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Spruce trees are Canada’s most significant forest resource because they grow in almost every region across the country and are the largest species by the number. Spruce trees also produce high quality wood and fibre that is widely used in the industry. With roughly 400 million seedlings planted per year, spruce are the most reforested trees in Canada. Climate change and unpredictable forest product markets require innovative new tools and technologies for tree breeding programs to deliver reliable spruce stock for future seed and seedling production.
A $10.5-million research project, Spruce-Up: Advanced spruce genomics for productive and resilient forests (Spruce-Up) is estimated to more than double the net economic output value of spruce forests, increasing the value of new trees and reducing losses due to environmental disturbances. This investment, made in part by Genome BC, is being led by Dr. Joerg Bohlmann at the University of British Columbia (UBC) and Dr. Jean Bousquet from l’Université Laval. The team will accelerate the development and deployment of genomics-improved spruce seedlings that could be more resistant to insects and drought, has enhanced nutrient use efficiency and results in improved wood quality and productivity.
Wetlands and waterfowl in Canada’s boreal forest will be the beneficiaries of a new program launched by Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) and forestry sector leaders. The partnership is a visionary approach to sharing knowledge and resources to advance sustainable forest management and wetland stewardship in the boreal forest, an area that offers one of the greatest conservation opportunities in the world.
Under the ‘Forest Management and Wetland Stewardship Initiative’, the partners will work collaboratively on priority projects that integrate wetland and waterfowl conservation into ongoing forest management planning and field operations. The coalition will establish wetland conservation guiding principles and best management practices. These will support companies in achieving their forest management objectives and help them meet the criteria for forest certification programs.
The U.S. International Trade Commission has ruled there is a reasonable indication that softwood lumber imports from Canada materially injure the U.S. industry. How significant is this ruling to the trade dispute between the two countries? Joshua Zaret, senior industry analyst for packaging, paper and paper products, Bloomberg Intelligence speaks on The Daily Brief. (Source: Bloomberg)
By NPT Staff
One strategy to control the spread of mountain pine beetles in Banff National Park sometimes does the opposite, a study by a University of British Columbia researcher shows.
While pheromone baiting followed by tree removal — purposefully attracting the pests to a tree, which is then cut down in winter when the larvae are trapped inside — can be successful where there is a dense population of beetles, the strategy can increase the number of beetles in some areas of the Canadian Rockies, according to mathematical modeling led by Rebecca Tyson, an associate professor of mathematics at UBC’s Okanagan campus.
“What our study found is that where the beetle population is low, the pheromone is actually attracting more beetles and thus helping the beetle population increase,” said Ms. Tyson, whose research was recently published in ScienceDirect.
The standstill agreement on softwood lumber trade expired recently, leaving Canadians holding their breath for the U.S. Lumber Coalition to launch legal proceedings.
In the calm before the storm of the next Canada-U.S. softwood lumber dispute, speculation about how the issue will unfold has crystallized around two options: a tax or a quota. The differences may appear merely technical, but they would mean vastly different things economically.
While a quota would impose a cap on exports to the United States, a tax would allow the level of exports to fluctuate with U.S. consumers’ willingness to pay for Canadian lumber. In other words, as U.S. lumber prices increase, Canadian lumber would still be able to enter the U.S. market to meet demand.
With the U.S. Lumber Coalition free to file a new trade case against Canadian lumber producers as early as October 13, share prices across the sector are expected to come under pressure.
Last Friday, students from St. Nicholas Catholic School got out of the classroom to help the former 10,000 Trees Project launch into its next phase as the rebranded Ten Thousand Forests project. The tree plant ceremony took place at the nature centre at the Laurel Creek Conservation Area.
“We’re passing on the shovel to the next generation,” said volunteer Rick Relf, who has been part of the organization for about as long as program founder, city Coun. Mark Whaley.
Beginning about 15 years ago, Whaley wanted to make Waterloo greener. So, he came up with a goal — plant 10,000 trees in 10 years on city land.
That goal was surpassed in 2007, faster than anyone expected, and 10,000 Trees, and its army of volunteers, kept at it.
“We’ve decided to put away the counter and keep planting,” said Whaley. “We have a new team of young, high-spirited and successful volunteers. They’re bigger thinkers and have bigger goals to make a difference.”
Ten Thousand Forests also has a new executive director, Tessa Jennison. A Waterloo native, Jennison earned her Bachelor’s degree in urban and regional planning at the University of Waterloo.
The Fort McMurray disaster may be just a taste of what’s ahead – as the warming climate looks to increase large forest fires in Canada by 50% by the end of the century.
A new report from Natural Resources Canada has revealed that climate change will have a significant impact on forest fires in the coming years.
While the Fort McMurray wildfire that covered 590,000 hectares is expected to become the largest insurance loss in Canadian history, the increasing size of fires may mean that the record will be quickly outstripped.
New Brunswick is on the brink of another spruce budworm outbreak and the forestry industry — the largest in the province — is doing everything in its power to prevent massive defoliation like that of the 1970s.
But to control the insect’s population, the province is banking on a different approach than the intensive aerial spraying of the past, according to the research scientist with the Canadian Forest Service.
“We’re trying to do a very surgical targeted, very small areas, instead of treating half the province, which happened during the previous outbreak,” said Johns.
Scientists together with the industry have started treating several hot spots in New Brunswick in the face of a looming epidemic.
The tariff barriers imposed on Canadian softwood lumber cost American consumers a fortune, all while enriching a limited group of producers, shows a Viewpoint published today by the Montreal Economic Institute (MEI), a Canadian public policy research center.
Since the entry into force of the latest Softwood Lumber Agreement between Canada and the United States, tariffs at the border have reduced Canadian exports and have allowed American producers to increase their market shares. The latter thus registered additional net earnings of US$4.31 billion between 2006 and 2015.
American consumers, however, are the big losers of this deal. Since the Canadian lumber targeted by the Agreement is used primarily for residential construction on the American market, American consumers have had to get their wood from an alternative and more expensive source.