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issue 258 | 25.02.13 | Page 1

All projections point to continued strong growth This Issue • Malaysia builds on $6bn timber export trade • Support for new parliamentary forest group

It’s happening .. building gains momentum in Australia, New Zealand and the US.

Building bustles Improved outlook for Australia, NZ of this year. Domestic demand for structural and framing lumber in New Zealand is climbing through Auckland’s house building resurgence and the Christchurch re-build. In 2012, there was a 73% increase for total building

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consents compared to the previous year in the Christchurch area. Over this same period there was also an increase of 28% in floor area for building consents for the country. Lumber exports from New Zealand in 2012 also rose


r sm




AS anticipated by leading financial and economic commentators, the pace of building activity has finally started to pick up. Momentum in the New Zealand, Australian and US markets has continued from the positive activity seen at the beginning

Consumers love the look of wood • Where are the future forest managers? • Canada pushes for taller wood buildings • Hoo-Hoo rustles up wood to support Men’s Shed



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issue 258 | 25.02.13 | Page 1


Canada pushes for greater use of wood and taller buildings

Working with builders, architects CANADA’S peak body for the forest products industry is pushing the merits of customised and pre-fabricated wood, calling on architects and builders to look more to the sector for sustainable, renewable design ideas. The Forest Products Association of Canada and partner organisation FPInnovations have also undertaken a study called Construction Value Pathways to help forest companies compete, looking to additional ways they can reach new markets and even branch into new products. “Our study identifies different ways that Canada’s mills can work directly with builders and architects to devise new innovative products and approaches that are environmentally attractive,” FPAC president and CEO David Lindsay said. “This will help the Canadian forest products industry reach our Vision 2020 goal of generating another $20 billion in economic activity through new products and markets by the end of the decade.” FPAC is also urging governments on both the federal and provincial levels to change building codes to allow larger wood buildings. The organisation wishes to see wood building of up to six storeys in height permitted by 2015 and wood buildings of up to 30 storeys allowed across the country by 2020. “Urbanisation and intensification are driving a higher demand for multi-residential units globally,” says Windmill Development Group founder and Construction Value Pathways external lead Jonathan Westeinde. “There is an increasing trend to retrofit and renovate existing homes and buildings in mature

Page 2 | issue 258 | 25.02.13

Improving our industry’s capacity to develop and maintain a skilled workforce ............................

David Lindsay .. another $20 billion in economic activity through new products and markets by the end of the decade.

western markets where growth is slowing,” he said. “The skilled labour shortage and desire for green building solutions are also changing the landscape. This study suggests that we can set our sights on working closely with the construction industry and be a world leader in a wide range of building systems.” Advances in wood quality, technology and construction practices help ensure that wood is a strong and durable building material. FPAC notes that engineered wood products, pre-fabricated pieces, fibre-based insulation and other wood-based products can even perform better than many traditional construction materials while also serving as a greener alternative. “Supported by sciencebased innovation, changes to codes and standards and the development of new materials and fully integrated systems will position the industry to become a world leader in the fields of multi-family residential and tall wooden buildings,” FPInnovations president and


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MPs, industry leaders turn out to support new parliamentary group Sustainable forests and wood products lauded THE Victorian Association of Forest Industries has welcomed the launch of the parliamentary support group for the forest and wood products industry. Convened by Liberal MP Gary Blackwood and Labor MP Joe Helper, the new group was launched by Victorian Agriculture Minister Peter Walsh. About 40 Victorian MPs and 100 industry representatives gathered in the Queen’s Hall at Parliament House in Melbourne for the event. VAFI CEO Lisa Marty said forestry and the industries that relied on it for wood and paper products had too often been subject to political debate without the appropriate understanding needed to make decisions about this important sector of the economy. “The forest and wood products industry produces more than $400 million in logs each year, generates $7.8 billion in sales and services income and directly employs about 24,000 people,” Ms Marty said. “We are an important part of the local economy and the products we produce are

to world’s best standards and the forest and wood products industry is one of the most sustainable sectors of our local economy,” he said. “It is great to see Victoria’s elected in









choosing to engage with the industry.”

Appropriate understanding needed to make decisions about an important sector of the economy .. Lisa Marty addresses the gathering at Parliament House.

renewable, store carbon and are always the environmental choice.” The keynote speaker, Paul Klymenko, CEO of environmental group Planet Ark, spoke about the importance of using forest and wood products to improve sustainability. Liberal Party convenor and Parliamentary Secretary for Forestry and Fisheries Gary Blackwood said the high attendance of the launch was a strong sign that MPs from all major parties recognised the importance of the industry for their electorates and across the state.

The launch was also welcomed by Victoria’s Shadow Minister

“Besides those directly working in forestry, tens of thousands of people are employed across Victoria working in furniture making, manufacturing construction materials for new homes, and paper making using materials from our forests and plantations,” Mr Blackwood said. Labor convenor and former Agriculture Minister Joe Helper said the bipartisan nature of the group showed the forest and wood products industry was recognised for both its economic and environmental importance to Victoria. “Victoria manages its forests

for Agriculture John Lenders who spoke at the event. The launch of the Victorian parliamentary support group was also supported by the industry superannuation fund First Super, Australian Paper, and




Growers Victoria, ForestWorks, Frame and Truss Manufacturers Australia, Friends of Forestry, Hancock Victorian Plantations, the



Network, the Timber Merchants Association,



Victoria and VicForests.

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issue 258 | 25.02.13 | Page 3


Engineered wood technology drives resurgence in housing development From Page1

a healthy 10%. In Australia, the Housing Industry Association is projecting dwelling starts increasing by 4.5% in 2013 and then again by a further 7% in the following year. Housing units authorised in the US were 28% higher in 2012 compared with the same time in 2011. All projections at the moment are pointing to continued strong growth in this area. In fact, it’s forecast that as a consequence of rapidly increasing housing starts lumber and panel prices in the US will move to new highs this year and record highs for lumber in 2014. With building activity picking up pace, wood processing activity in Australasia is also starting to ramp up.

“The guarded optimism now being seen in this part of the world by wood products companies is reflected in the buy-in by major equipment, product and service suppliers to this region’s first wood products expo, WoodEXPO 2013,” says Forest Industry Engineering Association director Brent Apthorp. “Already in mid-February, around half of the available stands at the New Zealand and Australian venues have been taken up. At this stage, there is a strong interest from major technology and equipment providers from offshore. Companies from the US, Canada, Austria, Germany, Italy and Switzerland as well as local companies have committed to this major event.” WoodEXPO 2013 runs in Albury, NSW, from September

Brent Apthorp .. thinking outside the square.

3 to 5 and again in Rotorua, New Zealand, from September 11 to 13. A comprehensive technology workshop program (up to 40 presenters in both countries) will be announced shortly. Sessions will include sawmilling, wood scanning, mill optimisation, saw design,

selection, maintenance and operation, finger-jointing, timber gluing and laminating, wood-based panels and engineered wood products, wood machining and wood finishing technologies. “Because of the distance from many of the major wood technology and manufacturing companies, these programs in the past have been an integral part of the success of FIEA’s events,” says Brent Apthorp. “Two-hour workshops will be running alongside the exhibitions on day two and three of both the New Zealand and Australian events. A series of practical troubleshooting sessions are also being set up as part of the EXPO workshop series.” Day one of each expo will Cont Page 7

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WHAT’S ON? MARCH 2013 5-6: ABARES National Outlook 2013 conference – National Convention Centre, Canberra. . Australia’s leading event to debate the issues for the agricultural, forestry, fisheries and food sectors. Outlook 2013 will examine the leading issues for the sectors; understand the long term outlook for a range of commodities, explore industry issues so markets will be informed and access the many opportunities for conversations, meetings and networking with fellow delegates. Leading national and international speakers will provide their unique perspectives. Email the ABARES events team at conferences@ or phone 02 6272 2303 or 02 6272 3051. 12: Sydney Hoo-Hoo Club 215 50th anniversary dinner. Rydges

Parramatta, 116-118 James Ruse Drive Rosehill, Paramatta, Sydney. Contact Heather Gattone on (02) 9660 7133 or Don Martin on 0417 763 838.

APRIL 2013 7-10: 6th international Woodfibre Resources and Trade Conference, Istanbul, Turkey. ‘Woodchips and Biomass for Global and Regional Markets’. Hilton Istanbul Hotel. Included in the program is a pre- and postconference field trip, two days of conference and the opportunity to visit Gallipoli.

Visit www.woodfibreconference. com to register. Residues-to-Revenues 2013 Conference and CleanTECH Expo Wood energy and ‘cleantech’ industry developments. Crowne Plaza Hotel, Auckland, April 10-11, 2013; Bayview Eden Hotel, Melbourne, April 15-16, 2013. Event website: www. 7-11: Institute of Foresters of Australia conference – Canberra Rex Hotel, Canberra. Managing Our Forests into the 21st Century. Australian and international speakers will address delegates on both international and local issues that will face foresters and forest managers in the century, such as politics, policy and perceptions. Contact IFA, PO Box 7002 Yarralumla ACT 2600. Tel: (02) 6281 3992. Web: www. Inaugural Local 18-19: Government Forest and Timber Industry Conference – Bayview on Eden, Melbourne Aimed at both local government and timber industry professionals from across Australia. The program will have a focus on socio-economic issues and the relationship between local government and the timber industry, and will feature presentations, discussions, workshops and opportunities to learn from and share experiences. Contact: Municipal Association of Victoria. Tel: (03) 9667 5529. Visit

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EVENTS MAY 8: Global Softwood Log & Lumber Conference Sheraton Wall Centre Hotel, Vancouver, BC. Sponsor opportunities available. Contact: info@ or call 1-604801-5996. 16-21: 3rd International Congress on Planted Forests – Lisbon,

Portugal. The congress aims to investigate the contribution of planted forests to sustainable development in the context of global changes. Topics will include the sustainability of planted forests, changing climates and the future role of planted forests in environmental protection and REDD+. Five of the major European Atlantic countries (Spain, France, Ireland, UK and Portugal) with large areas of planted forests have joined forces to organise this congress under the coordination of the Atlantic regional office of the European Forest Institute and the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation. Deadline for abstracts is February 28. Visit

JUNE 15: Melbourne Hoo-Hoo Club 217 50th anniversary dinner (venue to be advised). Contact: Trish Waters on 0418 358 501. Email: 24: The Cat Goes Gold. Brisbane Hoo-Hoo Club 218 50th anniversary celebration. Victoria Park Golf Complex. Contact: Don Towerton on 0428 745 455. Email: don@ or Tim Evans on 0417 726 741. Email: t-evans@

Australia’s forest, wood, pulp and paper products industry now has a stronger voice in dealings with government, the community and in key negotiations on the industry’s future, as two peak associations have merged to form a single national association. The Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) has been formed through the merger of the Australian Plantations Products and Paper Industry Council (A3P) and the National Association of Forest Industries (NAFI). AFPA was established to cover all aspects of Australia’s forest industry: - Forest growing; - Harvest and haulage; - Sawmilling and other wood processing; - Pulp and paper processing; and - Forest product exporting. For more information on the Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) or to enquire about membership , please call (02) 6285 3833.

issue 258 | 25.02.13 | Page 5


Professor Ian Ferguson

Professor Mark Brown

Dr Bill Jackson

Professor Jerry Vanclay

Dr Peter Holmgren

Where are the future forest managers?

Survival of the profession questioned at IFA conference MANY foresters are concerned with the direction forestry education is taking, with forestry qualifications being replaced by general science and environmental courses covering some but not all aspects of forestry. Where will the future forest and operational managers come from to manage our industry and reserves? Will there be an escalation of the emerging trend of employing foresters from overseas? Emeritus Professor Ian Ferguson’s paper ‘Future forestry employment and education’ to be delivered at the Institute of Foresters of Australia biennial conference in Canberra in April, points out that the problem is not simple; that on-going structural change and the swing to a more market-

Page 6 | issue 258 | 25.02.13

led economy has weakened the traditional links between the different sectors of government, forestry and educational institutions. “There is a need for the major timber and reserve management organisations to collectively identify and support their educational needs,” Prof. Ferguson says. The discussion will ask what role might foresters, through the IFA and other organisations, play in addressing the current problems. “Many feel that this is one major outstanding issue that needs

to be addressed now if the profession is to survive,” Prof. Ferguson added. The panel, drawn from forestry academics and employers of foresters, will discuss the topic with delegates and, fitting with the conference theme – ‘Managing our Forests into the 21st Century’ – will map out the direction forestry education might take during this century. The panel, chaired by Ian Ferguson, Emeritus Professor at the University of Melbourne, will include Mark Brown, Professor, Forest Operations, University of Sunshine Coast; Dr Bill Jackson, chief executive, Parks Victoria;

‘There is a need for the major timber and reserve management organisations to collectively identify and support their educational needs’ – Professor Ian Ferguson

Cam McDonald, chief operating Officer, Hancock Victorian Plantations; and Jerry Vanclay, Professor and Dean of Science, Southern Cross University. The conference committee expects some very constructive interaction with delegates during the session. Keynote international speaker at the conference will be Swedish-born and trained Dr Peter Holmgren, director of the Centre for International Forestry Research, who is an expert in forestry, climate change and food security at a global level. The IFA conference at the Canberra Rex Hotel from April 7 to 11 will address both international and local issues that will face foresters and forest managers in the century, such as politics, policy and perceptions.

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Organic super cellulose will become a $600bn industry within next eight years From Page 7

incorporate a wood processing summit for both senior managers and production staff from local companies. Rather than tweaking current processing and manufacturing operations (increasing the resolution of vision systems, the speed of scanning or feeding lumber into a machine, saws that can provide a smoother cut….) the objective of the summits is to identify what technologies are out there that can make a major difference – a ‘step change’ – to how we’re currently cutting up and processing our wood. An example of ‘thinking outside the square’ is opportunities that may be available through 3D printing or additive manufacturing – the process of making three dimensional solid objects from digital models. In his recent State of the Union address, the US President Barack Obama referred to 3D-printing as “having the potential to revolutionise the way we make almost everything”. Congress is being urged to help create a network of 15 manufacturing innovation hubs to ensure that the “next revolution in manufacturing is made in America”. Other examples of up-andcoming new technologies include nanocrystalline cellulose (the US National

WoodEXPO 2013 .. a comprehensive technology workshop program.

Science Foundation has predicted that this organic super-material will become a $US600 billion industry within

the next eight years), plant automation through industrial robots (allied industries have already implemented x-ray

technologies, automation and robotics to optimise their processing operations and increasingly robotics are being used in wood panel operations) and CT scanning to look inside logs and lumber to optimise initial breakdown and downstream processing operations. All these technologies are being talked about as ‘true gamechangers’ for the industry in the coming years. Interest in WoodEXPO 2013 can be registered at www.

Timber workers buy export logs on wharf TASMANIAN timber workers have bought some specialty timber from a stockpile on the Burnie wharf marked for export. About 15,000 tonnes of logs were waiting for export to China. A dozen sawmillers and contractors met Forestry Tasmania’s chairman Bob Annells on the wharf to tell him they have been trying to buy specialty timber for 18 months.

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issue 258 | 25.02.13 | Page 7


Consumers ‘love look of wood’ but are unaware of the environmental benefits

Iconic landmarks ‘woodenised’ as carbon capture examples RESEARCH shows an overwhelming 89% of people love the look of timber in their homes, buildings, furniture and flooring, but many are still unaware of the environmental benefits of using responsibly sourced wood as an answer to climate change. Trees take in carbon dioxide from the air through photosynthesis and when harvested responsibly, store it as carbon in their wood. Using certified wood for building or renovating locks carbon on the surface of the Earth rather than in the atmosphere where it contributes to climate change. Surveys conducted by Forest and Wood Products Australia throughout 2011 and 2012 show that although 93% of people understood that trees absorb carbon, only 52% of people understand that choosing wood positively impacts climate change. “By choosing wood over other more carbon intensive materials when buying or renovating, consumers can really make a difference and possibly mean their home is effectively carbon neutral for a few months,” says Chris Philpot, campaign manager, Make It Wood. “Most people want to do something about climate

Australian landmarks .. ‘woodenised’ to demonstrate how responsibly sourced wood can help tackle climage change.

change – here is an easy way to help.” Examples of good environmental decisions include: choosing to install wooden window frames rather than an aluminium, the wooden frames store carbon, provide better insulation and look beautiful; choosing recycled wood for the kitchen and bathrooms; buying an outdoor table setting made from wood rather than plastic or glass; and choosing warm and fashionable wooden floorboards. “Wood is unique as a building product because of its personality and longevity,” says Make it Wood ambassador Druce Davey of Greener Kitchens. “I design a lot of recycled timber

Chris Philpot .. most people want to do something about climate change.

into my kitchens because it is hard wearing and can be renovated over time. It is a stunning decorative element that never fails to be the hero of a room, adding warmth and character to a space that no

‘By choosing wood over other more carbon intensive materials when buying or renovating, consumers can really make a difference and possibly mean their home is effectively carbon neutral for a few months’ – Chris Philpot Page 8 | issue 258 | 25.02.13

other material can create.” As the carbon benefits of wood products are based upon the trees being responsibly harvested, consumers need to look for wood that is independently certified by schemes such as Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) to ensure high conservation value forests are protected. An initiative of Planet Ark and Forest and Wood Products Australia, Make It Wood is asking consumers to ‘show their love for wood’ – and win an iPad – by entering a ‘Snap Some Wood’ photo competition. Starting last week, Make It Wood is running a monthlong media and advertising promotion. As examples, famous Australian landmarks have been ‘woodenised’, to show that buildings made from responsibly sourced wood would be helping to tackle climate change.

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ForCES project .. an enhanced global system for forest managers.

New FSC website maps geographical scope of projects THE Forest Stewardship Council has launched a new Forest Certification for Ecosystem Services (ForCES) project website. The new website aims to meet the needs of project participants and to communicate more widely with the public about project developments. The website has a fresh look and user-friendly navigation, and contains the latest information about project implementation and issues related to forest certification and ecosystem services. An interactive map provides information about the geographical scope of the project and gives details about the ecosystem services that are being explored in each pilot site. ForCES is a landmark project which is running over a fouryear period (2011–2015). It is looking at the changes to the FSC system that will be needed in order to make FSC a global leader in the certification of ecosystem services. The project involves FSC and its partner organisations researching, analysing and field testing innovative ways to evaluate and reward the provision of critical ecosystem services such as biodiversity

conservation, watershed protection, and carbon storage and sequestration. Pilot studies are being carried out in Chile, Indonesia, Nepal and Vietnam. Ten pilot sites covering about 900,000 ha of forest have been selected to reflect different socio-political and environmental conditions. Project implementation started in January and includes identifying and interviewing potential buyers of ecosystem services in each site to get a sense of the demand for the final certification model.

By the end of 2015, the ForCES project will have helped FSC to put in place an enhanced global system for forest managers which targets key ecosystem services with existing or future market potential. It will also provide demonstration sites that illustrate the successful certification of ecosystem services, and the positive impacts and added value of FSC certification for forest operations and local communities. The new ForCES website can be accessed at www.forces.

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issue 258 | 25.02.13 | Page 9


Malaysia builds on $6bn timber export trade as New Year closes Forester is new CEO of timber certification council IT’S back to business for Malaysian timber traders as they prepare to build on $US6 billion worth of exports announced at the close of the Chinese New Year on February 18. Furniture exports are set to exceed $US2 billion for 2012 and the latest national statistics on the timber sector during January-November last year were RM 18.5 billion or $US6 billion. The leading timber sub-sector, in terms of export, was wooden furniture which reached about $US 1.93 billion, according to the International Tropical Timber Organisation. Plywood exports were the second highest at $US1.52 billion.

management certification under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme, including facilitating the multi-stakeholder consultations related to the development and review of the forest management standards.

Selective forest management .. the system in Malaysaia is based on the pre-selection of the trees to be cut, which must have a life cycle of 25-30 years, contributing to both the conservation and evolution of species and the maximum utilisation of the raw material.

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Other major export sub-sectors were sawn wood ($726 million), logs ($500 million), MDF ($342 million) and joinery products ($290 million). The Malaysian Timber Certification Council has announced the appointment of Teng Koon Yong as its CEO, effective January 1. He succeeds Chew Lye Teng who has retired after serving as the CEO for 14 years since 1999. NTCC develops and operates the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme as an independent body. Mr Yong is a trained forester with considerable experience and was formerly MTCC’s senior forest manager, a position he gained after serving 17 years in the Forestry Department Peninsular Malaysia. As the senior forest manager, Mr Yong was responsible for all activities related to forest

The standards under the Malaysian certification system which are used for auditing forest management practices in the forest management units (FMUs) and forest plantation management units (FPMUs) are the Malaysian criteria and indicator, one for natural forests and another for forest plantations. The development and review of the standards had taken into account the country’s wide geographical spread and involved regional and national level consultations with multiple stakeholders. Currently, there are nine FMUs certified under the Malaysian timber certification system covering 4.65 million ha and 32% of the total permanent reserved forests in Malaysia. Certified timber from these areas is supplied to 171 companies which have obtained chain of custody certification. No forest plantations have been certified under the Malaysian timber certification system at present. However, in line with international practice requiring a certification to standard be reviewed once every five years, the MC&I (forest plantations) is presently undergoing its first review process.

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Study mission to Canada will inspect CLT and nano cellulose technologies From Page 2

CEO Pierre Lapointe said. With the construction market estimated at $8 trillion and boasting annual growth of 8% according to FPAC, even a slight increase in the use of forest products would be a boon to the forest products industry. Currently, that industry is valued at $57 billion a year, represents 2% of the country’s gross domestic product and is responsible for 230,000 jobs across Canada. The Australian Forest Products

Association is leading a study mission to Canada in April that will cover technologies in the development and manufacture of nano crystalline cellulose and the making and application of cross laminated timber, the next wave in timber construction. The tour will visit FPInnovations, the largest forest research organisation in the world, based in Vancouver. Participants will also visit Structurlam Wood Products in Penticton, a city in the Okanagan

Valley of the Southern Interior of British Columbia to inspect the manufacture of high quality cross laminated timber, glulam beams and bespoke fabrications using timber. The itinerary includes the British Columbia Council of Forest Industries in Prince George, BC, which represents the province’s forest industry interests in expanding export opportunities for Canadian wood products.

Pierre Lapointe .. Canada world leader in the fields of multi-family residential and tall wooden buildings.

Australian landscape soaks up carbon emitted by fossil fuels THE Australian landscape soaked up one-third of the carbon emitted by fossil fuels over the past 20years, according to a new CSIRO study. The study, which marks

a significant milestone in Australian atmospheric science, also found that Australia exported 2.5 times more carbon in fossil fuels in 2009-2010 than was emitted from fossil fuels burned within

Australia. These results emerge from the three-year study, the Australian Terrestrial Carbon Budget, published this month in the journal Biogeosciences. In the study, scientists quantified

how much land carbon is lost or gained through plant and soil ‘breathing’ in response to variable climate and rising carbon dioxide. Effects of fires, erosion and deforestation were also considered.

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issue 258 | 25.02.13 | Page 11


NZ forest exports ‘put at risk’ over certification issue NEW Zealand’s forest exports are being put risk as the industry continues to drag the chain on a key aspect of its certification, a union for workers in the wood industries says. Appalling forest safety statistics have been in the spotlight last year and in the first two months of the year with two deaths already reported. And as a two-month round of safety briefings for forestry workers got under way last week in Kaitaia, a town in the far north region of New Zealand, First Union was warning that the continued barriers put in the way of forestry workers accessing union advice and support will not only have a counterproductive effect on workplace safety, but also put forestry’s critical certification at risk. “New Zealand forest owners have responded to growing international awareness around the environmental and social issues embedded in wood production by obtaining certification from the Forest Stewardship Council, an internationally recognised certification body,” First Union general secretary Robert Reid said in an online media report. “Certification allows producers to charge a price premium for their product and increasingly certification is essential to be able to sell into the global market,” Mr Reid said. However, a key aspect of FSC certification was an obligation on forest owners, their managers and contractors to facilitate the activity of unions in the industry, recognising the union’s role in representing and supporting the forestry workforce. “This is clearly not happening in

Robert Reid .. union has role in representing and supporting the forestry workforce.

New Zealand with unions sidelined in the production of the local FSC standard and years of antagonism from the industry to unions playing any role at all. Now unions have been locked out of the current round of safety briefings,” Mr Reid said. “At its core, this issue is about safety. Unions have established expertise in workplace safety programs and in helping workers to give meaningful effect to a cornerstone of the Health and Safety in Employment Act – worker participation. “Workers are the ones risking their lives every day when they go to work in our forests and attempting to improve health and safety without the systematic involvement of workers is ineffective and completely misguided.” Mr Reid said forest owners put the entire New Zealand forest and wood processing industry at risk if they did not facilitate unions in the sector and work constructively with them to bring down the horrific accident and death rates in the industry.

‘Unions have been locked out of the current round of safety briefings’ – Robert Reid Page 12 | issue 258 | 25.02.13

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Rigid, stable floor frame system underpins high-set flood house THE obvious answer to building in a flood prone area is to build above any expected flood levels – as is the case with pole homes and high-sets in Queensland and Northern NSW. Pole homes generally have some parts grounded and are usually built on the sides of hills which are obviously less flood prone but more wind-prone. High-sets are usually built on flood plains designed to be above flood levels. These houses are both built with suspended timber floors, mostly set at least head height and sitting on timber or metal poles, piers or brick walls or other methods or a combination thereof. According to the global warming experts, our weather is going to become more extreme but generally hotter and wetter and storms will get more numerous and more violent. This is certainly borne out by recent events; large-scale flooding is becoming an annual event in north Queensland and in northern NSW and it’s getting worse on a global scale. It is obviously worse in the tropical and subtropical areas and poorly planned ‘low lying areas’ anywhere. The world is figuratively ‘sinking’. Outside of building a ‘floatable raft house’, high-sets offer the best solution. And the ideal high-set should have the strongest cyclone-rated house sitting on top of the most rigid stable floor frame possible at an optimal height determined by local statutory body flood levels This also dictates insurance company edicts. A rigid suspension system offers the most strength and also least resistance to moving flood waters and cyclonic winds. Round timber or metal poles are desirable but certainly

the least resistance to moving floodwaters and catch far less debris. These poles can either be single rounds or Loggo’s versatile Lamilogs. The Lamilog 200/3.6 floor system allows for increased spans creating much sought after space under the building. These inexpensive piers/pylons can be spaced up to 3.6 m centres. In 1999, Join-T-Lock was asked to ‘lock-up’ a pole home in an area with up to 150 km/h winds in the Illawarra region.

This typical high-set house is high and dry.

not brick walls or brick piers. A building system meeting the challenge has been developed by Oaks Flats-based Jointlock Pty Ltd on the NSW south coast. The Loggo building system addresses all the issues associated with building high-set houses in flood-prone areas. History shows and common sense predicts that these ‘under-house’ areas should be utilised for recreational purposes, car parking and storage which can be quickly dismantled and removed. The Loggo floor frame suits any suspension system from near-ground level to well above head height for pole homes and high-sets and includes: • Portal frame houses of any conventional design. Termite protection is provided by the Termimesh wrap system in addition to the available impregnated non-CCA treatment system. The in-plane Join-T-Locked floor system works in both tension and compression through its axially

“The home was battered by 145 km/h winds only three weeks later and the residents were enthralled that for the first time in their pole home’s history they felt absolutely safe and not ‘seasick’ and fearful because of the previous instability created by gale force gusting winds,” Jointlock principal Pat Thornton said. Join-T-Lock tested two innovative brace designs to assess the potential.

Pat Thornton .. the residents tried traditional and expensive adjustable metal rod braces to no avail.

orientated metal pins. This results in a stabilised platform with a perimeter rail sitting on top of supports at up to 3.6 m by 2.4 m intervals. • Poles – preferably true round timber poles to which it is pinjointed and cradled within the concave cut at the top of these poles. This imparts more stability in high winds and more expectantly, moving flood waters. Obviously ‘round’ poles have the least profile and

The first full pole home using this technology will be completed this year on the NSW mid north coast

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“The residents had tried traditional and expensive adjustable metal rod braces to no avail,” Mr Thornton said. ”In gusting winds these loosen, crush timber, stretch and constantly need adjusting – and, oh, they rust. “With two simple Join-T-Lock braces their problems were solved.” Loggo is continuing this system development. It is hoped its first full pole home using this technology will be completed this year on the NSW mid north coast.

issue 258 | 25.02.13 | Page 13


As Forte celebrates, Canada looks to greater multi-storey construction

Code changes clear path for higher wooden buildings AS Lend Lease Australia wraps up celebrations in Melbourne after the launch of the $11 million, 10-storey tower Forte at Victoria Harbour, Canada is considering allowing multistorey construction for wooden buildings in national codes. The Canadian Commission on Building and Fire Codes is taking a closer look at requirements in the 2010 National Building and Fire Codes of Canada that currently limit the height of wood buildings to no more than four storeys. The initiative was undertaken as a result of code change requests from the Province of British Columbia and the Canadian Wood Council asking that the current height limits for combustible construction be increased. Doing so would move the National Model Construction Codes towards harmonisation with various code development initiatives and market access policies being established in jurisdictions across the country. David Cracknell, the senior construction manager (development) for Lend Lease Australia, was guest speaker at the Large Wood Structures Symposium in Vancouver on February 20. He said Lend Lease had used CLT for a number of reasons; it offered an opportunity to commercialise sustainability, and also meant shorter construction times. Reduced tolerance facilitated off-site manufacturing. Benefits of CLT included reduced high risk work, and the elimination of injuries associated with formwork and reinforcing. CLT would also mean a better working environment with less dust, noise and vibration. Also, fresh water consumption was reduced compared to

Page 14 | issue 258 | 25.02.13

Proposed changes to increase the height and area limits to six storeys for buildings constructed of combustible materials are under development in Canada for the National Model Construction Codes.

reinforced concrete, and pollution on site was also reduced. CLT is also 20% the weight of the original structure, and there was an additional savings in follow-on trades as the material is easier to work with than concrete. Mr Cracknell said Forte also needed to get the necessary timber from Europe to Australia, which essentially meant shipping a building between the two points. The building was shipped in 25 containers in two different ships. Extensive testing was undertaken to make sure CLT was properly fire resistant and had adequate moisture protection. “It’s a different construction process,” Mr Cracknell said. Design was completed up front, and 3D modelling was used extensively.” Because the panels were two

tonnes instead of 10-tonne concrete, a smaller crane could be used. In Canada, proposed changes to increase the height and area limits to six storeys for buildings constructed of combustible materials are under development for the National Model Construction Codes. The task group determined that height and area limits for buildings constructed of combustible materials could safely be increased to six storeys by either introducing new and/or modifying various protective measures. These proposed changes would apply to residential and office-type buildings. They would also include mixedtype occupancies where buildings depended on the top occupancy, may have office, residential, mercantile, assembly, low hazard or storage

Height and area limits for buildings constructed of combustible materials could safely be increased to six storeys by introducing new protective measures

garage-type occupancies. To address emergency responder concerns, provisions to allow greater access for firefighting have been proposed, such as requiring that a minimum of 25% of the building perimeter be directly accessible by fire responders. Other requirements would include mandatory sprinklers throughout the building; a fire-resistance rating of not less than one hour for floor and roof assemblies as well as mezzanines; and noncombustible cladding on roofs that are inaccessible to fire hoses. The building could also only be occupied once fire safety features were fully enabled. Further proposed changes dealing with structural and earthquake design, such as changes to seismic force resisting systems, are also being developed. Following acceptance of the proposed changes, a committees plans to start work on a second phase of this project, which would involve a review of the codes in their entirety to determine if the concept of combustible/noncombustible construction could be eliminated, augmented, or replaced with performancebased requirements. The policy implications of the proposed changes, including enforcement issues, will be discussed with the provinces and territories during the summer of 2013. The proposed changes are expected to be submitted for public review in fall 2013. Final changes, if approved by the CCBFC, will be incorporated in the 2015 editions of the National Building and Fire Codes of Canada.

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Here’s a way for men to ‘shed’ fears and work together on worthy projects THE Australian Men’s Shed Association is committed to encouraging and supporting men of all ages to live full, active and independent lives by simply providing a space – a shed. Members are from all walks of life; the bond that unites them is that they are men with time on their hands who would like something meaningful to do with that time. Brisbane Hoo-Hoo Timber Industry Club 218 at a breakfast meeting in Brisbane last week agreed to support the organisation and will provide a network of contacts throughout the state where reject timber and plywood and offcuts could be sourced. Also, in keeping with the club’s primary charity aim of providing funds and materials for sick and disadvantaged children, toys and other items created by the men’s sheds could be distributed to these charities, most probably through the Variety Club of Queensland’s Bush Bash event in the state, another project supported by Club 218. AMSA is a community-based, non-profit, non-commercial organisation supported by the federal government that is accessible to all men and whose primary activity is the provision of a safe and friendly environment where men are able to work on meaningful projects at their own pace in their own time in the company of others. A major objective is to advance the well-being and health of members and as such AMSA has won sponsorship from men’s health organisations like Beyond Blue, a national organisation working to address issues associated with depression, anxiety and related disorders. The modern Men’s Shed is an updated version of the shed in

Queensland directors of the Australian Men’s Shed Association Graeme Curnow and Bruce Turnbull (seated) look over an early edition of the Building in Timber Handbook at Vagelis Restaurant in Brisbane. Supporting the association by helping to provide timber for Men’s Shed projects are, standing from left, Don Towerton and Tim Evans, Brisbane Hoo-Hoo Club 218 directors, Gerry Gardiner of itreatTIMBER Pty Ltd who brought the AMSA to the attention of the club, and Club 218 directors Alf Chapple, Jim Bowden and Alan Jones (club president).

Bush bash charity test run for Hoo-Hoo Club 218 Kingwood

Fun, fraternity – and helping children’s charities .. Brisbane HooHoo Club 218 members gathered in Brisbane last Saturday for the Variety Club of Queensland’s ‘mini-bash’ from Brisbane to the Darling Downs. The 900 km round trip in the club’s 1977 Kingswood (pictured) and support vehicle comes ahead of the club’s entry in the 10-day Sun, Saddles and Surf Variety Bush Bash from Emerald in central Queensland to Mission Beach on the Queensland North Coast by way of the famous Mount Isa Rodeo, the largest event of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere. The Bush Bash from August 5 to 14 will raise funds for sick and disadvantaged children and is Club 218’s biggest charity project this year. Enjoying the start of the minbash are Club 218 members Caroline Mort, Tim Evans, Jim Bowden, Alan Jones (Club 218 president), John Muller and Peter Mort. All costs on the trip were met by individual members.

These men come from all walks of life; the bond that unites them is that they are men with time on their hands who would like something meaningful to do with that time

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the backyard that has long been a part of Australian culture. The sheds are springing up all around Australia with about 920 registered locations and more than 50,000 members. If you looked inside one you might see a number of men restoring furniture, perhaps restoring bicycles for a local school, or fixing lawn mowers or making a kid’s cubby house for Camp Quality to raffle. You might also see a few young men working with the older men learning new skills and maybe also learning something about life from the men they work with. You will see tea-bags, coffee cups and a comfortable area where men can sit and talk. Queensland directors of AMSA Graeme Curnow and Bruce Turnbull met with Brisbane Hoo-Hoo Club 218 directors last week to exchange information and the ideals of both associations. Mr Curnow said the basic premise of each Men’s Shed was to provide a local, informal location where the men of a community could spend time engaged in manual crafts such as woodworking or the restoration of old furniture. “Members range from men who are using tools for the first time to experienced woodworkers looking to maintain and hone their existing skills,” Mr Curnow said. “The shed environment is positive and encouraging no matter what a man’s ability, and there is a strong focus on learning new skills, encouraging one another and working together.” Long-time club member and timber industry identity Alf Chapple was appointed the club’s state coordinator for the project.

issue 258 | 25.02.13 | Page 15

INTERPOL seizure breakthrough in fight against illegal log traders THE first international INTERPOL operation to clamp down on illegal logging has led to nearly 200 arrests and the seizure of the equivalent of 2000 truckloads of timber in Latin America, according to anti-corruption group Global Witness. INTERPOL, the world’s biggest international police organisation, said its officials had inspected and investigated vehicles, retail premises and individuals and watched ports and transport centres in 12 countries in Central and South America from September to November last year. The operation resulted in the confiscation of more than 50,000 cub m of wood and related products worth around $US8 million, as well as some 150 vehicles. Countries taking part reported 194 arrests, 118 individuals under investigation, and several cases of deportation, INTERPOL added. “This is a major development in the fight against illegal logging, which is a much bigger global problem than most of us realise,” said Billy Kyte, forest campaigner at Global Witness, which investigates graft and conflict involving natural resources. “Local people often get the blame, but they are usually not the real problem. Much more damage is done by big companies connected to business, political and criminal elites, who systematically skirt laws and regulations in order to destroy forests on an industrial scale,” he said in a statement. INTERPOL’s operation involved law enforcement agencies in Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia,

Page 16 | issue 258 | 25.02.13

Members of Brazil’s environmental police force IBAMA and the Para state police inspect logs discovered during a raid against illegal logging near Novo Progresso in the Amazon rainforest.

Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Paraguay, Peru and Venezuela. It was the start of a drive to help INTERPOL’s 190 member countries combat illegal logging and forestry crime, the organisation said. David Higgins, manager of INTERPOL’s environmental crime program, said the illegal timber trade “affects not only the health, security and quality of life of local forestdependent communities, but also causes significant costs to governments in terms of lost economic revenue”. The trade was thought to be worth $30 billion to $100 billion annually, he added. INTERPOL plans to use the intelligence gathered during the operation as a foundation for more “incisive actions” against illegal logging in partnership

with member states. Because the illegal timber trade crosses national boundaries, police forces and regulators find it difficult to pursue outside their domestic jurisdiction. Project Leaf – a joint initiative involving INTERPOL and the UN Environment Program with financial support from the Norwegian government – is helping to coordinate a global assault on illegal logging and organised forest crime. Global Witness said the Latin American operation showed how illegal logging damaged forest-dependent communities and how murder and corruption increased as criminal groups moved into remote forest areas. The illegal timber trade hampers efforts to stop deforestation and forest degradation, which also contribute to climate change, and are responsible for

The operation should be a wake-up call for companies that import wood products as new EU timber regulations come into force on March 3

nearly 20% of greenhouse gas emissions. “For too long, governments and international enforcement bodies have turned a blind eye to the illegality and corruption that lies behind much of what ends up on our shop floors and in our living rooms,” Bill Kyte said. The INTERPOL operation should be a “wake-up call” for companies that import wood products, he said, as new EU timber regulations coming into force on March 3 made it an offence for companies to import illegally harvested wood. Businesses will also be committing an offence if they do not check their supply chains to ensure they know where their timber came from and how it was obtained, according to Global Witness. European Parliament and European Council have approved legislation which prohibits the sale of timber logged illegally under the rules of the country of origin. In addition, companies must use a system of ‘due diligence’ to ascertain that the timber they sell in the EU was harvested legally The new EU legislation, which will come into force in March, is similar to the US Lacey Act, which makes it illegal to handle fish or wildlife produced illegally outside the US. An amendment to the Lacey Act to extend it to timber products was agreed by the US Congress in June 2008. The new rules will also strengthen the EU’s hand as it seeks to work with developing countries to implement forest governance and protection schemes. – TrustLaw.

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on the road

The Sport-age of Kings romps in

Kia’s compact SUV displays European breeding IT’S called the Sport of Kings, so we decided to take the Kia Sportage – the diesel Platinum version – up to the Corbould Park races on the Sunshine Coast after some early morning track work along forest roads near Beerburrum. This $1 each way punter chose one of the country’s finest thoroughbred racing and training facilities, less than an hour north of Brisbane, to trial this compact five-seater SUV. Kia Sportage has run a few races of its own, taking multiple victories in the six-round Score Desert Series, the toughest offroad racing event in the US, followed by success with two Sportages in the most difficult event in the world – the Paris-DakarCairo Rally. The current-generation Kia Sportage has been a standout car for the South Korean manufacturer since it was launched in 2010; it has established itself as one of the company’s most popular models in Australia, and with Kia’s latest updates to the Platinum variant it now one of the best buys in the medium SUV market. One of Kia’s greatest strengths has been its ability to merge high-end European design and engineering with Korean manufacturing technology. This results in a car that is European at heart but with the affordability and value-packed features of a Korean vehicle. The Sportage was designed by a now former Kia designer Massimo Frascella who has designed cars for Ford, Land Rover, Jaguar and even Aston Martin, and worked under Kia’s head of design Peter Schreyer. After starting his professional career at Audi in 1978 as a design graduate, Schreyer moved on to Volkswagen in 1999. It wasn’t until 2006 that

A sure thing .. Kia’s Platinum version Sportage, one of the best SUV buys on the road, turned heads at Corbould Park.

Kia swayed the German born designer to join its ranks. He is most famous for the iconic exterior design of the original Audi TT in 1995. In December, Schreyer was named the president of Kia Motors. Less than a month later, he became the chief design officer of both Hyundai Motors and Kia Motors. The Sportage Platinum diesel is one of the better SUVs in its category. And with the inclusion of satellite navigation now as standard kit, it becomes an even stronger bet to finish ahead of its contemporaries. Powered by a smaller version of the Kia Sorento’s 2.2-litre turbo diesel, the Sportage’s 2.0-litre turbocharged engine delivers a walloping 135 kW of power and 392 Nm of torque, which is actually better than similar engines from the likes of Volkswagen and Audi. On the road the Sportage matches many of its Japanese rivals: smooth and with good

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ride quality over those rough forest roads. Also, the Platinum variants get a ventilated driver’s seat that pumped air through tiny holes in the seat to keep our saddles cool on this hot summer day. The front driver and passenger seats can be heated for those cold nights. Both front and rear seats are comfortable, even on a long journey, and the car easily accommodates five averagesized adults. Using the proximity key, once inside the Platinum we were met with a very stylish interior – there’s the leather-wrapped steering wheel and the

Peter Schreyer .. designing Kias that stand out from the crowd.

leather seats – with eight-way adjustable driver’s seat – are good quality. The radio, clock and climate control all feature red on black LCD screens. Standard features include fog lights, a rear-vision camera, a trip computer, cruise control, climate control an electrochromatic rear vision mirror and 17 in. alloys. The six-speaker audio system incorporates steering wheelmounted controls, a USB input, a 3.5 mm input and Bluetooth phone/audio integration. The all-wheel-drive system gives constant grip, especially in the wet. The Sportage is also safe, currently EuroNCAP tested at five stars with airbags, ABS, EBD and ESC. The reversing camera built into the rear view mirror has guidelines highlighting the width of the car, perfect for backing into the driveway. Kia’s ADR testing places the Sportage at 7.5L/100 km. The Sportage can hold its head high in any field; not only does it look the part, it rides and handles like a BMW. Capable and stylish, there’s very little not to like at $45,000 plus on-roads (diesel) and around $41,500 (petrol). At Corbould Park we had to have a bet on the smart filly Silent Achiever racing at Randwick. Like the Sportage, she romped in.

issue 258 | 25.02.13 | Page 17



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