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Today's Takeaway

US to impose duties of 65 to 115 percent on Chinese hardwood plywood

Categories: Today's Takeaway
Jun 21, 2017
Tree Frog Forestry News

The US Department of Commerce announced that it will be imposing a preliminary duty on hardwood plywood imports from China of "57% on non-investigated companies that qualified for a separate rate and 115% against all other producers/exporters". Final determination is expected around August 30th.

No real news on the softwood lumber file but Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin is claiming the interim tariff is "hurting Kentucky’s homebuilders". Meanwhile, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters that the Trump Administration "would like to eliminate the log export ban in BC".


On the Tall Wood front, the mayor of Springfield Oregon plans to "build a four-storey parking structure out of cross-laminated timber" and down-under the "sod-turning ceremony for the world's tallest wooden office building [10 stories] will take place in Brisbane, Australia". 

"Rising stars on Business in Vancouver’s Top 100 Public Companies" list includes West Fraser and Canfor, with profits up 215 and 122 percent, respectively, between 2015 and 2016. The only stock to outperform the two forestry companies was Teck Resources. 

Finally, Conservative MP Denis Lebel will be leaving federal politics to become "the next president and general manager of the Quebec Forest Industry Council."

-- Kelly McCloskey, Tree Frog Editor

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Forestry

Regina's annual Dutch elm disease monitoring begins

Categories: Forestry
Region: Canada; Canada West
Jun 20, 2017
CBC News

It's that time of year again when Regina city workers walk neighbourhood streets and parks, staring up at the trees. They're looking for signs of Dutch elm disease, which Regina's manager of forestry, pest control and horticulture says the city has under control. He wants it to stay that way. Russell Eirich explained the importance of Dutch elm disease monitoring by showing off Regina's oldest living tree, a 116-year-old American elm in Victoria Park. "This tree has survived the Regina tornado," he said. "It's seen all the championship teams for the Roughriders. It's seen it all for Regina." It's one of only two or three elms of equivalent size in the city and is worth approximately $75,000. "Dutch elm disease can take a tree like this out in a matter of weeks," he said.

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Opinion: First Nations and forestry: A growing collaboration

By Corby Lamb, president of Capacity Forest Management

Categories: Forestry
Region: Canada; Canada West
Jun 20, 2017
Vancouver Sun

While forestry remains solidly one of British Columbia’s most important industries, real change continues. For example, there has never been any doubt that hundreds of communities across B.C., from the coast to the Interior, rely on the forest industry for their livelihoods. But for many decades, First Nations did not participate widely in the success of the sector. In recent years, that has begun to transform dramatically. In fact, I’d say that within the last decade, participation by First Nations in B.C.’s forest sector has increased 10-fold. ...The increasing involvement of First Nations in the forest sector is partly due to changes in legislation that have provided First Nations with greater and more equitable access to forest licenses and opportunities. But it’s also because of the persistence of First Nations in building capacity and know-how in sustainable forestry and in ensuring their forestry operations are independently certified as well-managed. And it’s thanks to innovative joint-ventures like the one among Interfor, the Wuikinuxv Nation and my own firm — Capacity Forest Management.

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PROGRESS 2017: Making Dog Mountain green again

By Karly Blats

Categories: Forestry
Region: Canada; Canada West
Jun 20, 2017
Alberni Valley News

Close to 20,000 trees have been planted on Dog Mountain in efforts to make the fire-ravaged area green again. The Sproat Lake mountain was struck by fire in early July 2015 that consumed about 425 hectares of the landscape, affecting almost 100 per cent of the peninsula. The fire was mainly ground based and consumed almost all of the existing understory vegetation, woody debris and organic soil layers, leaving exposed mineral soils and scorched tree stems throughout much of the area. The Hupacasath First Nation began salvage operations in late 2016 to recover damaged timber from the mountain and engage in further restoration work. Of the 20,000 seedlings planted this spring, 7,000 were cedar and the rest were fir trees.

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Wildfires won't stop at the edge of public land -- sustainability policy shouldn't either

By Tom Martin, president & CEO,American Forest Foundation

Categories: Forestry
Region: United States
Jun 19, 2017
The Hill

Nearly 145 million acres of land are at a high risk of catastrophic wildfire across the West thanks to the overwhelming insect epidemic, drought, decades of fire suppression and years of lack of management of our forests. This statistic is sure to come up in Tuesday's Senate Energy and Natural Resources Subcommittee hearing on restoring watersheds and large landscapes. The committee plans to discuss collaborative initiatives between state and federal partners to help restore forests back to health in order to protect our forest resources, watersheds and communities. We agree, collaboration is key if restoration is to happen across a forested landscape. In order to truly see results, a missing piece of the puzzle must be included in this collaboration - private and family owned land.

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Broken system hurts recreation and logging

By Nick Smith, executive director, Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities

Categories: Forestry
Region: United States; US West
Jun 20, 2017
The Bend Bulletin

Opponents of active management on national forests often claim it degrades recreational opportunities on public lands. Yet two recent news stories demonstrate why that claim is flawed. The Deschutes National Forest recently was forced to temporarily close Cultus Lake Campground and a day-use area after discovering it’s surrounded by over 450 dead or diseased trees that “could fall and kill people.” Instead of responding quickly to the public safety risk and keeping the popular recreational site open to the public for the full summer season, the restoration work is delayed because it might affect a spotted owl wandering into the area. ...There’s little doubt Forest Service officials would’ve preferred to move quickly to remove hazard trees and keep these recreation sites open. But their hands are tied. The system of federal forest management is stacked in favor of those who oppose any logging activity, and will use the court system to sue the Forest Service or bury their employees in bureaucracy and red tape.

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Lawsuit against Cascade-Siskiyou monument expansion delayed

By Andrew Selsky

Categories: Forestry
Region: United States; US West
Jun 20, 2017
Associated Press in Statesman Journal

A federal judge has given the Trump administration more time to review federal monument designations made by previous presidents before it responds to a lawsuit brought by two timber companies against the expansion of a monument in southern Oregon, according to court documents viewed Monday. Judge Mark D. Clarke ruled that all pending deadlines are stayed while Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke "conducts his review of the designation for the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument," according to the court records. ...Murphy Co. and Murphy Timber Investments LLC challenged the legality of President Barack Obama's adding of about 48,000 acres to the monument in southwestern Oregon to protect its biodiversity. The companies say the move reduces the supply of timber sold and jeopardizes their log supply.

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Department of Interior Review Threatens Cascade Siskiyou National Monument

By Matthew Renda

Categories: Forestry
Region: United States; US West
Jun 20, 2017
Courthouse News Service

Dave Willis... As the executive director of the Soda Mountain Wilderness Council navigates through the southern reaches of the Cascade Range, lichen hang from the branches of the coniferous trees, swaying in the wind. “This is a class old-growth remnant forest,” Willis says. “You don’t see much of these around anymore.” This forest is intact, retaining the character it’s maintained for centuries, because of the conservation endeavors of Willis, his organization and the many allies that contributed to the effort to create and expand the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument. ...President Trump ordered the DOI review of the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument – along with 21 other national monuments located in 11 mostly western states – calling the designations by previous presidents under the Antiquities Act “a massive federal land grab.”

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Proposal to conserve 13398 acres of timber company land under public review

By Perry Backus

Categories: Forestry
Region: United States; US West
Jun 20, 2017
The Missoulian

WHITEFISH — Nearly 22 square miles of important fish and wildlife habitat nine miles northwest of Whitefish could soon find its way into public hands. Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks and The Trust for Public Land is working to conserve 13,398 acres of property, currently owned by Weyerhaeuser, through a complicated land deal that involves funding from a variety of sources. “It’s one of the most complicated projects that I’ve worked on,” said Kris Tempel, resource specialist with FWP’s Habitat Conservation Program. “It’s also a very exciting project that’s taken several years to put together. The finish line is coming.” The lands are part of the properties purchased by Weyerhaeuser in 2016 from Plum Creek Timber.

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Hidden Valley Nature Center gets $400K grant

By Ali Stevenson, Midcoast Conservancy

Categories: Forestry
Region: United States; US East
Jun 20, 2017
Boothbay Register

Midcoast Conservancy is delighted to announce that its Hidden Valley Nature Center has been awarded $400,000 by the U.S. Forest Service as part of The Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program, which provides grants to local governments, tribes and qualified nonprofits to establish community forests that will provide economic and environmental benefits as well as education, stewardship and recreation opportunities. Midcoast Conservancy board chair Susan Russell said, “The grant to HVNC was the highest amount that could be awarded to any one project, and was ranked third overall among all applicants nationwide. We are thrilled that the U.S. Forest Service appreciates what a special place we have in the Nature Center.” The projects selected were shaped by the communities that proposed them. These communities will also manage the forests in the future. 

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Trump's budget threatens national forests

By Judy K. Dunscomb, Senior Conservation Scientist, The Nature Conservancy

Categories: Forestry
Region: United States; US East
Jun 20, 2017
Roanoke Times

When the “Virginia Is for Lovers” campaign was first created in 1968, it was to be a series of slogans highlighting what Virginians care about most. Among other passions, Virginia was for “history lovers” and “mountain lovers.” Nearly 50 years later, those passions are stronger than ever, but they are now threatened by proposed cuts to federal agencies and programs that protect western Virginia’s iconic natural assets — from the Blue Ridge Parkway to the George Washington and Jefferson National Forests. ...The protections and partnerships envisioned by the Constitution’s Article XI are now threatened by proposed cuts to the federal budget that support the U.S. Departments of the Interior and Agriculture — specifically the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), the Forest Legacy Program, operations funding for the U.S. Forest Service, and the Farm Bill’s Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP). These programs support all three of Virginia’s three major industries: agriculture, forestry and tourism and directly support Virginia’s people—helping unemployment while improving environmental quality.

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New 'disturbance map' shows damaging effects of forest loss in Brazilian Amazon

By Jonathan Watts

Categories: Forestry
Region: International
Jun 20, 2017
The Guardian

As Brazil’s government steps back from Amazon conservation, the urgent need for stronger protection has been made more apparent by a new data map that highlights the knock-on effect of the forest’s capacity to absorb carbon, regulate temperatures and sustain life. Launched on Tuesday, the Silent Forest project assesses the extent and impact of forest degradation – a largely man-made phenomenon that is less well-known than land clearance, but is seen by scientists as potentially more of a problem for the climate and biodiversity. . ...To draw attention to the trends and the risks, the Silent Forest “disturbance map” highlights the black spots of forest degradation (particularly prominent near Santarem, Sinop and on the border of Pará and Maranhão states), as well as areas affected by roads, logging and forest fires, which tend to cluster together as a result of (often illegal) human activity.

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234-Year-Old Tree Has Impressively Stable Genome

By Jef Akst

Categories: Forestry
Region: International
Jun 20, 2017
The Scientist

Sequencing DNA collected from leaves on different branches of a 234-year-old oak tree on the University of Lausanne campus in Switzerland, plant biologist Philippe Reymond and colleagues found far fewer single base-pair substitutions than expected based on known plant mutations rates and the number of cell divisions that presumed to have occurred between an old branch near the tree’s base and a younger branch 40 meters higher up. The team, which did not analyze other types of genetic mutations such as deletions, published its results last week (June 13) on the preprint server bioRxiv. “It’s a tantalizing study,” Daniel Schoen, a plant evolutionary biologist at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, tells Nature. “It touches on something that was simmering always, in the back of the minds of plant biologists.”

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Forest Fires

PROGRESS 2017: Expanded airport means economic growth in Port Alberni

By Karly Blats

Categories: Forest Fires
Region: Canada; Canada West
Jun 20, 2017
Alberni Valley News

Runway expansions at the Alberni Valley Regional Airport (AVRA) have not only benefited the local economy but have made it possible for Coulson Aviation to bring in six Boeing 737 jets to Port Alberni. ...“I sat with him and said we’re working with Southwest Airlines, we’re looking at building new air tankers, but we can’t get them into Alberni, so that’s where the mayor really dug in,” Coulson said. ...Coulson purchased all six jets from Southwest Airlines and they will be used around the world to fight wildfires. ...Once conversion is done, the 737s, equipped with 63 passenger seats for firefighting crews, will be flown to Southern California to start trials with the US Forest Service. When not in Australia or the US fighting fires, the 737s will be stored in Nevada, where Coulson says he can find a lot of hangars and infrastructure for a cheaper cost than in Canada.

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PG&E begins aerial wildfire patrols

By Pacific Gas and Electric Company

Categories: Forest Fires
Region: United States; US West
Jun 19, 2017
Sierra Star

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) has begun daily aerial fire detection patrols across hundreds of miles of its service area, officials announced in a release Monday. The patrols are to assist the U.S. Forest Service, Cal Fire and local fire agencies with early fire detection and response this summer. Officials said PG&E is launching the patrols due to an increase in fire danger from rising temperatures, coupled with the potential for winds. The patrols also will occur in time for the July 4 holiday with its risk of fires sparked by illegal or misuse of “Safe and Sane” fireworks.

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Utah blaze caused by torch used to kill weeds

By Brady McCombs and Alina Hartounian 

Categories: Forest Fires
Region: United States; US West
Jun 20, 2017
Associated Press in The Washington Post

SALT LAKE CITY — A wildfire that destroyed one home and damaged another while forcing hundreds of people to evacuate a Utah ski town was started by somebody using a torch to kill weeds, Gov. Gary Herbert said Tuesday. Herbert, who toured the fire-damaged area around Brian Head, tweeted that experts told him the weed torch was used in dry conditions. He urged people to be extra careful during hot, dry days. The person who was doing the burning on private land has been identified by investigators but has not yet been charged, which is why officials aren’t releasing the name, said Jason Curry of the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands. ...The evacuations of more than 700 people and the closure of part of a state highway were still in place as of Tuesday afternoon, Forest Service spokeswoman Cigi Burton said. There’s no timeline to lift the measures.

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Mandatory evacuations lifted near Big Bear Lake as wildfire grows to 1,200 acres amid California heat wave

By Joseph Serna

Categories: Forest Fires
Region: United States; US West
Jun 20, 2017
Los Angeles Times

Firefighters continued battling a wildfire Tuesday in the San Bernardino Mountains as flames spread into the rugged terrain amid a sweltering heat wave. Mandatory evacuations were briefly issued for the area of Holcomb Valley Road and Highway 18 in Baldwin Lake, but the orders were lifted by 5:30 p.m., according to the Big Bear Fire Department. The evacuation order was prompted by an abrupt shift in winds, and the sheriff’s station in Big Bear urged residents to be prepared in case of another sudden change. The fire has burned 1,200 acres and was 10% contained Tuesday night, officials said. More than 1,000 firefighters were assigned to control the blaze. ...In what was the hottest day of the year so far in the mountains, two firefighters suffered heat-related injuries as the blaze spread across an estimated 850 acres in its first few hours, officials said.

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Wildfire's smoke overhangs Payson Firewise meeting

By Peter Aleshire

Categories: Forest Fires
Region: United States; US West
Jun 20, 2017
Payson Roundup

An anxious crowd showed up last week for a meeting on Payson’s proposed new Firewise ordinance, with smoke from the eight-mile-distant Highline Fire giving the meeting urgency. Payson’s proposed ordinance will set in place standards to clear thickets, weeds and debris from homes and vacant lots, but only in response to complaints from neighbors. The proposal dropped most of the construction standards included in the International Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI) code that Flagstaff and Prescott adopted — unlike most other forested communities in the state. Payson Fire Chief David Staub described the proposed Payson code as a “compromise,” which at least makes a start on making it more likely Payson will survive the close approach of a major fire. Forest Service commanders directing the efforts of 1,000 firefighters battling the Highline Fire offered a briefing that inspired a barrage of questions.

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Portugal works to contain wildfire, debunks report of plane crash

Categories: Forest Fires
Region: International
Jun 20, 2017
Associated Press in CBC News

Emergency services in Portugal said Tuesday they were making good progress in controlling a major wildfire that killed 64 people in the central area of the country, while officials said reports that a water-dropping plane had crashed in the area of the blaze turned out to be false. Maria Jose Andre of Portugal's Air Accident Office said her department was told by the Civil Protection Agency that a Canadair water bomber had crashed on Tuesday while fighting the wildfire. Her office immediately sent a crash investigation team to the area. But in a bizarre sequence of events, officials with the Portuguese government and the Civil Protection Agency said they could not confirm a crash had taken place. They said airborne search-and-rescue teams dispatched to look for wreckage didn't find anything and that no firefighting planes were missing. ..."It could have been a strange coincidence, with a plane passing over and an explosion occurring on the ground at the same time," Coutinho told the AP.

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Firefighting plane crashes battling devastating forest blazes in Portugal

Categories: Forest Fires
Region: International
Jun 21, 2017
Agence France-Presse in 9News

A water-bombing plane has crashed while fighting the devastating forest fires that have broken out in central Portugal. A spokesman for the country's civil protection was unable to give further immediate details about the aircraft. Spain, France and Italy have sent a total of 19 water bombers to help the operation. Earlier, Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa has led calls to know why a highway now dubbed the "road of death" -- where most of the 64 victims of a giant forest fire perished -- had not been blocked off, as questions mounted over the disaster management response. More than 1,000 firefighters still battled to control the flames which broke out in the central Pedrogao Grande region over the weekend and spread at breakneck speed to neighbouring areas.

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Company & Business News

Softwood lumber tariffs: sword of Damocles still hangs over industry

By the Montreal Economic Institute

Categories: Company & Business News
Region: Canada; United States
Jun 20, 2017
Canada Newswire

Montreal- The antidumping duties on Canadian softwood lumber that will be announced Friday by the United States, which could be as high as 10%, will once again penalize Canadian workers and American consumers, according to calculations carried out by the MEI. Added to countervailing duties of around 20% imposed by the United States in April 2017, this new protectionist measure could reduce Canadian producers' market share. This share was just 27% one month after the imposition of the tariffs, whereas it averaged 32% in 2016. This drop in market share represents monthly losses of $102 million across Canada, including $66 million in British Columbia and $16 million in Quebec. "The tariffs are already having negative effects, but it is still too soon to evaluate these effects over the long term since there is much uncertainty in the market, with each player pursuing its own strategy," explains Alexandre Moreau, Public Policy Analyst at the MEI.

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Quesnel’s Largest Forest Company Reacts To New Allowable Annual Cut

By George Henderson

Categories: Company & Business News
Region: Canada; Canada West
Jun 20, 2017
My Cariboo Now

The Vice President of Canadian Woodlands for West Fraser says he is certainly not concerned about the reduction in the Allowable Annual Cut for Quesnel. Larry Gardner says it is not a surprise and he feels the 2.6 million cubic metre number is the right number for now. We asked Gardner what the impact would be, “We’ve been planning for these sort of impacts for quite a few years and we’re really already harvesting in the Quesnel area at the level that the cut has just been reduced to so we don’t see that our current behavior will change.”

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Top 100 public companies: Lesser lights landing larger list gains

By Albert Van Santvoort

Categories: Company & Business News
Region: Canada; Canada West
Jun 20, 2017
Business in Vancouver

Rising stars on Business in Vancouver’s Top 100 Public Companies list are giving B.C.’s biggest companies a run for their money when it comes to revenue growth. ...Many of the top 10, companies like Telus, Finning International and Westcoast Energy Inc., have retained their top ranking on BIV’s list for the last five years. ...West Fraser Timber Co Ltd. and Canfor Corp. are the other two companies in the top 10 that have generated consistent profit and revenue growth. Although the revenue growth of the two B.C.-based forestry companies pales in comparison to Lululemon’s 76% over five years, both have posted better earnings than the yoga-wear maker. West Fraser Timber’s profits jumped 213% between 2015 and 2016; Canfor’s grew 122%. Unsurprisingly, the two forestry companies have had two of the strongest-performing stocks in the top 10 between 2012 and 2016, with average yearly price increases of 51.5% and 37.9%, respectively. The only stock to outperform the two forestry companies was Teck Resources.

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Hardwoods Announces Update Regarding US Trade Investigation Against Chinese Import Plywood

By Hardwoods Distribution Inc.

Categories: Company & Business News
Region: Canada; Canada West
Jun 20, 2017
Stockhouse

LANGLEY, BC - Hardwoods Distribution Inc. today announced that the US Department of Commerce has issued its preliminary determination regarding antidumping duties against hardwood plywood manufactured in China and imported into the United States. As previously announced by the Company, on November 18, 2016 a trade case was filed in the United States seeking the imposition of countervailing duties and antidumping duties  against Chinese hardwood plywood. The trade case was brought by a coalition of U.S. plywood manufacturers, alleging that Chinese imports are subsidized by the Government of China and are sold in the United States at prices below fair value. As previously announced on April 19, 2017 Commerce completed the preliminary stage of its CVD investigation and imposed a preliminary CVD rate of 9.89% against product imported to the U.S. from substantially all Chinese mill producers.

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Denis Lebel to head Quebec's Forest Industry Council

Categories: Company & Business News
Region: Canada; Canada East
Jun 20, 2017
Canadian Press in the Montreal Gazette

Conservative MP Denis Lebel, who announced on Monday that he was leaving politics, will be the next president and general manager of the Conseil de l’industrie forestière du Québec. CIFQ’s president of the board of directors, Éric Bouchard, made the announcement Tuesday, adding that Lebel will begin in September. He will succeed André Tremblay, who has occupied that position since Jan. 1, 2011. Bouchard said that Lebel, who was former Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Quebec lieutenant, has “important assets,” like his knowledge of current issues and “understanding the economic importance of the forest industry for many regions in Quebec.”

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WH Press Sec: The Softwood Lumber Case Makes It Clear America Will Negotiate A Better NAFTA Deal

Categories: Company & Business News
Region: United States
Jun 20, 2017
Need To Know Network

Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin is claiming the tariff on Canadian softwood lumber is hurting the state of Kentucky’s homebuilders. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters on Monday that the Trump administration has made it clear that it will negotiate a better deal for the United States regarding the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). ...The effects of this tariff are compounded by a log export ban in British Columbia that the Trump Administration would like to eliminate as part of the deal. “I think that Wilbur Ross and the Department of Commerce have made it very clear with the softwood lumber case that they want to get a better deal for our country,” Spicer told the reporter.


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Commerce Hits Hardwood Plywood from China with Preliminary Duties

By Rossella Brevetti

Categories: Company & Business News
Region: United States
Jun 20, 2017
Bloomberg BNA

Hardwood plywood from China will get hit with preliminary dumping duties of up to 114.72 percent, the Commerce Department announced June 19. As a result, U.S. Customs and Border Protection will collect cash deposits in the amount of the preliminary margins. Imports of hardwood plywood from China were valued at an estimated $1.12 billion in 2016, Commerce said. Hardwood plywood is a flat panel assembly of two or more layers of wood veneers in combination with a core. Hardwood plywood is used for wall panels, kitchen cabinet components, seat backs, table and desk tops, furniture components, as well as the raw material for certain engineered (i.e., multilayered) wood flooring.

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Colville’s Duane Vaagen left the timber wars behind to forge good jobs in the ‘bipartisan forest’

Categories: Company & Business News
Region: United States; US West
Jun 20, 2017
The Spokesman-Review

COLVILLE – Lumber executives thought this was the year for a triumphant trip to Washington, D.C. Duane Vaagen, a 65-year-old sawmill owner in Colville, was among them. President Donald Trump had invited industry leaders to tell him what they wanted. But he wasn’t celebrating after this trip with 24 other timber industry representatives from the Federal Forest Resource Coalition. It was too early for him to tell if the way the U.S. Forest Service manages the forests will change. He is skeptical after fighting in court, with many administrations and with leaders from both parties for decades with little change.

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What if Alabama taxed its timber at a higher rate?

By Christopher Harress

Categories: Company & Business News
Region: United States; US East
Jun 21, 2017
AL.com

In a follow up email to Reckon, Bennett said that he felt like property tax on timberland could be at least tripled without much harm to the property owners. He cited property tax bills in the double and triple digits on land worth between $100,000 and $800,000, respectively. But before we get into the figures, let's start with the basics of timber tax in Alabama and why attempting to make direct comparisons between states is problematic. When it comes to timber, there are predominately two ways that the most states gather tax dollars. ...Unfortunately, the revenue departments of most Southeastern states do not have easily available data on tax revenue from timberland. Timberland tax is often combined with other property taxes when annual reports are produced. The second issue is that in some states, such as Tennessee, Florida and North Carolina, for example, property taxes are collected at the county level. So it's hard to get at the numbers and compare them.

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Domtar gives donation, employees work to renovate community center

Categories: Company & Business News
Region: United States; US East
Jun 20, 2017
Bradford Era

JOHNSONBURG — Domtar Corp. donated $10,000 to the Johnsonburg Community Center, and partnered with the Student Conservation Association Saturday to work on renovating and restoring the center. The donation will be used to fund a new weight room facility. In addition to Domtar’s donation, employees from the company’s Johnsonburg Mill, along with members from its non-profit partner, the Student Conservation Association, teamed up Saturday to host a volunteer on-site refurbishing of the entire community center.

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Major publishers move to defend Greenpeace in dispute with logging firm

By Danuta Kean

Categories: Company & Business News
Region: Canada; International
Jun 21, 2017
The Guardian

The world’s biggest book publishers have been dragged into a bitter dispute between a US logging company and environmental campaigners Greenpeace. It follows legal action taken by the logging company, Resolute Forest Products, which campaigners and publishers fear has implications for freedom of speech. ...Publishers, including Penguin Random House and Murdoch-owned HarperCollins, became involved after a petition signed by more than 100 authors in support of Greenpeace was handed in at US publishing trade show BookExpo. The petition called for publishers using Resolute products to use their clout to pressurise the company into dropping the lawsuit and addressing alleged logging practices. Hachette Livre, whose UK subsidiaries publish among others Ian Rankin, JK Rowling and Cressida Cowell, expresseds concern that the Rico action poses a threat to free speech and could be used to silence environmental organisations at a time when the US government has stated its intention to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement on climate change.

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Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy

Clean Energy Finance Corporation lobbying for wood-fired power to replace coal

By James Massola

Categories: Carbon, Climate & Bioenergy
Region: International
Jun 21, 2017
The Sydney Morning Herald

The Clean Energy Finance Corporation has stepped up its lobbying of senior Coalition and Labor politicians for Australia to use wood waste to "co-fire" coal power stations and reduce carbon emissions. The corporation was established by the Gillard government to help drive investment into renewable energy sources. Biomass products, such as wood pellets, are widely used overseas to help reduce emissions and are permissible under Australia's current renewable energy target, but not yet financially competitive. ...Australian Forest Products Association chief executive Ross Hampton pointed out the Finkel review had made clear coal would be part of Australia's energy mix "for decades to come", and with an ageing coal plants, "Australia is uniquely placed to embrace co-firing biomass in our energy mix" to reduce emissions.

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Wood & Paper Products & Green Building

Who Knew Lumber Could Be So Mesmerizing?

By Rebecca Dolan

Categories: Wood & Paper Products & Green Building
Region: United States; US West
Jun 19, 2017
Esquire


Brett Foxwell, an engineer/animator based in Oakland, California, recently released a video to accompany the musician bedtimes' new single, WoodSwimmer. Using a milling machine and animation camera, Foxwell photographically scanned cross-sections of new and old wood samples. What's achieved is a mesmerizing display. The growth rings, viewed in rapid sequence, appear to literally swim and melt and seamlessly mesh. Seen through the camera's lens, the milling process takes on a supernatural quality. The wavy images on-screen intensify the experience of listening to bedtimes' electronic beats.

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Mass timber gets the nod for University of Idaho’s new basketball arena

By Sherry Devlin

Categories: Wood & Paper Products & Green Building
Region: United States; US West
Jun 18, 2017
TreeSource

The momentum for mass timber continues to gain strength and speed, with last week’s announcement that the University of Idaho will build its new $30 million basketball arena from wood. Why? Because Idaho wants, and needs, to stand out from its recruiting season competitors – and the new basketball arena might do the trick. “It ties in with our land grant mission. It ties in with the timber industry. It ties in with our need for a facility. This is really resonating with people,” UI Athletic Director Rob Spear told the Spokesman-Review’s Peter Harriman.

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In Springfield, mayor’s innovation, persistence leads timber town into future

By Marcus Kauffman

Categories: Wood & Paper Products & Green Building
Region: United States; US West
Jun 19, 2017
TreeSource

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. – Mayor Christine Lundberg had the revolutionary idea: Take a banal urban edifice – a cement parking structure – and recast it as the catalyst that connects Springfield’s rich history with a forward-thinking future. Her citizenry concurred, and now Springfield (population 60,000) plans to build a four-story parking structure out of cross-laminated timber (CLT). Keep reading: They’re not crazy. It can be done. In fact, it is the backbone of a multi-pronged strategy to showcase sustainable design, grow jobs and improve high school graduation rates. ...Lundberg envisions mass timber as the next evolution in her community’s natural resource economy. “We have timber. It’s renewable, it’s sustainable, it’s climate friendly, it’s all of those things,” she said. Springfield’s history is inextricably tied to timber.

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SmartLam Hosting Timber Conference in Columbia Falls

By Dillon Tabish

Categories: Wood & Paper Products & Green Building
Region: United States; US West
Jun 20, 2017
Flathead Beacon

SmartLam, one of the nation’s pioneers in cross-laminated timber manufacturing, is hosting a conference in Columbia Falls on June 28 devoted to the cutting-edge building material. Casey Malmquist, president and general manager of SmartLam, said the one-day conference will focus on the “CLT movement” and how it is becoming a mainstream engineered wood product used for a variety of building projects. ...A panel of speakers from Montana will also appear, including Malmquist, Brian Caldwell, principal of Thinktank Design Group, and Chuck Roady, director at F.H. Stoltze Land and Lumber Company.

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A taste of Russian wood in a new scotch from Ardbeg

By Jim Brucker

Categories: Wood & Paper Products & Green Building
Region: International
Jun 20, 2017
Chicago Tribune

Islay scotch, famously potent and smoky, is at the global nexus of both tradition and evolution. ...The oak used to age scotch comes to Scotland from France, Spain, the United States and a range of other countries. The wood is what transforms a whisky, over years, to become less harsh and more complex, adding tannins, vanilla and spice. ...In effect, sourcing oak from novel worldwide regions has a profound effect on an Ardbeg expression. ...Kelpie Single-Malt Scotch whisky, named after a mythical Scottish sea beast, is the latest wide-release limited edition from Ardbeg. For this one, about 40 percent of the oak is from the Black Sea Russian Republic of Adygea, — the wood is rarely used to age whisky. ...In crafting Kelpie, McCarron worked to maximize the impact of the rare Black Sea casks. "We wanted to see the difference in this strain of oak, so we toasted rather than charred the casks and kept it at virgin oak."

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Wellington International Airport Terminal: South Extension

By Guy Marriage

Categories: Wood & Paper Products & Green Building
Region: International
Jun 21, 2017
Architecture Now

NZ -- Wellington Airport's latest addition, by Warren and Mahoney, is the main entry point for Wellington's frequent domestic travellers. ...The 450x150mm timber members are laminated together in thin layers, supported below floor level on a grunty steel angle and each is pinned to the lintel at the top with a single big stainless-steel bolt. ...The whole overall effect is stunning: beauty is in the details. While the bold weaving of the walls is the strongest design feature, both the ceiling and the floor also have strong design elements. More massive timber-laminated beams in the ceiling, apparently free-hanging, actually support the extensive servicing hidden in the ceiling, and their monumental scale and directionality point you firmly towards the planes. There’s a whole lot of carbon capture going on right here, subtly reminding the MPs of the importance of combating climate change. 

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Tall timber: the world's tallest wooden office building to open in Brisbane

By Max Opray

Categories: Wood & Paper Products & Green Building
Region: International
Jun 21, 2017
The Guardian

The famous Queenslander tradition of building houses upon wooden stilts is escalating to a whole other level on Thursday – or 10 levels, to be exact. The sod-turning ceremony at 5 King Street in Brisbane will be a groundbreaking event in more than just in the literal sense. When complete in 2018, 45 metres of the 52-metre office tower will qualify as the world’s highest to be held aloft not by steel and concrete, but timber and glue. ...[Chris] Ammundsen [lead structural engineer] has a lot riding on the answers he came up with – his company is setting up office within the building in order to enjoy the benefits of working in timber surrounds, which a PlanetArk study indicated can lead to a lower heart rate and blood pressure. There are also environmental benefits – where every tonne of cement creates 900kg of greenhouse gas emissions, engineered wood acts instead as a carbon sink.

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