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Portugal: Christmas it’s not that far away and solidarity season is officially open

14/11/2019

Adorned pines, lights and stringent decorations. In Portugal, the most wonderful time of the year, can be started the best way possible, helping the country firefighters.

 

Choosing the christmas tree has never been easier. The “Pinheiro Bombeiro” (Firefighter Pine) is already in its 3rd edition, in 2019, and everyone can rent a pine tree, instead of buying a plastic one. The environmental footprint decreases and the planet thanks.

The portuguese startup Rnters made this project to connect a caring cause to today’s growing environmental concerns. For 20 euros, anyone can rent their christmas tree and 5 euros from each pine goes to volunteer firefighters to buy their equipments.

In all, past editions have raised 29,000 euros that allowed the buy of dozens of gloves and masks for various firefighting teams, but the company wants to reach all the fire brigades in Portugal.

Get more info: https://eco.sapo.pt/2019/11/12/quer-uma-arvore-de-natal-pode-alugar-e-ajudar-os-bombeiros/

 

 

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Wood stove or pellet stove: Two single purpose options

11/11/2019

The heat source, the interaction with the machine and the environment created are the main differences. Here are the points to keep in mind before deciding which option best fits your preferences.

 

According to the experts, both wood and pellets stove may be good options, because thus markets have a large offer adapted to the different needs. In general, wood stoves are better for the ones who want to invest in a trusty warmth source, once a modern wood-burning stove burn cordwood for the cleanest way possible and is independent of external energy. The available models can be chosen depending on consumer’s preference and taste, since there are uncountable aesthetic solutions. However, the size of the area he wants to warm is also important and market include different size options, materials and styles, so it’s possible to achieve both worlds, when it’s time to choose.

In the other hand, pellet stove is new in the market and stands out for maintaining a constant ambient temperature. The wood pellets that feed these kinds of stoves are made of recycled wood, compressed wood fiber, sawmill waste and timber clearing operations and can be connected for one full day with no pellets recharge - unlike wood stoves - allowing a reduced user interaction with the machine. As with wood stoves there is no shortage of choice either for any kind of needs and market tends.

In short, both options have categories fitted to different consumers, therefore the decision must tend to what best suits each reality. If a reliable source of energy is the most important even if it implies the constant supply, the wood stove is a better match. If you don't want to worry about cutting and stacking wood, although you must be dependent on electricity and obligation of the buying wood in the market, pellets stoves will serve you better.

To more details: https://myhomco.com/news/pellet-vs-wood-which-stove-is-better/

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One of a kind. Trees are rare birds that do not have a defined life cycle like the other living beings on earth

05/11/2019

Why don’t trees die of old age? Statistics aren’t clear on this topic, but there are some unique facts about tree live that we cannot find in any living organism in the world.

 

It is in the White Mountains of California that the largest living tree in the world is found. The Great Basin bristlecone pine, a species that is already known for its longevity, born 5,068 years ago and remains alive to this day.

No one really knows if there be a time when the life cycle will end for her, but, as in all areas of study, it’s possible to rely on statistics, so that day will probably come. When it will be, no one can guarantee it.

Trees have no growth limit, which in theoretical terms means that they can grow indefinitely. However, in practice, this would result in a death sentence, because at some point, photosynthesis would no longer be possible, since water wouldn’t circulate long enough to reach the upper leaves. So, this pine, sometime during growth, started to get large, growing sideways, since this is the protection mechanism to maintain photosynthesis.

There are causes of death in tree life cycle, but age isn’t one of them. Damage from a storm, external causes like fires or an infestation or attack from insects that makes her vulnerable are some of the likely reasons. However, tree death can result from a combination of these and other factors. And even if she survives many situations, the odds at some point do not protect her from the inevitable. That's why the trees don't live forever. Just don't really die of old age.

Further information: https://www.realclearscience.com/blog/2014/11/do_trees_die_of_old_age.html

 

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Flooring: Positive balance in major European wood flooring markets in first half of 2019

31/10/2019

The last European Federation of the Parquet Industry (FEP) report showed a grown at German, Austrian, French, Polish and Spanish wood flooring markets, but the rest of Europe did not keep up with this trend.

 

The variation in the different countries is partly due to the trade war in European market between China and EUA, according to FEP. Donald Trump's tariffs undermine the competitiveness of US companies by reducing sales in the US market and undermining the globality of the countries with which they establish economic relations.

These measures affect especially countries with smaller markets like Italy, Switzerland, Netherlands or Norway. However, the decrease seen in Netherlands and Norway, is also due to the strong competition from luxury vinyl tiles (LVT).

By now, German keeps on the leadership of European parquet market and France and Spain showed developments in relate to the same time in 2018. There are then contradictory trends marking the first 6 months of the year.

For more details: https://www.wbpionline.com/news/european-wood-flooring-consumption-presents-mixed-picture-in-2019-241019-7471170/

 

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Rise of 20% in sawn timber exports puts Cameroon at the forefront of EU suppliers

28/10/2019

After the growth of 25% in wood exports for China, Cameroon bet on European market and reached increases greater than 20% in 2019.

 

 

According to International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO) report, in Q1, 2019, Cameroon exports 60.000 tons of sawn tropical timber to European market, which makes an increase of 22% over the same period last year. This mark represents about 33% of total EU sawn timber imports.

 

In H1, 2019 Cameroon’s leadership in wood market was confirmed by becoming Nº1 sawn timber supplier in the European Union. The last ITTO report showed a volume of imports of 141.000 tons, putting the country ahead of all big suppliers, like Brazil, Congo and Ghana.

 

The report on Cameroon export earnings to China in H1, 2019, had already revealed gains of $43 million (16% more than last year). However, there is still a long way to go until it reaches the values of major suppliers of sawn timber in China market, like Gabon, which reached milestones of $129 million.

 

 

Find out more: https://www.businessincameroon.com/wood/0310-9558-cameroon-was-the-leading-eu-supplier-of-sawn-timber-in-h1-2019 | https://www.businessincameroon.com/wood/0110-9547-with-76-000-m3-exported-in-h1-2019-cameroon-became-the-6th-sawn-wood-supplier-to-china | https://www.businessincameroon.com/public-management/1707-9345-cameroon-s-sawn-timber-exports-to-the-eu-up-by-33-yoy-in-q1-2019-itto

 

 

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Brexit: What does it mean for the timber sector to put off the decision?

25/10/2019

A postponing of Brexit decision put timber trade on alert for the following repercussions. After all, what are the challenges, taxes, fees and penalties that the industry may face?

 

The UK government made a few guarantees to companies related to import and export business. According to the Guidance published by the UK government, “the UK will continue to have a VAT system after leaves the EU (European Union)”. The goal will always be to make as few changes as possible to keep companies safe.

“UK VAT registered business importing good to the UK will be able to account for import VAT on their VAT return”, so EU or non-EU companies will not have to pay VAT on importation time or upon arrival of the products in the UK.

Imports, exports, customs for business and trading in general will obligate companies “to apply the same customs and excise rules to goods moving between the UK and the EU as currently apply in cases where goods move between the UK and a country outside of the EU”. This means the amounts charged will noticeably increase, what puts traders on alert and will force negotiations to reduce prices as much as possible.

However, wood products, like sawn or PAR Softwood and Hardwood, would already remain exempt regardless of origin. The market where most significant differences can be felt will be that of imported European wood-based panels, where rates can reach 10%.

Read more: https://ttf.co.uk/a-no-deal-brexit-is-now-odds-on-heres-what-that-means-for-timber-trade/

 

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Portugal: Manage the forest from space it’s possible now

22/10/2019

The RESUCI project was launched as a complement or alternative to helicopter and field forest inspections. The proposal aims to ensure the feasibility of using observation services and to assist in the implementation and maintenance of firefighting networks.

The RESUCI – Space-based Services to support REsilient and SUstainable Critical Infrastructure, was developed by GMV Innovating Solutions, in partnership with R&D Nester - REN-State Grid Energy Research Center. Works via Earth Observation data (EO) and Global Navigation Satellite System data (GNSS) and for now showed great advantages over traditional monitoring methods.

The implementation of the project would allow the detailed study of properties of objects that are not visible to the naked eye and an integrated view of the observed space that would show the relationship between different components and the surrounding landscape. In addition, RESUCI obtains data remotely without the need to move teams on the ground and access inaccessible regions. These satellites also enable time analysis by continuously covering a single point and producing and analyzing results quickly and automatically, as well as their immediate integration with information systems. 

If the project gets implemented it will bring new possibilities to REN (National Electric Network), operator of Portugal's national electricity transmission network and to ICNF (Institute for the Conservation of Nature and Forests), organization of the Portuguese State responsible for the valorization and conservation of nature, forest resources and biodiversity in Portugal.

According to Nuno Pinho da Silva, R&D researcher Nester - REN-State Grid Energy Research Center and António Araújo, GMV project manager, satellite images can become “powerful, unique and indispensable tools for decision support in the most varied territorial challenges, and particularly in the case of the installation and management of forest defense networks, which is vast, with implementation throughout the Portuguese territory, suffering various pressures, natural and human, such as growth vegetation to occupation by illegal buildings”.

Find more here: https://eco.sapo.pt/2019/10/21/a-gestao-do-territorio-e-da-floresta-que-vem-do-espaco/ / https://business.esa.int/projects/resuci

 

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Burning wet firewood no longer needs to be a problem

16/10/2019

A team from Stony Brook University, in New York, invented the stove of the future and they are committed to change the firewood sector.

 

Burning damp wood was one of the biggest troubles of firewood sector, mainly in humid weather places, but companies everywhere found difficult to reach quality and dried wood. Although the burning process is faster when we have dry wood, the use of heat energy generated is better than the wet wood combustion process. This happens because when dry wood is burning the energy focus on generate warmth, instead of waste heat boiling the damp in the wood.

The innovation pretends to dry wood before she gets into the stove, so, once the process of burning starts, she’s already dried. The new stove also intends to offer the possibility of put pre-heated wood inside the stove to simplify all process.

If the project becomes a success will make the process of combustion easier and change radically the firewood industry.

Read more about in https://nationalfirewoodassociation.org/2018/08/02/true-innovation/

 


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Cork is giving new fresh lives to industries beyond stoppers production

10/10/2019

The idea of a market focused on cork stoppers is officially outdated. Cork is considered one of the eco-friendliest materials nowadays and has been a sustainable alternative increasingly adopted by sectors like furniture and construction.


Flooring, doors, furniture and walls are just four of the new uses of cork. This material
is resistant to wear and tear, impermeable, buoyant, elastic, and fire-retardant. These are the unique features that provided cork an all new sea of possibilities and sectors to explore.

Oak trees, the species where cork is extracted, are born specially in Portugal and Spain and together, these countries are responsible for more than 60% of the global production. The ease of recycling, the sustainability or the great insulation capacity are just a few reasons why companies of design, furniture, construction and decoration have been progressively adopting it in their own business.

In the beginning, cork was actually used only like a household material. However, now cork is challenging and replacing traditional materials in flooring, accessories, decoration or walls and the conditions are reunited to grown even more in the future and expand to other sectors.

 

Visit https://www.dwell.com/article/a-crash-course-on-cork-the-eco-friendly-material-thats-popping-up-everywhere-bb3449f1 to know more.

 


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Brazil: Instability in the pine export sector

08/10/2019

The steady growth of pine exports in Brazil between 2011 and 2018 was halted in 2019. Statistics show a year full of ups and downs for the pine plywood industry, which will force exports to increase to 105,000 tons per month by the end of the year.

The forest products market tends to grow very fast, but it has volatile features as well as it tends to fluctuate in short periods of time.

In 2018, data on plywood and lumber exports showed a positive market time. However, new studies focused on pine plywood exports, in May 2019, revealed a 31% drop in export volume between March and April of the same year. The fall was mainly due to the climate changes coinciding with the peak US construction season, which resulted in a breakdown of timber exports from Brazil to the United States.

The very last data, related to the month of August, indicate a major success in the US construction market - the biggest responsible for the success of Brazil exports. This will be a challenge for Brazilian pine owners and plywood and lumber exports that should see the exports grow more than 105,000 tons per month until the end of 2019 to match the recipes of the last year.

 Find more here: https://www.forest2market.com/blog/brazils-pine-export-market-braces-for-negative-impact-2

 

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