Reuters reported, “New U.S. single-family home sales recorded their biggest gain in 24 years in April—16.6 percent—touching a more than eight-year high as purchases increased broadly, a sign of growing confidence in the economy’s prospects.”
There was more good news to follow. The Commerce Department also recorded a surge in new home prices and offered further evidence of a pick-up in economic growth.
Resolute Forest Products Inc. filed a federal lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Georgia against Greenpeace International, Greenpeace USA, Greenpeace Fund Inc., STAND (formerly ForestEthics), and other associates. The complaint includes allegations of federal racketeering claims as well as racketeering, trademark, defamation, and tortious interference claims.
Resolute claims that a Greenpeace campaign falsely accused Resolute of, among other things: (a) “destroying endangered forests,” and “operating and sourcing wood . . . in violation of law”; (b) causing the “destruction of endangered species” and “critical caribou habitat” and risking a “Caribou Herd Death Spiral,” “extirpation” and “extinction;” (c) “abandoning” and “impoverishing” the Boreal’s indigenous communities; and (d) impairing the Boreal’s ability to mitigate climate change.
The AFRC reported the results of a long-term study on the effects of forest thinning. The “Siuslaw Thinning and Underplanting for Diversity Study,” recently completed in partnership by the U.S. Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station and Oregon State University, aimed to compare and contrast the effectiveness of a range of thinning and underplanting prescriptions in Douglas-fir dominated forests on the Siuslaw National Forest over the course of 20 years.
The study considered three levels of thinning intensities: light, moderate, and heavy. These treatments thinned forest stands down to 100, 60, and 30 trees per acre respectively. It also considered unthinned control stands. Among other findings, the study concluded that:
1. Individual tree diameter growth was greater for heavily thinned stands than for lightly or moderately thinned stands.
2. Abundance and diversity of herbaceous and shrub vegetation increased with increasing thinning intensity.
3. Natural regeneration was absent in unthinned stands.
Canopy closure in thinned units was relatively stable for two to three years following harvest, but began to close between three and eight years post-harvest—a rate of about two percent per year. In contrast, canopy closure of the unthinned units tended to decrease slightly throughout as canopies receded.
These results draw a clear conclusion that thinning, especially at moderate to heavy intensities, has positive net benefits toward overall forest health and diversity. AFRC supports thinning as a management tool. However, the association had serious concerns about the almost exclusive use of thinning on public forestlands to achieve all forest resiliency and diversity goals.
Seneca Sustainable Energy LLC, operates a wood-burning power plant north of Eugene. It prevailed in its lawsuit against the Oregon Department of Energy, winning an extra $1 million subsidy. Seneca was previously issued a $10 tax credit but said under state rules it should have been $11 million.
On the Cover
Starks Timber Processing out of Puyallup, Washington, operating
one of its Tigercat LS855Cs on steep slopes.
Cedarland Forest Resources helps
private landowners find their niche.
The Reality of Steep Slope Logging
Starks Timber Processing discusses the need for safety when it comes logging
on steep slopes.
Transitioning to the Next Generation
After 35 years, R. L. Smith Logging has
seen is all. The next challenge will be passing the torch.
Wood Castle Fine Hardwood Furniture mills wood to guarantee supply.
Three Questions to Ask Before Buying a Log Loader
How to make the most of your next purchase.
Climbing Steep Slopes with the ClimbMAX
B.C.’s Tolko Industries is the first operation in North America to use a winch-assist forestry machine—the ClimbMAX steep slope harvester.
A look at processing heads.