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News stories tagged with "wood-products"

Eileen Simollardes (at right) from Vermont Gas outlines the pipeline project.  Cornwall select board chairman Bruce Hiland (in blue) looks on at left.  (Photo:  Brian Mann)
Eileen Simollardes (at right) from Vermont Gas outlines the pipeline project. Cornwall select board chairman Bruce Hiland (in blue) looks on at left. (Photo: Brian Mann)

NY-VT tension shapes Ticonderoga gas pipeline project

The US and Canada are carrying more and more energy produced in North America on rail tank cars. That's controversial, especially after this summer's disaster in Lac-Megantic.

But there's also a fierce debate underway over construction of new pipelines to carry the surge of domestic natural gas and oil. Much of the controversy has focused on the Keystone XL project in the Midwest. But we have our own pipeline battle shaping up here in the North Country.

A company in Vermont hopes to build a new line that would feed natural gas from Vermont underneath Lake Champlain to the International Paper mill in Ticonderoga. Some environmental activists and local government leaders in Vermont are promising to block the project unless major changes are made.  Go to full article
Annette and Sherman Craig retired to the Adirondacks, volunteering and forming a woodworking business. Photo: Brian Mann
Annette and Sherman Craig retired to the Adirondacks, volunteering and forming a woodworking business. Photo: Brian Mann

Woodworking and activism in the shadow of a shuttered mill

This summer, North Country Public Radio has been reporting on the final closure of the paper mill in Newton Falls. A Canadian firm has auctioned off the mill's equipment and is looking for a buyer for the land and buildings.

It's an old story in our region, as factories, mines, and mills have closed or moved overseas. One big question for places like southern St. Lawrence County is - what next? What will the next economy look like?

This morning, Brian Mann profiles Sherman and Annette Craig, owners of Wanakena Woodworks.

They're artisan furniture makers and community activists who hope that their kind of investment can help revitalize struggling corners of the Park.  Go to full article
Researchers say bats shatter and splinter because of poor alignment of the grain in the wood. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/shaindlin/">shaindlin</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Researchers say bats shatter and splinter because of poor alignment of the grain in the wood. Photo: shaindlin, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Why we're seeing fewer shattered baseball bats

If you've ever feared for your safety at a baseball game, you can now rest a little easier thanks to the U.S. Forest Service. After testing and analyzing thousands of shattered Major League bats, researchers at the Forest Products Laboratory have been able to decrease the shatter rate of maple bats by more than half.  Go to full article
The mill's closure in Newton Falls raises tough new questions about the economy in southern St. Lawrence County. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/83372564@N00/3701986511/in/photolist-6D8DBD-6T2khj-6D8DMc-6QUjhF">J. Stephen Conn</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
The mill's closure in Newton Falls raises tough new questions about the economy in southern St. Lawrence County. Photo: J. Stephen Conn, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

As mill is dismantled, tough questions for Clifton-Fine

A company called Scotia Investments has been dismantling the historic paper mill in Netwon Falls in southern St. Lawrence County. It's a devastating final blow to the local economy, following years of efforts to revive the mill.

North Country Public Radio reached out to state officials to find out whether the decision to spend ten million dollars refurbishing the rail line into southern St. Lawrence County will be revisited now that the paper mill in Newton Falls has closed. So far, we've had no answer to that question.

Chris Westbrook heads the Clifton Fine Economic Development Corporation. He's been one of the leaders trying to find new source of jobs and prosperity in his struggling corner of the Adirondack Park.

He spoke in-depth with our Adirondack bureau chief, Brian Mann, about this moment in the community's history and about what comes next.  Go to full article
A clear cut near Speculator managed by Lyme Timber.  Sometimes a woodlot that looks heavily logged is being managed well, while a parcel with lots of trees can be made of "junk" timber. Photo used by permission
A clear cut near Speculator managed by Lyme Timber. Sometimes a woodlot that looks heavily logged is being managed well, while a parcel with lots of trees can be made of "junk" timber. Photo used by permission

A million acres of Adk timberland becoming "junk"?

In recent weeks, the Adirondack Park has become embroiled in a new debate over clearcut logging.

But a growing coalition of environmentalists, industry leaders, government officials and academics agree on one thing.

More than a million acres of the Park's privately-owned timber land is deteriorating -- turning into what some critics describe as "junk" forest.

That trend threatens the long-term environmental health of the Adirondacks, as well as the health of the North Country's logging industry.  Go to full article

Farm Bureau faces off with DEC over outdoor wood furnaces

New York's largest farm lobby group is pushing back, hard, against proposals to tighten regulation of outdoor wood-burning boilers.

The Department of Environmental Conservation wants new boilers to burn more cleanly, and wants old boilers modified to reduce pollution. The agency cites nuisance complaints about low-lying smoke from the burners, and concerns about air quality and public health.

Dean Norton, president of the New York State Farm Bureau, says the Department of Environmental Conservation's proposed restrictions will affect thousands of farmers and homeowners. He says the costs of compliance could reach into the thousands of dollars, at a time when framers are already struggling.

The first of several public hearings on the proposals is tomorrow evening in Watertown. Martha Foley has more.  Go to full article
Rep. Scott Murphy at the Hot Biscuit Diner (Photo: Susan Waters)
Rep. Scott Murphy at the Hot Biscuit Diner (Photo: Susan Waters)

Rep. Murphy visit Ticonderoga and finds a debate over energy & climate change

Congressman Scott Murphy (D-Glens Falls) traveled to Ticonderoga yesterday. His visit came on the heels of last week's House vote on historic climate-change legislation. Murphy, who took office less than two months ago, voted in favor of the bill. As Brian Mann reports, that decision was met with questions, criticism and praise.  Go to full article
The Emerald Ash borer..
The Emerald Ash borer..

Ash-chewing beetle joins the list of invasives hitting New York

Last week, New York's Conservation Department announced that yet another invasive species has arrived in the state. This one, the Emerald ash borer, could be devastating. Millions of trees have already been ravaged by the tiny, green beetle, from Michigan to southern Canada. Brian Mann spoke with Robert Davies, head of the DEC Division of Lands and Forests.  Go to full article

NY state restricts transportation of untreated firewood

State environment officials have closed New York's borders to shipments of untreated firewood. The new regulations follow on the heels of a request for voluntary limits on the movement of firewood issued last year. Brian Mann has details.  Go to full article
Stephen Maselli, at Old Adirondack in Willsboro
Stephen Maselli, at Old Adirondack in Willsboro

Building the Adirondack brand, one chair at a time

The North Country's manufacturing industry continues to decline. Jarden Plastics, in Tupper Lake, closed earlier this month. Some companies are holding on and looking for ways to survive and grow. But they face big challenges, with rising energy costs and foreign competition. Brian Mann spoke with Stephen Maselli, president of Old Adirondack Furniture in Willsboro. His company employs more than twenty craftsmen and salespeople. Maselli says the region needs to do more to develop and protect the Adirondack brand. One of the national furniture catalogs that used to sell his company's Adirondack chairs now buys chairs from a plant in Asia.  Go to full article

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