All posts by Melinda Olson

US Forest Carbon Projects

March 10, 2016

10:00  Background on Carbon Projects – Dave Walters, Landvest, Eugene, OR
• What are the various types of carbon projects? What are the options when selecting a carbon project?

• How are carbon projects structured and what are the protocol requirements? What is necessary to bring a project to the marketplace?

• Overview of the US carbon marketplace. Where are existing carbon projects, what is their scale and sale price?

• Opportunities and tradeoffs in managing private timberlands for carbon.

11:00   Carbon Project Development Timeline and Key Steps – Dave Walters
• Scoping: Is the project worth spending money on?

• Information Gathering: What kinds of information are required by the project protocols?

• Analysis: What type of analysis is needed to validate the project?

• Submission and Processing: How to prepare a project for the marketplace.

Noon  Lunch

1:15  The Carbon Inventory: What does your inventory need to look like? – Dave Walters

• Project Requirements: Building an inventory system to match project protocol requirements. Measuring biomass instead of board feet.

• Design Considerations: What type of plots, how many and where, what do you need to measure, and what information needs to be collected.

• Processing: Calculating biomass using project protocol requisites.

• Documentation: Doing what you say you will do and recording every step.

3:00  Break

3:15  Growth and Yield Modelling: Modelling your forest out 100 years – Dave Walters

• Project Requirements: Modeling and projection conditions for submitting your project.

• Which model to use: Review of approved models and alternatives.

4:30  Adjourn

March 11, 2016

8:30  Growth and Yield Modelling, Continued
• What do you need the model to do? It is not your typical analysis.

• Pros and cons of approved models.

• Documentation for verification

10:00  Break

10:15  Harvest Scheduling – Dave Walters
• Merging your regular business model with long planning horizons.

• Approaches and tools for scheduling

Noon  Lunch

1:15  Forest Carbon Verification: Lessons Learned From the Verification of Over 50 million Tonnes – Zane Haxtema, Senior Verification Forester, SCS Global Services, Seattle, WA

2:00  Legal Considerations and Potential Pitfalls When Developing a Carbon Project – Greg Fullem, Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt, Portland, OR

3:00  Break

3:15  Recap and Take Home Messages

3:45  Adjourn

Financial and Business Management Skills for Forestry and Natural Resource Leaders

March 15, 2016

8:00  Course welcome and introductions

Priority skills for career development and profitable business management

  • Six skills for “getting smart” in forestry and forest business
  • A day in the forestry life: land management vs. wood procurement vs. analyst

1: Conducting basic financial analysis in forestry

  • Key tools and metrics for forest finance and economics
  • How evaluate the economics of forest management (marginal analysis)
  • Case example: identify the forest rotation that maximizes value
  • Case example: assess the returns of forest management activities (i.e. fertilization)

2: Understanding basic tax rules and ownership structures

  • Key terms and tax rules critical to forest managers and owners
  • Explaining and comparing REITs, C-corps, TIMOs, LLCs and MLPs

3: Understanding the language of business

  • o Defining and reviewing financial statements (includes forestry case example)

Noon Lunch (included with registration)

1:00 Session continues

4: Putting forestry risks in perspective

  • Reviewing the data on forestry risks
  • Developing a plan to communicate risks to clients and managers

5: understanding market and forestry data

  • Overview of key forestry data sets and key things to know
  • How do successful forest investors and managers stay current?
  • Discussion: includes recommendations and examples of what to read

4:00 Adjourn for Day 1

March 16, 2016

8:00 Session continues

6: communicating with a range of individuals, executives and organizations

  • The good, the bad, the ugly: what forestry gets right and wrong
  • How to give a talk
  • How to conduct an interview
  • How to make a recommendation to managers or clients
  • Group exercise with facilitated feedback

12:00 Adjourn

Forest Health: Identification and Management of Forest Insects and Diseases

Title: Forest Health: Identification and Management of Forest Insects and Diseases

Location: Spokane, WA

Start Date: 2013-03-13

End Date: 2013-03-14

Link to PDF version of conference materials

Wednesday, March 13, 2013
9:00 The Whole Picture: Tree Vigor, Forest Ecology and Stand Dynamics — Karen Ripley, Washington State Department of Natural Resources, Olympia, WA
9:30 Current Assessment of Western US Forest Health — Iral Ragenovich, USDA Forest Service, Portland, OR
10:00 Aerial Surveys: Techniques and Products — Keith Sprengel, USDA Forest Service, Westside Forest Insect and Disease Service Center, Sandy, OR
10:30 Break
11:00 Assessing Fire Damaged Trees — Karen Ripley (invited)
11:30 Why are My Trees Dying?  Diagnostic Tools and Methods for Forest Managers—Elizabeth Willhite, USDA Forest Service, Sandy, OR
Noon Lunch (included with registration)
Defoliating Insects: Hosts, Habitats, and Management Strategies
1:00 Western Spruce Budworm — Connie Mehmel, USDA Forest Service, Wenatchee, WA
1:30 Douglas-fir Tussock Moth — Connie Mehmel, USDA Forest Service, Wenatchee, WA
2:00 Black Pine Leaf Scale on Ponderosa Pine — Mike Johnson, Washington State Department of Natural Resources, Colville, WA
2:30 Break
Stem Problems: Recognition, Importance and Management
3:00 Dwarf Mistletoe in Oregon and Washington — Angel Luis Saavedra, USDA Forest Service, Wenatchee, WA
3:30 White Pine Blister Rust — Holly Kearns, USDA Forest Service, Sandy, OR
4:00 Stem Decays — Greg Filip, USDA Forest Service, Portland, OR
4:30 Insects and Pruning Wounds — Mike Johnson, Washington State Department of Natural Resources, Colville, WA
Thursday, March 14, 2013
Root Diseases: Identification, Importance and Management
8:00 Laminated Root Rot— Kris Chadwick, USDA Forest Service, Sandy, OR
8:30 Armillaria Root Disease — Amy Ramsey-Kroll, Washington State Department of Natural Resources, Olympia, WA
9:00 Annosus Root and Butt Rot — Kris Chadwick, USDA Forest Service, Sandy, OR
Bark Beetles: Identification, Hazard Assessment and Management
9:30 Douglas-fir Beetle — Beth Willhite, USDA Forest Service, Sandy, OR
10:00 Break
10:30 Protecting Douglas-fir with the Antiaggregation Pheromone MCH — Connie Mehmel, USDA Forest Service, Wenatchee, WA
11:00 Mountain Pine Beetle Outbreaks in Ponderosa Pine — Tom Eckberg , Idaho Department of Lands, Coeur d’Alene, ID
11:30 Mountain Pine Beetle in Lodgepole — Andy Eglitis, USDA Forest Service, Bend, OR
Noon Lunch (included with registration)
1:00 Western Pine Beetle – Andy Eglitis
1:30 Fir Engraver and Pine Engraver Beetle — Sandy Kegley, USDA Forest Service, Coeur d’Alene, ID
2:00 Climate Change and Insect and Disease Interactions — Nancy Grulke, Western Wildland Environmental Threat Assessment Center, USDA Forest Service, Prineville, OR
2:30 Assessing Forest Health Risk — Greg Filip, USDA Forest Service, Portland,
3:00 Managing Your Forests for Forest Health — Dave Shaw, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 
3:30 Adjourn

Forest Export Markets: Opportunities in Japan and China

Link to PDF version of conference materialsPortland, OR USA
December 18, 2012

Tuesday, December 18, 2012
9:00 Conference Welcome
9:10 Overview of Asian Markets and Fiber Supply ― Hank Ekstrom, Wood Resources International LLC, Seattle, WA. This presentation will cover the demand for imports of logs, woodchips, wood products and pulp in the key Asian markets of China, Japan, South Korea and India. Market share of US exporters will be discussed relative to supplies from competing regions such as Russia, Canada, New Zealand and Australia.
9:40 The Impact of Russian Log Exports on Asian Markets ― Paul Owen, Vanport International, Boring, ORWhat are the implications of Russia being accepted into the World Trade Organization? Will Russia slash or eliminate log export tariffs making their logs more affordable to China? Theoretically, that action could undercut North American log exports and China could lean less on the US and Canada for logs.
10:10 Break
10:40 Logs Exports Under an Uncertain Chinese Economy: Understanding Key Economic IndicatorsJohn Perez-Garcia, Center for International Trade in Forest Products, University of Washington, Seattle, WAThis presentation will address two strategic business questions: Under what conditions will China continue to import US softwood logs?  What is the likelihood that these conditions will continue into the future?  The answer lies in an examination of the important factors in log trading and a focus on key economic indicators to discern possible future trends . . . all with a focus on China.
11:15 Moving Logs to Asia: Shipping Logistics, Options and Port Capabilities – Tom Leeds, Pacific Lumber & Shipping, Seattle, WA
Noon Lunch
1:00 The US as a Brand Name in Chinese Forest Products Markets ― Xu Fang, American Softwoods China Office, Shanghai, China.  In-person Interview by Eric Hansen, Wood Science and Engineering Department, College of Forestry, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR
1:30 How to Finance Your Exports and Mitigate Risk: Tools for Both Pre-shipment and Post-shipment Finance ― Bryan Hicks and Tony Liebo, Wells Fargo HSBC Trade Bank, Seattle, WA
2:00 Break
2:20 Managing Phytosanitary Issues in Log Exports– Cindy Cooper, aPlant Services, WA Dept. of Agriculture, Olympia, WA. Each year Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) trade measures play an increasingly critical role in shaping the flow of U.S. global trade. China has previously acted to suspend log shipments from S. Carolina and Virginia due to the presence of pests. PNW log exporters will need to stay ahead of this curve.
2:45 Timber in an Uncertain Global Economy – Dr. Bill Conerly, Conerly Consulting, Lake Oswego, ORDr. Bill Conerly will address the demand for Northwest timber, including domestic uses and the export markets in Asia. Along the way he’ll explain the best practices for handling the tremendous uncertainty about the global economic outlook.
3:15 Adjourn

Scaling for Non-Scalers: Understanding the Scaling Process, Log Rules, Sorts, Grades, and Accountability

9:00      Scaling Bureaus: How they operate and their role in log              marketsTom St. Laurent
o How bureaus fit into the log buying and selling process
o Represent both the log buyers and sellers
o Apply log scaling rules
o Provide qualified scalers
o Serve as independent third parties

9:30      What does a log scaler do?Mike Belfry
o How scalers fit into the log transaction process (only measure volume, not value)
o What is their relationship to log buyers and sellers
o Different points in log transport where scaling can occur
o What is log volume and how is it calculated?
o What are the specific measurements and data collected on a typical log?
o Log documentation
o Understanding gross and net volume
o Why did my load scale out at a lesser volume? Reasons for volume deductions

10:30      Break

11:00      Northwest Log Scaling Rules: Applying uniformity and standardization within the Doug-fir processing areaTom St. Laurent
o Function and role of the rules
o What they cover
o How they are maintained and revised
o How to use volume tables

11:30      Special requests: Using procedures in addition to the NW Log Scaling Rules Tom St. Laurent
o Why special requests are made
o Common examples
o Documenting special requests

Noon      Lunch

1:00      Understanding log grades and sortsMike Belfry
o What is the difference between grades and sorts?
o Why do sorts vary from company to company?
o What is the difference between a good #2 sawlog and a rough #2 sawlog
o What is the pulp sort?
o What is a cull?

2:00      Break

2:15      Log accountability: Tracking the log load from landing to millMike Belfry
o How is data collected? Load receipts, weight reports, sample scales, sample expansion, log tags, scale tickets and certificates
o Understanding the paperwork: Examples will be provided of load receipts, scale tickets and certificates and each form will be reviewed in detail.
o What are the standard procedures for documentation and changes?
o How is the data stored, disseminated and then accessed by clients?
3:45      Catch-all short topicsMike Belfry and Tom St. Laurent
o Difference between westside and eastside scaling
o Understanding cubic measurements
o Deciphering overrun and underrun
o Volume conversion factors
o Using taper factors and actual taper

4:15      Adjourn

Western Region Council on Forest Engineering Seminar

Thursday, January 14, 2016


0700 – 0815    Registration and Continental Breakfast (Included with registration)

0815 – 0830    Introduction to Western Region COFE & Seminar Jeff Wimer, Chair, WR.COFE & OSU FERM Department


0830-0900       Protecting the Logging Workforce: Development of Innovative Logging Techniques for a Safer Working Environment Kevin Boston, Oregon State University

0900 – 0930     Building a Dual Purpose System Steep Slope Machine Bruce Skurdahl, Summit Machinery

0930 – 1000     New Zealand Cable-Assist in the Pacific Northwest Frank Chandler Jr., C & C Logging

1000 – 1010    Blount / Oregon Cutting Systems update

1010 – 1040    BREAK (Refreshments Provided)

1040 – 1050    Peterson CAT update


1050 – 1120    Wayne Stone Logging – Extreme Downhill Show Jason Colter, Student, Oregon State University

1120 – 1150    Skyline Tension Monitoring Systems Why, What, and How? Brian Tuor, Cable Logging Specialist

1150 – 1200    Triad Machinery / Link-Belt update

1200 – 1240    LUNCH (Provided)

1240 – 1310    ANNOUNCEMENTS, Ticket Raffle, OSU Student Scholarship Awards –  Jerry Sedlak Memorial Scholarship – Loren Kellogg

1310 – 1320    Pape’ Machinery update


1320 – 1350    3D Laser Vest Richard Gabriel, Spectrum Geomatix


1350 – 1420    FE Licensure Update Oregon State Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying

1420 – 1430    Vendor Update

1430 – 1500    BREAK (Refreshments Provided)

1500 – 1530      Federal Forest Management Affects All Oregonians, Especially Private Timberland Owners Bob Ragon, Douglas Forest Operators

1530 – 1600    State Historic Preservation Office Jason Robison, Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe

1600 – 1630    Oregon Department of Forestry Riparian Rule Analysis Terry Frueh, Oregon Department of Forestry

1630 – 1645    Wrap-Up and Evaluation Jeff Wimer

Sawmilling 101: Introduction to Softwood Sawmill Operations and Financial Performance

9:00 Sawmilling Overview

    • A. What are the Basic Manufacturing Processes? Follow a log along the manufacturing processes from delivery to the mill, through sawmilling and kiln drying, and on to the planer and shipping.
    • B. What does a Successful Sawmill Manager Pay Attention to? An introduction to key sawmill performance metrics and a sample sawmill income statement to illustrate how key metrics impact financial performance.

10:15 Break

10:30 Markets and Manufacturing in North America

  • C. Where Does the Lumber End Up? A review of the primary end users of lumber to include residential building, remodeling and repair and industrial distribution channels. Consumer preferences and green labeling round out the picture of market forces.
  • D. What are the Characteristics of Markets and Manufacturing in the Various Regions of North America? An overview of each major region is provided to cover population trends, characteristics of mills, regional market drivers and species mix.

Noon: Lunch

1:00 Key Sawmilling Metrics in Detail

  • E. A Close-up of Key Metrics: The instructors will draw upon actual sawmill operating statistics from 20 years of benchmarking study data and how those factors impact financial performance.
    • 1. Log Supply and Pricing: Logs are typically 60 to 70 percent of a sawmill’s total operating cost. This session will focus on the characteristics of logs that drive value, and the process of identifying the right log at the right price for the right mill.
    • 2. Lumber Recovery: What forces impact the amount of lumber recovered from each log? This session will focus on how mills measure and maximize the volume and value of lumber produced.
    • 3. Productivity and Manufacturing Costs: This session will review the key factors that drive mill productivity and manufacturing cost including log and lumber mix, technology, labor, energy, maintenance and supplies.
    • 4. Lumber Products and Sales Values: A look at major lumber product categories including commodity and specialty product lines including key characteristics and market values.
    • 5. Sawmill Byproducts: This session will focus on end uses and values for byproducts including chips, sawdust, shavings, bark, and hog fuel.

3:00 Break

3:30 Characteristics of Top Performers

  • F. What are the Characteristics of Top Performing Sawmill Operations? The instructors will draw on more than 20 years of benchmarking experience to illustrate differences in key performance metrics between average and top performing sawmills, and will present several case studies of top performers.

4:30 Adjourn