Tree Frog Forestry News

Category Archives: Today’s Takeaway

Today’s Takeaway

US Department of Commerce lifts tariffs on shakes & shingles

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 7, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway
Region: United States

The US Dept of Commerce announced the immediate lifting of tariffs on Canadian Western Red Cedar shakes & shingles. In related news: the softwood lumber dispute adds to US homebuilder costs; lumber and panel shortages put consumers on hold in Nova Scotia and North Carolina; Norbord continues with flexible operations; the ProDealer summit goes virtual; and Canada’s consumer confidence rises for 10th straight week. 

In other news: BC wildfires are down by 1/3 due to a soggy June; beetle-mania in North Eastern Ontario is linked to past forest fires; the BC College of Applied Biology on the regulated and reserved practice of applied biology; and fire concerns persist with mass timber towers.

Finally; the democratization of remote sensing, a webinar by UBC’s Nicholas Coops. 

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Lumber futures hit record high, companies report Q2 earnings

The Tree Frog Forestry News
August 7, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Lumber futures climbed to record highs as dealers express concern over high prices, virus outbreaks and shipment-delays. In related news: BMO forecasts recovery of Canadian economy next year; US mortgage rates fall to record low; and China recovers from its record Q1 contraction. Meanwhile, more positive second quarter earnings are in for Western Forest Products, Interfor; Domtar and Rayonier Advanced Materials. 

In Forestry/Climate news: FPInnovations releases guide to road building on weak soils; arson is suspected in Southeast BC wildfires; Vermont’s broadleaf forests are being managed for carbon; Brazil invites the private sector to adopt Amazon forests; and Portugal’s forest workers are distressed by imprecise fire alerts

Finally, Interfor’s Covid-19 plan keeps Mohalla, Oregon sawmill outbreak in check.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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US passes, considers bills on health of forests and forest communities

The Tree Frog Forestry News
August 6, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

On the coattails of signing of the Great American Outdoors Act, the US considers relief for Covid-19 impacted logging communities, and a bill to increase forest management and reduce litigation is introduced (to the dismay of some). Companies in the news include: Cascades (Q2 earnings); West Fraser (new heat exchangers); Freres Lumber (PPP loan); Verso (mill closure); and Enviva (pellet plant purchase).

In other news: BC will fund a wildfire chair position at Thompson Rivers University; EPA’s cost-benefit analyses are are a path to better forestry; Europe’s forests face growing pest threat; and illegal logging is on the rise in Brazil.

Finally, the Olympic athletes of the carbon world are… the forests of the Pacific Northwest.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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In a warming world, some trees are storing more carbon

The Tree Frog Forestry News
August 5, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

A new study at the Harvard Forest Research site says the rate of forest carbon capture doubled in the past two decades. In other Forestry/Climate news: the gov’t of Canada is investing in BC’s species at risk; Alberta’s forest and wildfire training centre in Hinton to be updated; BC’s old-growth strategy report to be released soon; and EU and Chinese studies shed light on how biodiversity impacts forest ecosystems.

In Business news: the National Association of Home Builders seeks a meeting with US commerce secretary to address high lumber prices and tariffs on Canadian lumber; the Oregon Forest Resources Institute is called a de facto lobby arm of industry; and more positive Q2 financial results from Louisiana Pacific, Norbord and Stella-Jones

Finally, a mystery rock face and immortal trees?

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Building boom continues despite drop in construction spending

The Tree Frog Forestry News
August 4, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Lumber consumption continues to exceed forecasts despite drop in residential and nonresidential construction spending. In related news: Resolute hopes to reopen idled El Dorado mill; Boise Cascade reports positive earnings; and supply shortages a concern for Wisconsin builders.

In Wood Product news: stories on the value of old barns and bent wood; and mass timber innovation comes to Washington state, UK, and Australia. Meanwhile: the US seeks limits on habitat for species-at-risk; Covid-19 is blamed for a rise in Oregon’s human-caused wildfires; and thousands remain evacuated due to a Southern California wildfire.

Finally, the most sasquatch sightings per capita, and wood coffins at your farmers market!

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Work-from-home makes lumber a winner, paper a loser

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 31, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Work-from-home policies are helping make lumber a winner, paper a loser. In related news: Resolute shares rise on lumber revenues; lumber dealers remain positive despite cover-19; timber housing meets housing demand; but housing starts continue to fall in Japan; and lower pulp prices push WeyerhaeuserMercer and Finish forest companies earnings lower. Meanwhile: Canada risks spat with Japan over log exports; court approves C&C Wood Products sale; and a Kentucky hardwood producer files for bankruptcy.

In Forestry/Climate news: BC announces new research chair in wildfire management, as it urges caution during the current heat wave and works to adapt firefighting strategies. Elsewhere, forest development stalls despite Trump’s order; and California wildfires grow as more redwoods are protected.

Finally, its a long-weekend north of the 49th, so the Frogs will hop back on Tuesday.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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The US economy contracted 9.5% in Q2, the worst on record

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 30, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The US economic contraction in Q2 was the worst on record with GDP falling 9.5%. In related US news: pending home sales edged up in June; mortgage applications were down slightly last week and Southern Yellow Pine prices broke the previous record. Meanwhile: the BC Business Council offers up a blueprint for recovery; Nova Scotia’s forestry transition fund is accepting applications; Resolute reports a small Q2 profit; Sappi reports a big loss; and International Paper shows strong earnings. 

In Forestry/Climate news: an ENGO report says Ontario must act on its ‘hidden deforestation‘; the wildfire fix rule is adopted by the US Forest Service; a UK prof says both young and old forests are important to slow climate change; and wildfire pollutants put kidney patients at greater risk.

Finally, musical titan Chuck Leavell has a pending documentary titled ‘The Tree Man‘.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Prices moderate, consumers and analysts take a measured view

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 29, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Softwood prices moderated somewhat while consumers and forest sector analysts become less optimistic about the short-term outlook. Companies in today’s news include: West Fraser (strong profits); Pacific BioEnergy (conveyor fire); Northern Pulp (Nova Scotia gov’t pushback); Corner Brook Pulp & Paper (federal funding for diversification); and Weyerhaeuser (new sustainability strategy).

In Forestry/Climate news: BC’s oldest Community Forest celebrates 20 years; Oregon increases fire restrictions due to hot temperatures; California’s Shasta College secures a commercial timber license; a book review of The Journey of Trees; and FPInnovations’ Smart Driver for Forestry Trucks training is now online.

Finally, almost 3 billion animals were affected by Australia’s 2019/20 bushfires.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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West Fraser, PotlatchDeltic report Q2 earnings

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 28, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Second quarter sales and earnings reported by West Fraser and PotlatchDeltic bolstered by strong solid wood prices. In other Business news: Kalesnikoff Timber shows off its new CLT plant, Fast + Epp completes its new mass timber headquarters; Corner Brook, Newfoundland has a new Centre for Forest Research and Innovation; and the Retail Hardware Association names its Top Guns Award winners.

In Forestry/Climate news: BC’s wet summer prompts slow fire season; fuel buildup puts Arizona communities at risk; a U of New Hampshire study improves drones ability to identify tree crowns; and an ENGO study on UK support for wood biomass is called “incredibly leading“. 

Finally, a new study says millennia trees have tricks to stay youthful but there’s no immortality.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Lumber prices – the hurdle that could cripple the recovery

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 27, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The V-shapped housing market recovery is being challenged by low lumber inventories and high prices. Companies in the news include: Canfor’s Taylor pulp mill (record production); C&C Wood Products (a suitor is found); Elmsdale Lumber (a shortage of logs); Verso’s Luke Paper Mill (a lack of UI benefits); and Kimberly-Clark (new climate goals).

In Forestry/Climate news: the spruce budworm is surging in Ontario; a breakthrough agreement clears the way for thinning in New Mexico; new satellite technology to monitor Argentina’s forests; Scotland looks to expand its woodlands; and Germany’s forests decimated by insects, drought.

Finally, the summer heat is drying out BC’s forests; as wildfires abound in Maine and Portugal.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Thanks to lumber, Canfor is back into the black in Q2

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 24, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Canfor bounces back into the black, reflecting materially higher lumber earnings and a small pulp products loss. In related news: BC forestry revenue rebounds but employment lags; North American dealers retain upbeat outlook; Maine loggers welcome fed relief bill; and EU wood pellet demand is expected to increase. Elsewhere: Unifor supports Northern Pulp’s bid for creditor protection; and Western Forest Products donates $100,000 to 13 food banks. 

In other news: prof studies the effects of glyphosate on northern BC’s forests; climate change hits home for Russia in Siberia; Greece wildfires rage out of control; and wildfire smoke ages, becomes more toxic over time. Meanwhile: Toronto breaks ground on its newest, tallest wood-frame building; and the US National Defense Authorization Act provides for mass timber use.

Finally, the BC Forest Practices Board welcomes two new appointees. Congrats Gail and Cindy!

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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US delays duty adjustments on Canadian lumber for 60 days

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 23, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The US Dept of Commerce announced a further 60-day delay on administrative reviews, postponing the anticipated duty changes on Canadian softwood lumber. In related news: US home sales rebound; nonresidential construction is down; and Russian timber exports fall. Companies in the news include Teal Jones (property tax increase); Western Forest Products (food bank donation); and Verso Corp. (potential buyers). 

In Forestry/Climate news: BC stands behind predator control as ENGOs ask court to revoke wolf kill permits; wilderness designation is sought for parts of Olympic National Forest; scientists say the Amazon is trapped in a climate/forest loss cycle; and New Zealand passes bill to help domestic wood processors.

Finally, the US Congress passes an historic bill to boost conservation, parks.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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High operating costs continue to hold back some BC mills

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 22, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Softwood lumber prices continue to rise but demand flows east as high operating costs keeps some BC mills shuttered. In related news: can a forest machine connectivity project reduce BC’s harvesting costs; CN Rail recalls some of its laid off workers; and a new train cargo facility is planned for Terrace, BC. Meanwhile, Nova Scotia opposes Northern Pulp’s bailout deal; and a California court upholds verdict in Monsanto glyphosate case

In Forestry/Climate news: the UN says forest loss is still a problem in the tropics; the Sierra Club BC calls for a logging moratorium in at-risk old-growth forests; and an Australian hardwood store blockade seeks to reverse the company’s decision not to stock native forest timber products.

Finally, pizza boxes are recyclable despite cheese and grease. And wine bottles are next!

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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UN’s 2020 analysis of forest resources goes interactive

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 21, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The UN FAO released an interactive version of its 1990-2020 analysis of the world’s forest resources. In other Forestry news: fibre access challenges Aspen Planers in BC; Forest fires up, hectares lost down in Ontario; US House spending bills to address conservation; endangered species status sought for rare Alaska wolves; the sustainability (or not) of biomass electricity in the Netherlands; a New Zealand court decision emphasizes steep slope safety; and Iran’s forest fires attributed to human error.

In other news: Covid-19 fails to dampen US home purchase plans; 84 Lumber to expand with 200 new hires; Alabama Pellets secures incentives for new mill; Verso shutdown impacts Wisconsin’s loggers; and Rayonier Advanced Materials reports lower Q2 earnings.

Finally, as the affordable housing crisis intensifies, its granny flats to the rescue.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Flight to suburbs boosts US homebuilding but virus casts a pall

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 20, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

US housing starts increased by 17% amid reports of rising demand in the suburbs but a resurgence in Covid-19 threatens the recovery. In related news: a renovation boom boosts Canadian lumber stocks, leads to treated lumber shortages in Ottawa; Maine’s loggers face tough times; and Arkansas’s Governor addresses growing importance of timber.

In Forestry/Climate news: BC seeks intel on the impact of climate change on its resource industries; researchers say climate change is impacting Labrador’s caribou herds; UBC invents a portable DNA device to detect tree pests; and 9-axle B-trains make log hauling safer and more efficient. Meanwhile, mass timber gains momentum with BC government support and FPInnovations’ guidebooks

Finally, why Bigfoot and other beasts of the forest loom large in the human imagination.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Builder confidence rallies as housing starts and sales rise

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 17, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Builder, remodeller and dealer confidence levels rally as US housing starts and Canadian sales continue to rise. Companies in the news include: Corner Brook Pulp and Paper (paper machine fire); Proctor & Gamble (climate campaign); Georgia Pacific Warrenton, VA plant (4 covid cases); and SmartLam Columbia Falls, MT (new CLT plant opening). 

In Forestry/Climate news: BC announces funding for caribou habitat restoration; Bruce Blackwell defends Whistler’s approach to fire mitigation; Ontario works to keep fatal wildlife disease at bay; a study says ethical labels fail to change corporate conduct; Brazil takes action to preserve Amazon forests; and climate change is blamed for Siberian wildfires

Finally, researchers find the further they go, the stronger mountain pine beetle’s signal gets.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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ENGOs, industry groups rally to influence Canada’s recovery plans

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 16, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Canada’s resource industry and (separately) a large group of environmental organizations are organizing to influence Ottawa’s post-covid recovery plans. In other Business news: Canada seeks to stem out-migration in Northern Ontario; BC’s log export plunge may violate the Trans-Pacific Partnership; the US furniture industry wants the Chinese tariff exclusions to be extended; recovered paper shipments to China could cease by year-end; and economic updates abound by Fannie Mae, MarketWatch, and the Mortgage Bankers Assoc.

In other news: BC’s wolf kill program is panned in The Atlantic; ENGOs seek protection for Alaska’s wolf population; lifting the Tongass Roadless Rule said to benefit China most; and Two Sides launches its Love Paper campaign.

Finally, biodegradable fleece clothing made from wood – yes it’s possible!

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Lumber prices and lumber futures reach new highs

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 15, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Softwood lumber prices increase toward 2018 levels and lumber futures reach new highs. In other Business news: deck demand creates run on treated wood; Truck Loggers Association cancels 2021 convention and trade show; SmartLam debuts new facility in Columbia Falls; Fastmarkets names US boxmaker Anthony Pratt CEO of the year; and Marianne Berube—of Wood WORKS! fame—elected chair of Nipissing University Board.

In Forestry/Climate news: the challenges inherent in UN’s REDD+ plan to save forests; BC’s wolf kill program found to have no detectable effect, US loggers seek COVID-19 bridge relief; and Canada urged to protect rare moss clinging to life on Moresby Island.

Finally, want to celebrate National Forest Week in America? Here’s how.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Fighting forest fires at night with night vision goggle technology

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 14, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

BC successfully tests forest fire suppression by helicopter at night with night vision goggle technology. In related news: California to prevent wildfires sparked by power lines; the US Forest Service considers logging-rule-change to reduce fire risk; and the latest wildfire potential outlook for the Pacific Northwest (above normal) and the US Southeast (below normal). 

In other news: softwood lumber leads the rise in residential construction costs; Canada Wood’s latest update on the Chinese market; with federal support, BC is on track to plant 300 million trees; the pros and cons of wood pellets and climate change; heat-treated wood inks North American distribution deal; and a Korean architectural firm adds another first to its wood leading designs.

Finally, genomes and fossils reveal how oaks evolved to rule North America’s forests.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Canada provides emergency funding for tree planting

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 13, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The Canadian government announced emergency funding for COVID-19 safety measures to protect the 2020 tree planting season. In related news: the US Administration’s suspension of temporary visas bars key workers for tree planting; Colorado’s loan program helps forest product businesses; and Scotland provides grants to get more trees in the ground.

Meanwhile: Fort McMurray’s fires had a lasting impact on its rivers; a Philadelphia study links growth in tree canopy to human health; and Fort Nelson secures BC’s largest community forest, as Quesnel moves closer to securing same. 

In Business news: US pandemic challenge hits BC exports; the Canada-China Huawei dispute threatens lumber trade; lower log prices hurt New Zealand exports; who owns Northern Pulp?; and Setra’s Q2 results.

Finally, Wood CO2ts less; the world’s newest frog; and Johnny Walker in paper bottles.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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America is on a lumber binge, paper mills regress

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 10, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

America is on a lumber binge (treated wood shortages, futures up 85%), but paper mills regress (two Maine operations close). In related news: the US Northeast struggles amid Covid-19; little help for Mackenzie, BC despite Premier’s tough talk; and the Steelworkers speak to problems with international trade. Companies in the news include: Domtar—Kamloops (emissions odour); Brinks Forest Products (chip pile fire); Hood Container (mill investment); and CN Rail (wildfire appeal loss). 

In other news: BC’s forestry watchdog finds issues with Quesnel timber sales; Northeast Ontario struggles with the spruce budworm; and the US Forest Service assesses conditions in northwest forests. Meanwhile: Notre Dame is to be rebuilt just as it was before; Russian firefighters are seeding clouds to douse wildfires, and Ontario’s heat wave exacerbates its fire challenges.

Finally, if you like the Sounds of the Forest, you’ll like these audio postcards.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Mass timber gets design and networking boost

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 9, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Mass timber gets a boost via a free online timber design tool (by Fast + Epp) and a new online networking community (thanks to US WoodWorks). Meanwhile, two projects by UK architects Waugh Thistleton are in the news—a new demountable CLT design, but also (sadly) a construction crane collapse

In Forestry news: the CIF defends Canada’s boreal forest management; FPAC promotes international awards for forestry; researchers at the U of Toronto co-lead a new Wildland Fire Research Network; six faculty at the U of Northern BC secure federal forestry research funding; investing in conservation found to generate huge returns, and the National Association of State Foresters seeks $500 million for its COVID-19 stimulus platform

Finally, purifying water with the help of wood, bacteria and the sun.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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If there’s a crisis, it won’t be a housing crisis

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 8, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Hoya Capital says a decade of underbuilding and mortgage debt service ratios at historic lows points to strong housing markets. In related news: the construction sector is hiring; dealers are underbought; softwood lumber prices are rising; and SYP is at a two-year high. In other Business news: a new pellet mill is planned for the Slave Lake, NTW; and Port Alberni’s Community Forest pays large dividend.

In other news: US predicts growth in biomass energy generation; Bayer’s Roundup settlement hasn’t ended its troubles; Kimberly-Clark vows to halve its environmental footprint; Walmart ups its requirement for certified paper sourcing; and Georgia considers early adoption of mass timber code changes.

Finally, Alberta’s grizzlies need more space while BC’s spirit bear needs more protection.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Weather, Covid-19 blamed for bad start to Quebec’s wildfire season

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 6, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The weather and idle-cottagers (re: Covid-19) are blamed for the bad start to Quebec’s wildfire season. In related news: conditions spark surge in Northern Ontario; Arizona faces extreme danger; Oregon’s fire season is in effect state-wide; Brazil sees worst June in 13 years; Arctic wildfires cause spike in carbon emissions; and a look back at the sawmill fire that changed Vancouver forever.

In other news: Greenpeace supports FSC CanadaMosaic says log exports needed to maintain domestic supply; Domtar blames weather for Kamloops’ pulp mill odours; Roseburg mill fire put-out in Missoula; Skeena Sawmills inks deal to secure fibre; and FPAC endorses federal innovation funding but only as a ‘first step‘ to recovery.

Finally, Ivanka Trump joins the American Forestry Conference speakers list.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Softwood lumber prices surge as consumer confidence rises

The Tree Frog Forestry News
July 3, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Softwood lumber prices surged 11% last week as dealers reported strong sales and US consumer confidence rose for the second straight month. In other Business news: CN Rail plans to expand and upgrade its BC network; Northern Pulp secured a loan to keep the lights on; no buyers yet for the bankrupt Kenora Forest Products operation; Empire Recycled Fiber plans to build a new mill in Pennsylvania; and Deere has a new worldwide president of forestry and construction. 

In Forestry news: NRDC disparages FPAC’s response to their tissue exposé, as well as SFI’s proposed standards revision; a white-tailed deer invasion threatens Alberta caribou; Ontario’s Gypsy moth outbreak dates back to an 1869 silkworm breeding experiment; and in the fight against prostate cancer—extract (and drink) cork tree bark.

Finally, to our readers North and South: a belated happy Canada Day, and an early happy Independence Day.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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We’re on vacation! Check back Friday for the week’s highlights

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 29, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The long-awaited debut of NAFTA-two this Wednesday comes with predictability and stability despite new threats of tariffs. In other Business news: Mississippi’s forest industry backs effort to change state flag; Pinnacle Renewable Energy amends credit agreement with lenders; Ashton Lewis Lumber expands into Virginia; and luxury homebuyers bounce back but inadequate inventory persists.

In Forestry news: LiDAR advancements are touted by Forsite Consultants and SFI; while wildfire stories abound in Alberta (slow start to the season); Indonesia (early start); Oregon (preparations underway); and Michigan (new detection systems). Meanwhile: CLT makes headway in Vancouver and Sacramento; and Minnesota celebrated Paul Bunyan Day. 

Finally, the Frogs are taking a couple of days off to celebrate Canada Day but will be back with a full-week recap on Friday. 

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Softwood Lumber Board generates 10.5% more incremental demand in Q1

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 26, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The Softwood Lumber Board generated 420 MBF of incremental demand in Q1, as well as providing intel on what the ‘next normal‘ could look like post-COVID. In other Business news: New Hampshire industry lumbers on; BC based Mosaic and Conifex restart operations; Northern Pulp’s creditor protection creates reopening uncertainty; Georgia Pacific amends wood supply agreement with CatchMark; and COFI’s Susan Yurkovich comments on Mackenzie’s struggles as the BC town makes plans for another forest rally

In other news: wildlife biologists defend BC’s controversial moose cow-calf hunt; more coverage on NRDC’s contested report linking US toilet-paper makers with Canada’s boreal forests; forestry careers get a boost in Quesnel, BC and Georgia; and the city of Salem named Tree City USA by the Arbor Day Foundation.

Finally, the who, what, when and why of dust hazard analysis

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Contested report claims US toilet paper production harms Canadian forests

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 25, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

A contested report by US lobby group NRDC claims working from home exacerbates the US tissue manufacturer’s ‘tree-to-toilet pipeline‘, which is devastating Canada’s boreal forests. Meanwhile: Wildsight takes aim at BC’s ancient forests; an Alberta-Pacific report supports maintenance of FSC certification; and forests’s climate change role is double sided.

In Business news: Mosaic Forest Management is back in business; more on the Mackenzie BC rally as Conifex is set to recommence operations; Ponderay Newsprint shuts down in NW Washington; Södra to increase pulp capacity in Sweden; Skeena Sawmills signs new labour agreement; and a coalition of groups lobbies Ottawa to leave log exports alone.

Finally, the world’s tallest ‘hybrid timber’ tower is coming to Sydney, Australia.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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US loggers and truckers seek COVID-19 relief package

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 24, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Maine and North Carolina loggers and truckers seek federal relief package to help with COVID-19 impacts. In other Business news: Mackenzie BC mayor says people are nervous and mad; the future of Ontario’s Fort Frances paper mill may lie in cannabis; US tariff concerns increase as election nears; and a range of housing commentary by Madison’s, NAHB, CNBC and Business in Vancouver.

In other news: BC welcomes support for mass timber construction; NAWLA launches lumber industry careers campaign; injunctions thwart Australian loggers (again), and ENGOs urge end to UK biomass subsidies. 

Finally, move over Smokey, says a moose with no name.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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US, Canadian housing markets poised to rebound

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 23, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The US and Canadian housing markets are poised to rebound, although May’s numbers are still down. In other Business news: Mackenzie, BC rallies for the future of its mills; Ontario’s Fort Frances paper mill’s assets are up for auction; and Mosaic and Steelworkers reach several landmark agreements. 

In Forestry/Climate news: Mongabay ups the pressure on BC’s old growth forests; FAO’s building back better message seeks to offset risk of forest loss; tree planting programs in Chile and the US are said to reduce biodiversity, while restricting them in New Zealand is at odds with the country’s climate goals. Meanwhile: BC’s forest watchdog calls for protection of fish-bearing streams; and six Vancouver Island rivers undergo habitat restoration.

Finally, forest fires continue to rage through Quebec and Arizona.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Northern Pulp gets creditor protection after province offered to defer loan payments

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 22, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Northern Pulp was granted creditor protection by the BC Supreme Court to ensure it can safely idle its Pictou County mill, three weeks after Nova Scotia offered to defer its loan payments. In Business/COVID news: Canadian forest industry overcomes operational challenges; BC extends electricity bill payment deferral; Montana timber industry braces for pandemic effects; and housing will outperform the US economy—so will forest products.

In other news: SFI and FSC recognize National Indigenous Peoples Day; and wildfire advancement and preparations in Alberta, New Brunswick, and Washington state. Meanwhile: Enviva acquires two pellet plants in Georgia; and mass timber the upshot of Sidewalk Labs’ canceled Toronto project.

Finally, June 22 is World (Tropical) Rainforest Day.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Housing will outperform the US economy, employment will struggle

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 19, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The housing sector will outperform the North American economy as it recovers from COVID-19, although employment will struggle as companies shed higher-income earners. In related news: engineered wood and mass timber are poised for strong growth; DIY keeps the renovation sector hopping; dealers are encouraged by the uptick in housing starts; add logs to the Canada-China trade problem; and Pinnacle completes its Williams Lake, BC upgrade.

In Forestry/Climate news: BC tree planting in the time of COVID; scientists say the US trillion trees plan is a risky climate strategy; a Russian theory claims forests make both rain and wind; and First Nations are a key part of Canada’s sustainable biomass strategy.

Finally, achievements in tall wood buildings are celebrated in a new book.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Wildfires and COVID-19 risks, it depends where you live

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 18, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Alberta’s slow start to the wildfire season is linked to weather and COVID-19 restrictions; Oregon prepares with precautions, and Arizona deals with a spike in wildfires and virus cases.

In Business news: commentary on the North  American housing markets from the NAHB (permits soar), Forests2Market (industry performance tumbles) and Bloomberg columnist (housing is hot); as the Tree Frog News features three more keynote speakers at FEA’s (virtual) Softwood Lumber Conference. Today’s focus—North America’s log and lumber markets

In other news: a new study says Northern Pulp’s treatment facility ‘did its job’ at Boat Harbour, Nova Scotia; UBC and FPInnovations receive monies to develop a virtual reality planning tool; and a log scaling robot wins award in New Zealand.

Finally, self-powered ‘paper chips’ could help sound an early alarm for forest fires.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Lumber prices stabilize as builder and consumer confidence rises

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 17, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

US builder confidence surged in June as Canadians shed their pessimism about the economy, and lumber prices stabilized. But according to two FEA principals: the current recession will play out differently than 2008 as housing starts and lumber prices tick-up through 2021.

In other Business news: Canfor’s Swedish subsidiary acquires 3 sawmills; China claims pests found in logs imported from Canada; and BC appoints Ravi Kahlon to lead its mass timber expansion, as a Georgia bill seeks to expand its use. Meanwhile: Nova Scotia names board to oversee new forestry trust; and Western Forest Products defends limited pesticide use in Powell River region.

Finally, a Philadelphia study says increasing tree canopy can decrease human mortality!

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Strong softwood lumber rebound forecast in 2021: FEA

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 16, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The great softwood lumber consumption collapse of 2020 will mostly be regained in 2021, according to FEA’s Russ Taylor—lead-off presenter at FEA’s Global Softwood Lumber Conference—the virtual version. In related news: housing markets in CanadaCalifornia and China shrug off the COVID-19 effect. 

In other Business: the BC government takes heat over Mackenzie pulp mill closure; Resolute’s newsprint capacities are down 40%; and JD Irving to begin work its New Brunswick sawmill expansion. 

In other news: the Seattle Times picks up the BC old-growth story; the US administration is panned for its plan to open up national parks; and New Zealand’s MP’s move to prevent forestry price controls.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Governments launch programs to support local forest companies

Tree Frog Forestry News
June 15, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The Newfoundland and Virginia governments launched programs to support their respective forest sectors amid COVID-19. Meanwhile, organizations releasing their economic policy proposal wish-lists include three Ontario building associations, and the US Hardwood Federation. In related news: a suite of economic indicators suggests US homebuilding will soon rebound, but supply will likely lag demand.

In other news: the US Agriculture Secretary unveiled a vision for more development in national forests; Ontario’s proposed species-at-risk extension gets pushback; deforestation in the Amazon continues to rise; and more fallout due to recent mill closure announcements in Mackenzie, BC and Duluth, Minnesota

Finally, eight updates to our Conference and Events page due to COVID-19.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Paper Excellence, Verso Corporation idle pulp & paper mills indefinitely

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 12, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Paper Excellence is idling its Mackenzie, BC pulp mill indefinitely due to lower demand and fibre shortages, while Verso Corporation idles its paper mills in Duluth and Wisconsin Rapids. Commenting on the Mackenzie closure are the Gov’t of BC, Unifor and the Mayor of Prince George.

In other Business news: dealers report uptick in wood product sales as building material prices in general rise; BC delays increase to log export restrictions to assist industry amid COVID-19 challenges; Canada joins US in investigating China’s dumping of hardwood plywood; and more company news from San Group, and Taiga Building Products.

Finally: a first of its kind mass timber warehouse in BC, and a carbon and soil professor wins the World Food Prize.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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US interest rates to remain low, US home purchasing climbs

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 11, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

The US Federal Reserve projections of near-zero federal funds rate through 2022 supports the home building sector and reinforces its leadership role in the coming recovery. In other Business news: how the pandemic is changing US homebuilding practices; the US is investigating plywood imports from Vietnam; and a pending rail line closure will impact Interfor’s Grand Forks, BC mill.

In Forestry news: BC loggers plead for certainty on old growth transition; former board member says BC’s forestry watchdog needs to change; Oregon real estate trusts are panned for their impact on small timber communities; and Arkansas representative champions sustainable forest management. Meanwhile: a lignin-based resin that reduces plywood’s footprint and a review on Michael Green’s Tall Wood Buildings book.

Finally, the conservation officer who refused to kill two bear cubs is vindicated in court.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Buyers pull back, sit on inventory amid civil unrest

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 10, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Civil unrest led to most North American buyers sitting on whatever inventory they had last week. In related news: high lumber prices are a sign that demand exists and; combined with lower sawlog costs is leading to improved profitability worldwide. In other Business news: work is underway to save C&C Wood Products; Clearwater Paper’s Lewiston plant upgrade fails to deliver savings; and Maine’s TREE Foundation has a new executive director.

In other news: Biomass generated electricity is expected to grow in the US; Go Lab—Maine’s new wood fibre insulation venture—is delayed another year; and the staggering value of forests—and how to save them.

Finally, a stone-carved arrowhead dating back 7000 years found near Williams Lake, BC.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Northern Pulp appeals gov’t order; C&C files for bankruptcy

The Tree Frog Forestry News
June 9, 2020
Category: Today's Takeaway

Northern Pulp is appealing the Nova Scotia gov’t order regarding its effluent treatment plant, claims it was “constructively evicted” from Boat Harbour. In other Business news: C&C Wood Products in Quesnel, BC files for bankruptcy; New Brunswick Premier defends environmental oversight appointment; US court says EPA must set new limits for pulp mill air pollutants; and it’s official – we’re in a recession.

In Forestry/Climate news: Nova Scotia species at-risk order could impact other Atlantic provinces; rare Oregon salamander found not to be impacted by logging; experts say fire management key to conserving California’s dry forests; and more on BC’s big and small old-growth trees.

Finally, BC Wood goes virtual and 6 new environmental product declarations by the Canadian and American Wood Councils.

Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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