Tag Archives: Pacific Northwest

Pacific Northwest Log Prices to Rise in 1Q2013

Pacific Northwest Log Prices to Rise in 1Q2013

>PRWEB.COM Newswire

Charlotte, NC (PRWEB) January 10, 2013

After muted gains in the second half in 2012, log prices in the Pacific Northwest are climbing back to pre-recession levels. Forest2Market projects that they will gain additional ground in 1Q2013, the result of the ongoing recovery taking place in both domestic and export markets.

The U.S. housing market turned the corner in the last half of 2012, and demand for forest products quickly followed. In November, lumber prices were $100 per thousand board feet (MBF) above their November 2011 level. Forest2Market projects the housing recovery will continue to pick up steam in 2013, with annualized housing starts hitting the 1 million mark by the end of the year.

“Asian appetite for Northwest forest products strengthened in the second half of 2012 and looks strong moving into the New Year,” says Gordon Culbertson, Manager of Forest2Market’s Pacific Northwest business. “Inventories of imported logs and lumber products in China have declined by nearly 50 percent from a year ago, while the Chinese Government has renewed efforts to stimulate affordable housing construction. Russia’s market share, traditionally the largest supplier of Chinese logs and lumber, has continued to erode, leaving Chinese buyers to fill the shortage with deliveries from North America and New Zealand.”

According to Forest2Market’s Delivered Price Benchmark database, prices for logs delivered to Northwest seaports for export loading to Asia revived as 2012 progressed, with Douglas fir prices gaining back $72 per MBF of the $78 per MBF they lost in the first half of the year and Hem-fir hitting a 2012 peak in November at $558 per MBF. Strong demand from China, especially for hem-fir logs, and Japan’s renewed interest in higher quality second growth Douglas fir logs will bolster prices going forward.

Supply disruptions will add to the upward pressure on prices in early months of 2013, as mills attempting to increase production face tight log inventories, difficulty stimulating new log deliveries and—in some cases—lost production.

Weather is, in part, responsible for the supply disruptions, according to Culbertson. “The long, hot, dry summer of 2012 across the Northwest led to many days of curtailed logging due to fire risk. This was followed by heavy rains in the fall and heavy rains and snowfall at low elevations in December, both of which hindered logging and hauling operations and limited the ability of mills to replenish their log supplies.”

Combined, these supply constraints and stronger demand from both U.S. and export markets will push log prices higher in 2013. Douglas fir prices, for instance, will reach into the mid-$600s by the end of the first quarter, with the largest increases occurring in western Oregon, where the supply shortage is more acute.

Forest2Market’s Delivered Price Benchmarks
Forest2Market offers delivered price benchmarks for logs in the Pacific Northwest, the U.S. South and in the Midwest, and will soon offer the same service in the Northeast. Customers use our benchmarks to compare their performance to the market and make data-driven decisions to improve their performance.

About Forest2Market
Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Forest2Market provides market pricing data and supply chain expertise to customers in the forest, wood products, pulp and paper, recovered fiber, lumber and bioenergy industries. For more information, visit http://www.forest2market.com.

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2013/1/prweb10308191.htm

Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/1006924#ixzz2Hcpv4FuE

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We lost everything to the Sacred Owl

We lost everything to the Sacred Owl

July 3, 2012

Sacrificing to the Sacred Owl
By Margaret Goodwin,

In ancient religions, practiced by primitive cultures, it was customary to make sacrifices to sundry gods and idols. Some of the more sanguinary cults engaged in human sacrifice. We like to consider such practices far removed from our civilized modern society. However, we make far more extravagant sacrifices to our sacred idols than the ancients ever dreamed of making. While the ancients may have slaughtered the odd sheep or bull or virgin on the altar of an angry god, we sacrifice entire regions of our country, decimating their economies, wiping out employment for thousands of people, destroying their livelihoods and breaking up homes, creating widespread poverty and sending statistics on domestic violence, divorce, and drug abuse soaring through the roof, as once-productive and self-sufficient communities decline into indigence.

And to what powerful god are we making this enormous human sacrifice? Well, it’s not a god, exactly. It’s a Sacred Owl.

The Northwest Forest Plan (NWFP) was adopted in 1994 to “protect” the Sacred Owl. Nobody actually knew how many Sacred Owls existed at the time; nor did they know how many had existed in any previous period. Nobody had ever counted them. Instead, they created a model based on nesting habitat. Since Sacred Owls nest in “old growth,” and “old growth” was being reduced by logging, the model inferred that the Sacred Owl population must be declining also.

Based on this model, the powers that be concluded the Sacred Owl must be endangered. Since the Sacred Owl also requires younger stands and clearings for forage, the critical habitat designation was broadened to include most of the public forest lands in the Pacific Northwest. This opened the door for the environmental movement to litigate virtually any timber sale on public lands under the auspices of the Endangered Species Act.

Today, the environmentalists claim the Sacred Owl population is still declining at an alarming rate. So we must set aside even more land as “critical habitat,” sacrificing even more production, jobs, and communities. But, if the Sacred Owl population really is declining so rapidly, eighteen years after the NWFP was put into effect, then clearly the plan is not successful and should be scrapped. Why double down on a failed plan?

Perhaps, from the perspective of the environmental movement, the plan hasn’t really been a failure. Suppose, instead, it has been wildly successful. How could that be, if the Sacred Owl population is even worse off today than it was before the NWFP was implemented?

Let’s do a little thought experiment. What if the Sacred Owl was only a means to an end, rather than an end in itself? Suppose for a moment that the environmental movement wanted to eliminate logging on public lands. In order to accomplish that, they would need to find a law that would allow them to challenge any government timber sale and tie it up in litigation until the legal expenses exceeded the revenues.

The Endangered Species Act would serve that purpose well. They would just need to come up with an endangered species that lives in places where logging occurs. Of course, it couldn’t be just any endangered species, like an insect or rodent or fungus. It would have to be something cute and appealing, something cuddly-looking that people who live in cities would want to protect.

Enter the Spotted Owl. With apologies to Voltaire, if the Spotted Owl didn’t exist, the environmentalists would have had to invent him.

Serendipitously, the Sacred Owl has proven very lucrative for the environmental movement. They discovered another law, called the Equal Access to Justice Act, which requires the government to reimburse legal fees for the prevailing party in lawsuits against the federal government.

In the last four years alone, more than 570 lawsuits have been filed under the Endangered Species Act. When the environmentalists lose, it costs them very little because their attorneys belong to the movement. When they win, they can claim up to $500 an hour in attorney fees.

Just since 2009, U.S. taxpayers have paid the environmental movement more than $15 million in attorney fees for preventing the productive and sustainable use of natural resources on public lands.

So it’s easy to see why this owl is sacred to the environmental movement. It’s been very good to them. But how many more jobs, how many more communities, how many more local economies are we willing to sacrifice to this Sacred Owl, and to its high priests in the environmental movement, before we expose this dangerous cult for what it is? How many more sacrifices can our nation afford to make?

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