MFPC Newsletter May 2017
Tree Growth amendment responsive to our concerns
The generally positive trend in housing starts is good for our lumber manufacturers, but they are keeping a weary eye on the growing sawdust and other wood waste piles whose markets are decreasing. We have ongoing challenges but a history of resilience and innovation that will keep Maine’s forest economy vibrant for generations to come.
On another note, despite the furor of the legislative session, we have been making great progress on the Roadmap Initiative with the establishment of the executive and working committees for the Global Assessment, Inventory, Transportation and Emerging Technologies sectors. Some of the proposal requests from committees are below.
The Governor’s Tree Growth bill finally arrived and after careful review and discussions we testified in favor of the bill as long as significant changes were made. Read more.
Roadmap proposals sought for Global Market Analysis and Wood Supply
The Maine Forest Products Council (MFPC), on behalf of the Maine Forest Economy Growth Initiative, has issued a Request for Information (RFI) for a Global Market Analysis and Benchmarking. All responses to this RFI are due no later than June 9, 2017.
MFPC, on behalf of the Maine Forest Economy Growth Initiative, has issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) for Maine Wood Supply Projections. All responses to this RFP are due no later than June 9, 2017.
For more information, please contact: Sarah Curran, Program Director for the Maine Forest Economy Growth Initiative, (207) 622-6345, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anything can happen as bills make their way through the House and Senate
Executive Director Patrick Strauch, Bill Ferdinand and I have been spending a lot of time at the Legislature mostly focused on public hearings and work sessions in front of the various committees that have jurisdiction over the many bills we are interested in, however we very much have our eyes and ears around the House and Senate sessions watching day in and day out (along with a few nights), because this is often when shenanigans happen. Here’s the big picture. Read more.
Forest products still Maine’s top export in 2016: Our industry’s exports were one of the few bright spots highlighted in Measures of Growth 2017, the annual report released April 25 by the Maine Development Foundation and Maine Economic Growth Council. At MFPC’s request, the Maine International Trade Center recently compiled a detailed forest products report on exports. Here are some highlights:
- Despite the drop in paper, forest products still account for nearly 22 percent of all Maine exports.
- Canada remains Maine’s top trading partner for paper and wood products by a wide margin, and is second to China on wood pulp and recovered paper, with Sweden moving up fast to take the third spot.
- If you look at exports by commodities, our industry claims three spots on the top 10 list, for paper (3rd), wood products (5th), and wood pulp/recovered paper (7).
Maine’s first post-secondary training program for future operators of mechanized logging equipment starts June 19 in Millinocket, thanks to a partnership between three Maine community colleges, the Professional Logging Contractors (PLC) of Maine, and industry partners. The 12-week certificate program will start in conjuction with Eastern Maine Community College and rotate to other locations around the state. Read more.
Managing Forests for Wildlife Habitat and Forest Products in a Changing Environment: SFI Coordinator Pat Sirois will be one of the presenters at a workshop June 14 at the Searsmont Town Office to help woodland owners, foresters, and others understand changing climate conditions, and the opportunities and challenges these changes pose for forest and wildlife habitat management. Also presenting will be Sandy Walczyk, district forester, and Kevin Doran, natural science educator, of Maine Forest Service, and Jennifer Hushaw and Si Balch with Manomet Climate Services Program. Robbins Lumber is a co-sponsor. Registration 8:30 a.m., workshop: 9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Forestry Credits: This workshop has been assigned 3.0 category 1 CFE credits. Logger Credits: This workshop qualifies for CLP credits –3 hours. To register please call or email: Sue McCarthy, 207-622-9288. If you have questions about the program please contact Kevin Doran, 207-287-4988.
Join us at the MFPC Golf Tournament on July 13 starting at 1 p.m. at Bangor Municipal Golf Course. Brian Flewelling and Sue McCarthy are busy getting sponsorships for the tournament. They still need hole sponsors or banner sponsors. If you are willing to help out with this fundraiser, please contact them as soon as possible. The hole sponsorships are $250 each and we place the banner at each hole. The banner sponsors are $300 each, and we use your company banner and place it on the Marquee at the tournament. We still have openings for golfers, so if you would like to join the fun, contact Sue McCarthy.
Meet Maine Sportsmen and Women in a first-of-its-kind effort. The Friends of the Maine State Museum has preserved the stories of some of the guardians of Maine woods ways, including Oscar Cronk, Gary Day, Matt Libby Sr., Ormy Pitcher, Robert Shelton, Judy Sirois and Paul Wade. Click on the Maine State Museum’s You Tube channel to see and hear directly from people who have inspired careful wildlife management, taken risks, innovated to grow a new industry, and preserved a Maine way of life. The oral history project is sponsored by NRA Teach Freedom Foundation, Kittery Trading Post, Doyle and Nelson, Maine Arts Commission, and North Maine Woods.
June 2 Opening of Paper Industry Exhibit at Maine Historical Society: The Maine Historical Society is opening a new exhibition, Making Paper, Making Maine. This exhibit is part of an initiative that explores the vast impact that the paper industry has had on Maine since the late 19th century. The exhibit opens during Portland’s First Friday Art Walk on June 2 (5-8 p.m.) and be on view through October 28. The exhibition is anchored by extensive resources on Maine Memory Network. Read more..
In case you missed it: American trees are moving west and no one knows why. Climate change only explains at least 20 percent of the movement as bout three-quarters of tree species common to eastern American forests — including white oaks, sugar maples, and American hollies—have shifted their population center west since 1980. More than half of the species studied also moved northward during the same period.