Forestry issues get attention in Olympia

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It’s heartening to see some focus at the Washington State Capitol during this year’s legislative session on issues of forest health, active forest management and better fighting wildfires. We’re seeing the momentum around the same time that the forestry and pulp and paper industries held their Forest Products Advocacy Day in Olympia. Gov. Jay Inslee has called for more forest … Read More

Legislature could increase prescribed burns and private fire contractors

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The Washington Legislature last year considered several reforms to the way the state fights wildfires, and it approved a pilot project to increase the use of prescribed burns to make forests more resilient to fire. That spirit of change is continuing in this year’s legislative session, with state lawmakers considering more ways to increase prescribed burns and legislation that would … Read More

President Trump says Forest Service can hire summer firefighters

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President Trump has said he will allow the U.S. Forest Service to hire seasonal firefighters for this summer’s wildfire season. The announcement ends a period of uncertainty that included a letter of concern from three Washington lawmakers: Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Spokane), Rep. Derek Kilmer (D-Gig Harbor) and Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-Sunnyside). Last week, the three lawmakers were part of … Read More

Reports suggest reform in fighting Wash. wildfires

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New reports on the 2015 Twisp River Fire that killed three U.S. Forest Service firefighters suggest several lessons for battling fires in the future. From the Spokane Spokesman-Review: An after-action review of a fatal incident is normal, but this time the Forest Service teamed up with the Washington state Department of Natural Resources for a learning review. The learning review … Read More

Mass timber now on display in D.C.

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Cross-laminated timber has now arrived in one of the country’s major museums in Washington, D.C. The National Building Museum has on display an exhibit called Timber City, which highlights the benefits of mass timber construction products like cross-laminated timber, laminated veneer and laminated strand lumber. The Architects Newspaper has more details: (I)t’s the 21st century, and a new exhibition at … Read More

Northwest companies take major role in CLT

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A new story from the Associated Press explores the critical role that Northwest companies are playing in the rise of cross-laminated timber in the U.S. The story is also notable because since it was produced by the Associated Press wire service, the article has been published in newspapers all over the country, helping to spread the word about the benefits … Read More

U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree is from the Northwest

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Given the towering evergreens of the Northwest, it’s not a surprise that trees from this region would often be chosen to serve as the official Capitol Christmas Tree in Washington, D.C. But it’s still a thrill to see the trees make their way across the country and eventually stand in lights at the U.S. Capitol for the whole country to … Read More

More fishers reintroduced in Washington

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The fisher, a large member of the weasel, mink and otter family, has returned to Washington in recent years after disappearing in the mid-1900s because of overtrapping and loss of habitat. The revival of the fisher is because of efforts by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other leaders to reintroduce the … Read More

Federal wildfire reform in 2016 goes up in smoke

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For several years now we’ve followed the efforts in Congress to pass federal timber reform. None of those efforts have proved successful so far, but more recently there was hope on the horizon that Congress may approve at least one measure that would have provided more money for wildfire prevention. There appeared to be bipartisan momentum to end the practice … Read More

Washington kids gets funding for outdoor education

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Mark Doumit, the Executive Director of the Washington Forest Protection Association, and Bill Taylor, President of Taylor Shellfish, wrote in an Everett Herald op-ed last year about the importance of teaching children about working outdoors and in natural resources industries. It’s heartening to see school districts, state lawmakers and nonprofits like Washington STEM show strong support for improving education in … Read More