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AFA Newsroom Archive [V8N1] [1-1-13]
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AFA Newsroom V8 No. 1, January 1, 2013 

Rayonier Increases Timberland Ownership 

 JACKSONVILLE, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Rayonier (NYSE:RYN) recently announced it has acquired approximately 62,600 acres of timberlands in East Texas. The property, purchased from a private ownership group for $88 million, or $1,406 per acre, brings the company’s total ownership in Texas to over 150,000 acres.


Wood Storks in the Southeastern United States no Longer Face Imminent Danger of Extinction

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing to upgrade the status of the U. S. breeding population of wood storks from Endangered to Threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The proposal follows a comprehensive review, conducted by Service biologists, of the best available scientific and commercial information about the species’ status.

“The proposed reclassification of the wood stork demonstrates that the Endangered Species Act works,” said Dan Ashe, Director for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “This is a good day for the wood stork, and a good day for conservation. Thanks to great efforts from our conservation partners, the species is making real progress toward recovery.”


TCW: Helping Teach Teachers How to Teach about Forestry

Plans are underway for the 2013 Teachers' Conservation Workshop. The workshop will be held at Auburn University at the School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences building on July 8th through the 11th. Please help us by sponsoring one teacher to attend this workshop.  The $500 sponsorship is a charitable contribution and is tax deductible.

Through your contribution a teacher is able to participate in this professional development workshop. Teachers will receive continuing education,  valuable classroom materials, and instruction from faculty and industry professionals. Our goal is to improve teachers' abilities to instruct their students on the importance of forests to the state's environment and economy.  We do this through field trips to a demonstration forest and a paper mill. Teachers also attend presentations by University faculty and industry professionals.

Finally, teachers are able to participate in hands on activities that they can take back and implement with their students. Please see the attached form for more information and how to make a donation. Contact Chris Erwin at 334-300-0254 or email him at

Forisk Notes Biomass Production Increase in Southeast, Mostly for Wood Pellet Production

Wood Bioenergy US, a publication by Forisk Consulting that tracks, screens, and analyzes the wood bioenergy sector in the United States, notes that, "regionally, the US South had the most updates this issue with the addition of six projects to the WBUS database, five of which are announcements for wood pellet projects to export to Europe.


F2M Composite Yellow Pine Prices for November 2012 Show Continuing Improvement

Forest2Market’s composite lumber price increased by 8 percent throughout the month of November. The composite price started the month at $324/MBF (Week 44). This was the largest week-to-week gain of the month, up from $306/MBF in the last week of October (Week 43). Prices continued to increase in Week 45, up to $332/MBF; this was followed by a 4 percent gain in Week 46 to $345/MBF. Composite price reached the highest price year to date in Week 47 at a price of $351/MBF before declining slightly in the final week of the month (Week 48) to $350/MBF.


ALC Director Starts off the New Year With the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

By Ray Clifton
It has been quite a year for the Alabama loggers Council. Challenges to logging businesses still abound in an economy that lags behind where we would all like for it to be. Still, we remain optimistic and are thankful for the blessinges associated with our businesses and families.

Take a moment to reflect on 2012 and look ahead to 2013.

To read the rest of Logger Notes, click here.

Drax Biomass International Inc. Announces New Pellet Mills and Facilities

Drax Biomass International Inc. a development and operating company focused on manufacturing wood pellets for renewable, low-carbon power generation from sustainable biomass, has announced its plans for three projects in the Gulf region. In the first half of 2013, Drax Biomass expects to begin construction of two pellet manufacturing plants in Louisiana and Mississippi, as well as a port storage and loading facility at the Port of Greater Baton Rouge.

Read more...

New Southern Pine Design Values Set for Review in January, 2013

The Southern Pine Inspection Bureau (SPIB) has resubmitted its proposed southern pine design values for visually graded lumber to the American Lumber Standards Committee’s (ALSC). The new design values were originally intended for review during an ALSC Board of Review meeting on October 18. The SPIB withdrew its proposal shortly before the meeting in light of a Forest Products Laboratory (FPL) report of discrepancies.


Latest Information About What the EPA has Planned for us in 2013

As rumored, U.S. EPA has released the final versions of the 4 Rules – the Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) standards for Major and Area Source Boilers (Boiler MACT), Commercial and Industrial Solid Waste Incineration (CISWI), and Nonhazardous Secondary Materials (NHSM) rules.  Finalized just three days shy of a year since they were proposed, the much anticipated final rules will impact thousands of boilers, process heaters, incinerators, and kilns across the country.

Much like last year, we have our work cut out for us to get up to speed on the changes to the rules.  So whip up some hot chocolate (perhaps with some booze), grab a blanket, and get cozy next to the fire – there’s a lot of reading to be done!  Or you can enjoy the holidays and let us do it for you – keep an eye out for updates via our blog, 4 The Record newsletter, and social media (LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook) as we dive into the rules.


Lisa Jackson, Darling of the Environmental Movement, Resigns as EPA Chief

The Obama administration's chief environmental watchdog, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, is stepping down after a nearly four-year tenure marked by high-profile brawls over global warming pollution, the Keystone XL oil pipeline, new controls on coal-fired plants and several other hot-button issues that affect the nation's economy and people's health.

Read FRA's Bulletin for December 

As we move into the season when we all remember the many things we have to celebrate, most of us look back at the past year and anticipate the coming one. We're moving into a steady recovery in housing and in the businesses that support it. We see strong investments and emerging technologies in the bioenergy field and with them challenges and opportunities for the whole wood supply chain.


Northeast Biomass Heating EXPO Set for April 3-5 in Saratoga Springs, New York

The 5th Annual Northeast Biomass Heating Expo is set for April 3-5 in Saratoga Springs, NY. The 2013 program emphasizes practical learning for developers, installers, and suppliers of biomass (wood and agricultural crops) heating and combined heat and power (CHP) equipment. 


Geithner Says U.S. Will Reach Debt Ceiling by the End of the Year

The U.S. Government will hit its debt ceiling at the end of the year, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said this week.


Alabamians will Automatically Pay Estate Taxes in 2013 if Fiscal Cliff Not Averted

Without a compromise to avoid the "fiscal cliff" that would bring drastic changes to the U.S. federal tax code, Alabamians will be forced to pay estate taxes in 2013, the Tax Foundation says. Alabama is one of many states that currently has what the Tax Foundation calls a "dormant state estate tax" within its laws.


Prominent U.S. Senator says President Obama Wants the Country to Go Over the 'Fiscal Cliff'

Longtime U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley said recently that Republicans have a "great deal of leverage" on President Obama because they can refuse to raise the debt ceiling unless he agrees to spending cuts.
The Iowa Republican also says the President wants the nation to go over the fiscal cliff because it will raise everyone's taxes, then Obama can be seen as saving the middle class by lowering their taxes in the new year.
Read more... 


Texas School Responds to Security Needs by Allowing Teachers to Carry Concealed Weapons

Although the liberal media lamblasted the NRA for suggesting that armed security might be the best deterrent for shootings at schools like that which occurred recently in Connecticut, a school in Harrold, Texas believes they are secure because some of their teachers are authorized to carry concealed weapons at the school.

"We don't have money for a security guard, but this is a better solution," Superintendent David Thweatt said. "A shooter could take out a guard or officer with a visible, holstered weapon. But our teachers have master's degrees, are older and have had extensive training. And their guns are hidden. We can protect our children." 


Adult Volunteers Play Vital Role in 4-H Shooting Sports Program for Youngsters

Shooting sports programs teach youngsters decision-making, teamwork, self-discipline, self-confidence and problem solving. But long before Alabama 4-H shooting sports programs begin teaching youth, adult volunteer leaders go through intensive, certified training to learn aspects of teaching the sport to youth. 


FROM THE EVP: United We Stand, Divided We Fall!

In 1949, our founding members decided that it was in their best interest to pool their resources and fund an organization that would “stand in the gap” for them at the state capital.  Staff members were tasked to be watchmen, sounding the alarm on potential threats from legislative or regulatory activity and working to eliminate those threats.

Read the rest of Chris' Column... 

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