The Tree Frog News
Peter Foster: Greenpeace stands for delay, delay, delay
Told to file a defence in Resolute case, Greenpeace instead files appeal
Greenpeace Canada continues to squirm to avoid coming up with a defence against Resolute Forest Products’ $7-million lawsuit alleging “intentional interference with economic relations;” that is, trying to destroy Resolute’s business by pressuring its customers Last Friday, lawyers for Greenpeace sought leave to appeal the decision of the Divisional Court of Ontario (which had rejected an earlier appeal and told Greenpeace to file a defence, plus pay costs). The case has significant ramifications for whether radical NGOs will be allowed to continue to spread misinformation, trample over corporate reputations, and destroy business and jobs.
Whiteswan fire largest in area
A large forest fire is raging near Whiteswan Lake, southeast of Canal Flats. The 150-hectare Whitetail Brook fire was sparked by lightning during last week’s storm, but wasn’t detected until Sunday afternoon, July 27. It quickly grew in size, and is now being fought by 40 firefighters from the Southeast Fire Centre, as well as three water tenders, three bulldozers, one excavator, three medium helicopters with buckets, and one light helicopter for administrative use.
‘Protect us’ from wild fire say Maple Ridge residents
In the forests that surround Maple Ridge, you only have to dig a few metres to find a charred layer, evidence of a time when wildfires were more frequent is not difficult to find. In 1929, a spark from a locomotive caused an extensive, disastrous blaze that destroyed almost 60,000 hectares of forest and ended logging in the Alouette River valley. Back then, Maple Ridge was sparsely populated. Now, with suburbs built into the edge of the forests, the consequences of wildfire would be costly and traumatic.
Grassy Narrows First Nation 'not victims,' says advocate
Community dealing with health effects after mercury was dumped into river 40 years ago
The people of Grassy Narrows First Nation have been coping with and resisting the violence of ongoing dispossession in their homeland for the last 100 years or more. ...Then for eight years in the late 1960s and early 1970s, a paper mill in Dryden, Ont., dumped 20,000 pounds of mercury into the English-Wabigoon River, the lifeblood of local Anishinaabe people. ...Grassy Narrows First Nation has organized and maintained the longest-running logging blockade in Canadian history. They have fought the dismissal of their treaties rights in court. They have done endless media interviews, workshops and educational campaigns designed to educate Canadians about these injustices.
Foresters Battle Spread of Asian Long-Horned Beetle
WASHINGTON - Clear-cutting is being viewed as an effective way to contain the spread of the pesky and deadly Asian long-horned beetle. The beetles, along with the emerald ash borer, have wreaked environmental and economic devastation on North American hardwood trees. Government and industry leaders across parts of the United States and Canada have had to resort to cutting down large swaths of trees in an effort to prevent the spread of insects like the Asian long-horned beetle.
Oregon Wildfires & Forest Fires
The latest updates on fires in Oregon.
Firefighters keep Yosemite blaze far from sequoias
YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, Calif. — A wildfire in Yosemite National Park made a new run that firefighters quickly stopped, and containment lines have kept it from threatening some treasured trees that are among the largest and oldest living things on earth. The blaze made a run of about a half-mile in the Crane Creek area Wednesday, park officials said in a statement, but it was brought under control. The fire remained about 10 miles from Merced Grove, one of three Yosemite stands of giant sequoias, towering trees that grow only on the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada and can live longer than 3,000 years.
Daines signaled that loyalty lies in DC with letter to Boehner opposing collaborative bills
Letter by Jim Posewitz
U.S. Congressman Steve Daines just flashed us a signal on who he will represent. A recent (July 19) news article reported that he joined 28 other Republicans asking House Speaker Boehner to oppose U.S. Forest proposals being developed at the local level. Montana citizens have worked for years developing two such proposals: the Rocky Mountain Front Heritage Act and Sen. Jon Tester’s Forest Jobs and Recreation Act. What Daines and his fellow Republicans want is legislation designed in Washington for all national forests and then dictated to the local people (H.R. 1526). The net effect would be trashing the time and effort invested in two genuinely collaborative efforts.
Letter: Elliott Forest symptomatic of state government
The July 27 article, "Elliott Forest loses money," caught my interest. While at the Division of State Lands in the mid-1990s, I got interested in why the management of Elliott cost the division so much. After all, the program was managed by the state forest department and most actual work was contracted out (leaving only management); little or no money went to the Common School Fund. My investigation revealed that money from Elliott was spent by the Oregon State Forestry Department on parking lots, roads, equipment, small buildings, etc., for the department and charged to Elliott as management expense.
Delaware forest fire crew returns Monday from west coast
20 Delaware Forest Service firefighters help battle Washington state's historic wildfire
Firefighters have been turning the corner on controlling Washington state's largest-ever wildfire – the 250,000-acre Carlton Complex east of Seattle – aided by 20 firefighters from the Delaware Forest Service. The crew, which is scheduled to return home Monday, includes veterans and newcomers from public agencies, volunteer fire companies and others from the Mid-Atlantic region who have completed training in wildland firefighting, according to John Petersen, a spokesman for the Delaware Forest Service.
A 'tree change' for TFS' Indian sandalwood plantations
Tropical Forestry Services (TFS) is planting over 1,400 hectares of Indian sandalwood in the Northern Territory this year. The trees are being planted on Midway Station in the Douglas Daly (515 ha) and also on TFS properties near Katherine (900 ha). The plantings this year look distinctly different to any other carried out by TFS, which has been planting sandalwood in Australia's tropical north since 1999. This year, each sandalwood tree, along with host trees, is planted within a cardboard, biodegradable tree-guard, which is held in place by two bamboo sticks.
Back to Top
Tasmanian logger escapes conviction for punching forestry protester
A magistrate has decided not to record a conviction against a Tasmanian forestry worker who punched a man in the street after recognising him as a protester. Jamie McMahon, 28, told the Magistrates Court in Hobart he punched Ali Alishah in the face in a New Norfolk street in March last year after he recognised him as one of the Butlers Gorge forest protesters. McMahon, a third-generation forestry worker, said frustration got the better of him because he had lost wages because of the actions of protesters.
Company & Business News
Drew Hasselback: Aboriginal court decisions shouldn’t be dealbreakers
You’ve heard varying degrees of panic over the Supreme Court of Canada’s rulings in Tsilhqot’in and Grassy Narrows. These are clearly important aboriginal rights decisions, and each will have a profound impact on Canada’s natural resource industry. Yet I’m not sure either case justifies any fear. The cases clarify some technical aspects of aboriginal law. And, well, that’s it. They’re not legal blocades that will halt all development in this country. Litigation is a zero-sum game. If a case makes it all the way to judgment, you have a winner and you have a loser. Now, what is it that the winner gets?
Union Boss Weighs in on Lakeland Fine
Prince George, B.C. - Union boss Frank Everitt has weighed in on the penalty and claims cost levied against Lakeland Mills by WorkSafeBC. The Local 1-424 United Steel Workers president says while no amount of money will ever replace the death of two workers he's admits it's a bit of a mystery how they arrived at roughly $724,000. "I understand the $97,500 administrative penalty because it's the same penalty that was issued in relation to the Babine issue." But when it comes to the $626,000 claims cost levy, that's where the confusion comes in.
Western Forest Products' 2Q revenue increased by 12.9% to $296.2 million
Western Forest Products Inc. announces results for the 2Q 2014 with adjusted EBITDA of $40.9 million compared to adjusted EBITDA of $32.8 million for the 1Q 2014 and $44.9 million for the 2Q 2013. The Company reported revenue of $296.2 million for the 2Q 2014 compared to $246 million for the 1Q 2014 and $262.3 million for the 2Q 2013. "Despite the challenges that we faced in our second quarter, we delivered another strong performance. Increased shipments and an improved sales mix drove our revenue to its highest level in seven years," said Don Demens, President and CEO.
Forest sector to receive $1.1M in seed money
A combined investment of $1.1 million from the federal and provincial governments to the Prince Albert Model Forest Association (PAMF) will be used for skills training, seeking out new export markets and improving technologies in the forest sector. PAMF president Mark Johnston said the global forest sector has gone through a big downturn in the past decade and the companies are just starting to recover. "It's a really good time to be asking questions about technology because the forest product sector is really coming back to life," Johnston said.
Opinion: Court ruling means Tsilhqot’in lands never belonged to Crown
Province will not be able to issue permits to third parties for resource exploitation.
The recent Supreme Court of Canada decision in the Tsilhqot’in case has caused a tectonic shift in the legal landscape in B.C., and in other parts of Canada where aboriginal title still exists. It is, as Chief Jody Wilson-Raybould put it, a “game-changer” in several important ways. ...These lands are not (and never were) Crown lands that could be regulated and divided as though they were public lands. Given that aboriginal title is protected by the Canadian constitution, governments cannot deal with, or interfere with, the Tsilhqot’in First Nation’s use of the lands and resources without their consent; i.e. the province will no longer be able to issue permits to third parties for land use or resource exploitation on those lands.
Workers, families ‘really disappointed’ by Prince George sawmill blast fines
by Shaw/Hoekstra - They say $724,163 in penalties issued by WorkSafeBC following Lakeland Mills fire are too little, too late
VICTORIA — Steep fines handed out Tuesday to the owners of a Prince George sawmill that exploded in 2012 have provided little satisfaction to workers and families of the victims. ...Ronda Roche, whose husband Glenn was killed in the wood dust-fuelled explosion, said she's greatly disappointed at the amount of the fine and the time it took to issue the penalties. "It is very clear that failures in our system continue to disappoint our families," said Roche. "The reality of ever seeing justice or accountability for the death and injuries of Lakeland employees as well as for employees of Babine Forest Products continues to be unlikely based on the outcomes to this point of time."
Ledwidge Lumber receives loan guarantee of $1.5 million
Nova Scotia Business Inc. says the loan guarantee will help the family-owned sawmill in Enfield establish a private-sector line of credit.
Nova Scotia's Crown-owned business development agency is providing a $1.5-million loan guarantee to a lumber company in Enfield. Nova Scotia Business Inc. says the loan guarantee for Ledwidge Lumber will help the family-owned sawmill establish a private-sector line of credit. Ledwidge Lumber produces lumber for housing construction and specialty products, with the capability of producing up to 100 million board feet of lumber products annually.
Tembec reports financial results for its third quarter ended June 28, 2014
MONTREAL - Consolidated sales for the three-month period ended June 28, 2014, were $404 million, as compared to $399 million in the same quarter a year ago. The Company generated net earnings of $30 million or $0.30 per share in the June 2014 quarter compared to a net loss of $7 million or $0.07 per share in the June 2013 quarter. The June 2014 results include a gain of $14 million related to the sale of land.
Northern Pulp won't be shut down despite emissions, stench
No 'imminent threat' to human health, says Environment Minister Randy Delorey
Nova Scotia's Environment Minister says there's no question the Northern Pulp mill in Abercrombie Point is malfunctioning, but he has no intention of forcing it to shut down despite public complaints about the emissions coming from the mill. "To date the conclusions that they've made are that there isn't an imminent threat to human health," Randy Delorey said Wednesday. David MacKenzie, a spokesman for Northern Pulp, said the smell and particulate are caused by emissions that are getting through an old precipitator, which is a filtration device.
Plum Creek plant resumes production
Production has resumed at Plum Creek’s MDF plant in Columbia Falls, Montana, which was hit by fire on June 10. Although production was down for about three weeks, the company continued to supply customers from existing inventory. The fire, which is thought to have been caused by a mechanical failure, caused around US$8-10m of damage. Plum Creek has announced it will donate US$15,000 to the fire services that attended the fire.
Millinocket receives small payment toward Great Northern Paper tax debt
MILLINOCKET, Maine — It’s more than a week past deadline and not nearly enough to cover the tab, but the auctioneer trying to settle Great Northern Paper Co.’s $1.18 million net tax debt has made a $76,650 payment, town officials said Wednesday. Town Manager Peggy Daigle announced receipt of the payment in a brief email on Wednesday. Town Council Chairman Richard Angotti Jr. was similarly terse in his reaction to the payment, which was received Friday. “It’s another payment,” Angotti said Wednesday.
Jobs will flow as timber brings life to rail terminal
Australia’s leading forestry and logistics service providers are working together on a three-year deal for the export of approximately 175,000 tonnes of timber per annum from the Bathurst region. PF Olsen Australia, the nation’s leading independent provider of forest management services, has engaged Asciano Limited subsidiaries Pacific National and C3 to handle and haul the containerised timber from Bathurst to Port Botany in NSW. The logs will then be shipped to China, where demand for Australian timber continues to grow.
Back to Top
Gunns plantations: Farmers told to rule a line under tree lease losses and 'move on'
Farmers are being told they should stop waiting for tree lease payments of millions of dollars after the collapse of Gunns. The Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association's Jan Davis said many farmers and landholders with plantations on their land should now work out where they stand, as they were unlikely to be paid. "The biggest challenge for individual landowners is sitting down in the cold, hard, light of day, and working out where they are at themselves, making the decision to rule a line under it, and move on whatever moving on might look like for them individually," she said.
Wood & Paper Products & Green Building
Nominations open for Wood Works! BC Awards
This year marks the 10th year Wood WORKS! BC will recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of communities that have built projects using wood. The Community Recognition Awards are presented annually to communities that have specified the use of wood in a local project. Nominated projects may be cultural, recreational or administrative buildings of any size. One project from each area association will be selected. The winning local governments will be recognized at the area association luncheons during UBCM’s 2014 Convention in Whistler.
Back to Top
Bamboo housing touted by UBC
University of B.C. researchers are working nationally and internationally on a better construction material — bamboo to promote sustainable development and hopefully meet future building needs. Due to rapid urban expansion and heavy pollution around the globe, the need for sustainability is gradually becoming significant, said Gregory Smith, a professor in UBC’s Deartment of Wood Science. While concrete manufacturing emits large amounts of carbon dioxide, he said, utilizing bamboo as a construction material can be a substitution
to reduce the carbon footprint — along with promoting the use of
renewable materials, so as to help fight climate change.