Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: April 4, 2017

Today’s Takeaway

BC log exports mostly a side show

April 4, 2017
Category: Today's Takeaway

Lamenting the fact that BC’s election means “we’ll hear a lot of talk about raw logs”, columnist Tom Fletcher reports that the just released BC Stats on exports suggest that log exports are “mostly a political sideshow”, given that the “three largest importers of BC logs—the US, China and Japan—are also our leading customers, with lumber value running as much as 10 times log value in a given year”.

According to a survey by the Truck Loggers Association, 60% of the people living in BC’s coastal communities believe “our forests are being managed sustainably” and 91% agree that “it’s in their communities’ best interest if the forest companies and the workers harvesting timber and growing trees in the surrounding area are local”.

In a Phys.org story on wood energy, the issue with unlocking Europe’s potential is “wood mobilization”. In other words, the problem is “not that there is not enough wood growing in the forest but that there are many issues with getting it out of the forest.

Finally, the Government of Nova Scotia is getting kudos from developer Ross Cantwell on their decision to adopt the new national building code, making six-storey wooden buildings possible. According to Cantwell, “although there are pluses and minuses”, this kind of construction allows us to “pack a lot of people into Halifax and Dartmouth without relying too much on huge towers”.

–Tree Frog Editors

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Business & Politics

Forestry sector looks to capitalize on investments in federal budget

By DCN News Services
Daily Commercial News
April 3, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

OTTAWA — The Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) sees opportunities for Canada’s forestry products sector in the recently announced federal budget. Forestry sector looks to capitalize on investments in federal budget. According to a release issued by the association, in the budget tabled by Finance Minister Bill Morneau March 22 he earmarked: $1.8 billion to support clean technology. The release states it is critical that the forest products sector is central to the government’s clean tech strategy. The investment will help the sector develop environmentally friendly products in areas of bio-fuels and bio-materials while helping to reduce carbon in the atmosphere; $40 million over four years — starting next year — to support projects to increase the use of wood in buildings and infrastructure. This is an important program to support the use of sustainably sourced Canadian wood and since wood stores carbon, this a great way to further address climate change, the association explains…

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British Columbia’s forest policies need to add up

By Tom Fletcher
Kamloops This Week
April 3, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

We’ll hear a lot of talk about raw logs in the next few weeks, as B.C. political parties position themselves for the May 9 vote. Raw logs is the emotional buzzword designed to bring the issue down to the bumper-sticker level of modern political debate. NDP politicians denounce the BC Liberals for presiding over a “500 per cent” increase in log — sorry, “raw log” — exports as sawmills have closed. The B.C. Liberals respond that more jobs would be lost if further restrictions were put on log exports, the NDP doesn’t care about loggers, and so forth. Fortunately, BC Stats has just produced its annual export trade figures for all commodities, including logs and lumber.  There has indeed been a steep increase in log exports to China, from next to nothing in 2007 to more than $400 million by value in 2016. Log exports to the U.S. declined 10 years ago and have ticked along at about $50 million a year since.

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Feds Have Forest Industry’s Back: MP

Magic 99.9
April 2, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

The federal government has the forest industry’s back. That’s the promise of Kenora M.P. Bob Nault. Nault says there is lots of uncertainty surrounding the softwood lumber negotiations, but he expects there will be support for lumber companies if they have to start paying hefty duties. Nault admits the federal budget doesn’t outline any support for lumber companies, but suggests the government is prepared for tough negotiations. END OF STORY

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Shipments of Southern Pine Lumber Up in 2016

By The Southern Forest Products Association
Southern Forest Products Association
April 4, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

The Southern Forest Products Association  has announced that, for the seventh consecutive year, shipments of Southern Pine lumber recorded an increase from the previous year. Shipments in 2016 totaled 17.34 billion board feet (Bbf), an increase of 4% over the volume shipped in 2015 (16.6 Bbf) and 47% above 2009 shipments (11.8 Bbf). Tabulation of Southern Pine shipment totals is a cooperative effort with the Southern Pine Inspection Bureau (SPIB) and Timber Products Inspection (TP). END OF STORY

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Two maps that show the promise of Maine’s forest industry

By Darren Fishell
Bangor Daily News
April 3, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: US East, United States

Two maps make consultant Eric Kingsley optimistic about the future of Maine’s forest products industry. The first shows the world’s forests. The second shows the lights of the world at night. “There’s one spot and only one spot — and we’re part of it — where forests and markets are on top of each other,” Kingsley said during a forum about building a new bio-based economy in the state. “That is a spectacular structural advantage that we had previously utilized, have forgot about — I think — and it’s time for us to re-utilize that.”

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Natural Resources Wales’ timber deal pulled over saw line

By David Deans
BBC News
April 4, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

A company that was given a £39m deal to buy timber from Natural Resources Wales – which no other firm was allowed to bid for – has failed to meet a key part of the agreement. The unnamed saw mill firm had promised to build a new production line for cutting timber. But the body said the company had not met a deadline to do this by March. The 10-year deal which was criticised by auditors will now end as a result, it told BBC Wales. Auditor General for Wales, Huw Vaughan Thomas, had dubbed the transactions related to the deals for larch and spruce timber “irregular” when he qualified the organisation’s accounts in a report that emerged in March. He said the decision-making process was not transparent and expressed “doubt” over whether it met EU state aid rules.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Rocky Ridge facility roof to reflect Calgary’s rolling hills

By Kathleen Renne
Journal of Commerce
April 3, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

Purported to have the largest wood roof in North America, Calgary’s Rocky Ridge Recreation Facility in the city’s northwest quadrant is scheduled for completion by the end of 2017 with the facility opening to the public in early 2018. “The shape of the building with its undulating roof is intriguing. It reflects the rolling hills of the surrounding landscape,” explains Trevor O’Brien of PCL Construction, the Rocky Ridge Recreation Facility contractor. “The building is clad in brass. It will develop a patina and go from bright gold to a more natural brown colour because it’s intended to mesh with the surrounding grasslands.” …Hence, the team decided on a roof made of glue-laminated timbers, or glulam, fabricated by Penticton, B.C.-based Structurlam.

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Why six-storey wooden buildings are good news for Halifax

By Tristan Cleveland – urban planner
MetroNews Canada
April 3, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada East, Canada

To pack a lot of people into Halifax and Dartmouth without relying too much on huge towers, mid-rise wooden construction could be the solution. Nova Scotia just did something awesome smart. As of April 1, the province has adopted the new national building code, making six-storey wooden buildings possible. If we want to pack a lot of people into the Halifax and Dartmouth without relying too much on huge towers, we’re going to have to make mid-rise buildings an attractive option for developers. Wood could help us get there, and in a way that’s both more affordable and sustainable. I spoke to Ross Cantwell for insight on the new rules, since he’s currently erecting a wooden apartment building on Gottingen Street. …Anything that makes construction cheaper makes affordable housing more viable. Wood is also more sustainable, since it’s renewable and biodegradable. Using it emits, by one estimate, 60 to 80 per cent less carbon than concrete.

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Forestry

Fish and Wildlife Management Underfunded in B.C. – B.C. Wildlife Federation

By Greg Fry     
250 News
April 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Prince George, B.C. – How does B.C. shape up to its peers when it comes to funding fish and wildlife management? Not very good according to the B.C. Wildlife Federation. Jesse Zeman, resident priority program manager with the BCWF, presented his findings to about 60 people last night in the Canfor Theatre at UNBC for a town hall discussion titled “The Future of Fish and Wildlife: Are we Losing What Makes B.C. Special?” From 2011-2016 he said B.C., with a population of 4.6 million, ranked last in funding fish and wildlife management compared to seven jurisdictions in Western North America at $7 per person.

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Government-to-government agreement signed between McLeod Lake Indian Band and BC government

By Shannon Waters     
My Prince George Now
April 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The McLeod Lake Indian Band has signed on to a government-to-government agreement with the province. The 556 member band will share any oil and gas revenue generated in its territory with the province. As part of this, BC will provide $1 million over the course of the agreement, which runs until March 31, 2024. The agreement also establishes a management committee for 23 thousand square kilometres in the Omineca region, which will focus on environmental stewardship while maintaining forestry activities.

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Nine-axle trucks good for roads, industry says forestry reps

By Spencer Gowan
My Prince George Now
April 4, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Members from Canfor and FPInnovations (non-profit, scientific forestry research organization) presented to Council on Monday night about the possibility of larger trucks one day heading through our city. The small team noted the discussion of implementing these 9-axle trucks has been in the works since October 2013. There have been road impact studies, bridge discussions, and performance measures conducted. Tom Hoffman, Manager of External & Stakeholder Relations for Tolko Industries Ltd., says the larger vehicles will actually put less pressure on roads than current vehicles. “They maintain or reduce the impact levels on the public infrastructure. The 9-axle units are actually 5% per axle less impactive on the pavement than the 8-axle are currently.”

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Timber Supply Reviews Under Review?

By George Henderson
My Cariboo Now
March 31, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Cariboo Regional District has joined West Fraser in 100 Mile House in calling for a new Timber Supply Review in the South Cariboo. A letter will be sent to the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources. Quesnel Mayor Bob Simpson raised the issue at this week’s City Council meeting… “The 100 Mile House Timber Supply is not that old but they are running into all kinds of problems with it as the timber supply situation becomes more and more constrained and as the war in the woods accelerates as to people actually going and finding real volume on the ground that they can actually get into their mills.”

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A Further Look: Community Perspectives on the BC Coastal Forest Industry

By The Truck Loggers Association
Truck Loggers Association
April 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Vancouver – Nearly 60 per cent of people living in BC’s coastal communities believe our forests are being managed sustainably, according to a new TLA report published today, A Further Look: Community Perspectives on the BC Coastal Forest Industry. “While this number is good news, it still shows how much work the forest industry has to do,” said David Elstone, TLA Executive Director. “BC’s forest industry is world class. We need to continue to tell our story to new audiences. And in doing so, the industry needs to demonstrate it is listening to community concerns.” Today’s report follows up on the TLA’s report published last June and is a further look into the relationship between forestry and coastal communities. …“TLA members live and work in these coastal communities. They build their businesses in and around these towns, support local community groups and other local businesses,” said Elstone. “In this way, they are vital to the economic health of the entire province.”

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East Creek investigation finds clearcutting rare intact old-growth on Vancouver Island in compliance with laws, highlighting BC government failure to protect endangered rainforest – Sierra Club

Nation Talk
March 30, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

VICTORIA—The BC government’s Forest Practices Board (FPB) released its findings today regarding Sierra Club BC’s May 2016 complaint about Lemare Lake Logging Ltd.’s logging practices in the East Creek area. East Creek is located adjacent to the Mquq?in – Brooks Peninsula Provincial Park, in Kwakwaka’wakw territory and forms part of the largest remaining contiguous ancient rainforest on northern Vancouver Island. Sierra Club BC visited East Creek in the fall of 2015 and documented the devastation of ancient rainforest, including the use of blasting charges, in an area known as important habitat for salmon, marbled murrelet and northern goshawk and important First Nations cultural values, leading to the complaint and investigation.

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98 BC Liberal Falsehoods, Boondoggles and Scandals: The Clark Era 53

By David Beers, Tom Barrett and Tyee Staff and Contributors
The Tyee
April 4, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

FALSEHOOD: Forest Job Figures Didn’t Count Real Jobs: The government boasted the booming economy they’d created had resulted in 27 mill re-openings and 10,000 new forestry jobs since 2009. Turns out those numbers were based on the “number of board feet [exported to] China divided by 250 million feet per mill” — numbers that the Opposition NDP said didn’t match figures from Statistics Canada. The NDP’s numbers came up with less than half that number of new jobs. And the government’s own stats don’t bear out the boast.

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Toronto’s forests fight back

By Nadin Ramadan
The Varsity
April 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada

Researchers at Natural Resources Canada have bred wasps to help rid Toronto of the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) beetle that has been plaguing the city’s ash trees since 2007….The EAB’s main targets are ash trees, which is why it poses such a large threat to Toronto’s forests. Ash trees make up nearly 8.5 per cent of the city’s tree canopy. …The plan is simple, albeit morbid — female wasps, once released, fly to the beetle-infested trees and lay their eggs on EAB larvae. Once they hatch, the wasp larvae will eat the EAB larvae and use their eggs as a home. …With regards to the effects of the wasps, Smith said that she is “less worried environmentally. I think… the huge population of ash, and now the loss of this ash as a result of this invasive insect… is more devastating than these small parasitic wasps will ever be.”

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Public forum looks at Emerald Ash Borer infestation

TB Newswatch
April 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada


THUNDER BAY — As the threat posed by the Emerald Ash Borer grows, several groups, including the city of Thunder Bay, are taking steps to combat the invasive species. A public forum was held at Lakehead University this past week, featuring scientists and companies that are researching ways to contain the pest. …Invasive Species Centre project manager Taylor Wright said the bug was detected in the province 15 years ago and there has been an incredible amount of research into how to manage the pest. “Anybody within Thunder Bay or the surrounding area that wants to learn about the insects, what the city is doing and what research has been done there’s all sorts of great information available,” Wright said.

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Serial spraying needs new rules

By Tim Palmer, award-winning author
The World
April 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Across 5.8 million acres of industrial forest land in Oregon, logging companies can spray herbicides and pesticides with little regulation. And they spray far more than their own land and trees. Thousands of homes, plus schools, public water supplies, farms, pets, dairy cows, recreation sites and untold mileage of public roads, trails, and waterways full of fish are within a wind’s breath of chemical sprays that sometimes include carcinogens. The results are what any person informed about the effects of 2,4D, atrazine, and other toxins might expect. In Cedar Valley, near the Rogue River, 40 people were sickened and many went to the hospital suffering from the effects of spraying over their homes in 2013. …The fact that one industry, whose workers comprise less than 3 percent of the state’s labor force, can wreak this kind of damage on the rest of the people, land, and water seems a bit outrageous.

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Bill from Sens. Daines, Tester would weaken ESA

Letter by Jim Bailey
The Bozeman Daily Chronicle
April 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

In news releases, Sens. Daines and Tester misrepresent the need for and effects of their proposed “Litigation Relief for Forest Management Projects Act.” Senators promote this bill as relief from a “disastrous” court decision to protect critical habitat for Canada lynx. Their overstated blame is misplaced. The court was merely following law. Their bill’s intent to “discourage litigation” is a serious attack on our separated powers system of government and public access to the courts. Moreover, our senators deviously ignore impacts of their proposal to weaken the Endangered Species Act. …Most disappointing, 15 wildlife-oriented ngos support this bill to weaken the ESA and public access to the courts. Why?

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Environmentalists dominate hearing

The Lewiston Tribune
April 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

It was environmentalists versus economic groups at a Senate hearing at Lewiston Monday on the size and boundary lines of a central Idaho wilderness area. The backpackers appeared to have the edge in numbers over the mining interests of the Wallace-Kellogg area and the timber-oriented residents of Elk City, on the fringe of the Nezperce National Forest. The hearing, the first of three, was conducted by Sens. Frank Church and James McClure of Idaho in behalf of the Senate Parks, Recreation and Renewable Resources committee. …Opponents of expanded wilderness areas in Idaho opted for the forest industry measure, terming it the least of three evils. The administration proposal got little support. Anti-wilderness witnesses said Idaho’s Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management lands should remain open for timber harvest and mineral development because of the impact their loss would have on Idaho’s economy.

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Apache County names new natural resource coordinator

By Trudy Balcom
White Mountain Independent
April 4, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

APACHE COUNTY — Bruce Greco, the former director of outreach at the Ecological Restoration Institute at Northern Arizona University, is now the natural resources coordinator for Apache County. The Apache County Board of Supervisors approved his appointment to the position at their March 21 meeting. They approved a contract with a not-to-exceed amount of $40,000 compensation annually for Greco’s position. The former natural resources coordinator, Doyel Shamley, left the position when he was elected as District 3 supervisor. The natural resources coordinator represents the county’s interests and acts as a liaison to federal agencies active in the county. The person stays abreast of the activities of the U.S Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management and the state Department of Forestry and Fire Management.

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Forest Service Scalped on Tongass Timber Sales

By Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility
YubaNet
April 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

WASHINGTON, DC – Recent timber sales from Alaska’s vast Tongass National Forest have been financial as well as ecological debacles, according to internal reports released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). In violation of its own policies, the U.S. Forest Service let timber operators benefit by cherry-picking more valuable trees and leaving intended salvage trees standing. A June 20, 2016 Forest Service “Washington Office Activity Review” examined two large Tongass timber sales and found – Staggering monetary losses in each, “close to 2 million” in one sale, an amount “more than double the original stumpage” according to a post-harvest Monitoring Report. In the other sale, Forest Service maladministration led to “a reduction in sale value exceeding $1,700,000”.

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Thinning forests aims to reduce fire risk

By Phuong Le?
Associated Press
April 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

CLE ELUM, Wash. — To restore a forest and reduce the risk of severe wildfires, a conservation group is cutting down trees. The Nature Conservancy is selectively logging dry forests in Washington’s Central Cascades as part of a long-term plan to make thousands of privately owned forestland more resilient to fire, disease and climate change. A century of wildfire suppression has resulted in overgrown tree stands that are ripe for fire, so the group is weeding out smaller trees that can serve as kindling for fires. They’re leaving bigger, older and more fire-resistant ponderosa pines while removing tree species such as grand fir that are more susceptible to fire. “We’re changing how the fire would burn, and changing it from severe to a fire that would be good and would maintain forest health,” said Ryan Haugo, senior forest ecologist at The Nature Conservancy. “We’re trying to mimic the role that fire would naturally play.”

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Oklahoma forestry officials respond to 800 wildfires so far this year

Associated Press for the Times Record
April 3, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States

OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma Forestry Services officials say 2017 is already among the most active on record with wildfires. State forester George Geissler tells The Oklahoman that this year ranks in Oklahoma’s top five wildfire seasons. He says that number could rise if the state sees “a bad summer season.” The forestry services has responded to more than 800 wildfires so far this year that resulted in more than 450,000 acres of burned woodlands and grasslands. Geissler says the most common source of the wildfires has been “human caused.” Another source has been high winds downing power lines, causing them to arc on dry vegetation. The wildfires have burned acres used to feed livestock, wooded areas and thousands of miles of fences

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Wood possible form of renewable energy, supports rural job, minimizes wildfires

By the US Forest Service
Frederick Press-Leader
April 3, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: US East, United States

Some wonder what if there was an endless fuel source that came from widely available natural waste products and what if converting these products to energy supported tens of thousands of rural jobs. Wood can be just that fuel. In many places, it already is. The U.S. Forest Service is working to expand renewable wood energy markets by providing technical assistance and grants to public and private sector partners through its Woody Biomass Utilization program. By supporting efforts to reuse the excess wood from forest thinnings, urban tree trimmings and forest products manufacturing facilities as well as trees killed by fires, insects, disease and hurricanes, the agency seeks to increase the amount of locally produced energy while improving forest health and resilience. After years of aggressive fire suppression, forests throughout the U.S. are overstocked with standing deadwood and small, easily ignitable twigs and ladder fuels that allow wildfires to spread quickly.

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‘Forest mobilisation:’ Unlocking Europe’s wood energy potential

By Sam Edwards
Phys.org
March 31, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Increasing the woody biomass supply sustainably, continuously and at acceptable prices is a huge challenge It’s not always easy to see the wood from trees when dealing with complex challenges in energy policy. However, Europe is increasingly finding in its forests a significant source of renewable energy that could help the region move away from fossil fuel dependency. …A 2010 study UN study predicted a 3.5% annual growth rate for wood energy, meaning that supply will need double by 2030 to meet demand. Currently, most wood energy harvested in the European economic community is used by the residential (39%), industrial (38%) and power and heat (20%) sectors, according to the UNECE/FAO Joint Wood Energy Enquiry.

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Why is government stalling on green revolution at Drax?

Yorkshire Post
March 14, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

In the unfolding drama of Britain’s green revolution, a North Yorkshire power plant has found itself cast as one of the main protagonists. And it’s a heroic part. Smouldering away on the flatlands of the lower Ouse, Drax is the UK’s largest power station and since opening in 1974 it has played a major role in the country’s coal-fired energy production. But in 2012 it received confirmation of Government support to start moving over to biomass fuel and since then has converted three of its six units. They are fuelled by woodchip pellets, which are a by-product of the forestry industry; replanting keeps carbon levels near constant, making the fuel effectively carbon-neutral. The pellets are shipped in, 80 per cent from the United States, 15 per cent from the rest of Europe, arriving at Hull, Immingham, the Tyne and Liverpool, before being freighted to Drax by trains that never fully stop as they release their cargo through grilles beneath the tracks.

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