WoodWeek – 1 February 2017

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Greetings from Rotorua – the heart of forestry. Wow, it's the first of the month already. It’s time to stop comparing holiday fishing stories – its February already! Today’s issue is a mixed bag of market updates and the woes of fellow wood industry colleagues both in Australia and British Columbia.

First up, there have been some speaker changes for the upcoming FIEA Forest Industry Safety Summit. And it is exactly a month away. Rob Moonen, CEO of the BC Forest Safety Council, will be the keynote speaker on day one of the conference. He has been directly involved with running the BC forest industry’s SAFE certification system for most of the past decade.

Looking at long-term wood imports to China shows up some interesting trends. Over the past decade, the importation of softwood lumber has grown much faster than that of softwood logs. From 2006 to 2016, lumber imports were up from just over two million m3 to over 21 million m3, while log import volumes were up from 20 million m3 to 34 million m3 during the same period.

The Department of Conservation plans to let a private road be built in the Coromandel State Forest Park to harvest logs, despite it turning down the proposal five years ago because it had "zero conservation benefit". The move has raised the ire of some trampers and locals who say it is another example of the commercialisation of the conservation estate.

When it comes to wood buildings that not only gain advantage structurally but also in terms of sheer beauty, this new one in the Netherlands takes some beating. But the award judges recognised much more than just outward appearances in choosing the winner. Read on ... and enjoy. If you see any stories you think we should be sharing with others in our wood- wide community please get in touch.

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Safety Summit adds new speakers

Loggers and forest managers have been quick to capitalise on the latest Forest Industry Safety Summit set to run next month in Rotorua. Registrations have exceeded expectations and the gathering is set to be the second largest forest safety conference ever held in New Zealand.

“We have had some really positive news in our speakers lineup as well,” says conference organiser, John Stulen, “while we lost Cos Bruyn as a keynote speaker, we are really pleased to announce that we have two new keynote speakers who more than compensate for his unforeseen departure.”

Rob Moonen, CEO of the BC Forest Safety Council will be the keynote speaker on day one of the conference,” says Stulen, “and he has been directly involved with running the BC forest industry’s SAFE certification system for most of the past decade.”

Rob’s involvement is very timely, with the work on our own safe certification program now in its final stages with our own Forest Industry Safety Council,” added Stulen. "The loggers and their safety teams in BC have learned a lot from experience in 10 years and Rob will bring their story to share with our industry safety leaders – which really is everyone on the forest floor.”

FIEA has also been lucky to gain the services of Steve Carden, CEO of Landcorp. Carden is leading the large farming company to a new phase in safety and is keen to compare notes with people in forestry. So, it should be the basis for some great conversations and information sharing, says Stulen.

Looking to the event itself, the conference room is going to be a busy place.

“All of our exhibitor stand spaces are sold out, even though we extended the capacity with a marquee in the hotel courtyard”, says FIEA’s event manager, Gordon Thomson, ”and there are only small number of conference seats available. Now is the time to register to make sure you don't miss out."

Special offers are now being made available to members of other industry associations across the forest industries. To take advantage of this offer, go to http://forestsafety.events

“For the first time, FIEA has teamed up with the Forest Industry Safety Council (FISC) to organise a workshop as part of the Safety Summit,” says Thomson. “Working with Fiona Ewing of FISC has led us to include a series of workshops and panel sessions for people to interact – from the forest floor to the CEOs.”

The summit runs 1st & 2nd March 2017 in Rotorua at the Distinction Hotel.

The following week it moves to the Bayview Eden Hotel in Melbourne running on 7th &8th March.

For full details visit: http://forestsafety.events

Photo: Rob Moonen, CEO, BC Forest Safety Council

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Comparing China's log and lumber imports

Strong demand for wood in China in the second half of 2016 resulted in both record high imports of softwood lumber and logs, and increased import prices, reports the Wood Resource Quarterly.

China imported record-high volumes of softwood lumber in 2016 and softwood log imports reached their second highest level on record. Despite relatively pessimistic forecasts for wood demand early in 2016, China’s need for imported wood picked up during the summer and fall with import volumes of both logs and lumber being up about 20% in the 4Q/16 as compared to the 4Q/15. Total importation of logs and lumber (in roundwood equivalents) reached almost 76 million m3 in 2016, which was up 17% from 2015, and almost 38% higher than five years ago, according to the Wood Resource Quarterly (WRQ).

Over the past decade, the importation of softwood lumber has grown much faster than that of softwood logs. From 2006 to 2016, lumber imports were up from just over two million m3 to over 21 million m3, while log import volumes were up from 20 million m3 to 34 million m3 during the same period.

From 2015 to 2016, Russia has increased its shipments of lumber to China by over three million to a total of 11.6 million m3 (this includes logs that have been canted to avoid log export taxes). With lumber markets in the Middle East and Northern Africa (the MENA countries) and Europe having been relatively weak the past few years, many sawmills in the Nordic countries have increased their presence in the Chinese market with shipments being up over 35% in 2016 from the previous year. Although lumber supply from Finland and Sweden still account for only six percent of the total lumber imports, the share can be expected to increase in the coming years because of more intense marketing of predominantly higher-quality spruce lumber for the Chinese furniture, millwork and construction industries.

Import values for lumber to China rose during most of 2016 with average prices in December 2016 being about six percent higher than in December 2015. The increases during 2016 came after two years of sharply declining prices, as reported in the latest WRQ (www.woodprices.com). The lower- cost lumber has consistently been from Russia and Canada, while the cost for lumber from Europe and Chile has been higher than the average prices, which have ranged between US$160-180/m3 in 2016.

Global lumber, sawlog, and pulpwood market reporting is included in the 52-page quarterly publication Wood Resource Quarterly (WRQ). The report, which was established in 1988 and has subscribers in over 30 countries, tracks sawlog, pulpwood, wood chip, lumber and pellet prices, trade, and market developments in most key regions around the world. To subscribe to the WRQ, please go to www.woodprices.com



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Logging road plan sparks ire in Coromandel

The Department of Conservation plans to let a private road be built in the Coromandel State Forest Park to harvest logs, despite it turning down the proposal five years ago because it had "zero conservation benefit".

The move has raised the ire of some trampers and locals who say it is another example of the commercialisation of the conservation estate.

Waitaia Forestry wants to build a 1.74km road on the Waitaia Ridge, north of Whitianga, so it can harvest pine from a mature, thousand-acre forestry block it owns.

DOC declined the decision in 2011 saying the adverse environmental effects would be high.

Now it has approved the road in principle.

There is an existing Waitaia Road the local council has not maintained. The groups opposed say the company should upgrade that for the logging instead.

More >>

Source RNZ News

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NZ Logger - The Bare Necessities

The simple approach to machinery has worked well for Jensen Logging with its latest Caterpillar 521B and SouthStar QS450 combination in thinning operations in Kaingaroa Forest, which is the subject of an Iron Test in the February issue of NZ Logger magazine. In this issue you can also learn about progress with the Contractor Certification scheme, which is undergoing trials at the moment.

Just as the dairy industry has its environmental issues surrounding “dirty dairying” the forestry industry has to contend with criticism that its activities lead to sedimentation of rivers and coastal waters. Nelson forests has been looking at ways to address the issue and recently brought together a number of organisations to showcase its progress, which is covered in the magazine.

Plus much more, in the February 2017 issue of NZ Logger, now on sale at selected service stations, or to subscribe for either the printed version and/or the digital version, visit www.nzlogger.co.nz.

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Champion Freight Export Report - November 2016

Thanks to the great team at Champion Freight we've got the latest export market activity update for you in a series of really self-explanatory charts.





Click here to download the Champion Freight reports.

Source: Champion Freight

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BC interior mills under threat from beetles

British Columbia mill closures feared as allowable harvest slashed - Decline in availability of beetle-killed timber drags down sustainable logging rate.

A decade after billions of mountain pine beetles chewed their way through British Columbia’s lodgepole pine forest, the Interior timber supply has begun a dramatic drop.

“These cut reductions are starting to happen, and they are going to be real,” Albert Nussbaum, director of forest analysis and inventory for the B.C. Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, told a January 19 forestry conference in Vancouver, Washington.

Nussbaum’s talk to the American and Canadian delegates laid out the severity of the mountain pine beetle infestation in hard numbers that can be expected to translate into mill closures and community disruptions. He said the beetle killed 54% of the merchantable pine that was to be harvested. But in some areas, specifically the central Interior, 80% to 90% of the merchantable pine was killed.

“That’s where the impact is going to be felt more significantly,” Nussbaum said in a later interview.

The beetle infestation peaked in 2004, and Nussbaum said the good news is that beetle populations are now down to near-normal levels. Forest companies have been salvaging that dead timber, but he said the pace of salvage operations is beginning to slow down. With the decline in the availability of dead timber, the province’s chief forester is now dropping the sustainable harvest rate, called the allowable annual cut (AAC), to reflect this new reality of the Interior forest.

Base-case numbers for one of the hardest-hit timber supply areas, Quesnel, show annual AAC dropping to 1.6 million cubic metres from four million cubic metres. It will be up to the chief forester to determine how that happens and over what time period.

The decline has been expected for years, but it was always somewhere in the future, Hakan Ekstrom, of the Seattle forestry consulting firm Wood Resources International, said in an interview.

“Now it is actually going to happen,” said Ekstrom, whose firm is one of the event sponsors. “More sawmills will be shut down in British Columbia. The question is, will it be three, four, five or six sawmills? And will it be in the next three, four or five years?”

More >>

Source: Business in Vancouver

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Dutch timber building wins award

When it comes to wood buildings that not only gain advantage structurally but also in terms of sheer beauty this new one in the Netherlands takes some beating. But the award judges recognised much more than just outward appearances in choosing the winner. Read on ...

There is a lot to love about Patch22, the tallest wood building in the Netherlands, which just won a World Architecture News Residential award as best building of 2016.

The 100 foot tall, seven storey building in an Amsterdam industrial area is designed by Tom Frantzen and has a wood structure, although the floors “have a concrete-like appearance.” The ceilings are high (4 meters or 13 feet floor to floor). The judges at WAN liked this, writing:

"The 4 metre floor to ceiling heights allow the building to function for commercial or residential use. To avoid objections to change of use, a new kind of land-lease contract was drawn up in cooperation with the city. It appears to have created an ‘attractor’ or beacon which will contribute to stimulating development in the area."

The units are sold unfinished, and completely open. It has raised floor system so that owners can get into the floor for wiring and plumbing where they want it. This allows it to be used for living and working “so that the building will still be cultivated with love over 100 years.”

To see more - in both pictures and words, click here

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Safety certified required for government contracts

Once again looking to our forest-based colleagues on North America's west coast - Beginning April 1, 2017, the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations will be applying Safety Accord Forest Enterprise Certification Standard, known in the BC forest sector as SAFE, to specific contract areas.

Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Steve Thomson made the announcement this morning during his presentation to the annual Truck Loggers Association convention in Vancouver in late January.

SAFE is an industry standard developed by those in the BC forest sector and administered by the BC Forest Safety Council. The program uses industry recognised audit protocols to improve participating companies’ safety cultures and to evaluate their current safety programs.

Upon meeting the standard, companies receive SAFE certification numbers and are listed on the BC Forest Safety Council website.

BC logging and silvlciture contractors considering bidding on affected ministry contracts from April 1, 2017, were advised to begin preparing themselves to meet the standard by contacting the BC Forest Safety Council to get started.

For wildfire emergency and other emergency response, SAFE will be treated as a preferred requirement.

The ministry also holds itself to the same standard, achieving SAFE certification last year. BC Timber Sales has applied SAFE certification requirements for those bidding on contracts for almost seven years. Expansion of SAFE certification requirements across the ministry fulfils an action item in B.C.’s forest sector competitiveness agenda.

For more information, click here or here.

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Jobs


Buy and Sell


... and finally ... Business USA style >>> you'll love it!

Okay - here are a few clips which highlight two bright young men:

This one selling razor blades ... or is he selling shaves?




...And this guy selling himself (in a nice way I mean!)





Have a safe and productive week.

John Stulen
Editor

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