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Timber Talk

Posted By Denise Foster, Tuesday, July 21, 2020

If You Read The Ohio Woodland Journal
Please Consider Replying To This Survey

The Ohio Woodland Journal has a new editor, Jamie Regula, and she is trying to learn what inspires the readers of the Journal, so that she can continue to put in the content that readers want to see.

To that end, she is asking Ohio Woodland Journal subscribers to take a short, quick, confidential survey that will inform her of the topics that are important to the Journal’s readership.

Please consider taking the survey.

Survey responses are preferred by September 15, 2020.


Forest Markets Weekly Newsletter

The National Association of State Foresters' Forest Markets Committee releases a Weekly Newsletter full of all things Forestry and Forest Products Industry related. Each week’s newsletter has articles about: Forest Markets, Housing, Working Forests, New Products and Technology, and Renewable Energy. This week’s newsletter contains an interesting article about biodegradable fleece clothing made from wood cellulose. See the complete newsletter.

From The Hardwood Leader – The Big Picture

Following is “The Big Picture” from the July 2020 Hardwood Leader, produced and distributed by Hardwood Publishing Inc. This “Big Picture” summary discusses the uptick in hardwood exports that are beginning to develop, and that builder optimism is up.

The best news might be that most major international markets for U.S. hardwood lumber have at least turned the corner and started to grow from their pandemic lows, with Chinese demand rebounding nicely in Apr and May. Canada, Europe and Mexico showed at least modest gains in May. Hardwood log exports were also up in May, overall, with gains to China and Canada offsetting lower shipments to Vietnam. Export gains will continue to lend stability to most species, though Hard Maple and Soft Maple will struggle until domestic markets show real improvement. In addition, potential improvements in Poplar and White Oak prices will have to wait not only for domestic demand improvements, but also for a return of Vietnamese and UK demand, both of which remained depressed through May.

Builder optimism is up and some analysts still believe the spring build is coming, but starts remained weak through May. Dimension and component manufacturers say they are doing quite well now, however, which is a good sign that new construction and remodeling have since started to bounce back. Still, broader U.S. economic recovery will likely be stymied—at least through the election—by on-again-off-again COVID restrictions, making hardwood demand recovery in foreign markets all the more important.

American Loggers Council (ALC) Update for July

In the July 2020 ALC update, ALC President, Shannon Jarvis, discusses the financial problems facing the logging industry due to COVID-19, along with the results of their recent Logger Survey and the need to contact our legislator’s on behalf of the Logger Relief Fund. Read Shannon’s article.

Issues & Advocacy Update

The following update on national level issues comes from our partners at the Forest Resource Association in Washington, DC.

Expect Biomass Carbon Neutrality Rule This Week

The latest information we have on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) rule package designating forest-based biomass combustion as carbon neutral is that EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler will sign the proposal next week, at which time it will begin its journey from proposed to the final rule. As we have mentioned in previous updates, the goal is to have the rule finalized by the end of 2020.   

The rule is expected to be very favorable to the forest products value chain. FRA President Deb Hawkinson will be issuing a statement in support of the EPA’s efforts and the substance of the rule when it is released.  

Senator Collins to Introduce COVID-19 Logger Relief Bill

Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) has been circulating the draft text of legislation that directs the Department of Agriculture to make payments to logging and log trucking businesses who experienced greater than ten percent losses in the first two quarters of 2020 when compared with the same period of 2019. These payments would be allowed for operating expenses and equipment payments. FRA supports the legislation and will work with the American Loggers Council to advance it in Congress.

FMCSA Extends COVID-19 Emergency Hours Waiver

Due to the ongoing national COVID-19 pandemic, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has extended the hours of service waiver through August 14th for carriers providing direct assistance in support of COVID-19 relief efforts. The exemption was previously set to expire on July 14th.

The waiver covers drivers hauling livestock and livestock feed; medical supplies and equipment related to the testing, diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19; and supplies and equipment necessary for community safety, sanitation, and prevention of community transmission of COVID-19 such as masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, soap, and disinfectants.

Surface Transportation Bill Continuing Resolution

The Surface Transportation Bill is likely headed to an extension due to both the House and Senate moving their focus to elections, and the House’s unwillingness to compromise on the Transportation Bill they passed along party lines on July 1st. It is anticipated that the continuing resolution will last six months to one year, and it may show up in the next COVID-19 relief bill.

If you have any questions, please contact FRA’s Director, Government Affairs Tim O’Hara, (218) 390-7965, or FRA President Deb Hawkinson, (202) 296-3937,

Free BWC Webinar - Hearing Conservation
Program - Tuesday, July 21

BWC is hosting a webinar titled Hearing Conservation Program on Tuesday, July 21 (11 a.m. to 12 p.m.). This webinar will explain occupational noise exposure, methods for evaluating and reducing workplace noise exposure, and the basic elements of a comprehensive hearing conservation program.  

The webinar will be instructed by Tom Kelly, CSP, an industrial hygienist in BWC’s Youngstown Service Office.

Additional information, including registration instructions, can be found in this flyer.

For more information or assistance when registering, contact BWC’s Kaylee Blevings at

Pennsylvania Forestry Association (PFA)
July 2020 Newsletter

For those of you on Ohio’s eastern border, you may be interested in some of the information in the PFA July 2020 newsletter. This edition gives a PA Tree Farm update, calls for nominations for various awards, has an Agroforestry Survey, an announcement on webinars dedicated to improving forest-bird habitat through forestry, and much more.

Farm Science Review Will be a Virtual Show in 2020

For the first time in its nearly 60-year history, The Ohio State University’s Farm Science Review, scheduled for Sept. 22 to Sept. 24, will not be held in-person. Instead, a virtual show will be implemented for 2020. See all the details in the Press Release.

Cleveland’s Plan to Grow It’s Tree Canopy

Once known as the Forest City, Cleveland, Ohio’s tree canopy has been dwindling at an alarming rate. Organizations across the city are trying to reverse that trend by digging deep to plant 350,000 trees by 2030. Read the interesting tree story of our northern Ohio large city.

Pallet Enterprise Classifieds

Here is a recent offering of classified ads from Pallet Enterprise. These classifieds consist of machinery, lumber, job openings, etc.

Dovetail Partners July “The Outlook” Newsletter

The July issue of Dovetail Partners “The Outlook” newsletter discusses Household Waste Recycling, a Biomass Energy Utilization whitepaper, and a webinar on The Future of the Forest Products Industry. See the complete newsletter for these and other interesting articles. "The Outlook" is the monthly e-newsletter of Dovetail Partners, Inc, a 501c3 non-profit corporation.

Lignin from Wood and Agricultural Waste
to be used in Automotive, Mass Timber (CLT)
and Construction Applications

Researchers from Michigan State University and Michigan Tech have partnered with Ford Motor Company in a project to replace petroleum-based polyol in polyurethane foams with lignin. Read about this very interesting research project.

Upcoming Events
For Details on These and Other Events

In light of the Coronavirus COVID-19 concerns, OFA cancelled all group activities in March, April, and May. In June, we have started rescheduling some CSAW Training classes and BMP classes with PPE and Social Distancing Guidelines.  Watch this area for updates when it is socially and healthfully responsible to start rescheduling Loggers Chapter meetings and other activities.

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