
May 26, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

In January-March 2014, Latvia’s forest industry’s exports continued to rise, as the Baltic Course reports. Exports amounted EUR 498,9 million (+14.5%), as compared to EUR 435,4 million in the same period of 2013. Wood and wood articles shipments reached EUR 436,5 million in Q1/2014, which is 17.5% more than in 2013. Latvia’s largest export markets were UK, Sweden and Germany. 14.1% or EUR 70.5 million worth of Latvian forest industry exports went to Britain, 12.5% to Sweden (EUR 63.3 million) and 11.5% (EUR 57.5) to Germany.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

B.C. and Chinese district sign MOU to promote B.C. wood products

BC Government
May 23, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER – British Columbia has signed a five-year agreement with Shanghai’s Pudong District to promote wood-frame construction and B.C. wood products to meet the Chinese district’s needs for energy-efficient, low-carbon buildings. The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed by Forestry Innovation Investment, the Government of B.C.’s market development agency for wood products, and the Shanghai Pudong Construction and Transportation Commission. The agreement calls for further co-operation between the two agencies on the development of wood-frame construction technology in Pudong.

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WIDC Links to District Energy System

250 News
May 21, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

Prince George, B.C. – The Wood Innovation and Design Centre at 5th and George in downtown Prince George is now the 8th building to link up to the city’s District Energy System (DES). Crews have been working on the connection this week, and expect to have the work completed and the trench back filled by Tuesday of next week. The connection was cause for a subdued celebration this morning as the city said thanks to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and the Federal Government for their financial support in the development of the DES.

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Forestry

Jens Wieting: B.C. forest giveaway threatens to speed up collapse

The Georgia Straight
May 26, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Here in British Columbia, we are seeing the same ominous pattern when it comes to our forests. Even in regions that are running out of trees, government acts as if finding more trees to cut is the only priority, no matter what the cost in the longer term. To this short-sighted end, the provincial government is inviting comments until the end of May on a tenure change proposal that offers logging companies a change from “volume-based” to “secure area-based” tenures in the form of tree farm licences. This would give greater corporate control over more public forest land.

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Opinion: Tree-farm licences a failure in forest management

Vancouver Sun
May 26, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

British Columbia’s forests are 93-per cent owned by commoners and comprise a part of what has been known for centuries as The Commons. As such, it is incumbent on policy-makers to ensure the common interest prevails over self-interest and government interest in the governance of these forestlands. Unfortunately, misguided thinking is undermining the common interest as the government struggles to deal with the aftermath of the mountain-pine-beetle infestation in Interior B.C. For over half a century, the forests ministry allowed vast areas of aging pine forests in the B.C. Interior to become increasingly susceptible to infestation by the mountain pine beetle.

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Logging rights consultation fails to ask the big questions

West Coast Environmental Law
May 21, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The provincial government’s current “Area Based Forest Tenure Consultation”, which ends on May 30, 2014 is about large-scale logging interests and how much control they should have over BC’s forests. It fails to ask the big questions: Who should be managing BC’s forests and for what purpose? How can we address decades of unsustainable overcutting? Instead, the consultation looks at further entrenching corporate control. …But although the government’s consultation website talks a lot about
area-based tenure, the real focus of what the government is proposing is
somewhat narrower.

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Hundreds evacuated from Sask. town as forest fire threatens only access road

CTV News
May 25, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Around 900 residents have been evacuated from a northern Saskatchewan First Nations community, as a massive forest fire threatens to cut off the only road out of town. While flames have not touched Stanley Mission yet — officials say the fire is about five to 10 kilometres away — a general evacuation order was issued on Saturday. Approximately 600 residents are still in Stanley Mission, but hundreds have already left, many of them fleeing to Saskatoon.

Stanley Mission ordered to evacuate as fire edges closer from The CBC News

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VIEW: Area-based tenures are not the answer for BC forests

By Torrance Coste
The Tyee
May 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Another spring, another attempt to hand over logging rights to private interests in B.C. The B.C. government is reviving its push to convert Crown forest lands from volume-based (usually known as Timber Supply Areas, or TSAs) to area-based tenures (Tree Farm Licences or TFLs). Area-based tenures give more control to the tenure holder, and less to the Ministry of Forests, essentially creating a system that resembles private management on public land. Last year, the minister of forests attempted to rush a bill containing these changes through the legislature before anyone noticed.

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Government sets logging sights on ‘precious jewel’ of B.C. forests

Globe and Mail
May 25, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Gambier Island sits in the heart of Howe Sound, a thickly forested, dark green hump of land surrounded by a blue ocean, just around the corner from the urban sprawl of Metro Vancouver. Driving to Whistler on the Sea to Sky Highway, you see the stunningly beautiful island to the west as you pass through Lions Bay, with the peaks of Tetrahedron Provincial Park in the distance. That view may change soon, however, if the provincial government goes ahead with plans to allow logging in two woodlots covering more than 3,000 acres on the northeast end of the i

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Government not privatizing forests

Letter from Steve Thomson, Minister of forests, lands and natural resource operations
Victoria Times Colonist
May 24, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

I would like to correct some assertions made in the commentary. This government is not interested in privatizing B.C.’s public forests. We remain committed to managing our forests sustainably now and into the future. B.C. is recognized as a world leader of sustainable forest management — more than 52 million hectares are certified to one of three internationally recognized sustainable-forest-management certification standards. B.C. is also unique in having an independent Forest Practices Board specifically set up to monitor and audit forest practices and investigate complaints.

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B.C. rights tribunal awards $600,000 to tree planters who faced discrimination

Canadian Press
May 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER – Racial taunts and other discriminatory behaviour aimed at a group of African workers has prompted the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal to order the owners of a tree planting firm to pay them more than $600,000 for injury to their dignity and self respect. In a ruling released Friday, tribunal member Norman Trerise said the owners of Khaira Enterprises Ltd. had no regard for employment standards for the 55 workers who launched the human rights complaints. “There is little doubt that every worker who worked for Khaira in 2010 experienced some form of adverse treatment,” Trerise said in his ruling.

55 tree planters winn $700k over ‘slave-like’ discrimination in BC from The CBC News

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BC sends wildland firefighters, helicopter to fight Alaskan blazes

Seven firefighters and one helicopter will travel from Salmon Arm to Delta Junction
Canadian Press
May 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

KAMLOOPS – Wildland firefighters from BC who use helicopters and rope-rappelling techniques to battle remote forest fire are heading north to help Alaska. Forests and Lands Minister Steve Thomson says seven firefighters, known as rapattack personnel, and one helicopter will travel from Salmon Arm to Delta Junction, Alaska, about 130 kilometres southeast of Fairbanks. Thomson says the firefighters are expected to leave Saturday morning, joining two airtankers, an aircraft, and an air-attack officer who are already in Palmer, Alaska.

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Tolko welcomes caribou strategy

Vernon Morning Star
May 25, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Vernon-based Tolko Industries is praising plans to protect caribou in Manitoba. The Manitoba government and the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement working group, have created a new woodland caribou recovery strategy to ensure sustainability of this sensitive species that will include special consideration of its boreal habitat. “Tolko Industries is committed to responsible and environmentally sustainable management of our forest tenures, much of which includes caribou habitat, and we’ve been involved in the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement right from the start,” said Bob Fleet, vice-president of forestry, environment and communications for Tolko, which has operations in The Pas, Man.

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What is your kid’s teacher saying about forestry?

Providing Pro-D opportunities for teachers since 1967!
Festival of Forestry
May 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Logging on to forestry

We’ve heard the stories over and over—your kid comes home from school concerned because they’ve just learned that Douglas-fir is going to be extinct because of forestry. In a province where the educational system is supported by forestry generated dollars, there is very little knowledge in the system about what we do. The Festival of Forestry’s annual teachers’ tours are changing that. BUT, this year we need a little help. We’re asking Tree Frog readers in the Lower Mainland and on Vancouver Island to invite your kid’s teachers to apply for our tour. All the information is on our website, just follow the read more link. Application deadline is June 6th. Thank you in advance for your support!

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Comment: Join the fight to save B.C.’s public forests

by Vicky Husband
Victoria Times Colonist
May 22, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

….However, our current government has proven to be a poor steward of our public forests. In 2004, the B.C. Liberals enacted legislation that has effectively turned all of our unprotected forests into timber farms that a few large corporations are rapidly clearcutting. Recent reports and court cases have told the government that even the minimum standards in its legislation cannot be enforced and that all of the values that make forest ecosystems healthy and viable are at risk because the Liberals made “timber” the pre-eminent value under the law.

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Series of logging cuts in Kings County troubles neighbours

Officials from J.D. Irving Ltd. and the Department of Natural Resources say all rules were followed
CBC News
May 26, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada


Some people in KIngs County are raising questions about logging cuts since 2012 that carved out more than five square kilometres of forest. Daimen Hardie takes in the view from a hilltop inside the clear cut area and says he’s never seen anything like it. “I’m used to large clearcuts,” said Hardie, whose group Community Forests International owns an organic farm and woodlot in the area. “In Ontario I planted trees in large, burned-out areas, But I’ve never seen anything this wide scale in such steep terrain.”

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Greenpeace calls on Resolute’s CEO to embrace solutions

IHB
May 23, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Following the recent suspension of Resolute’s Forest Products FSC certificate for 6,7 million hectares of Boreal Forest in Quebec and Ontario, after a Rainforest Alliance investigation, the company filled a law suit this week claiming that the audit was biased and riddled with errors. Moreover, Resolute also sued Greenpeace Canada, which in response published a press release on Thursday adressing to the company’s CEO.

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A New Weapon in the Fight to Protect America’s Ash Trees is Under Evaluation

May 18-24, 2014 is Emerald Ash Borer Awareness Week
USDA Blog
May 21, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

In our efforts to preserve and protect American ash trees from the damaging and invasive emerald ash borer (EAB) beetle, APHIS is working diligently to find and implement solutions that have the potential to successfully conserve this beautiful natural resource. Spathius galinae (S. galinae) just could be that newest weapon in the arsenal. The tiny stingless wasp, about the size of a typical mosquito, targets and attacks EAB larvae living under the bark of ash trees.

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Daines-endorsed plan to sell of public lands would have Roosevelt rolling in his grave

Letter by Lyle Quandahl
The Missoulian
May 26, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A lot of strange things have been coming out of Washington, D.C., lately, but a federal budget plan to sell off our public lands which was endorsed by U.S. Rep. Steve Daines, R-Montana, might take the cake. Buried deep in the budget bill is a proposal to start disposing of our public lands legacy piece by piece on the open market to pay for Washington’s spending. Can you hear that sound? That’s the sound of President Teddy Roosevelt rolling over in his grave. While he was President, Teddy Roosevelt created five new national parks, four game preserves and 150 national forests.

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State-federal effort ID’s forest priorities in NV

Associated Press
May 25, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

RENO, Nev. — Ten areas in the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest in Nevada have been selected as top priorities for projects to combat damage from insects and disease that increases the wildfire risk. Plans under the state-federal effort announced this week include forest thinning to reduce the risk of insect infestation or disease, and to remove dead and dying trees. …The priority areas include the Lee Canyon, Deer Creek and Kyle Canyon
watersheds in Clark County, and the Hidden Valley-Steamboat and
Franktown-Frontal Washoe Lake watersheds in Washoe County.

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Ramp Down Old-growth Logging in the Tongass

This week U.S. Forest Service announced its process to transition away from large-scale old-growth logging in the Tongass, but conservation groups caution that this transition must be executed much more quickly than the proposed 10 to 15 year time frame.
InfoZine
May 24, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Washington DC – The agency has released a “notice of intent” to amend the current management plan for America’s largest national forest located in southeast Alaska. While this amendment process will be instrumental to implementing USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack’s 2013 proposal to “speed the transition” away from old-growth logging in the Tongass, the plan set forth today by the Forest Service allows for the continual pillaging of Tongass old-growth trees during the next decade and beyond.

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Wildfire in northern Arizona grows significantly

Associated Press
May 24, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — A wildfire burning in rugged terrain in a northern Arizona canyon grew significantly because of fires intentionally set by crews to rob the blaze of its natural forest fuels, officials said Saturday. Crews have mostly completed burnout operations on the key northern flank of the Slide Fire and are preparing to make similar protection efforts on the fire’s western end. The burnout operations conducted Friday night by fire crews contributed to the heavy smoke over Sedona and Flagstaff. “They are making progress. Having the humidity and cooler temperatures was certainly very helpful. But we are by no means done yet,” Coronado National Forest Service information officer Gerry Perry said.

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Elected officials should support practical land management solutions

The Missoulian
May 25, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Over the last few months, some Montana legislators have been ginning up attention to the idea that national forests and other public lands should be taken away from the federal government and transferred to state or local governments. The proponents of these schemes offer up legal-sounding rhetoric about “divestiture” and “enabling clauses,” and they wax about the riches that would be revealed if Montana’s public lands were turned over to state management. These federal land takeover proposals gloss over the practical realities, like whether state or local agencies have the capacity to manage millions of acres of public land or the tax increases that would be necessary to finance all the activities they envision.

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Alaska wildfire scorches more than 100,000 acres, threatens homes

Reuters
May 25, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

NEW YORK — Firefighters in Alaska on Sunday were battling a massive wildfire that was pushing toward hundreds of homes and vacation cabins, with residents urged to be ready for a possible mandatory evacuation, state emergency officials said. The Funny River wildfire was burning on more than 110,000 acres inside the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge in southern Alaska, expanding from about 96,000 acres on Saturday, according to the Alaska Interagency Incident Management Team.

Area evacuated as Alaska wildfire grows from The Associated Press

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Nourse named deputy regional forester for Alaska

Associated Press
May 25, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

JUNEAU, Alaska — A forest supervisor from Idaho has been named the new deputy regional forester for Alaska. Becky Nourse (nurse) is scheduled to start in her new job July 28. She said she will be based in Juneau. Nourse will succeed Ruth Monahan, who retired in early May. Alaska Regional Forester Beth Pendleton, in a release, said Nourse is well-versed in the issues and lifestyle of Alaska, having spent 14 years of her career on the Tongass and Chugach national forests.

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Cornell business named 2013 Logger of the Year

Daily Press
May 21, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

CORNELL – In partnership with the Michigan Sustainable Forestry Initiative Committee (SIC), the Michigan Association of Timbermen awarded Marvin Nelson Forest Products, Inc., of Cornell, with their highest yearly honor for a logging company in Michigan. Named the 2013 Logger of the Year, the entire Nelson family attended the Timbermen’s 40th Annual Convention on May 2 in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., to accept their award.

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Forestry association aims doubling of Brazilian forest sector by 2020

ITTO
May 27, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

New association asking for policies to stimulate investment The newly-established Brazilian Tree Industry Asociation (IBA) represents almost the entire forestry sector in the country, replacing the Brazilian Association of Wood Panel Industry (ABIPA), the Brazilian Association of High Strength Laminated Flooring Industry (ABIPLAR), the Brazilian Association of Forest Plantation Producers (ABRAF) and the Brazilian Pulp and Paper Association (BRACELPA). 

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Warnings over ‘death’ of forestry if Natural Resources Wales management does not improve

Environment body attacked for management of forestry, with one group claiming it had been ‘lamentably poor’ in its first year
Wales Online
May 26, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The single body responsible for Wales’ environment has been severely criticised by forestry and timber bodies for its “lamentably poor” handling of the sector – with allegations it has “low levels of commercial acumen” and that it operates in a bubble. In submissions to an upcoming Assembly Environment and Sustainability Committee inquiry into public forestry in Wales, several bodies attacked Natural Resources Wales’ (NRW) management of the forestry estate, a year after it was officially set up – merging the Forestry Commission in Wales (FCW) with the Countryside Council for Wales and the Environment Agency. 

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Global study challenges view blaming poor for forest clearing

CIFOR
May 21, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A global study questions the idea that poverty drives forest clearing. Households with medium- to high-level assets close to markets are more likely to cut down trees than the poorest and market-isolated households, the study says. Researchers also suggest that a strategy of developing market access to alleviate poverty and eventually contain deforestation may backfire. The global study is the product of the Poverty and Environment Network (PEN), a collaborative effort led by the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR).

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