Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: June 2, 2017

Today’s Takeaway

Ottawa announces softwood aid package amid cacophony of responses

Tree Frog Forestry News
June 2, 2017
Category: Today's Takeaway

The announcement of federal aid to Canadian lumber producers to “help them survive American duties and a potentially protracted softwood lumber dispute” dominates today’s news. Here are some of the headlines:

  • Canada’s unions welcome support for forest sector workers and communities (Canadian Labour Congress)
  • Forest industry applauds government’s response to softwood duties (FPAC)
  • US softwood lobby assails Ottawa’s aid package, calling it a subsidy (Globe and Mail)
  • It already looks like we’re going to blow the new NAFTA deal (Business Insider)
  • Ottawa’s lumber industry aid not subsidy, ministers say (BC Local News)
  • ‘A huge mistake:’ Money manager slams Ottawa on softwood (Business News Network)

In other softwood news, Wilbur Ross, the US Secretary of Commerce, wants to “settle the conflict over softwood lumber before NAFTA” with the “best window being between now and early January”.

Greenpeace is calling on an Ontario court to dismiss Resolute’s “multimillion-dollar defamation claim without a hearing on its merits.” In new legal filings, they claim the company’s action “is a vexatious abuse of the courts”. Resolute accuses Greenpeace of “fake posturing on the free-speech issue.”

Finally, one of the “biggest victims” of the US pulling out of the Paris Climate Agreement “will be American private forest owners because of the lost opportunity to earn money by generating carbon offsets”. And speaking of storing carbon,“the world’s tallest [19 storeys] wood building is poised to be built in downtown Vancouver”.

— Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Business & Politics

Canada’s unions welcome support for forest sector workers and communities

Canadian Labour Congress Release
Marketwired
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

OTTAWA, ONTARIO — Canada’s unions are welcoming today’s announcement that the federal government is taking steps to support forest sector workers and communities affected by the United States’ imposition of duties on Canadian softwood exports. “The forestry sector is one of Canada’s key economic drivers and these unfair and unjustified U.S. duties threaten more than 25,000 good jobs in nearly every region of our country,” said CLC President Hassan Yussuff. “The CLC is pleased that the government is acting quickly and taking concrete steps to help affected workers, communities and companies,” he added.

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BC Lumber Producers Welcome Government of Canada Support for Forestry Workers and Communities

BC Lumber Trade Council
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

The BC Lumber Trade Council welcomes the federal government announcement today of measures to support forestry workers and communities impacted by the duties imposed by the U.S. on softwood lumber. “BC lumber producers welcome the announcement today of measures to support forestry workers and communities during this trade dispute, as well as promoting forest sector diversification, overseas marketing and innovation,” said Susan Yurkovich, President of the BC Lumber Trade Council. “This package is a prudent response that can provide both immediate support for workers and communities if required, along with enabling additional investments in longer-term opportunities for the sector,” added Yurkovich. “We particularly appreciate the investment in expanding markets for Canada’s high-quality forest products overseas which will help to further diversify our markets.”

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Forest industry applauds government’s response to softwood duties

By Forest Products Association of Canada   
Canada Newswire
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) is pleased that the Government of Canada has launched initiatives to ensure the forest sector remains competitive in the face of the unwarranted duties implemented by the U.S. on softwood lumber. “We appreciate that the federal government is standing tall for Canadian forestry communities by launching a comprehensive package in the face of trade actions that we believe are without merit.” said Derek Nighbor, CEO of Forest Products Association of Canada. “This support will assist our efforts in continuing to transform our sector, diversify our markets, and support our workers.” …”These actions by the federal government are a critical step as we work to secure a strong forest sector of tomorrow.”

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Canadian Lumber Tariffs Impacting Southern Yellow Pine Prices

By Melissa Reynard
Market Watch
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

With the recently-announced tariffs on Canadian softwood lumber imports into the US, a lot of unanswered questions are floating around the market. …Forest2Market’s lumber data has showed steady price decreases since the new tariffs were announced at the end of April. Prices increased steadily through January and February before peaking at a 12-year high in April—perhaps in preparation for an impending tariff—which could account for the leveling of prices we’re seeing now. Forest2Market’s data also shows a significant volume increase in #1 and #2 dimension products when comparing January to April. Even if lumber demand and prices were to spike in the coming weeks, the latent capacity at mills and the amount of domestic supply would keep the market from sustaining any kind of long-term price increase. There is no question that current lumber prices are still high compared to previous years, but the downward trend—or at least some kind of equilibrium—will likely be the norm over the next few weeks. 

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‘A huge mistake:’ Money manager slams Ottawa on softwood

By Noah Zivitz
Business News Network
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

The federal government’s reported plan to extend a round of support to Canada’s softwood lumber industry amid a festering trade dispute with the United States is getting a frosty reception from a Toronto-based money manager. “This is the Liberal government again intervening in the market economy,” Baskin Wealth Management President David Baskin told BNN in an interview Thursday. “It’s sort of the industrial equivalent of No Child Left Behind.” …”The softwood lumber industry was facing the Canadian dollar at par – and above par – and managed,” he said. “They’ve now had essentially a 25-per-cent price increase as a result of the Canadian dollar being at 74 cents US. You would think that would be enough help.” “This undermines the government’s trade case…I think it’s a huge mistake.” 

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Federal government offers $867M to help lumber sector weather softwood tariffs

Mia Rabson and Ross Marowits
Canadian Press in the Vancouver Sun
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

OTTAWA — Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr has announced $867 million in financial support to help lumber producers and employees weather the impact of punishing new U.S. tariffs on Canadian softwood exports. The package announced Thursday includes $605 million in loans and loan guarantees to help cushion the blow for forestry companies and to help them explore new markets and innovations. There is also $260 million over the next three years to expand existing programs to help diversify the market base for lumber products, allow the indigenous forestry sector to explore new initiatives and extend work-sharing agreement limits to minimize layoffs. Carr said the package isn’t just about responding to the U.S. tariffs but to position Canada’s industry for the future. …The government has been careful to characterize the money as a support package, not a bailout, in order to avoid running further afoul of protectionist forces in the United States. 

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Renewed Federal Support for Canadian Forestry Innovation Will Benefit Sustainable Bio-Based Economy

By FPInnovations
Canada Newswire
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

MONTRÉAL – FPInnovations welcomes the Federal Government’s announcement of support to Canada’s forest sector for market and product diversification and forestry-based indigenous communities. The announcement, made by the Honourable James Carr, Minister of Natural Resources; the Honourable Chrystia Freeland, Minister of Foreign Affairs; and the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of International Trade, highlights the importance of the forest sector to the Canadian economy and the recognition of the important role Government plays in supporting innovative research and development and de-risking transformative bio-based technologies.

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Support for Canada’s Forest Industry and Communities the Right Thing to Do – for Now: Steelworkers

United Steelworkers
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

OTTAWA – The Chair of the United Steelworkers Wood Council, representing thousands of workers in the forest sector, said today’s announcement of $867 million to relieve the crisis caused by punitive U.S. tariffs is the right thing to do, but not the only thing. “These measures must be made effective immediately and must not be seen as subsidies to industry,” said USW Wood Council Chair Bob Matters. “This must be about protecting the viability of communities and the workers who depend on forestry, a cornerstone of the Canadian economy in a globalized world. Long-term stability is key.” Matters said loans and loan guarantees are for forestry companies to allow them to pay tariffs without having to use their operating funds. “It means employers can operate normally until a resolution is found between our governments on a truly fair softwood lumber agreement,” he said. “We hope that this will help to stop the current layoffs and prevent further layoffs over the next few months.”

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U.S. Lumber Coalition Comments On Latest Canadian Softwood Lumber Subsidy

US Lumber Coalition
PR Newswire
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

WASHINGTON — …The new funding adds to existing government subsidies boosting the Canadian softwood lumber industry, creating an uneven playing field with the U.S. lumber industry and putting American jobs at risk. “Today’s announcement of a new government subsidy for Canadian softwood lumber producers only further tilts the trade scale in Canada’s favor, threatening more than 350,000 jobs in communities across the United States,” said U.S. Lumber Coalition spokesperson, Zoltan van Heyningen. “The U.S. Commerce Department’s recent anti-subsidy duties were a step in the right direction, and we appreciate the Administration’s support. But Canada continues to push back and refuses to play by the same set of rules. We need a level playing field and must limit the flow of unfairly subsidized softwood shipments flooding the U.S. market, driving American lumber manufacturers out of business.”

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Sec of Commerce: Settle sugar, softwood lumber, dairy before NAFTA negotiations

The Hagstrom Report
Tri-state Livestock News
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said this week that the Trump administration wants to settle the conflict with Mexico over sugar and the conflicts with Canada over softwood lumber and dairy policy before negotiations over the North American Free Trade Agreement begin, Washington Trade Daily reported Thursday. If not, Ross suggested in a session at the Bipartisan Poilcy Center on Wednesday that the United States will follow through with separate trade actions, Ross added, according to the WTD report. The best window to start the negotiations, Ross added, is between now and early January, and the conclusion should come by mid next year before the Mexican election campaign starts up in earnest and Trade Promotion Authority lapses, WTD said.

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Canada: International Merchandise Trade, April 2017

Market Pulse
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

Canada’s merchandise trade balance with the world narrowed to a $370 million deficit in April, from a revised $936 million deficit in March. Exports rose 1.8% to $47.7 billion, led by higher exports of passenger cars and light trucks. Imports were up 0.6% to $48.1 billion, on the strength of import prices. …Exports of forestry products and building and packaging materials rose 4.7% in April to $3.7 billion. Following a 6.4% increase in March, lumber and other sawmill and millwork products rose 8.0% in April to $1.5 billion. Volumes for this group rose 4.3% and prices were up 3.6%. There were higher exports of softwood lumber to the United States in April. This increase preceded the decision by the US Department of Commerce to impose countervailing duties on imports of Canadian softwood lumber into the US, effective April 28.

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It already looks like we’re going to blow the new NAFTA deal

By Linette Lopez
Business Insider
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States

On Wednesday the Commerce Department Secretary Wilbur Ross said that the department will impose penalties on Canadian lumber and Mexican sugar if the US is unable to come to a settlement with those countries over alleged trade violations. This is bad. It’s bad because the US still has to enter NAFTA renegotiations with these two countries. And while the Trump administration may think that this kind of talk tough puts the US in a position of strength, it will very likely do just the opposite. It will weaken the US in negotiations for a deal that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross has said we must have Congress confirm by July 2018. Strategically the timing here is off as threats before negotiations have even started, make this kind of “fast-track” Ross wants unlikely. There are two reasons for that — politics and time. The Trump administration has turned public opinion against the US in both countries, and — especially in Mexico — that could mean dealing with politicians unwilling to suffer insults or make compromises with a former regional friend.

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Ottawa announces softwood lumber aid package

By Nelson Bennett
Business in Vancouver
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

Ottawa will provide $867 million in aid to Canadian lumber producers to help them them survive American softwood lumber duties and a potentially protracted softwood lumber dispute. …Carr said the Business Development Bank of Canada and Export Development Canada will make $605 million available in loans, at commercial rates, to help “viable” companies make capital investments and diversify their markets. …While the aid package may help some of the marginal players, one industry analyst said the American Lumber coalition could argue that it is yet another government subsidy, adding some fuel to the fire. …“Today’s announcement of a new government subsidy for Canadian softwood lumber producers only further tilts the trade scale in Canada’s favor, threatening more than 350,000 jobs in communities across the United States,” said Zoltan van Heyningen.

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US softwood lobby assails Ottawa’s aid package, calling it a subsidy

By Steven Chase and Brent Jang
The Globe and Mail
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

The American lumber lobby at the heart of the softwood trade dispute is attacking Ottawa’s new $867-million aid package for the Canadian forestry industry as another “government subsidy,” raising the possibility that Washington could impose further punitive duties on producers from Canada. …“Canada is standing up to the U.S. Canada is standing up for Canadians,” Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr said at a news conference to announce the assistance. …The federal government insisted the new support does not breach international trade rules because the loans will be made on commercial terms and that the measures “will stand the test of scrutiny.” …Mark Warner, a Toronto lawyer who previously worked on trade matters for the Ontario government, warned that this sort of financing could very well trigger further retaliatory action from the United States in the form of higher duties.

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Ottawa announces $867M in financial assistance for softwood lumber industry

By Peter Zimonjic, Susan Lunn, John Paul Tasker
CBC News
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada

The Canadian government today announced it will make $867 million in loans available to the forestry industry, workers and communities impacted by softwood lumber tariffs recently imposed by the United States. The deal includes a series of loans and loan guarantees that will work in concert with provincial efforts to support the industry. …Carr said Ottawa is working with the provinces to speak with one voice on the issue. He also said he is not worried about further criticism from the U.S. that Canada is subsidizing the industry with this financial support, because the loans are at market rates. The U.S. Lumber Coalition, however, was quick to respond with a view that differs sharply from Carr’s. “Today’s announcement of a new government subsidy for Canadian softwood lumber producers only further tilts the trade scale in Canada’s favour, threatening more than 350,000 jobs in communities across the Unites States,” said coalition spokesperson Zoltan van Heyningen.

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Premier Responds to Federal Forestry Aid Package

By Elaine Macdonald-Meisner
250 News
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Prince George, B.C.- Premier Christy Clark has issued a statement in the wake of the Federal Government’s announcement of an $867 million dollar package to aid communities and forestry workers that may be hit by the Softwood Lumber trade dispute. “We appreciate the leadership the Government of Canada has shown on softwood lumber. Today’s announcement is a result of the work put in by Minister James Carr and the provincial forest ministers on the Federal-Provincial Softwood Lumber Task Force. It demonstrates a firm commitment to Canada’s forest-dependent communities and workers, including the more than 60,000 British Columbians in more than 140 communities throughout our province.” …NDP leader, John Horgan, who is ready to step into the role of Premier should the Liberals fail a confidence test in the legislature, also welcomes the Federal package “It’s a start” says Horgan.

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Feds announce $867M to support foresters, Horgan hopes BC gets solid cut

By Spencer Gowan
My Prince George Now
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

BC NDP leader John Horgan calls the $867 million the federal government is using to support forest industry workers and communities a “good start,” and hopes to the province gets its fair share. “I just want to ensure that the federal government understands clearly that British Columbia is responsible for over 50% of the softwood trade between Canada and the US and we’re fully expecting that share of that package to come to British Columbia.” …To get a fair, stable trade deal for Canada – something Horgan calls the most important economic issue in British Columbia right – the NDP leader says he wants to help the Prime Minister and the provinces in Washington.

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B.C. premier welcomes feds $876M in softwood help

Canadian Press in Global News
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

Federal financial aide for Canada’s forestry sector amid a softwood trade dispute with the United States is getting support across party lines in British Columbia. Premier Christy Clark said the funding will help the 60,000 people working in the sector in B.C. after duties as has high as 24 per cent were placed on softwood by an American government that alleges Canadian lumber is unfairly subsidized. …At a news conference in Vancouver, Horgan said he is committed to reaching a deal with the U.S. on the dispute and would travel to Washington to work with lawmakers in person. “I’m hopefully we’ll always have a prosperous and productive relationship with the United States on trade, whether it be softwood or any other issue,” he said.

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Fire at Interfor lumber yard near Castlegar

By Chelsea Novak
Castlegar News
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Castlegar Fire Department responded to a call at the Interfor lumber yard near Keenleyside Dam on Thursday afternoon. Employees from BC Eco Chips, contracted to Zellstoff Celgar, were burning a slash pile when a wind storm blew a spark onto a pile of nearby lumber and ignited it. Men working in the yard noticed the fire on top of the pile and called for help. The logs that were burned were destined for Celgar to make wood chips, and one BC Eco Chips employee was optimistic that not that many of the logs in the pile had been burned. [END]

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Ottawa’s lumber industry aid not subsidy, ministers say

By Tom Fletcher
BC Local News
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

The federal government’s latest assistance package for the forest industry is designed not to generate further complaints about subsidies after the U.S. imposed border duties averaging 20 per cent on Canadian lumber exports, federal officials say. The $867 million package includes loans and loan guarantees as well as extensions of federal work sharing programs to preserve employment, Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr said. …Susan Yurkovich, president of the B.C. Lumber Trade Council, praised the federal assistance package. “This package is a prudent response that can provide both immediate support for workers and communities if required, along with enabling additional investments in longer-term opportunities for the sector,” Yurkovich said. “We particularly appreciate the investment in expanding markets for Canada’s high-quality forest products overseas, which will help to further diversify our markets.”

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Unions reach tentative contract with Canfor Pulp

Prince George Citizen
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

A tentative agreement between Canfor Pulp and unionized workers at its three Prince George pulp mills was reached Thursday. It remains subject to ratification by the membership, represented by Public and Private Workers of Canada and Unifor, a process expected to take about two weeks. PPWC vice president Gary Fiege declined to provide details saying it must first be presented to the union’s members. However, he said the main issues were job security, wages and benefits. Strike notice was never issued. …if ratified, the four-year dea will set the pattern for 17 other pulp and paper mills in B.C. and Alberta.

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Charlotte-area plant to shut down paper machine, laying off 180 workers

By Jenna Martin
Charlotte Business Journal
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Resolute Forest Products will idle a paper machine at its plant in Catawba, S.C., on June 30, resulting in the layoff of about 180 workers. The Canadian company said the decision to shut down the machine at its pulp and paper mill is driven by an ongoing market decline as well as “price erosion for lightweight coated paper grades produced on the machine.” It comes after a “significant capital investment and employee efforts” to cut down the machine’s operating costs. In addition to the job cuts, the York County mill will lose about 193,000 metric tons of coated paper production capacity. Before the machine’s idling, the plant produced an annual 720,000 metric tons of specialty papers and market pulp.

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Greenpeace wants Resolute’s Ontario lawsuit tossed as ‘vexatious’ litigation

By Colin Perkel
Canadian Press in Vancouver Metro
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

TORONTO — A forestry company’s multimillion-dollar defamation claim against Greenpeace is a vexatious abuse of the courts, the environmental group says in new Canadian legal filings. In calling on an Ontario court to dismiss the lawsuit without a hearing on its merits, Greenpeace argues that Montreal-based Resolute Forest Products’ claim is little more than an attempt at gagging a vocal critic. “The Canadian action seeks millions of dollars in damages while imposing overwhelming litigation costs by way of a strategy of fighting every point, demanding production from every possible witness, and seeking to expand the litigation as broadly as possible,” the motion application states. “The Resolute plaintiffs are also strategically using the existence of two parallel proceedings to finesse or circumvent difficulties encountered in the other jurisdiction.”

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Question of duties: Plywood debate divides industry

By Thomas Russell
Furniture Today
June 1, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

Headlines regarding an antidumping case against Chinese made hardwood plywood and decorative veneers may remind many in the industry of a similar debate in the furniture industry in 2003, when U.S. bedroom manufacturers brought their own antidumping case against Chinese-made wooden bedroom furniture. It was one of the most divisive issues facing the industry before or since, pitting U.S. manufacturers that made a living from their U.S.-made goods against retailers that made their living from competitively priced bedrooms, whether domestic or imported. …A major difference in the two cases — hardwood plywood and wooden bedroom — is that the subject merchandise is a raw material used to make finished goods, not the finished goods themselves. Still, it bears some watching, not as much from the impact on the furniture industry, as from the parallels between the two cases. In each case, the petitioners claimed the unfairly priced product has caused injury to their industry in the form of revenue and job losses.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

Which is cheaper, dumping or recycling project waste?

Daily Commercial News
June 1, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada

If he could get his hands on more waste drywall, John Pahulje thinks he could more than double his company’s output of recycled gypsum. Which is cheaper, dumping or recycling project waste? Unfortunately, he says, too much of it bypasses New West Gypsum Recycling’s Oakville, Ont. plant and heads to landfills in both Ontario and the U.S. …Part of the problem is that there’s no incentive for contractors to separate out their waste. Other than metals, asphalt and concrete and masonry (which has a ready scrap market), wood, drywall and insulation is costly to separate and recycle.

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World’s tallest mostly wood building poised to be built in downtown Vancouver alongside Erickson classic

By Matt Robinson
Vancouver Sun
June 1, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: Canada, Canada West

A design by award-winning Japanese architect Shigeru Ban for the world’s tallest hybrid timber structure is poised to be built in downtown Vancouver. When complete, the wood, glass and concrete building will stand 19 storeys and 71 metres tall — one storey higher than the wood-hybrid Brock Commons at the University of B.C. — said Tobi Reyes, the CEO of PortLiving, the Vancouver-based developer behind the project. Ban designed the residential tower, Terrace House, as a tribute to late architect Arthur Erickson’s decades old neighbouring building, Evergreen, at the corner of Jervis and West Hastings streets. …Meanwhile, architects are working on a 57-metre tall tower for Bordeaux, France, a 73-metre tower for Amsterdam, The Netherlands, and a 304-metre tall skyscraper for London, England — all in wood. But as Reyes said, though there are lots of announcements about tall wooden buildings, few of them are permitted like his is. PortLiving has a development permit for Terrace House and it is now seeking a building permit.

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Environmental Protection Agency seeks comments on extension of national formaldehyde standard deadlines

By Thomas Russell
Furniture Today
June 1, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

Stakeholders in a new national formaldehyde emissions standard for composite wood products have until June 8 to comment on the extension of compliance standards recently announced by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The new national standard, which was first announced in the Federal Register this past December, falls under what’s called the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). Formaldehyde poses health concerns as it is known to cause nose, eye and upper respiratory irritation, the latter of which is particularly an issue for people with asthma. It also has been linked to some cancers according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is mostly odorless below one part per million but can be detected at lower concentrations.

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Wood Product Innovation: Nano-scale Cellulose Products Showing Promise for Future

By Tim Cox
Pallet Enterprise
June 1, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

An interview with World Nieh, national program leader for Forest Products and Wood Utilization for the U.S. Forest Service in Washington, D.C. …Nanotechnology has become one of the hottest areas of research and development in wood utilization globally. Several companies are starting to market cellulose nanomaterials or market products made with cellulose nanomaterials. Cellulose nanomaterials have the potential to be produced from scrap pieces of wood or wood chips. Globally, this innovative new material is about five years from full commercialization. …CLT (Cross-Laminated Timber, large-scale mass timber panels produced by gluing lumber in criss-cross layers) is a new product in the U.S. that may be able to use lower grade lumber. CLT technology is available right now.

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Wooden housing construction: ministries are planning, business is staying aside

By Vladimir Gurvich
Russian Construction
June 1, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Will wooden sky-scrapers appear in Russia? The Russian government is looking for different ways of overcoming the crisis in the construction sphere and new stimuli for its development. Wooden industrial housing construction has been attracting larger interest lately, and measures are being developed to give a new impulse to the sector. However, the results are modest. And the main reason for that is a number of complex systematic problems which cannot yet be solved. …According to Dmitry Rudenko, Vice-President of the Segezha Group company, the industry will completely start developing when a real market of industrial wooden housing construction is formed. Presently, it is in its embryonic state.

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Timber Trade Federation invites local authorities to commit only to ‘Timber you can Trust’

Timber Trade Federation
May 31, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

The Timber Trade Federation (TTF) has invited councils, politicians and other stakeholders across the UK to sign up to their new ‘Timber you can Trust’ campaign, highlighting the need to source timber responsibly. As councils across the UK commit to build growing numbers of new homes, the need for sustainably sourced construction materials has also increased.  The TTF wants to work with local government to ensure that high standards of responsible sourcing are maintained in local government & private sector procurement policies. Launching the campaign, David Hopkins, TTF’s Managing Director, said: “I’m excited to launch this new campaign, and to work with local government to increase awareness about the importance of responsible timber sourcing, the good management of forests, and the sustainability of the whole timber supply chain.

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L&G installs new management for CLT housing business

Timber Trade Journal
June 2, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

Legal & General (L&G) has hired Rosie Toogood from Rolls-Royce as CEO of its modular housing business. Ms Toogood comes in to head up the 550,000ft2 factory in Leeds which will produce 3,500 cross-laminated timber homes per year. Her appointment follows L&G’s recruitment of David Jones from housebuilder the Berkeley Group to help deliver the firm’s modular housing developments. At Berkeley his role included responsibility for the development and delivery of a volumetric modular housing solution. Joining in mid-June, Ms Toogood held senior roles across a number of key customer-facing business areas at Rolls Royce, leading new product introduction and setting up global supply chains to deliver complex engineering products.

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Forestry

St. Lazare plagued by so many caterpillars they’re burying them in pails

By Meaghan Ketcheson
CBC News
June 1, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada, Canada West

Haley Blouin loves her brand new house near St.Lazare, Man. — about 120 kilometres northwest of Brandon — but right now she wants to set fire to it because of the dense carpet of forest tent caterpillars covering almost every surface. “They are just all over, like in oodles of big packs,” Blouin said. “They’re just disgusting, all over the place.”  The forest tent caterpillar infestation is approaching its peak, with several areas in Manitoba — including the province’s southwestern corner — seeing a particularly high number of the creepy crawlers. …”We’ve been putting them in five-gallon pails, digging holes and then burying them,” Blouin said. “Probably not the most humane thing to do.” They’ve buried five pails so far, but that hasn’t made a dent in the number of caterpillars on and around her property.

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Ag secretary: ‘There will be balance’ in U.S. forest management

By Sonny Perdue – U.S. secretary of agriculture
Idaho Statesman
June 1, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Today’s challenges for the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) are many, but the department is staffed by tens of thousands of dedicated civil servants who share a love of the land and for those who earn their livelihoods by providing the food, fiber and fuel needed at home and abroad. Key assets for this quality of life are this nation’s forests and grasslands. …The ideal management of our public lands would be through shared stewardship, meaning federal agencies would communicate, collaborate and coordinate with state and local governments and with citizens on how best to manage our public lands. The Forest Service has fully embraced this approach. After all, who knows local conditions better than those who are involved at the local level? So, then, what will the Forest Service do in the future?

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Judge issues injunction halting Lincoln-area timber project

By Tom Kuglin
Helena Independent Record
June 2, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A federal judge this week issued a preliminary injunction halting a 5,000-acre timber project near Lincoln. U.S. District Judge Dana Christensen agreed with environmental watchdogs that the Stonewall Vegetation Project should be delayed while the court considers the merits of a pending lawsuit. The Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest approved Stonewall last August. The project area, located about four miles north and west of Lincoln in heavily beetled-killed forests, covers 24,000 acres within Lewis and Clark and Powell counties. The project came from recommendations of the collaborative Lincoln Restoration Committee and includes logging on more than 2,100 acres and prescribed burning of more than 2,700 acres.

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Scientists warn greater glider faces extinction and want it protected from logging

By Adam Morton
The Age
June 2, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Those who know the greater glider have a vivid way of describing it: like a flying possum crossed with a koala. About the size of a garden-variety possum, but with a looped tail up to 60 centimetres long and membranes that extend from its elbow to its ankle, it is Australia’s largest gliding marsupial. Scientists say it may not continue to be: it is headed for extinction. Two decades ago, greater gliders were abundant up the east coast, but a combination of land-clearing, logging and the rising threat of bushfires linked to climate change has triggered an 80 per cent population crash.

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Forest Fires

Wildrose demands independent public inquiry into Fort McMurray wildfire

By Emma Graney
Edmonton Journal
June 1, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

The Opposition in Alberta wants a judge to examine all aspects of the 2016 Fort McMurray wildfire in an independent public inquiry. Thursday marked one year since residents were first allowed back into the city. The Wildrose Party says an independent inquiry, as opposed to a review or report, would separate the investigation from government and result in the best possible recommendations. The blaze was the most expensive natural disaster in Canadian history with an economic impact estimated at around $10 billion. Wildrose Leader Brian Jean, who lost his home, said the government owes it to Albertans to forge ahead with a public inquiry. The government commissioned an independent report into the wildfire not long after the evacuation ended, but it’s still nowhere to be seen.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Trump Announces US Withdrawal From Paris Climate Accord

By Camila Domonoske and Colin Dwyer
Oregon Public Broadcasting
June 1, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

President Trump has announced that the U.S. will be withdrawing from the Paris accord — the historic global agreement, reached in 2015, to set targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and limiting the rise in average global temperatures. …A wide chorus of voices had called for Trump to recommit to the Paris agreement: Other world leaders and hundreds of scientists, of course, but also CEOs of major energy companies and other big U.S. corporations. Even many of Trump’s own advisers support the deal, according to The New York Times. But those supporting a departure won out. …Meanwhile, many analysts see a U.S. departure from the deal as paving the way for China to take the lead on climate change.

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Pulling Out Of The Paris Agreement Would Hit U.S. Farmers And Forest Owners The Hardest

By Steve Zwick – Pragmatic Tree-Hugger
Huffington Post
June 1, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

If U.S. President Donald Trump pulls the United States out of the Paris Climate Agreement, as expected, some of the biggest victims will be American farmers and private forest owners, who stand to lose billions in lost productivity and carbon payments. Why? Because plants inhale carbon dioxide and exhale oxygen, storing the carbon in their trunks and roots. …Sustainable land management can stave off the worst effects, and the Paris Agreement even makes it possible for farmers and forest owners who properly manage their land to earn money by generating carbon offsets, as many U.S. farmers and forest owners are already doing through California’s cap-and-trade program. 

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Protests, new climate pledges after Trump’s Paris pullout

Associated Press in the Times Colonist
June 1, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: United States

BRUSSELS — Environmental campaigners protested Friday against President Donald Trump’s decision to pull the United States out of the Paris climate accord, while nations around the world pledged to double down on their efforts to curb global warming in response to the U.S. move. In Berlin, Greenpeace activists projected Trump’s silhouette onto the side of the U.S. embassy along with the words “#TotalLoser, so sad!” Hours later German Chancellor Angela Merkel summoned reporters for an impromptu statement in which she called Trump’s decision “extremely regrettable, and that’s putting it very mildly.” …Anticipating a possible U.S. pullout, officials from China and the European Union — two of the world’s major polluters — had prepared a declaration reaffirming their commitment to the 2015 Paris Agreement, which is widely considered a landmark deal for bringing together almost all countries under a common goal.

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