Congress introduces bill to promote CLT across the country

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Great news to see a bipartisan group of federal lawmakers reintroduce legislation to increase the use of innovative wood products, particularly cross-laminated timber, in construction projects. According to the Aberdeen Daily World, the Timber Innovation Act will “accelerate the research and development of wood for use in construction projects, such as cross-laminated timber, focusing on the construction of buildings more … Read More

Tom Westergreen wins ATFS National Outstanding Inspector of the Year

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We are happy to report that the American Tree Farm System has given its 2017 National Outstanding Inspector of the Year award to a Washington forestry leader: Tom Westergreen. From the ATFS press release: Westergreen has a life-long passion for tree farming and ATFS. He was raised on and currently manages his family tree farm (in Whatcom County), land that … Read More

Pacific Education Institute testifies for natural resource jobs

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We last wrote about the Pacific Education Institute (PEI) in December, when it awarded ten $5,000 grants to Washington programs that support student exploration of natural resource management, agricultural science, and environmental science careers. Since then, PEI has hired a new executive director, Kathryn Kurtz, and Kurtz just testified to the Senate Ways and Means Committee in favor of legislation … Read More

Statewide effort to clear fish barriers takes shape

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As we’ve noted before, forest landowners have been the state leader in clearing fish passage barriers in Washington over the past two decades. Since 1999, with the passage of the historic Forests & Fish Law, state officials estimate that 6,000 barriers have been removed, and about 6,000 miles of habitat have been opened up, with forest landowners responsible for up to … Read More

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