British Columbia Sawmill Curtailment and Timber Supply Update

Canadian Forestry News - Mon, 2019-06-10 03:00
As the home building and construction season for 2019 marches on, seasoned players in the production, sale and purchase of North American softwood dimension lumber products continue to be surprised by the very low demand for solid wood commodities. Lumber prices continue to drop persistently from the soaring highs experienced just a year ago.
Categories: Canadian, Forestry, News

Healthy reefs, healthy people: Community-based marine conservation in Papua New Guinea (commentary)

Canadian Forestry News - Fri, 2019-06-07 11:44
A blessed country of spectacular landscapes and the most diverse array of cultures on Earth, Papua New Guinea is also a global hotspot for biodiversity. Just in terms of species, the South Pacific nation has more birds than all of North America, over three-quarters of the world’s hard corals, and at least 2,000 reef fish. […]
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Older forests resist change, climate change, that is

Canadian Forestry News - Fri, 2019-06-07 07:24
Older forests in eastern North America are less vulnerable to climate change than younger forests, particularly for carbon storage, timber production, and biodiversity, new research finds. The study analyzed how climate change is expected to impact forests across the eastern US and Canada. It found that increased forest age reduces the climate sensitivity of forest carbon, timber, and biodiversity to projected increases in temperature and precipitation.
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The Great Insect Dying: Vanishing act in Europe and North America

Canadian Forestry News - Thu, 2019-06-06 12:09
The insects of the EU and US are the best studied in the world, and it is here that a strengthening case can be made for an alarming insect abundance decline.
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Komatsu Forestry provides quick equipment oil analysis

Canadian Forestry News - Thu, 2019-05-30 04:56
Komatsu Forestry’s Komatsu Oil Wear Analysis (KOWA) is now the official forestry fluid analysis provider for North America. KOWA serves its North American customers through partnerships with oil analysis laboratories, Fluid Life and Bureau Veritas. Source: Timberbiz KOWA has been an established Komatsu program for more than 40 years. The company’s construction and mining customers have used KOWA as an effective preventive maintenance and diagnostic tool through their North American Komatsu distributors. Analyzing engine oil and other fluids is an effective way to identify the health of a machine’s engine and powertrain to make informed repair and maintenance decisions. Proper oil and fluid analysis can extend component life, identify minor problems before they become major failures, and help customers make informed reselling and purchasing decisions. “The Komatsu Oil & Wear Analysis (KOWA) program allows customers to pinpoint and solve equipment problems by providing a full range of information on both the lubricant and the machine to support operations and maintenance decisions,” Tom Pietruszka, KOWA business manager said. “KOWA is the best defence for proactively maintaining your forestry equipment.” KOWA’s testing facilities are ISO-accredited to ensure high-level accuracy and offers ‘Next-day Turnaround’ upon receipt of samples for routine analysis. To eliminate maintenance guess work, oil analysis results are compared with Komatsu guidelines. The program features an online web portal for customers and dealers to view oil analysis results within minutes once testing has been completed. Customers can contact a local Komatsu distributor to order kits to begin using the program. All Komatsu Forestry equipment data has been loaded into the KOWA database.
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At 2,624 years, a bald cypress is oldest known living tree in eastern North America

Canadian Forestry News - Thu, 2019-05-16 06:35
Ancient bald cypress trees tower along the Black River in the state of North Carolina in the United States. Many of these living trees are over a thousand years old, researchers had estimated in the late 1980s. But there are much older trees still growing tall. One bald cypress tree (Taxodium distichum) in the Black […]
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North American Softwood Lumber Prices Bounce in Early May

Canadian Forestry News - Tue, 2019-05-14 03:02

The latest data from May 6 show US construction employment is up significantly. Likewise, the latest update from regional producers is that recent log cost increases in the Pacific Northwest (PNW) require similar increases in manufactured lumber prices. While no one in the North American lumber industry was celebrating sales volumes last week, the resurgence of demand and plumper sawmill order files were encouraging.

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Native plants regenerate on their own after invasive shrubs are removed

Canadian Forestry News - Fri, 2019-05-10 05:29
Invasive shrubs have become increasingly prevalent in the deciduous forests of eastern North America -- often creating a dense understory that outcompetes native plants. Many land managers would like to remove the invaders, but worry about whether a costly remediation program will be needed to help the native plant community rebound.
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Oldest known trees in eastern North America documented

Canadian Forestry News - Thu, 2019-05-09 07:51
A stand of bald cypress trees in North Carolina, including one least 2,624 years old, are the oldest known living trees in eastern North America and the oldest wetland tree species in the world. They show evidence of severe flooding and drought during colonial and pre-colonial times.
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Canada to argue US duties with NAFTA after industry downturn

Canadian Forestry News - Wed, 2019-05-08 02:59
Western Forest Products CEO Don Demens will be speaking to a NAFTA panel to argue that American softwood lumber duties should not be applied to the cedar products the company makes. The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) does not cover softwood lumber, which was excluded from NAFTA and was not included in the recently renegotiated agreement. Source: BIV However, chapter 19 of the agreement allows companies to challenge US trade findings and restrictions they disagree with – even for goods and services not explicitly covered by NAFTA. The Canadian government will also be making a petition to a NAFTA panel in Washington. Its arguments will be broader. Mr Demens will zero in on appearance-grade lumber made from Western Red and yellow cedar. These products are not construction grade lumber, which is the heart of the softwood lumber dispute that has prompted the US government to levy duties of more than 20%. “Cedar products represented about 3% of the volume (exported to the) US. from Canada in 2018, but 9% of the total duties,” Mr Demens said. “So, we’re being impacted disproportionately by a dispute that really isn’t anything to do with cedar. “We’re going to continue to press the fact that cedar and redwoods are separate products from construction lumber, and therefore they should be investigated separately. They’re not the cause of the dispute because they’re not injuring any US producers. Why should we be penalized and have cedar in what is largely an issue around construction grade lumber? “Our argument is it’s a small volume, it doesn’t injure US producers and is not part of the cause of the dispute.” The market for red and yellow cedar is small compared with the construction grade spruce, fir and pine that is at the heart of the softwood lumber dispute. About 20% to 25% of the products Western Forest Products makes are cedar products, but 85% of the market for those products are in the US. The company operates six sawmills on the BC coast, and just recently acquired a mill in Vancouver, Washington. American softwood lumber duties have cost the company Can$71 million, as of the last quarter. Until last year, the duties were mitigated somewhat by record high lumber prices in the US. But prices have dropped, and at the same time BC producers are finding it harder and harder to even supply logs to their mills, thanks to a shrinking timber supply and high stumpage rates. Like other forestry companies, Western Forest Products has had to curtail production in recent months. The company has taken one shift off of its Cowichan Bay sawmill, took a six-week shutdown at its Port Alberni mill, and a two-week shutdown at its mill in Ladysmith. According to Western Forest Products, stumpage rates in BC have gone up 120% over the last two years. Mr Demens argues that there is no shortage of logs on the coast, unlike the interior of BC, where a physical shortage has resulted from forest fires and the Mountain pine beetle. “The challenges here on the coast are centred around costs and access to markets,” Mr Demens said. Part of the access to markets problem now stems from duties on Canadian softwood lumber.
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Development of AP waste plant to start

Canadian Forestry News - Tue, 2019-04-30 03:40
Australian Paper and its partner SUEZ are moving to the development phase of their $600 million energy-from-waste plant after a two-year detailed study backed the project at AP’s Latrobe Valley paper mill. The $7.5 million Energy from Waste feasibility study, co-funded by the Victorian and Australian governments, confirmed that the plant would be socially, economically, environmentally and commercially viable. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz It would add a new dimension to the Latrobe Valley paper mill, the largest paper plant in Australia; stop waste being transported across Melbourne to landfill; save natural gas; lower carbon dioxide emissions; and create a massive economic boost, including hundreds of jobs in the Latrobe Valley and across the state. AP’s chief operating officer, Peter Williams, said AP and SUEZ were now focussed on taking this important regional investment in the Latrobe Valley to the development stage. “We will work to finalise approvals and seek to secure long-term waste supply contracts, as well as appoint suitable partners to undertake the engineering, procurement and construction phases,” he said. The summary report found the plant would help solve the pending landfill closures facing south-east Melbourne. “This could prevent about 550,000 tonnes of waste per annum being trucked across Melbourne from municipalities in the south-east to landfill sites located in the city’s west,” Mr Williams said. “The EfW project is the missing link in waste management infrastructure for the south-east, creating efficient energy from residual household and commercial waste, achieving a more sustainable outcome than disposal to landfills. The facility would reduce CO2 emissions by more than 540,000 tonnes per year.” With 80,000 tonnes expected also to be sourced from Gippsland, the total waste that would be processed at the Valley’s Maryvale mill is 650,000 tonnes. The report also found that by replacing natural gas at the Maryvale site, AP would return enough gas to the market to meet the annual needs of up to 70,000 Victorian households annually. “EfW technology is a proven and reliable low emissions technology, meeting the strictest European emission standards and has been used extensively in Europe, Japan and North America for decades,” Mr Williams said. In the construction phase, the report concluded that the proposed plant would contribute $483 million to Victoria’s gross state product (GSP) and about $228 million to Victorian household income. “This represents an average of 1046 full-time jobs per annum in the Victorian economy over three years,” the report said. The sectors most likely to benefit are construction, machinery and equipment manufacturing, professional, scientific and technical services, retail trade, chemical and non-metallic mineral product manufacturing, and finance and insurance services. The construction impacts in the Latrobe Valley are a $203 million boost to gross regional product (GRP), just under $89 million in household income over the three years of construction. This represents an average of 454 full-time jobs over three years. Once the plant is operational, the economic study estimates annual impacts of just under $199 million to Victoria’s GSP, about $76 million in household income and 911 full-time jobs when flow-on effects are taken into account. When operational, the plant would annually contribute $96 million to the Latrobe Valley’s GRP, $20 million in household income and 265 full-time jobs when flow-on effects are considered.
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Meet the winners of the 2019 Goldman Environmental Prize

Canadian Forestry News - Mon, 2019-04-29 10:53
Six grassroots environmental activists will receive the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize today. Dubbed the Green Nobel Prize, the Goldman Prize honors environmental activists from each of the six continental regions: Europe, Asia, North America, Central and South America, Africa, and islands and island nations. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Prize founded in […]
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‘Judas’ snakes lead scientists on a high-tech Easter egg hunt for pythons

Canadian Forestry News - Wed, 2019-04-24 05:09
Remember that 3-meter (17-foot) pregnant Burmese python recently captured by wildlife authorities in southern Florida? These snakes, invasive to North America and destructive to native wildlife, are cryptic in both their coloration and behavior, making them difficult to find. But scientists found this female with the help of some tracking tags and a cooperative male […]
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Supply Chain Price Differences Affecting the North America Pulp and Paper Industry

Canadian Forestry News - Tue, 2019-04-23 03:01

Over the last two decades, several trends have driven customer preferences and changes in demand for forest and paper products. As a result of these changes, demand for one of the forest industry’s seminal products—printing and writing papers—continues to decline rapidly; over the last decade, production of printing and writing papers has declined by 6% annually.

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Deforested habitats leave migratory birds ill-prepared for journey north

Canadian Forestry News - Mon, 2019-04-15 07:14
To many in North America, the sound of birds among the early spring trees is the sound of renewal: after a long, cold winter, the colorful warblers and vocal thrushes have finally returned, bringing with them the promise of warming weather. It’s a seasonal phenomenon as old as time — but one that’s in peril […]
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Regional Differences Pose Profitability Challenges for North American Sawmills

Canadian Forestry News - Mon, 2019-04-15 03:07

Beginning in 4Q2017, prices for domestic and export Douglas fir logs in the Pacific Northwest (PNW) rose steadily before they spiked in 2Q2018 to record levels. The phenomenon occurred when North American lumber prices also surged to record highs. While regional lumber producers in the PNW couldn’t fully capitalize on high lumber prices due to their equally high log costs at the time, producers in the US South were perfectly positioned to take advantage of the market and maximize profits.

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UNECE Event Recognizes Local Governments’ Role in Achieving SDGs

Canadian Forestry News - Thu, 2019-04-11 11:50
The event sought to enable the exchange of views and knowledge sharing of good practices and successful planning strategies. UNECE Executive Olga Algayerova acknowledged the need for the UN to give mayors and local governments more space to discuss practical action and solutions to achieve the SDGs. Urban areas comprise over 75% of the population in Europe, 80% in North America and almost 50% in Central Asia.
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Engineered wooden bike of LVL origins

Canadian Forestry News - Tue, 2019-04-09 01:01
Although wooden-frame bikes may not be a common sight out on the street, they’re plentiful at events such as the North American Handmade Bicycle Show. So, what makes one stand out there? Well, it helps if it’s made in a non-traditional manner – which is the case with Normal Bicycles. Source: New Atlas The metal bike frames that we’re used to consist of tubes, which are joined together via either welds or lugs. Many wooden frames, on the other hand, consist of two carved-out sides that are bonded together down the middle. Normal Bicycles, based out of Buffalo, New York, splits the difference – its frames are made of wooden tubes. “It’s multiple layers of maple veneer, laminated together,” said designer/builder Chris Kudla, describing his tube-making process. “By doing that, I can make the wall thickness a lot thinner, and also have these long sections of tubing that I can cut to length. It helps with stiffness, the weight, and also manufacturing.” It should be noted that there’s also a thin layer of carbon fibre lining the inside walls of the tubes. Those tubes are joined to one another using an aerospace-grade aluminium alloy and titanium fasteners. A marine finish is also applied, to keep the wood from being damaged by rain, snow or salt. The ride quality of the resulting bike is said to provide a solid connection with the road, but without the bumps and shocks. As far as weight goes, the custom gravel bike that was being showcased at NAHBS weighs a claimed 10.2 kg. Chris and his wife/business partner Jessica also had one of their cheaper, production Urban Scout commuter bikes on display – it tips the scales at 11.3 kg. Pricing for the Scout ranges from US$3200 to $3550, depending on the package. The gravel bike, on the other hand, is worth around $6000. “I’m an engineer doing woodworking,” Chris said, describing the origins of his unique approach. “Most of the time it’s woodworkers doing woodworking, so I think that’s where it comes from.”
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Spring Snowmelt: Transportation Woes Stall North American Lumber Shipments

Canadian Forestry News - Tue, 2019-04-02 03:03

Most “lumber talk” across North America over the last week has centered around the Montreal Wood Convention, a great event that draws the sawmill industry together every year. Attendees reported well-stocked inventories but a lag in production because deliveries to many parts of the US were stymied as severe flooding has taken over large swaths of the Midwest and the Northeast. Rail lines continue to flood and bridges are washed out all over the Midwest, so important transportation hubs like Memphis, TN, and Chicago, IL, are experiencing severe delays, backlogs and lack of rail car arrivals.

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What’s Driving Forest Industry Growth in the US South?

Canadian Forestry News - Wed, 2019-03-20 04:18

As I wrote in the first installment of this blog series, it’s nearly impossible to overstate the impacts that the Great Recession of 2008 had on the North American forest products industry. The sudden plunge of the housing sector had cascading effects that immediately influenced the entire global economy.

Categories: Canadian, Forestry, News