Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: May 31, 2016

Business & Politics

Domtar’s award-winning Windsor mill examines the sources of error

MRO Magazine
May 30, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

A worker is tasked to cut some failed bolts on a pressure vessel door. In the process, he cuts his finger and takes five stiches. An investigation determines that this accident was just waiting to happen. In a new approach to understanding the cause of incidents like this, Domtar’s pulp and paper mill in Windsor, Que. is improving its safety programs by adopting a more correct way of understanding the nature of errors. Adapting an approach developed to reduce the number of incidents in the nuclear power industry, called Human Performance Improvement (HPI), the Windsor mill is focusing less on how an incident happens, and more on why. Behind this tactic lies the dawning awareness that individual errors contribute far less to incidents than do organizational weaknesses.

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Pellet prices fall to lowest level since August 2012

EUWID
May 31, 2016
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

At an average of €228.18/t, end-user prices for A1 pellets in Germany fell in May to their lowest level since August 2012. Year on year, the current level is down by roughly 4.9%, while the decline since the beginning of 2016 is roughly 5.6%. According to the price survey conducted by the Deutscher Energieholz- und Pellet-Verband (DEPV – German Energy Wood and Pellet Association), the price for 6 t of A1 goods, at €224.02/t, is currently lowest in southern Ger-many. The price in central Germany is at €227.42/t and in northern and eastern Germany at €235.32/t.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Is steel, wood or concrete the most ‘green’ building material?

TVO.org
May 30, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

If the fairy tale of the Three Little Pigs were written today, the pigs’ homes would likely be built not out of straw, branches and bricks, but instead out of wood, steel and concrete. And the porky trio would be imperiled not by a big bad wolf, but by environmental cataclysm. Any child reading the original story could tell you immediately that sticks and straw wouldn’t ever offer lupine stopping power, and that bricks were the obvious choice from the get-go. But it gets more complicated for modern builders trying to select materials based on what might save their ecological bacon. Advocates for all three major construction materials lay claim to certain environmental merits.

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$1.5 million tall timber buildings research grant awarded

Manufacturers’ Monthly
May 31, 2016
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Hyne Timber, in partnership with the University of Queensland, has welcomed the announcement of more than $1.5 million funding for tall timber buildings research. The funding announcement by the Australian Research Council is particularly timely given the recent changes to the National Construction Code enabling timber construction up to eight storeys in height. Hyne Timber’s CEO Jon Kleinschmidt said the benefits of using timber in tall building construction is well known in other parts of the world and social barriers in Australia need to be addressed, “Further to the significant sustainable resource benefit, enhanced performance, ease, speed and reduced costs associated with timber construction makes timber an obvious construction material of first choice.

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Forestry

Forest industry joins CCFM on skills award for Aboriginal youth

Forest Products Association of Canada
May 30, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

The Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) is proud to join the Canadian Council of Forest Ministers (CCFM) to open up nominations for two Skills Awards for Aboriginal Youth as part of an effort to encourage more Aboriginal workers to consider careers in the forest sector. FPAC started handing out an annual skills award to a young Aboriginal person in 2012. In 2015, thanks to a new partnership with the CCFM, two awards were handed out and that will continue this year. …“The forest products industry has been working with Aboriginal communities as our neighbours and partners for many years, and we intend to work even more closely in the coming years,” said Derek Nighbor, CEO of FPAC. “I think we all recognize the importance of our sector and our forests to the environment and to our communities.”

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‘Very dry’ drought rating for Vancouver Island; reservoir cushions Victoria

By Amy Smart
Victoria Times Colonist
May 30, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The province is urging Vancouver Islanders and Gulf Islanders to conserve water, as most rivers and streams are experiencing very low flows, although Greater Victoria’s large reservoir puts the region in better shape. Wth a “very dry” Level 3 drought declared, the province is calling for a voluntary water-use reduction of 30 per cent by all municipal, agricultural and industrial users, except those supported by reservoirs or lake storage. The region will experience significant water supply shortages this year, unless there is substantial rainfall in June, the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations said. Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands were the driest regions in the province Monday.

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5 things to know about forest tent caterpillars

Entomologist Taz Stuart says 500M moths may emerge in July
CBC News
May 31, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Forest tent caterpillars are munching their way through Winnipeg, feeding on the leafy canopy of trees. Forest tent caterpillars typically infest the city once every 10 to 15 years, but when an infestation hits, it can last two to three years. City crews started spraying against the caterpillars two weeks ago. There are likely more of the wriggling insect around the city than most people would expect, Taz Stuart, entomologist and director of technical operations at Poulin’s Pest Control Services, said. He Tweeted on Monday that if each tree has 100 forest tent caterpillars and there are 5 million trees, 500 million adult moths will emerge in July.

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Mercury contamination at Grassy Narrows First Nation can be cleaned up, scientists tell government, again

Evidence points to new sources of contamination of fish and water, research scientist John Rudd says
CBC News
May 30, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

It is feasible to clean up some of the decades-old mercury contamination in Ontario’s English-Wabigoon River system near Grassy Narrows First Nation, according to new research by three experts in the field. Reed Paper in Dryden, Ont., dumped chemicals in the river in the 1960s and early 1970s, resulting in mercury poisoning among First Nations people who ate fish caught in the area. The possibility of remediation was first studied in the 1980s by a government research team that included John Rudd. He’s the lead author of the new research commissioned by Grassy Narrows First Nation and released on Monday. “It has been frustrating,” Rudd said. “We made these recommendations in the 1980s and our report was put on the shelf.”

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Pest that kills Hemlock trees on its way

Simcoe Reformer
May 27, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

A bug that sucks the sap out of trees and leaves them dead is the latest threat to Norfolk County’s forests, warns a biologist.  The Hemlock wooly adelgid is in the Niagara Region and is probably headed this way, said Gregor Beck, director of Ontario programs for Bird Studies Canada. The pest is capable of killing off large swaths of Hemlock trees – the type of tree that lines streams and ravines in Norfolk and provides habitat for a variety of threatened birds, said Beck. “These Hemlocks are really a critical part of the Carolinian habitat,” he said. “We are watching for this one. We know it’s close.” If Norfolk loses its Hemlock trees, it will add to the growing problem of habitat loss for birds in Canada. A report released earlier this month following a study of bird populations in North America concludes that more than one-third of species are at risk of extinction.

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Recreating forests of the past isn’t enough to fix our wildfire problems

Stephen Pyne, Regents Professor in the School of Life Sciences, Arizona State University
The Conversation
May 27, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

There is general agreement that America’s landscapes, certainly its wildlands, are out of whack with their fires. Wildfires are bigger, hotter, more savage and more expensive than in the past. There is wide agreement, too, that America’s deeper fire problem is not that malignant megafires are crashing into our communities. Instead, it’s that we’ve lost the older benign versions of fire that once washed over and benefited our ecosystems. Surely, the thinking goes, restoring fire’s former regimes would quell the outbursts and bolster forests’ ecological resilience to multiple threats. But active restoration has proved trickier, more controversial, and more limited than advocates assumed. It works, but not everywhere, and not everyone wants it.

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The Trees are Growing Every Day

by Paul R. McKenzie, lands and resource manager at F.H. Stoltze Land & Lumber Co
Flathead Beacon
May 26, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West


To borrow the words of a good friend, our National Forests are like a big sandbox and we all need to figure out how to play together in it. Finding a balance between protecting the ecological functions of our forests and the ever growing demands placed on them by a burgeoning human population requires hard work and hard decisions. That is the difficult role of the conservationist. That is the challenging work that local collaboratives in Montana and many other states are not shying away from. I truly believe it is not the ownership of the land that is the problem, but rather the quagmire of conflicting bureaucratic processes we have established over the last 100 years that is to blame for the condition of benign neglect we see on so many of our public lands today. The process problem likely has no local solution.

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Maine’s forest products industry is in freefall, but there’s another use for these woods

by Richard Jagels, emeritus professor of forest resources at the University of Maine
Bangor Daily News
May 30, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

…Coal may be the perishing enterprise in states such as West Virginia and Kentucky, but Maine has its own declining industry. The raft of paper mill closures we have seen in the past few years are the latest signs of a long-suffering wood products industry in Maine. When I began my career as a forest biologist and wood scientist at the University of Maine more than 35 years ago, Maine still had a healthy diversified wood products industry, and this was reflected in a robust enrollment of students in our forestry and wood products programs. …I grieve for the loss of much of Maine’s wood products industry, as well
as the loss of the wood science program that was an integral part of my
professional career. But hoping for a return to the past will not
improve our future. While the wood science program was declining at
UMaine, the forest recreation program was expanding — a portent of the
future.

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A cut above: For Sandhills logging crews, business is booming

The Fayetteville Observer
May 27, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

A”perfect storm” of weather, economy and consumer demand has sparked a logging boom in the Cape Fear region. “If you’ve been driving out in the country lately, you know there’s been an increase in logging activity,” said Harnett County Forestry Service ranger Buren Fulmer. “It’s been busier in our county than in the past few years, for a bunch of reasons. I imagine you’ll see the same thing elsewhere.” In Cumberland County, forestry ranger Craig Gottfried said “we’ve been busy all winter, and it hasn’t slowed down yet.” A gap-toothed landscape across the region indicates logging has seen a notable uptick this year. From the swamp loggers sloshing through the remnants of winter’s excess rain in Bladen and Columbus counties to crews clearing a path for what will be Interstate 295, it’s a tough time to be a tree in the Cape Fear region.

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Illegal Logging Is Bigger Than You Think

Bangor Daily News
May 30, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Illegal logging is definitely bigger than I thought, at least. When I wrote last December about the outsourcing of Maine’s paper industry, I mentioned that some illegal timber is making its way into China’s paper mills from places like Burma and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. What I didn’t get into, however, was how pervasive the illegal timber trade is worldwide. Looking at the kind of illegal logging that happens in Maine—where every once in a while someone cuts down the wrong trees and has to pay a fine—it might be hard to imagine how it could be such a major problem. It turns out that, according to Interpol, the illegal logging industry was worth an estimated $30 billion globally in 2012. That was slightly more than a quarter of the legitimate global logging industry’s value of around $115 billion that year.

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Coalition funds for forestry research

AAP in 9News.com.au
May 31, 2016
Category: Forestry
Region: International

A re-elected coalition government will pour money into research underpinning the forestry industry, with a $4 million pledge for centres at Launceston and Mount Gambier. The Tasmanian government has already stumped up its dollar-for-dollar commitment to the deal which also requires an investment by industry to form the $12 million National Institute for Forest Products Innovation. “Each research hub will investigate innovation in areas such as forest management, timber processing, wood fibre recovery, advanced manufacturing and the bio-economy,” assistant agriculture minister Senator Anne Ruston said on Tuesday while visiting Tasmania. END OF STORY

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Forest Fires

Crews gain ground on Fort McMurray wildfire, just days before re-entry

660 News
May 30, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

Many Fort McMurray evacuees are packing their bags and loading up on enough groceries to last at least two weeks. They’re just days away from Mounties opening the barriers to the city for the phased re-entry. Meanwhile, it appears crews are gaining some ground against the raging wildfire that forced residents out. There’s moisture in the air and more back-up crews coming to help douse the flames. The province expects firefighting conditions to improve with cooler temperatures and rain in the forecast. The blaze slightly decreased in size over the weekend, it’s now covering 579,946 hectares. With the first phase of re-entry slated for Wednesday, local government says it’s on track to welcome back evacuees. In a message posted Sunday night, the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo also confirmed the wildfire-ravaged areas on the community’s west side are being closely monitored.

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Time to replace P.E.I.’s aging fleet of forest fire trucks?

Oldest vehicle still in use dates from disco era, all trucks will soon qualify as antiques
CBC News
May 31, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

…But here’s something from 1979 that never went away: it’s a three-axle Chevrolet tanker truck still called upon to help workers with the P.E.I. forestry department put out forest fires. The ’79 Chevy is the oldest of a fleet of six vehicles with an average age of 30. That’s old enough to qualify as an antique under P.E.I.’s Highway Traffic Act. The newest truck in P.E.I.’s forest-fire fleet is a 1991 model. The other four trucks date from the 1980s. Most of the vehicles are four-wheel drive tanker trucks, designed to be able to go places conventional fire trucks can’t. According to officials, they’re called upon an average of about 25 times a year.

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Northwestern Ontario continues to be restricted fire zone

CBC News
May 30, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

A restricted fire zone remains in effect across much of northwestern Ontario, but the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry will reassess the situation on May 30 to examine the potential for lifting the ban.  There were no new fires confirmed by the afternoon of May 29 in the Northwest Region. Widespread rain fell across the area May 28 and 29, which helped to keep all the ongoing forest fires in check. The fire hazard is now considered low across the region.

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One fire still active in North Bay area

The forest fire hazard is low to high across the region.
Bay Today
May 30, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

There is one active fire in the North Bay region as the the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry reports North Bay 8 is considered under control at 0.8 of a hectare. There were no new fires in the Northeast Region by the afternoon of May 29. The forest fire hazard is low to high across the region. …Ontario provides firefighting resources outside of the province, and when needed brings in resources from other provinces, the territories or the United States. Firefighting resources in Canada, including personnel, aircraft and equipment, are shared through formal agreement and coordinated by the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Center in Winnipeg.

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Wet weather dampens forest fire situation

TB Newswatch
May 30, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada


THUNDER BAY – The restricted fire zone that covers much of Northwestern Ontario remains, but that may be re-evaluated following a damp and cool weekend. No new forest fires were reported Sunday in the Northwest region. The wet and cool weather also allowed the forest fire hazard rating to drop to low in many areas. Despite that, a major wild fire near Red Lake remains out of control and 40 firefighters from British Columbia have been brought in to help battle the blaze. Meanwhile, a fire burning near Geraldton airport is now listed as being held.

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Douglas County Residents Tour Stouts Creek 9 Months After Devastating Fire

KEZI.com
May 26, 2016
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

STOUTS CREEK, Ore. — Concerned citizens and some current and former land management workers toured the Stouts Creek area on Thursday, just 9 months after a fire wiped out over 26,000 acres of forest land in the area. Javier Goirigolzarri, the Executive Director of Communities for Healthy Forests, says, “We wanted to bring folks out that were interested in seeing what happened here last year, to see what the plans are for the land management agencies and the companies going forward from here; what they expect to accomplish here in the future, and to have the discussion about what we ought to be doing.”  Those discussions flowed once the group got to the burned area. County Commissioner Chris Boice and some of the land management officials talked about harvesting public lands and using that money to benefit the county.

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