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Canada: investments in the wood construction


An investment of $2.5-million has been made by the government of Canada to the Canadian Wood Council Advanced Wood Education Roadmap in order to promote the benefits and opportunities related to the wood construction.

This project includes a new Canadian post-secondary learning curricula, resources and tools, such as placements that will teach students the benefits of wood, wood-hybrid and non-traditional construction.

The funding for the project is being provided through Natural Resources Canada’s Green Construction through Wood program that encourages the use of wood in non-traditional construction projects.

The aim behind this program is to position Canada as world leader in tall wood construction technologies and the low-carbon economy.

This will help to achieve Canada’s 2030 climate change goals by training future leaders in design and construction communities in effective ways of constructing with Canadian wood, reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

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Czech Republic: the boom in prefab wooden houses


Comparing to 10 years ago, there is more than 3 thousand prefabricated wooden houses. Wood houses are becoming more accessible due to the rise of the price of bricks and the fall of spruce timber prices, caused by the beetle infestation.

Even though refabricated wooden houses are faster to build, the high demand makes clients wait at least half a year to place their order.

The biggest supplier of wooden buildings, Bruntál-based company RD Rýmařov, produces around 400 houses a year. 

“The demand is so huge that we are no longer able to cover it. We had to stop accepting orders for the next two years,” the company boss Jiří Pohloudek told the website 

An average wooden house with an area 150 square meters costs around three million crowns, while in Prague, that it is price of a small one-room apartment. 

According to real-estate agents, most clients interested in purchasing wooden houses are people between the ages of 30 to 40, who are mainly interested in low-energy houses of up to three million crowns. 

The average life-span of a wooden house is currently around 50 years. After this period, the house usually needs to undergo some major renovation.

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Germany & France: the forestry collapse


Droughts, storms and beetle plagues are the main cause of the ecological collapse these countries are facing. More than 1 million established trees have died in the last year.

The rivers in Germany have record numbers of lows and forests are now prone to fire. The problem in France are similar facing the worst beetle infestation in two decades.  The prices if timber have dropped due to all the trees dying.

Last year, there are registrations of 102 million cubic meters of French public forests were infected costing the industry nearly €80 million.

The process of high-quality softwood has fallen to €60-€80 per cubic metre. Its about the third over the last 18 months as the market is flooded with infested trees.

Densely forested Lüdenscheid in central Germany had seen its rainfall fall from 1,000mm in 2017 to 483mm last year.

Germany’s prized European red beech had also been dying off after being widely planted over the past decade in the hope of creating diverse, sustainable forests.

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Germany: competitive timber prices result in the rise of exports volume


Poland and Czech Republic, are together accounted for almost two-thirds of the import volume to Germany.

European nations, such as Germany, Czech Republic, Austria, France and Slovakia are hampered by large volumes of storm-damaged trees and beetle-infested forests. For that, during the first four months of 2019, the exports in Germany were up 61 per cent comparing to the same period back in 2018.

 As a result of the oversupply of logs in Germany the prices of logs have gone down in the country. As there is a lot of wood raw-material the prices become more competitive. Germany has increased production levels and expanded export sales.

Due to the expected reduction in log costs in the sawmill sector, there will be lots of opportunities for this industry to increase lumber exports in the coming year.

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Brazil: the use of timber to reduce its environmental footprint


Casa Modelo the new house built by Brazilian firm PITTA Arquitetura is a new sustainable home design solar-powered with minimal environmental impact, just outside São Paulo.

The incredible location set the tone for the design. Working with the homeowner, the architects sought to create a model sustainable home that could serve as a platform for future constructions in the area.

The local climate is marked by severe humidity, ultra hot summers and considerable rainfall, all of which prompted the designers to create a resilient structure that could stand up to the extreme elements.

The layout was also driven by the natural elements. The two bedrooms were orientated to embrace the morning sunlight, while overhangs shade the living spaces from the hot summer sun. In the winter months, sunlight from the large, north-facing windows is absorbed by the concrete walls and floors during the day and released at night

Additionally, an innovative rainwater harvesting system provides water for the residents.



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Betimber News: New wood veneer more resistant to impact


The new engineered wood veneer might replace the traditional for its high-impact applications.

New Leaf develops veneers for furniture, doors, wall panels, etc. This veneer is an exact replica of an authentical natural veneer. The protection layer is applied on the top of the pre-finished engineered veneer and includes other layers to protect sunlight, water, impact and other elements. This makes New Leaf three time more resistant, four times more scratch and water resistant eight times more dent resistant and fourteen times more impact resistant than others.

Its available in 37 wood species, veneer cut and stain combinations. You can also choose whether you prefer a classic, contemporary or luxury look.

New Leaf is a new company backed by Wilsonart which is one of the world’s leading providers of engineered surfaces.

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Philippines: every year students have to plant trees


Philippines parliament approved a new law where every student has to plant at least ten trees in selected areas before graduating.

If every student act by the law, one generation will be able to generate 525 million trees.
“Graduation Legacy for the Environment Act” is the name of the new law and the goal is to help with the climate change and formalize what already is a tradition in the country.

The trees will be planted mainly in forestry zones, protected areas, selected urban areas, etc.
The species used will always depend on the climate and typography oh the area, but Philippines species are the main priority.

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Finland: Innovative solutions for global problems



Finland recognition for the studies of innovation, technology, life, science and sustainability has finally began. The country is now a key global player.

1. Finnish innovation for global solutions
The world is facing a crisis due to chronic illness and it is predicted that by 2050 the over 65s will outnumber the children under 15 for the first time in history. That’s why there’s an urge for innovative solutions that will facilitate the transition towards personalized and preventive healthcare.

 2. Leading the way in sustainability

Sustainability has to become a fundamental, indispensable part of every business operation. These are transitions that will take time and providing support to companies embarking on these changes through initiatives such as sustainable finance will be crucial

 This is a report from Voices of Leaders online magazine.



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3D printing process with wood-based ink


The process is meant to produce the unique “ultrastructure” of wood and was demonstrated by a group of researchers from Sweden’s Chalmers University.

This process can interpret and digit wood’s genetic code. The technique is able to control the arrangement of cellulose nanofibrils. This will help to enable the technique to reproduce many of the desirable properties of natural wood.

Professor Paul Gatenholm is the project’s leader and together with his group developed a prototype for an innovative packaging concept.

Alongside applications in healthcare products and clothing, Gatenholm also sees potential for the technology in space, believing that it offers the perfect first test bed to develop the technology further. “The source material of plants is fantastically renewable, so the raw materials can be produced on site during longer space travel, or on the moon or on Mars. If you are growing food, there will probably be access to both cellulose and hemicellulose,” he said.

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Prices down in the wood sector in 2019


IFA latest report about the prices of timber sector turns clear the drops at the top and bottom of the scale achieved by forestry owners back in 2018.

From April to June, sawlog conifer timber 4.9m in length sold for €78/t to€82/t excluding VAT at the roadside.

This compares with €80t/ to €90/t last autumn. These prices are now back in line with early 2018 levels, but still higher than in 2017.

Palletwood prices are broadly stable, with only top prices for shorter lengths (under 2.5m or 3.1m) falling €2/t below late 2018 levels.

Stakewood (€38/t to €45/t) and pulp (€20/t to €34/t) fall in a lower range than last year, with cheaper pulpwood showing the sharpest drop of €5/t at the lowest end of the scale.

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