Tree Frog Forestry News

Daily Archives: June 15, 2017

Today’s Takeaway

Challenging times

Tree Frog Forestry News
June 15, 2017
Category: Today's Takeaway

Following on a recent report reviewing last year’s Fort McMurray fire, that observed there will be “greater climatic variability, more severe weather events, longer fire seasons“, Graham Thompson of the Edmonton Journal points out that the government and society “don’t seem to have a handle on how to respond to the growing threat of wildfire“.

The emerald ash borer continues to wreak havoc on the East coast, this time attacking ash trees in Montreal’s signature landmark Mount Royal. On the West coast, Oregon’s Sudden Oak Death Task Force has released a plan to combat that disease to eradicate a new strain that is “more aggressive and damaging to conifers“. The Idaho Panhandle National Forest has just finished a restoration project to combat root disease and the resulting bark beetle attacks. Experts are hopeful strategies of planting tolerant species and discouraging forest thinning will slow the impact.

— Heidi Walsh, Tree Frog Editor

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Business & Politics

Liberals’ foreign policy statement not a sign relationship with U.S. has soured, ambassador says

By John Ivison
National Post
June 14, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, United States


OTTAWA — Canada’s ambassador in Washington says that, even though the Americans “can act like bullies,” the Trudeau government’s recent foreign policy statement is a “recognition of reality,” not a sign the relationship is breaking up. David MacNaughton was in Ottawa to appear before a Senate committee. In an interview, he said dealing with the Trump Administration is a “delicate balancing act. “We have a good relationship with them — whenever I call I get phone calls returned. That said, we are now at a stage beyond ‘getting to know you’ … Sometimes you’ve got to stand up and show a little toughness. They’re pretty tough negotiators and sometimes can act like bullies. But I don’t think it has to get personal.” He pointed out Chrystia Freeland, the global affairs minister, did not refer to Donald Trump by name in her speech last week to the House of Commons that called for Canada to pursue a “clear and sovereign course” backed by hard military power.

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Cullen Concerned for Future of Small Mills

By Elaine Macdonald-Meisner
250 News
June 14, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West


Prince George, B.C. – With no agreement in the Softwood Lumber dispute in sight, Skeena Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen is concerned for the future of small mills. …Cullen says the assistance package is re-circulated money ” it was money that was already planned and they just rolled it into one to reach a more significant number. My worry is that, in particular, some of the smaller mills that operate in the North.. They don’t have the cash reserves they can’t sustain prolonged attacks against their product., which is obviously the American plan to wipe out more and more producers on the Canadian side.” He says this dispute is different than the last time because more of the major producers have investments in the United States “They were an important ally in fighting softwood last time, My concern is that their enthusiasm, their energy is not going to be as great because they have placed a bet on both sides of the table.”

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90 organizations urge logging giant Resolute to drop lawsuits against Greenpeace & Stand.earth

Greenpeace
June 12, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada East, Canada

Montreal — Organizations across Canada and the U.S., including the David Suzuki Foundation, the Broadbent Institute and Canadian Journalists for Free Expression, are calling on Resolute Forest Products to drop its multi-million dollar lawsuits aimed at silencing Greenpeace and Stand.earth in a newspaper ad appearing in Le Devoir and The Ottawa Citizen. The organizations are condemning Resolute’s attack on public discourse, free speech and the very heart of our democratic society. “Now, more than ever, the world needs our watchdogs. The right to speak, protest and criticize is also the right to dream of a better world. Don’t let Resolute silence Greenpeace or Stand.earth. Don’t let anyone silence our voices,” said Rick Smith, Executive Director of the Broadbent Institute. Other notable voices have also come forward in the defense of free speech and forests.

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Prices of Softwood Lumber and OSB Keep Climbing

By David Logan, National Association of Home Builders
Eye On Housing
June 13, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States

The prices of softwood lumber and OSB increased by 2.2% and 3.3%, respectively, in May according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The increases were a return to the 2017 norm, as softwood lumber and OSB have led building materials price gains in every month except April, when gypsum prices rose 5.1%. In contrast, prices paid for gypsum and ready-mix concrete fell for the first time since January, decreasing by 0.2% and 0.4%, respectively, in May. Unsurprisingly, the price of softwood lumber increased yet again in May. The increase pushed the softwood lumber price index to its highest level since September 2004. At that time, the prior U.S.-Canada softwood lumber trade dispute had been ongoing for over three years and prices had increased 38.5% since the expiration of the previous agreement in April 2001.

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Heyfield mill move to Tasmania should be without handouts, Greens say

By Emilie Gramenz
ABC News, Australia
June 15, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Opposition MPs in Tasmania are demanding transparency about taxpayer-funded assistance that may be offered or requested for a large Victorian sawmill looking to relocate to the state’s north-west. Australian Sustainable Hardwoods (ASH) has announced it will bring forward the closure of its mill in Heyfield after the Victorian Government made an unsuccessful bid to buy it and keep the jobs in Gippsland. ASH is instead preparing a proposal for the Tasmanian Government, after negotiations with the Office of the Coordinator General. The company has identified a site near Burnie and has been in talks to ensure it can secure a timber supply. The State Government has welcomed the prospect of more jobs in the north-west. “We look forward to reviewing their proposal, that’s planned to be coming our way in the near future,” Resources Minister Guy Barnett said.

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£39m timber deal was an extraordinary error, say AMs

By Daniel Davies
BBC News
June 15, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

It was “extraordinary” the environment regulator decided to sell £39m of timber to a sawmill company without a proper business case, AMs have said. Other firms were unable to bid for the Natural Resources Wales contract, which may have broken EU competition laws. Public Accounts Committee chairman Nick Ramsay called it “a serious error of judgement”. NRW accepted the recommendations of the committee and said it would address them. The company is not named in reports, but BBC Wales understands it is BSW Timber, which has a saw mill at Newbridge-on-Wye, Powys. The report, out on Thursday, also said it had “serious concerns” only one official at the regulator was in charge of the deal. “Given the sums of public money involved we find it to be wholly unacceptable that a full, open and fair retendering process did not take place,” it adds.

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New timber mill at Burnie would use wood only from plantation forests

By Helen Kempton
The Mercury
June 14, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

A NEW timber mill to process plantation-grown wood could be up and running near Burnie by the end of next year if a Victorian operator decides to relocate. How much the State Government might put on the table to cement Australian Sustainable Hardwood’s move and bring jobs to one of Tasmania’s most employment-hungry regions is not yet clear. The company this week said it would close its Heyfield Mill — with the loss of 250 jobs — and move to Tasmania after the Victorian Government offered $20 million to keep it going. ASH did not regard that as a “genuine offer”. Resources Minister Guy Barnett said no formal approach for backing had been made but any future proposal — which he expects to see soon — would be considered on its merits.

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Myrtleford timber mill lockout continues despite latest vote

By Erin Somerville
ABC News, Australia
June 14, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Efforts have begun to end a bitter workplace dispute that has resulted in around 200 workers being locked out of Myrtleford’s Carter Holt Harvey plywood mill for two months. Carter Holt Harvey workers have narrowly voted down the company’s latest enterprise offer that included a two per cent pay rise by 97 votes to 86, during a two-day secret ballot in Myrtleford last week. The vote was carried out after the mill locked out workers on April 19, 2017 after a year-long enterprise agreement negotiation between Carter Holt Harvey and the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union broke down. Staff are pushing for a 3 per cent pay rise annually over three years, a week’s annual leave over Christmas, and better income protection insurance.

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Global demand fuelling forestry export growth

By the New Zealand Government
Scoop.co.nz
June 15, 2017
Category: Business & Politics
Region: International

Strong demand from key markets is driving up export growth in forestry products, Associate Primary Industries Minister Louise Upston says. The latest Ministry for Primary Industries’ Situation and Outlook for Primary Industries (SOPI) shows strong growth in the forestry sector. “Forestry exports are expected to grow 6.4 per cent to $5.5 billion in 2017, before increasing further to $6.3 billion by 2021 as increased volumes of wood become available for harvest,” Ms Upston says. Strong demand for logs and sawn timber from key markets such as China and the US are keeping prices high while favourable exchange rates are also contributing to strong returns for exporters, the SOPI shows. Demand is expected to remain strong, as increased construction activity in China and the US, combined with China’s bans on harvesting native forest should ensure continued demand for New Zealand logs and sawn timber.

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Wood, Paper & Green Building

University of Idaho teams with timber industry for new basketball arena

By Peter Harriman
The Spokesman-Review
June 14, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US West


In the unending desire of higher education institutions to differentiate themselves as unique, the University of Idaho is aligning itself with the state’s widely recognized timber industry. Idaho will build its new basketball arena with wood. “It ties in with our land grant mission. It ties in with the timber industry. It ties in with our need for a facility. This is really resonating with people,” UI Athletic Director Rob Spear said. …Mass timber construction, while a well-established technology in Canada, is still new in the U.S. The university already built a plant nursery with wood. “It won sustainability awards,” Spear said. This was the germ of the idea to use mass timber construction for a basketball arena. Opsis Architecture of Portland, which has done several projects at the UI – including the campus centerpiece Teaching and Learning Center – will design the building.

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UA students, local orgs find way to give fallen trees new life

By Serena Bailey
The University of Alabama Crimson White
June 14, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: US East, United States

William MacGavin has been woodworking since he was 11 years old. Over the years he’s salvaged wood from Christmas trees left on the curb, trees downed in storms or trees cut down by a city to make didgeridoos and other projects. So when he saw a construction crew taking down some oaks, pines and magnolias near North Lawn Hall while it was being constructed, he asked where they were taking the wood. “They said ‘Oh we’re just hauling this off somewhere. It’s either going to be mulched or just probably taken to the dump to rot’ and that really bothered me,” MacGavin said. “I’m a woodworker, so I was like ‘That is some quality logs right there and it be great if the University could recycle those.’” MacGavin, who recently graduated from UA with a degree in architectural engineering, was also president of the Green Building Council.

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Forestry

Public lands, public data. Here’s how some provinces are lagging

By Elizabeth McSheffrey
National Observer
June 13, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada

Canadians may have difficulty finding out how governments are allowing industry to explore, alter or remove resources from publicly-owned land, new research has revealed. Members of Global Forest Watch Canada (GFWC) recently tried to access datasets on government concessions for the forestry, mining, petroleum and natural gas industries across the country, but in a number of cases, that information was not available or accessible. According to GFWC, an Ottawa-based non-profit that monitors the state of Canada’s forests, nearly 90 per cent of surface land in Canada belongs to the public. The organization maintains that the public should able to monitor what happens to that land and how industry is able to access it through government agreements called ‘concessions.’ …While Canada doesn’t receive a failing grade overall, said GFWC executive director Wynet Smith, the report reveals that governments have a long way to go in achieving their transparency commitments.

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Emerald ash borer could decimate Mount Royal trees, Projet Montréal says

June 15, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada


Thousands of ash trees on Mount Royal could be at risk of succumbing to the emerald ash borer, which would decimate the green canopy of the city’s signature landmark, Projet Montréal charged Wednesday. Saying the invasive species has already been detected throughout the wooded sections of the mountain, about half of which are heavily populated by ash trees, Projet Montréal said the city is failing to move quickly enough to ensure the trees are saved. There are about 26,000 ash trees on Mount Royal, estimated to account for roughly one quarter of all the trees on the mountain. City officials responded that while the number of infected ash trees felled on Mount Royal increased significantly in the last year, there is no cause for alarm and the mountain’s ash trees are not at risk of sudden devastation.

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Emerald ash borer could decimate Mount Royal trees, Projet Montréal says

June 15, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: Canada East, Canada


Thousands of ash trees on Mount Royal could be at risk of succumbing to the emerald ash borer, which would decimate the green canopy of the city’s signature landmark, Projet Montréal charged Wednesday. Saying the invasive species has already been detected throughout the wooded sections of the mountain, about half of which are heavily populated by ash trees, Projet Montréal said the city is failing to move quickly enough to ensure the trees are saved. There are about 26,000 ash trees on Mount Royal, estimated to account for roughly one quarter of all the trees on the mountain. City officials responded that while the number of infected ash trees felled on Mount Royal increased significantly in the last year, there is no cause for alarm and the mountain’s ash trees are not at risk of sudden devastation.

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Plan to bring death to Sudden Oak Death

By Saphara Harrell
The World
June 14, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

CURRY COUNTY — A recently-formed Sudden Oak Death Task Force released its plan to combat the disease in Southwest Oregon on Monday. Oregon’s U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley and Oregon State Rep. David Brock Smith convened the task force in March to deal with the issues that are arising from spread of Phytophthora ramorum, a non-native, invasive plant pathogen that has infected and killed hundreds of thousands of tanoak trees in Curry County. The pathogen produces spores during rainy periods that can be transferred to other trees in the wind. Adding to anxiety is the 2015 discovery of EU1, a European species of Phytophthora ramorum. It was first detected just north of Pistol River and is the only forest infestation of EU1 ever found in the United States, according to the task force’s strategic action plan. The new strain is more aggressive and damaging to conifers. The task force’s mission is to eradicate the potentially economically devastating EU1 pathogen.

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Root disease threatens millions of acres of local forests

By Rob Harris
KREM
June 13, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

INLAND NORTHWEST – The bark beetle is often the first to blame for damage to local forests, but there is another silent killer: root disease. U.S. Forest Service plant pathologist Christy Cleaver took KREM 2’s Rob Harris in the a North Idaho forest to see the damage first hand. “What you’re seeing here is a patch of dead trees that have died because of a root disease. And root diseases predispose trees to attack by bark beetles. So, the bark beetles have essentially come here to finish off these trees that were attacked by root disease,” said Cleaver. Root disease is attacking forests throughout the Inland Northwest. In fact, Cleaver said more than 16 million acres are impacted in North Idaho and Western Montana. The issues seen in the Inland Northwest can be traced back more than 100 years and across continents. The problem started in Europe. When Europeans came to America, they brought trees that were infected with what is called white pine blister rust. When they arrived in America, it infected the trees around it.

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Cattaraugus-Little Valley students help manage forests

By Rick Miller
Olean Times Herald
June 14, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: US East, United States


CATTARAUGUS — Environmental science students presented a summary of a 10-year forest management plan on school-owned forests to members of the Board of Education Tuesday. The Cattaraugus-Little Valley Central School District owns more than 50 acres of woodland off Leon Road in the town of New Albion. For the past decade, the property has been an outdoor classroom for Tony Schabloski’s environmental science students. Mason Snyder, Katie Tomasello, Caleb Bentson, Chris Dingman and Tatum White outlined species of trees on five tracts. There are plans for using herbicides to kill some undesirable trees and plants including birch, striped maple and ferns. Up to 30 acres of the Cattaraugus tract could have a selective harvest of timber next year. This year the students plant to repaint the boundary lines. In 2022, the plan calls for thinning more than 15 acres on the Cattaraugus tract. Two years later, another thinning of trees in the tracts is proposed.

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Why Holyrood must get new forestry framework right

By Stuart Goodall, Chief Executive, Confor
The Scotsman
June 15, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Forestry has come a very, very long way in the last 50 years. In 1967, forest cover in Scotland was about half what it is today. The government’s focus was solely on producing wood, while the businesses who would eventually use that wood, including sawmills, were still in their infancy. Fast forward to 2017, and forests cover 18 per cent of Scotland, employ more than 25,000 people and contribute £1 billion to the economy, while also providing homes for wildlife and places for people to walk and cycle. …Until now, the legislative framework for that role has been a 1967 Act. It’s not surprising, therefore, that we now have draft legislation at Holyrood designed to provide a new framework for forestry. While this particular legislation may not last 50 years, it is vital that Parliament gets it right. Forestry is a long-term business, and needs as much certainty about the future as it can get.

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Growing optimism fuels forestry field day

New Zealand Herald
June 15, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: International

Denis Hocking’s farm near Bulls earns more from forestry than sheep and beef in most years. The back part he bought nearly 30 years ago is sand dune country. It’s half foresty and half sheep and beef and Mr Hocking is a staunch advocate of growing trees for profit. He has collected a group of experts to show others how it’s done in a free field day on his property on June 24. It starts at 10.30am and goes on until mid afternoon – or until everyone has had enough. The Middle Districts Farm Forestry Association has run field days before, but not since the 1990s. It’s a good time to try again, Mr Hocking said, because log prices are booming and New Zealand needs more trees planted to offset its carbon emissions. He’s noticing hints of renewed interest in forestry – but “hardly a tidal wave”. One of the clues is the optimism of forestry nurseries.

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Forest Fires

Lightning Sparked Fire South of Pantage Lake 100% Contained

By Rebecca Dyok
My Cariboo Now
June 14, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

A wildfire five kilometers south of Pantage Lake is under control. Fire information officer with the Cariboo Fire Centre, Natasha Broznitsky says that as of Wednesday, June 14 the 168-hectare blaze was 100% contained and 6 firefighters were on site to look for any remaining hot spots. The fire which was reported on June 4 was started by lightning. Broznitsky says only 4 of the 38 wildfires within the Cariboo Fire Centre this year have been caused by lightning. The other 34 were human-caused and therefore preventable. (END OF STORY)

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B.C. Wildfire Services says Salmon Arms cuts not about elitism, despite documents

By Matt Meuse
CBC News
June 14, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

The executive director of B.C. Wildfire Services (BCWS) reaffirmed her department’s stance that controversial cuts at a Salmon Arm firefighting base were about fairness and cost-cutting — not about eliminating a culture of elitism, as suggested in ministry documents obtained by CBC News. In October 2016, BCWS cut staff catering and accommodation services at the Rapattack base in Salmon Arm, saying the move would save taxpayers $119,000 a year and bring base services more in line with other bases in the province. …Madeline Maley, executive director of BCWS, said she was not aware of any such barriers between crews. “I’m not aware of any animosity at all,” Maley said. “It’s certainly not part of the decision-making.”

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Summer forest fire prognosis still uncertain

By Barry Gerding
Penticton Western News
June 14, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West

The moisture on the ground and in the air this spring could be a precursor to a difficult forest fire campaign this summer. Justine Hunse, with the B.C. Wildlife Service, said the vegetation growth accelerated by the wet conditions could turn into bountiful forest fire fuel when the expectant Okanagan summer heat wave takes hold traditionally in July, August and sometimes into September. “The grass levels are something we monitor and we also gather data from the 200 weather monitoring stations across the province, but at this time of the year it’s difficult for us to predict what the severity of the upcoming fire season will be,” said Hunse. “Once the typical June rains subside towards the end of the month, we’ll have a better idea about what the intensity of the fire season might look like.”

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Blue Grouse fire holding

By Wayne Moore
Castanet
June 14, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada, Canada West


A wildfire burning in the area of Blue Grouse Mountain, north of Trader’s Cove, remains at two hectares in size. Officials with the Kamloops Fire Centre say the fire is held, meaning it is not growing in size. Fire information officer Justine Hunse says the fire has been reduced to a Rank 1 smouldering ground fire. “We have 26 firefighters on the ground and two fire origin and cause investigators on the scene,” said Hunse. Several planes and helicopters were involved in fighting the fire Tuesday. However, Hunse says no air support is being used today. While investigators are on scene trying to determine the cause, those first on scene believe the fire started near a small camp.

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One new forest fire in region

Sudbury Star
June 15, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: Canada East, Canada

There was one new forest fire confirmed in the Northeast Region by late afternoon Wednesday. Sudbury Fire 4, located about 50 kilometres north of the city, is 0.4 hectares in size. With the new fire, there are three active fires in the region. Sudbury 3 is listed as being held at 1.7 hectares. It is located north of Leinster Lake, to the east of Onaping Lake, and Sudbury 4 is listed as being held at 0.4 hectares. The forest fire hazard is moderate to high although rain is in the forecast and may bring the hazard down, depending on the amount of rain received. (END OF STORY)

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The Boundary Fire northwest of Flagstaff at 5,784 acres, 13% contained

Payson Roundup
June 14, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

Another wildfire searing through the Arizona landscape is the Boundary Fire, about seventeen miles northwest of Flagstaff, burning in the Kendrick Mountain Wilderness and north and east of the Wilderness on the Coconino and Kaibab National Forests. This fire was lightning caused, is 13% contained, currently reported at 5,784 acres, 495 personnel responding. An update from the Soutwest Area Incident Management Team 5 this morning, provided the following information: Helicopter aerial ignition operations continue today near the Kendrick Mountain peak. The operations, in which incendiary devices are dropped from a helicopter to reduce dead and down fuels, began near the peak on Tuesday.

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The Dog Head Fire one year later

By Nicole Maxwell
Albuquerque Journal
June 13, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: United States, US West

Editor’s note: On June 14, 2016, a mastication machine started the Dog Head Fire that did most of its damage over a week’s time. These stories review the events of those weeks, lessons learned and what happened to people affected by the fire. One year ago today, a forest fire exploded during a routine thinning procedure near the Fourth of July Campground in the Manzano Mountains, scorching 17,913 acres, destroying 12 single residences and 44 other minor structures. “The fire will affect our natural resources for the next three generations,” said Juan Sanchez of the Chilili Land Grant, one of the most affected areas. The fire left ash and debris, some of which went into the water supply. Most of the ash is gone from the water supply, but Sanchez said that the pond in Chilili is “full of silt.” A major issue in the aftermath of the fire is falling trees.

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Wildfires pollute much more than previously thought

By the Georgia Institute of Technology
Phys.org
June 14, 2017
Category: Forest Fires
Region: US East, United States

Summer wildfires boost air pollution considerably more than previously believed. Naturally burning timber and brush launch what are called fine particles into the air at a rate three times as high as levels noted in emissions inventories at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, according to a new study. The microscopic specks that form aerosols are a hazard to human health, particularly to the lungs and heart. “Burning biomass produces lots of pollution. These are really bad aerosols to breathe from a health point of view,” said researcher Greg Huey from the Georgia Institute of Technology, which led the study. The research also describes other chemicals in wildfire smoke, some never before measured, and it raises the estimated annual emission of particulate matter in the western United States significantly.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Alberta’s wildfire seasons to get worse thanks to climate change

By Graham Thomson
Edmonton Journal
June 14, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada, Canada West

Here is a snippet both reassuring and troubling from the recent reports into last year’s disastrous Fort McMurray wildfire. It’s a facet of the fire that was largely overlooked in the politically charged release of the reports a week ago where the opposition — and the news media — focused on the delayed delivery of the two documents. But it’s an aspect worth noting. The residents of Fort McMurray were saved primarily not by government nor by luck, but by themselves. …The fact is government and society don’t seem to have a handle on how to respond to the growing threat of wildfires. That might be because the size and scope of the fires are growing faster than the ability to respond, at least in the initial stages of the disaster. That’s what’s really troubling. These events are getting worse — thanks in part to man-made climate change.

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Canadian scientists discover how forests reduce air pollution

By Environment and Climate Change Canada
Canada Newswire
June 14, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: Canada East, Canada

OTTAWA – The Government of Canada relies on sound science to provide information needed to take action and protect the air we breathe. Clean air means healthier Canadians, and it contributes to increased economic prosperity through lower health-care costs and less damage to our natural environment….A new study recently published in Nature Communications by scientists at Environment and Climate Change Canada discovered a missing link in lower-atmosphere ozone formation: our forests. The shaded and relatively stagnant air of the forest ecosystem modifies the chemistry of air pollution, resulting in much less ozone formation than had been previously believed to take place.

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Forest accounting rules put EU’s climate credibility at risk

By Dr Joanna I House, reader in environmental science and policy, Cabot Institute, University of Bristol, UK
EURACTIV
June 14, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

…Forests are crucial to limiting global warming to 2 degrees Celsius. Deforestation is responsible for almost one tenth of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, while forests remove almost a third of CO2 emissions from the atmosphere. In the EU, forests currently grow more than they are harvested. As a result, they act as a net ‘sink’ of CO2 removing more than 400 Mt CO2 from the atmosphere annually, equivalent to 10% of total EU greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. New policies adopted or intended by Member States will likely drive them to harvest more trees (e.g. for the bioeconomy and bioenergy), reducing the sink. The controversy is, in simple terms, if forests are taking up less CO2 due to policies, should this be counted? Based on lessons learnt from the Kyoto Protocol, the European Commission proposed that accounting for the impacts of forests on the atmosphere should be based on a scientifically robust baseline.

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Replacing trees with bamboos halves the carbon storage capacity of forests

By the Forest Ecology and Management search and more info
Phys.org
June 14, 2017
Category: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International

Subtropical forests are among the most important ecosystems in terms of carbon sinks, fixing carbon from the atmosphere. Recent evidence indicates that after selective logging, bamboos replace trees in subtropical forests, which leads to decreased carbon storage. This decrease is far from trivial. The amount of carbon that a forest loses due to tree replacement by bamboos equals the amount of carbon liberated through clear cutting of the forest. Until now, the process responsible for this decline was unknown. Now, a new study reported in the journal Forest Ecology and Management sheds light on the mechanisms behind the loss in carbon fixation of subtropical forests. The study found that bamboo domination affects the forest’s function and carbon cycling by changing some characteristics of the litterfall.

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