Beetles, bushfires and the President push lumber prices up

Canadian Forestry News - Wed, 2018-06-27 19:17
What do forest fires, wood-eating beetles and US President Donald Trump have in common? They have all helped push the price of lumber to historic heights, leading to record share prices for lumber producers and higher prices for US homebuyers. Source: Financial Times The price of lumber has increased 57% since the start of 2017, according to the Random Lengths framing lumber composite price index, going from US$356 to US$571 per thousand board feet. Analysts attribute the price spike to steadily increasing demand and a coincidence of supply shocks in British Columbia, one of the world’s largest producers of softwood lumber. “When you have a tight supply chain, as soon as one thing goes wrong, prices skyrocket,” said Brendan Lowney, principal and macroeconomist at Forest Economic Advisors. “You almost have a vertical supply curve.” The run started early last year, when the market began pricing in expectations that the US Department of Commerce would implement countervailing and anti-dumping duties on Canadian softwood lumber. With a new protectionist ally in the White House, the US Lumber Coalition filed trade remedy petitions in November 2016, that argued Canadian government leases of publicly owned timberland effectively subsidised the industry and its US$5.6bn worth of imports to the American market in 2016. By the time the first duties were announced last April, the price of lumber had risen 20.7% — pricing in nearly exactly the 20.83% average duty ultimately levied on Canadian producers. But of the factors driving current prices, duties are only “number three on the list,” said Mr Lowney. More important was a historic 2017 wildfire season that was so severe the Canadian government’s senior climatologist called it the “summer of fire”. Between April and November, more than 1300 fires consumed more than 1.2m hectares of British Columbia. The fires and dry conditions forced many sawmill owners to halt operations and restricted much of the province’s logging activity. The slowdown came at a most inopportune time thanks to another, slower moving shock to the industry: throughout the late 1990s and early 2000s, British Columbia’s forests saw the largest infestation of mountain pine beetles on record, and the consequences are being felt now. It only takes a few hundred of the hard-shell black bugs, each roughly the size of a grain of rice, to overwhelm the defences of a healthy, towering pine. As they burrow through the tree’s bark to lay their eggs, they also introduce a fungus that changes the colour of its wood. “The tree is as good as dead within 48 hours,” said Katherine Bleiker, a bark beetle ecologist with Natural Resources Canada. The epidemic hit hardest in the heart of British Columbia’s logging country, affecting more than 18m hectares and killing about 54% of the province’s merchantable pine. But despite their changed colour, standing trees killed by pine beetles can still be harvested for lumber. Many are usable for up to eight years, and some last up to 12. After the epidemic’s peak in 2005, the provincial government increased annual harvest allowances, hoping to capture what value they could from the dead pines. The fire-shortened summer of 2017 was one of the last chances to harvest many of the affected trees and the government’s harvest allowances are now decreasing sharply. “We’re hitting that point where the supply curve really starts to bend down on the standing inventory in British Columbia ,” said Mr Lowney. By the last quarter of 2017, it had looked as if prices had settled around US$435 per thousand board feet. But when a harsh winter slowed down Canadian rail traffic, other commodities were prioritised and lumber orders piled up at mills, giving a new leg-up to prices. “What’s unprecedented about this run compared to other record runs is the length of it,” said Shawn Church, who has covered the industry for 28 years at trade publication Random Lengths. With the spring and summer building season now under way, prices are still climbing. The US residential sector is the country’s biggest lumber consumer, and new housing starts hit a post-2007 high in May High prices and high demand meant massive first-quarter profits for lumber companies. Share prices for the two largest Canadian lumber corporations, Canfor Corporation and West Fraser Timber Co Ltd, and Weyerhaeuser Co, the largest US producer, have all hit record highs this month. As lumber companies rake in profits, the costs are shifted to builders and eventually on to homebuyers. Analysts differ in their estimates, but the increase in lumber costs alone has probably added between US$3000 and US$9000 to the cost of the median new home. “It is making it harder to build affordable units at a moment when the housing market desperately needs them,” said Aaron Terrazas, economic research director at real estate website Zillow.
Categories: Canadian, Forestry, News

Canada’s failure to protect Wood Buffalo National Park to be raised at UNESCO meeting in Bahrain

Canadian Forestry News - Tue, 2018-06-26 12:45
FORT MCMURRAY— As UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee convenes this week for its annual meeting in Manama, Bahrain, Indigenous and environmental groups are calling on Canada to do more to protect its largest park, Wood Buffalo National Park.
Categories: Canadian, Forestry, News

NEW POLL: Canadians overwhelmingly support 
protecting much more land and sea

Canadian Forestry News - Mon, 2018-06-25 09:30
A major new public opinion survey commissioned by the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) and the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) found that Canadians overwhelmingly believe protected areas are necessary and want about half of our land and sea protected for nature.
Categories: Canadian, Forestry, News

Diverse Canadian voices call for action on protected areas

Canadian Forestry News - Fri, 2018-06-15 12:30
June 15, 2018, Ottawa, Ont. - The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) welcomes the diverse voices calling for action on protected areas in today’s public release of Canada’s Conservation Vision: A Report of the National Advisory Panel.
Categories: Canadian, Forestry, News

Superintendent, Urban Forestry in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada with Halifax Regional Municipality

Canadian Forestry Jobs - Fri, 2018-06-15 09:16

Job Posting

Halifax Regional Municipality is seeking applications for the permanent position of Superintendent, Urban Forestry within the Road Operations and Construction division of Transportation and Public Works. We encourage applications from qualified African Nova Scotians, racially visible persons, women in non-traditional positions, persons with disabilities and Aboriginal persons. HRM Encourages applicants to self-identify.

Under the direction of the Manager, Road Operations & Construction, the Superintendent, Urban Forestry is responsible for the coordination and management of diverse cross-functional and multi professional teams tasked with Urban Forest Master Plan (UFMP) implementation. The work is project based and includes the ongoing development of multi-year tree planting strategies, urban forest policies, by-laws, procedures, regulations and public education projects.


  • Serves as primary technical resource contact for the disciplines of arboriculture and urban forestry.
  • Provides Project management of broad-scope exercises such as master planning and management planning, requiring collaboration/coordination with diverse groups of external consultants, public, political, professional, and staff functions, interests, and stakeholders;
  • Oversees Policy development through the coordination of team efforts encompassing:
    • Research and stakeholder consultation
    • Process, procedural reviews and operational (re-)engineering review
    • Financial analyses including cost-benefit analyses; budget/project costing development and recommendations
    • Coordination of inter-departmental/inter-agency working groups/committees and public and legal consultations
    • Report and discussion paper preparation and presentations
    • By-law development and implementation planning
    • Program/policy assessment including pre- and post-implementation quantitative and qualitative survey methodology;
  • Coordinates and implements various HRM tree planting; conducts professional assessments and inspections and provides professional recommendations and advice on public trees.  Prepares related reports for council;
  • Issues and monitors Tree Permits and “Letters of Permission” related to By-Law T-600 Respecting Trees;
  • Prepares Request for Proposals, Contract tenders, terms of reference, transaction agreements and recommendations to Council toward the approval and execution of such agreements;
  • Coordinates the UFMP implementation with other business units to include the development, direction and co-ordination of street and park tree planting program;
  • Builds interdepartmental cooperation and effective relationships with management and staff.,
  • Facilitates learning in the organization and public as it relates to UFMP implementation;
  • Facilitates effective planning processes, action results based plans, maximizing use of available resources and uses innovation to access new resources while monitoring results and adjusting accordingly;
  • Ensures service levels are delivered in the most efficient and effective way including analyzing alternative service delivery methods, trend analysis and policy development;
  • Fosters the development of highly qualified and competent arborist staff.
  • Exercises a high degree of effective delegation of authority and effective decision- making expected at the Management level.
  • Assists in Emergency Management Response related activities
  • Provides effective Human Resources Management, administering Human Resources programs and other HRM policies.
  • Creates and maintains a positive work environment that is conducive to high morale and performance.
  • Complies with all applicable codes and legislation, including occupational health and safety, WHMIS, and hazardous substance programs ensuring the maintenance of a healthy and safe workplace.
  • Ensures staff works in an safe, effective and efficient manner, working within the guidelines set in Human Rights Act and OH&S regulations.

Education & Experience 

  • Post-secondary degree in Urban Planning, Urban Forestry, Environmental Management, Environmental Engineering, Environmental Resource Studies or related degree from a recognized institution and/or professional degree/designation. i.e. ISA Certified Arborist;
  • A minimum of five (5) years in the direct management of Urban / Forest Stands; within a municipal or institutional unionized environment is an asset;
  • Demonstrated experience managing complex, multi-disciplinary projects;
  • Sound knowledge and experience in the areas of inter-business unit facilitation, coordination, and policy and process/procedure development, to achieve results, negotiation, facilitation, and customer service excellence.

Technical/Job Specific Knowledge and Abilities 

  • Thorough knowledge of current trends/needs in sustainable urban forest management, environmental protection and municipal service delivery;
  • Thorough knowledge of urban and spatial planning principles and practices in context of management of municipal urban forests;
  • Thorough knowledge of relevant planning legislation and procedures;
  • General knowledge of the Urban Forest Master Plan in Halifax Regional Municipality;
  • General knowledge of Canadian Municipal procurement policies;
  • Strong knowledge and demonstrated experience of budget preparation and monitoring techniques;
  • General knowledge of occupational health, safety, environmental, planning, development and other applicable municipal, provincial and federal legislation;
  • General knowledge of inter-relationships with other governmental agencies or related disciplines (site development, landscaping, storm water management, site analysis);
  • Working knowledge of software i.e. MS Word, Excel, Outlook, GIS, etc.;
  • Demonstrated tact and diplomacy, both with internal and external clients.
  • Demonstrated high degree of professionalism and confidentiality

SECURITY CLEARANCE REQUIREMENTS: Applicants may be required to complete an employment security screening check.

PLEASE NOTE– Testing may be conducted as a component of the selection process to assess technical and job specific knowledge. Candidates, who are selected for testing, may be tested in a group setting, scheduled at the employer’s discretion.

COMPETENCIES: Analytical Thinking; Communication; Customer Service; Flexibility; Initiative; Networking/Relationship Building; Organization and Planning; Organizational Awareness; Team Leadership; Partnering; Risk Management; Valuing Diversity

WORK STATUS:  Permanent, full time
HOURS OF WORK:  Regular hours of work are Monday - Friday, 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
SALARY:  Non union, P3 Level, $88,000 - 110,000, commensurate with experience
WORK LOCATION:  3825 MacKintosh Street, Halifax
CLOSING DATE:  Applications will be received up to midnight on Thursday, July 5, 2018
We thank all applicants for their interest in this position. Only those applicants selected for interview/testing will be contacted. 
During the recruitment process, applicants have the right to request an accommodation. Applicants invited to participate in an assessment process (such as an interview or testing) and who require accommodation, should discuss their needs with the Recruiter when invited to the assessment process.
Qualified HRM retirees may also be considered for competitions. In these circumstances, a form of employment may be offered, including term and/or contract employment.


Categories: Canadian, Forestry, Jobs

CPAWS Applauds US and Canadian Mayors’ Announcement to Protect Natural Spaces

Canadian Forestry News - Thu, 2018-06-14 17:11
June 14, 2018, OTTAWA – The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) celebrates today’s announcement by Canadian and U.S. mayors of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Region of the creation of the Mayors’ Council on Nature and Communities, a new venture aimed at protecting natural spaces in urbanized areas.
Categories: Canadian, Forestry, News

Maintenance Superintendent in High Prairie, Alberta, Canada with Miriam Sherris Recruiting

Canadian Forestry Jobs - Thu, 2018-06-07 23:20

This full-time, permanent career opportunity is based in High Prairie, AB and requires a Maintenance Superintendent with a strong mechanical background and supervisory experience of multi-trade crews in a fast paced, industrial manufacturing environment.

How can you stand out?  If You….

  • Are seeking the next step in your career and have a proven track record of overseeing a safe and efficient operation in planning, organizing and operating all aspects of the maintenance department
  • Have always believed in advancing your career through continuous studies and hold a mechanical trade certification or engineering degree and have knowledge of other related trades
  • Have had the opportunity to add project management of capital projects to your career experience…This role might be for you!

As an integral part of the Maintenance team, you thoroughly enjoy leading a team of employees and helping them understand their contribution to the success of a manufacturing operation.  You are articulate and a strong motivator of people.  Your strong planning, budgeting and financial skills have contributed to your career success as a savvy manager who understands the importance of running a safe and efficient environment.


  • Are authorized to work in Canada (Canadian citizenship or permanent residency status)
  • Have a minimum of 6 years mechanical maintenance management experience in an industrial manufacturing environment
  • Have at least one mechanical trade certification (e.g. Red Seal Millwright); multiple certifications would be an asset. Mechanical engineers with experience leading multi-trades may also be considered
  • Are highly effective in motivating your team through the process of change management and continuous improvement methodologies
  • Have excellent communication skills and a strong command of the English language (both oral and written)
  • Are self-motivated with well-developed organizational and time management skills
  • Are computer literate, and possess good analytical skills

Our client is a well known and well respected employer who manufactures lumber, panel products, co-products, biomass power, and a growing number of specialty wood products in its operations across Western Canada.  As an industry leader in world markets, they provide a dynamic environment and consider the success of their people the most valuable resource.

Categories: Canadian, Forestry, Jobs

New report on Marine Protected Areas in Quebec: “Guidelines for reaching your destination”

Canadian Forestry News - Thu, 2018-06-07 10:06
Montreal, Que. - On the eve of World Oceans Day and the opening of the G7 in Charlevoix, the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) Québec Chapter released its 2018 report on marine conservation: "Marine Protected Areas: guidelines for reaching your destination". In the report, CPAWS highlights the encouraging signals from Quebec and Canadian governments to reach the 2020 international target to protect at least 10% of our ocean and emphasizes the importance of minimum standards for ensuring the quality and effectiveness of marine protected areas (MPA).
Categories: Canadian, Forestry, News

Inventory Forester / Inventory Technician in Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada with Ecora Engineering & Resource Group Ltd

Canadian Forestry Jobs - Wed, 2018-06-06 23:42
Job Description:

Ecora Engineering & Resource Group Ltd. is a British Columbia employee-owned engineering, environmental and forestry professional service firm. Ecora is committed to creating and delivering quality products to our valued clients. Our team has extensive experience in providing a wide range of consulting services to clients including first nation communities, provincial government, municipalities, architects, developers, and contracting firms throughout British Columbia. Our team of specialists is supported by a wide network of associates that enable Ecora to deliver a full suite of services throughout western Canada and around the world. Ecora is built around its core values of commitment to our staff, our relationships, our community and our environment. 

   Ecora is continuing to expand our Resource Inventory services in both Canadian and international markets and is currently seeking resource inventory staff. As an integral member of our Resource Inventory Team, you will be responsible for contributing to the delivery of all aspects of forest inventory projects throughout BC and other regions. 
   The position includes work in both field and office environments. The field activities involve field sample planning, establishment and reporting. The office activities include project planning, and photo interpretation and delineation to appropriate jurisdictional and company standards. Both work environments require compliance with our comprehensive occupational health and safety program, producing quality work on budget and on time, communicating effectively, and working collaboratively with fellow staff and clients. The position will include periodic travel. 
   We are seeking to fill inventory staff positions at the junior, intermediate and senior levels. Individuals with a current BC VRI air photo interpretation certificate will be given preference. 
   This is a permanent, full-time position with training opportunities, competitive remuneration and company-paid benefits, including participation in a profit sharing incentive plan and potential for share holding. This is an opportunity to grow with an emerging dynamic company. 
Job Qualifications:

  The successful candidate will possess the following: 
   • Valid Class 5 driver’s license (or equivalent) and clean driving record 
   • Legally eligible to work in Canada 
   • The ability to view images in stereo / 3-dimensions and in colour is mandatory 
   • Proficient in computer use, with excellent oral and written communication skills 
   • A minimum of 1 years’ work experience in operational forestry     


   Additionally, the successful candidate could possess the following: 
   • Familiarity with British Columbia’s Biogeoclimatic Ecosystem Classification (BEC) 
   • Registration with a professional association (e.g. ABCFP) is preferred but not required 
   • Experience with Python and SQL programming languages 

Categories: Canadian, Forestry, Jobs