Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: December 16, 2014

Business & Politics

Canadian Auto, Lumber Firms Choose Factories Abroad Over Exports

Bloomberg News
December 12, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

Canadian car-part manufacturers and lumber producers are choosing to expand factories abroad to boost sales, rather than to increase export production at home, a central bank study shows. The decisions by companies such as auto-parts supplier Magna International Inc., based in Aurora, Ontario, and Montreal-based pulp and paper makers Domtar Corp. and Resolute Forest Products to expand investment in foreign production may be contributing to Canada’s economic underperformance, said the report by the Bank of Canada’s Martin Coiteaux, Patrick Rizzetto, Lena Suchanek and Jane Voll.

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Wood Costs for Hardwood Pulp-Producing Mills have Declined in 2014

Pulp and Paper News
December 15, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States, International

Reduced pulpwood prices in Sweden, Russia, Brazil and Australia in the 3Q/14 resulted in the lowest Hardwood Fiber Price Index since 2009, according to the Wood Resource Quarterly. With mixed price trends for softwood fiber, the Softwood Fiber Price Index (SFPI) has been fairly stable the past two years. The costs of hardwood fiber for the manufacturing of pulp have trended downward for over three years. …In Western Canada, chip prices have gone up mainly because of higher prices for softwood market pulp (NBSK), to which they often are linked, while recent price increases in Western US have been driven by a rise in the volume of exported chips to Japan.

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Insider Buying: Michael T. Waites Purchases 15,000 Shares of Western Forest Products Stock

Dakota Financial News
December 15, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Western Forest Products Director Michael T. Waites acquired 15,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, December 11th. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $2.44 per share, with a total value of $36,600.00. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC.

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Conifex Issues Update on Mackenzie Power Project

250 News Prince George
December 15, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Mackenzie, B.C.- The work continues to repair equipment at the Conifex Mackenzie Power Generation Project. The company expects reinstallation, testing and commissioning work will start in January. Conifex says it has confirmation that its insurance will cover the physical damage and the delay in the start up , however, Conifex will have to cover the insurance deductable and the waiting period before receiving the delay in start up (DSU) payment, so that will add about $3 million dollars to the $100 million dollar construction budget. The company says it expects to be fully reimbursed for the DSU losses.

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Catalyst to indefinitely curtail paper machine at Powell River

Canada Newswire press release
December 15, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

RICHMOND, BC – Catalyst Paper today announced the decision to indefinitely curtail the No. 9 paper machine, one of three machines at its Powell River operation. This decision is fully market-related as the company is facing a lack of orders and a declining market for the paper manufactured on paper machine No. 9, which was temporarily curtailed on October 27. “This is a difficult, but necessary decision that supports Catalyst’s commitment to align mill operations and production with market demand,” said Joe Nemeth, President and Chief Executive Officer.

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Tembec strike over, cogen project delayed one month

Pulp and Paper Canada
December 15, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Tembec reached a settlement with its Temiscaming site employees who voted on Dec. 10 to end the two-week long strike. The settlement consists of a four-year agreement to expire in September 2018. A union representative told French-language broadcaster Radio-Canada that the union made many gains in this settlement, specifically on the subject of vacations and discipline. Roger Gauthier, regional president for the Unifor union, said labor relations had been an issue at the Tembec site for several years.

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New CFO for Rayonier

Pulp and Paper News
December 16, 2014
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

Rayonier, an international land resources company, has appointed Mark McHugh as the new Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer effective 12 December 2014. McHugh was associated with Raymond James where he was responsible for the firm’s timberland and agriculture sector coverage. He has 15 years of experience in finance and capital markets focusing on the timberland and REIT sectors. “Mark’s strategic, financial, and industry expertise served us well during our recent internal review and development of our realigned strategy.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

University of Ottawa Social Sciences Building wins multiple awards

Canadian Architect
December 15, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

A new academic facility at the University of Ottawa has garnered three design awards this season. The Faculty of Social Sciences was recently recognized with the Institutional Building Award at the Ontario Concrete Awards. Diamond Schmitt Architects and KWC Architects designed the building. The 15-storey tower and adjacent podia form a robust structure with a stepped massing scheme that relates to a varied urban perimeter context… To claim an additional 6,000 square feet of educational space that does not impede on the footprint of a future public plaza, a 12-metre cantilever supports a 225-seat theatre, a double-height multi-use hall and a green roof. The LEED Gold-certified facility also received the Interior Wood Design Award from Ontario Wood WORKS! 

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National Green Building Standard Approved for Military Housing in NDAA

Real Estaterama.com
December 15, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Association of Home Builders applauds Congress for authorizing the ICC 700 National Green Building Standard for all military residential construction, which represents 16 percent of the federal real estate portfolio. Passed today by the Senate, and last week by the House, the National Defense Authorization Act will provide affordable choices in meeting military energy and water reduction goals… Previously, the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED program was the only green rating system specifically approved for use for new military construction projects. With the passage of this bill… Project managers can select the NGBS, LEED or the Green Globes program when choosing a green certification for new residential or remodeling projects.

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Scotland’s home-grown CLT could roll off the production line in 2016

Construction Manager
December 15, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

A commercial factory manufactured cross-laminated timber (CLT) from Scottish timber is now a “serious proposition”, according to Peter Wilson, who leads the Wood Studio at Napier University. Wilson, who has been carrying out research aimed at raising the value of Scotland’s forestry industry for the past 10 years, says there are “two companies that are close to investing in cross laminated timber”. He expects a decision on whether a factory is built to be made “this side of Easter” and said that he would be “broken hearted” if production of Scottish CLT manufactured from Scottish timber did not happen in the next two years.

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Norway takes the lead in prefabricated buildings market with the construction of 14 storey timber house

CompaniesandMarkets.com
December 11, 2014
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Although the market for prefabricated building is relatively well established in Scandinavia, Norway is one country which has taken the biggest leap in prefabricated construction. In October of this year, the first timber elements were installed in a 14 storey (net area of 5830 sq. m.) residential building made of timber modules. The building, which is partially engineered by the German company Merk, includes a prefabricated timber frame based building modules are inserted in the “cabinet rack”. The construction company expects that residents can move in autumn of 2015.

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Forestry

Canada has done little to protect endangered caribou population: report

Globe and Mail
December 16, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

Two years after the federal government released a strategy for preventing the extinction of Canada’s dwindling herds of boreal woodland caribou, little has been done by provinces and territories to put that plan into action. A report to be released Tuesday by the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) says the animals, which roam the northern forests that stretch from British Columbia to Alberta, continue to die off as their ranges are eroded by human activity. “At this point, all of the populations are very much in trouble and industrial development just continues unabated right now without any kind of attention to the fact that these are rather sensitive areas,” said Éric Hébert-Daly, CPAWS national executive director.

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Group calls for purchase of forest land

Logging impact on water ‘minimal’: City
Nanaimo Daily News
December 15, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The mid-Vancouver Island chapter of the Council of Canadians is calling on the City of Nanaimo and the Regional District of Nanaimo to purchase swaths of forested land around Nanaimo’s South Fork watershed. Another group, Vancouver Island Water Watch is making the same request. The two groups say they will present a petition to the local governments in the New Year calling on them to make the lands publicly owned. The demand comes after Nanaimo issued a boil water advisory Thursday, after turbidity in the South Fork from heavy rains throughout the week raised contamination concerns. It was lifted Sunday.

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Recent flood re-ignites clear-cutting debate

Comox Valley Record
December 15, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The recent multi-day storm that flooded parts of the Comox Valley has re-ignited arguments that claim deforestation is a major contributor to the problem. Courtenay resident Rick James, for one, is saddened and frustrated when he considers the east coast of Vancouver Island. Once resembling Cathedral Grove, he says the area now contains less than one per cent of first growth timber. “It goes back to the Esquimalt/Nanaimo land grant,” said James, a career tree planter. “We’re not looking at Crown land, we’re looking at private property. The southeast part of Vancouver Island, this is the primest habitat for growing Douglas fir anywhere on the planet, and we’ve pissed it all away.”

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Forest Service works on strategy to meet growing recreation demands

by Rob Chaney
The Missoulian
December 15, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Faced with a growing crowd of folks who want to play on public lands, U.S. Forest Service specialists are strategizing how to provide an expanded array of recreational opportunities. “We created a lot of work for ourselves,” said George Bain, who wears the unwieldy title of director of recreation, lands, minerals, heritage and wilderness for the agency’s Region 1 in Missoula. “We want to stay relevant to the American public, but we don’t want to be in competition with other recreation providers.”

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Objectors get another shot at Red Lodge logging project

Billings Gazette
December 15, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Calling a proposed logging project in the Red Lodge area devastating to the ecosystem, many of the people objecting to the proposal renewed their arguments in a conference call Monday, while also voicing their disdain for the process. The call was meant as a way for the Forest Service’s deputy regional forester, Dave Schmid, to hear recommendations for ways the Forest Service could address the objectors’ complaints. But no solutions were offered.

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How a Flying Laser Built a 3-D Map of a Massive Alaskan Forest

Wired
December 16, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Big ol’ Alaska. The state that can swallow Texas, Montana, and California with room for a New England-size dessert. The Last Frontier is vast, yet threadbare of roads. Settlements are motes on the terrain. There’s so much space, so much of it inaccessible, that the US Forest Service—charged by Congress with keeping track of the nation’s timber—readily admits that more than one-quarter of the state’s forest has never been inventoried. But that’s about to change. The Forest Service has always counted trees, mostly so timber companies would know how many two-by-fours could be culled from a given forest. Climate change, though, has changed the agency’s focus.

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Federal appeals court to review decision exempting Tongass from Roadless Rule

Associated Press
December 16, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

JUNEAU, Alaska — A federal appeals court is set to review a decision that allowed the Tongass National Forest to be exempt from federal restrictions on road-building and timber harvests in “roadless” areas. An 11-member panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals is scheduled to hear arguments Tuesday. In March, a divided three-judge panel sided with the state of Alaska and found the U.S. Department of Agriculture had legitimate grounds in 2003 to temporarily exempt the Tongass from the Roadless Rule. The court in August granted a request for an 11-member panel to reconsider the case.  The case is scheduled to be argued in a courtroom in California.

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Jobs open: wildland firefighters needed

WDNR Blog Ear to the Ground
December 16, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

DNR is looking for a few hundred people to help us protect 13 million acres of Washington state from wildfire this summer. Is that you? Someone you know? Applications are being accepted for DNR’s summer “fire” jobs. Seasonal, temporary positions for these strenuous but rewarding and important jobs are open statewide. Training provided. We’re recruiting for wildland firefighter crew members and helitack crew positions for the 2015 summer season. Being a member of a hand crew or helitack crew is an excellent
opportunity for motivated individuals and students interested in a
natural resource management career or to gain fundamental forestry
experience through fire crew employment.

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Wallowa Resources plays role in watershed project

Local Entity Wallowa Resources plays role in Lower Joseph Creek Project analysis.
Wallowa County Chieftan
December 14, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

One of the key players in an advancing plan that could jump-start tree-thinning and other restoration work in a local watershed is a non-government entity committed to cooperation. The recent completion of the Lower Joseph Creek Restoration Project analysis – a draft environmental impact statement currently in its public comments phase – came about through cooperation among a number of interested parties, including Wallowa Resources, the organization dedicated to helping Wallowa County remain a viable community through resource stewardship.

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Forest management: True environmentalists left out

Letter by Bill Baum
The Missoulian
December 15, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Bob Brown, the ultimate politician and mentor to Michael Jamison, and Michael Jamison, a serious politician wannabe, have co-authored an opinion (Dec. 10) that must be answered. These men were the instigators, founders and promoters of the infamous Whitefish Range Partnership boondoggle that Flathead National Forest is planning on using for their so-called collaborative forest management planning input representing special interests despite the outrage from the true, large, environmental community. The problem is: There was nothing collaborative about the WRP

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Humble fungi may aid whitebark pine recovery

Summit County Voice
December 15, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

FRISCO — High-elevation whitebark pines are under the gun in the northern Rockies. White pine blister rust, an invasive fungus, and pine beetles have combined to drive the species toward extinction. But scientists trying to recover the species say that a humble mushroom could help their efforts. A three-year experiment shows a 10 to 15 percent increase in the survival rate of whitebark pine seedlings when Siberian slippery jack spores are injected into the soil around them. The injection takes place in nurseries before the seedlings are transplanted in the mountains. That increase is significant, said Cathy Cripps, a mycologist with Montana State University’s Department of Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology.

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Sealaska land transfer bill passes Congress

Associated Press
December 15, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

JUNEAU – Officials with Sealaska Corp. are pleased by passage of federal legislation that will transfer about 70,000 acres within the Tongass National Forest to the Alaska Native corporation. The provision, included within a defense bill, passed Congress late last week. It represents a compromised worked out by Sen. Lisa Murkowski and is intended to make final the land claims owed to Southeast tribes under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.

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$644k for logging royalties

The Fiji Times
December 16, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

THE North had 23,403.781 cubic metres of native forest logged this year, which yielded $644,514.51 in royalties. This was revealed by senior forestry officer North Jone Vakarewa while speaking during the recent North development board meeting where he also said 17,888.051 cubic metres of pine woodlots including 58,152.586 cubic metres of mahogany forest was logged this year. Mr Vakarewa said pine woodlots yielded a total revenue of $89,440.16 while the pine plantations raked in revenues according to the rate of $50 per hectare of pine. “A total of 132,863.58 tonnes of pine chip were received at the Wairiki Pine Chip plant,” he said.

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Community is driving forestry renewal plans

The Flinders News
December 16, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

The Jamestown and Wirrabara communities are joining forces to advise the State Government on its approach to the Mid North forestry. Community members have formed the Northern Forests Community Initiatives Working Group to strategically research and develop recommendations for the Bundaleer and Wirrabara forests to take to the government. Locals formed the group in response to a call from Forestry Minister Leon Bignell for local community input on the future of forests following the devastating Bundaleer and Bangor fires. Group chairman Greg Boston said “our group aims to provide community input in a thoroughly researched and well documented way”.

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‘This is our imagination for the future’

Mizzima
December 16, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

In a ground-breaking move toward community-led commercial forestry, forest user groups in Tanintharyi Region received training in forestry management, inventory and timber harvesting in November. The training, led by Cambridge-based conservation organisation Fauna and Flora International, is part of a country-wide FFI project aimed at exploring the potential for commercial timber harvesting rights for community-based forest user groups. Community groups in Kachin and Shan states and Ayeyarwady, Magwe and Tanintharyi regions were chosen to participate in FFI’s research on the legality of timber production and trade, FFI senior forest policy adviser U Win Hlaing told Mizzima.

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VicForests extends moratorium on logging in East Gippsland owl habitat

ABC News, Australia
December 16, 2014
Category: Forestry
Region: International

State-owned timber company VicForests has agreed to extend its moratorium on logging in certain areas of East Gippsland. An environment group is suing the timber company and the Victorian Government, over the logging of old-growth forest that is home to endangered owls. After further legal wrangling, VicForests has agreed to halt any logging of the 81 coupes in question until February 27. David Walsh from VicForests said legal discussions between the parties were continuing. “The owl management areas are set up by the Department of Environment and Primary Industries and they’re basically what is at the heart of its case,” he said.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

$3M Grant Supports Bioenergy Development

SUNY College ESF
December 15, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

The U.S. Department of Energy has awarded up to $3 million to the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) to develop and demonstrate ways to reduce the cost of delivering woody bioenergy feedstocks to biorefineries. Specifically, the grant will be used to lower the delivered cost of short-rotation woody crops; rapidly, accurately, and reliably assess feedstock quality; and improve harvest and preprocessing operations to produce feedstocks that meet key biorefinery partner specifications. ESF will work with partners including Case New Holland Industrial (CNHi), GreenWood Resources, University of West Virginia, Applied Biorefinery Sciences, Idaho National Lab and others to complete the project.

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ETEC adds 50 MW of biomass energy capacity (Video)

Penn Energy
December 15, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

The nonprofit East Texas Electric Cooperative has partnered with local logging operations to successfully develop a new a biomass plant, the Woodville Renewable Power Project, according to the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association.

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New company to invest $110 million, create 70 new jobs

GWD Today
December 15, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

A new wood pellet manufacturing company will bring a $110 million investment and 70 new jobs by opening a new manufacturing facility in Greenwood County. Portugal-based Portucel… is an integrated forest, pulp, paper and energy company and is currently Europe´s largest producer of uncoated wood free paper. It has total paper capacity of 1.5 million tons/year and eucalyptus pulp capacity of 1.3 million tons. Its activities are based at three large scale production mills in Portugal which have state of the art technology and are a benchmark for quality in the sector. Portucel is listed in Euronext, a pan-European stock exchange. The company’s long term majority shareholder is focused on industrial assets.

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Amazon peatlands are ‘most carbon-dense ecosystem’

BBC News
December 15, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

The most dense store of carbon in Amazonia is not above ground in trees but below ground in peatlands, a study has calculated. An international team of researchers said their work, which uses satellite data and field measurements, provides the “most accurate estimates to date”. Protecting these landscapes is vital if efforts to curb climate change are to be successful, they added… Writing in the paper, the scientists observed: “This investigation provides the most accurate estimates to date of the carbon stock of an area that is the largest peatland complex in the Neotropics.”

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Trees are fed up with our carbon, refuse to grow faster

Grist
December 15, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Scientists have long expected extra carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to boost tree growth — the climate-changing waste product of our fuel-burning ways is plant food, after all. But a new study suggests that trees in tropical rainforests around the world are not in fact growing any faster, even as CO2 levels in the air shoot past 400 parts per million. …But Peter van der Sleen, of Wageningen University in the Netherlands, and a team of Dutch researchers examined 150 years’ worth of tree rings in 1,109 trees of 12 species across Bolivia, Thailand, and Cameroon, and couldn’t find any evidence for CO2-accelerated tree growth — a phenomenon that the scientific community had widely held to be true.

Tropical rainforests not absorbing as much carbon as expected, scientists say from The Guardian

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Tropical forests may not combat climate change

News.Sciencemag.org
December 15, 2014
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Tropical forests may not save us from global warming. Scientists have long believed that as atmospheric carbon dioxide rises, the greenhouse gas could boost photosynthesis, enabling tropical and other forests to take up more carbon and store it as wood. Some data suggest this “carbon fertilization” effect is already happening, and many climate models assume it will help slow the rise in CO2. But a new analysis of tree ring samples collected in Bolivia, Cameroon, and Thailand finds no sign of increasing growth over the past 150 years. “Our study says that these models are too optimistic,” says Peter van der Sleen, a tropical ecologist at Wageningen University.

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General

Market Recap: RISI Crow’s Construction Materials Cost Index

Home Channel News
December 15, 2014
Category: Uncategorised

Lumber: Trading in the SPF lumber market was gauged narrowly, with few indications of either “quiet” or “brisk” trading. While eastern mills wanted to establish order files through the end of the year, many buyers wanted no more deliveries this year.   Panels: This week’s dive in OSB prices brought buyers to the table in most regions, as a bottom was sensed. Volumes purchased were not particularly heavy, but were enough to move the needle after a few weeks in the doldrums. Southern Pine plywood mills adjusted some prices lower early and were rewarded with sales activity most often described as “good.”

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