Friday Offcuts – 15 September 2017

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First, breaking news – and there are a few major stories this week. Wood processors from New Zealand (WPMA) met with an equivalent industry grouping (representing 3000 companies involved in timber importing, wholesaling and manufacturing) in China last week. A MOU was signed, the aim being to develop mutually beneficial trading and investment relationships between the two countries. Technical co-operation is part of the memorandum and WPMA and Chinese authorities are already working on building in NZ timber specifications into the official Chinese Timber Design Handbook.

In Australia this week, Kiwi industry associations met up with the Australian Forest Products Association for trans-Tasman discussions and Australia’s forestry Ministers (representing the Commonwealth Government and the governments of NSW, Tasmania, Victoria, Western Australia, Northern Territory and South Australia) released a position statement jointly committing to working together to grow the country’s forestry and wood products industries. The PM, as part of the AFPA Gala Dinner held at Parliament House, Canberra this week announced a new National Forest Industries Plan is to be developed to give vision and certainty to the industry and in Tasmania, Resources Minister Guy Barnett has just announced the sale of 29,000 hectares (cutting rights) of Tasmanian hardwood forest plantations (formerly managed by Forestry Tasmania) for AU$60.7 million to an entity called Reliance Forest Fibre.

Research, trials and results from recent work are also been covered in this week’s issue. Three major trials are currently underway across Australia aimed at reducing the risk of bushfire damage to the built and natural environments. Researchers from the University of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland are leading one of the projects (see news below) with field trials being undertaken in Western Australia, NSW and Victoria. They’re looking into the effectiveness of using machinery to reduce fire fuel loads with the aim of providing practical and economic recommendations that can be used to reduce both the strength and speed of bushfires.

Also in Australia, two regional groups, NSW’s Subtropical Farm Forestry Association and Queensland’s Specialty Timber Growers Inc have recently united under the brand Quality Timber Traders. Funding has been secured from the Farm Co-operative and Collaboration Program (a two-year, AU$13.8m initiative from the Australian Government). A series of field days and educational workshops for smaller scale timber growers along with research on higher value timber species are being planned.

Other R&D stories include Microsoft who’re testing a drone with in-built artificial-intelligence (the plan is that it’s going to fly and think for itself), Telsa has just been pipped at the post by Cummins who have released their own fully-electric heavy-duty truck and we’ve added some more details on workshops that have been set up for local forestry companies attending the upcoming ForestTECH 2017 series in November. They’ll be run by Interpine and the well-known LiDAR guru, Martin Isenburg. That’s it for this week.

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Australian PM announces National Forest Industries Plan

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has announced the development of a comprehensive plan to support the growth and sustainability of the Australian timber industry over the coming decades. In presenting the keynote address to a gathering of some 500 forest industry leaders at the AFPA Gala Dinner at Parliament House on Tuesday night, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull committed to a National Forest Industries Plan.

“Tonight I am pleased to announce I am requesting Anne Ruston to help us develop a new Government Plan that will underpin growth in the renewable timber and wood-fibre industry and work with a new government plan to give you the vision and certainty you need. We are committed to developing this industry as a growth engine for regional Australia.’’ Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, AFPA Gala Dinner, Parliament House, Canberra. September 12, 2017.

Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources Anne Ruston said the Australian Government saw a bright future ahead for forest industries. “The Australian forest industry directly provides tens of thousands of jobs, many of which support rural and regional communities. The Turnbull Government reaffirms its strong support for the sector and is committed to further collaboration to achieve certainty into the future,” Minister Ruston said.

AFPA Chairman Greg McCormack has enthusiastically welcomed the development of a National Forest Industries Plan. “The guiding policy documents used by Government to frame responses to our industries were both delivered last century: the 1992 National Forest Policy Statement and the 1997 Plantations Vision 2020 plan. Our industries have changed dramatically since then and I am delighted the Prime Minister has recognised that it is vital that Government and Departments also update their approach,” Mr McCormack said.

“The new Government National Forest Industries Plan will, we trust, outline actions to support the industry to establish new plantations, increase investment and grasp opportunities in the emerging bio-economy to turbo-charge regional job creation and economic development.”

The Gala Dinner was also an opportunity to celebrate the industry’s best and brightest, with the announcement of the winners of the inaugural 2017 Forest Industry Innovation Awards.

“AFPA congratulates our three award winners – OneSafeGroup for Innovation in Safety, Timber Communities Australia for Innovation in Training, and AKD Softwoods for Innovation in Business. The winners in each category were presented with a $1000 cash prize and a beautiful timber trophy,” Mr McCormack said. Source: AFPA

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NZ wood processors strengthen trading links with China

WPMA's Chair and CEO, Brian Stanley and Jon Tanner, were in China last week to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the equivalent body the China Timber and Wood Products Distribution Association (CTWPDA). The signing between the two organisations took place at the 7th China Global Wood Trade Conference in Chengdu and was witnessed by over 400 delegates from China and around the world.

The CTWPDA's current membership consists of 3000 companies engaged in timber importing, wholesaling as well as manufacturing. Brian Stanley says that besides being the representative organisation of China's timber industry and forming an important interface with the Chinese Government, the MoU is of particular value to WPMA members because the CTWPDA is set up to promote international timber trade with China.

As agreed with CTWPDA's President, Liu Nengwen, the CTWPDA / WPMA relationship intends to develop mutually beneficial trading and investment relationships between both countries. Brian commented that the WPMA looks forward to hosting the CTWPDA-led delegation to New Zealand in 2018.

The MoU also focuses on technical cooperation between both countries and, on that front, we are well advanced. "Having succeeded in writing New Zealand timber specifications into the official Chinese Timber Design Code last year I am pleased to report that the on-going project between WPMA and the Chinese authorities to write the Chinese Timber Design Handbook is making good progress", noted Mr Stanley.

This followed meeting with the project leader, Professor Yang, of the China Southwest Architectural Design and Research Corporation. In New Zealand, this project is made up of a consortium led by WPMA and includes Scion, the University of Canterbury, Indufor, MPI and MFAT. The project forms part of the WPMA workplan on technical standards' harmonisation to assist trade.

Source: Wood Processors & Manufacturers Association

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Update from FCNSW forestry firefighters in B.C.

Sharing a campsite with close to 300 firefighters, long shifts and extremely steep terrain are some of the challenges Forestry Corporation firefighters are facing during their 42-day deployment to the southern end of the Elephant Hill fire in British Columbia, Canada.

Forestry Corporation’s Amba Addinsall from Eden, Brian Lynch from Walcha, Matt Hagon from Grafton and Dan Allen from Casino are in Canada as part of a 100-strong Australian taskforce, alongside Rural Fire Service and National Parks and Wildlife Service firefighters.

Ms Addinsall said the crews had spent 14 consecutive days working minimum 12-hour shifts in intense firefighting conditions and before enjoying a well-earned short rest and recovery break then returning to the fire front for another 14 consecutive days.

“The first two days were intense with crowning fires and direct attack. Due to our expertise in heavy plant management, the Forestry Corporation crew was tasked with containing spot fires using a skidder and water tank and we worked closely with aircraft water bombing,” Ms Addinsall said.

“There was an uncontained fire edge that had to be mapped with GPS and we needed to do reconnaissance in extremely steep terrain, including canyons, to develop containment strategies. It has also been a challenge driving big pick-up trucks on the opposite side of the road.

“While the days are long and difficult, we have been enjoying working with local BC forest officers and plant operators who have given us valuable insight into fire and forest management practices in Canada. We’ve also been lucky enough to spot some local wildlife, including squirrels, chipmunks, deer, black bear and grouse.”

Mr Hagon said while the days were hard and the novelty of sleeping in tents had worn off, they were learning valuable lessons working with local crews. “We have performed many tasks over here in a range of different environments. The scenery here is spectacular and we have enjoyed working with the locals learning not only about their way of firefighting but also their timber industry and local way of life,” Mr Hagon said.

The BC fires have been severe, with some local communities displaced for more than a month and many homes lost. The community is grateful for the international assistance to take the pressure of local firefighters and help bring the fires under control.

Photo: Forestry Corporation’s Amba Addinsall, Brian Lynch, Matt Hagon and Dan Allen on deployment in Canada.

Source: Forestry Corporation NSW

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Extra LiDAR workshops added to ForestTECH 2017

In conjunction with the ForestTECH 2017 series this year, Interpine will be running their own introductory workshop for ForestTECH delegates the day after each event - Friday 17 November, Rotorua and in Melbourne, Thursday 23 November.

They’re designed to teach local forestry companies on how to manipulate, process and visualize LiDAR datasets, with a specific focus on forestry derived outputs. These include terrain and vegetation surfaces and vegetation related metrics.

In New Zealand, the practical course includes hands-on labs and presentations and will be held at the computer facility at Toi Ohomai in Rotorua, just down the road from the ForestTECH 2017 venue. In Australia, participants will bring along their own computers. The workshop will be run at the ForestTECH 2017 conference venue in Melbourne.

Presenters include Interpine team members and Dr. Martin Isenburg, a presenter at the ForestTECH series. Dr. Isenburg is an independent scientist, lecturer, and research consultant who has created a popular suite of LiDAR processing software modules called LAStools that is the flagship product of rapidlasso GmbH, Germany. See for more information.

Further details are available on the ForestTECH 2017 programme and conference registrations can be made on the event website,

Information and registrations for the additional workshops in both countries can be made at here. Note, for the workshops, numbers will be limited so if wanting to secure a space, it would be wise to register early.

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NZTE probes wood fibre supply concerns

New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, which has encouraged a Chinese company to invest in a NZ$180 million wood processing plant in the Central North Island to boost regional development, is now looking into whether there is enough wood fibre available to supply the plant following concerns from local industry.

China’s Guangxi Fenglin Wood Industry Group announced plans earlier this year to establish a plant in Kawerau by 2020 to produce 600,000 cubic metres of panel boards a year and generate 100 new jobs, at an expected cost of NZ$180 million.

However, the Wood Processors & Manufacturers Association of New Zealand has raised concerns that timber mills in the region don’t produce enough wood fibre to supply the proposed plant as well as existing big pulp mills of Kinleith in Tokoroa and Tasman in Kawerau, which are owned by Japan’s Oji Fibre Solutions. Fenglin’s proposed plant is expected to initially produce particle board and later expand to medium-density fibre board (MDF).

The WPMA “very much welcomes” overseas investment in the New Zealand wood processing sector, said chief executive Jon Tanner. However, he noted “it is important that this investment is directed to regions where there is not an already constrained wood fibre supply.”

NZTE confirmed to BusinessDesk that it has commissioned Finland forestry consultancy Indufor to provide baseline data on levels of wood fibre available for processing in the region for industry stakeholders.

NZTE general manager of investment Dylan Lawrence said the report will investigate the current and planned harvest levels of timber, the current annual volumes of pulpwood and residues, as well as planned production and consumption levels in the industry. The report is expected to be completed near the end of this year and NZTE will publish a high-level summary of the findings, Lawrence said.

Fenglin told BusinessDesk it is confident that there is sufficient wood supply for the new development. "Fibre supply for the new particle board mill in the immediate term will come from existing under-utilised wood fibre resources and from the rapidly expanding forest harvest in the wider region," said Fenglin Wood Industry (New Zealand) director John Galbraith. "The plant will complement existing wood manufacturing, providing alternative markets for existing by-products and our expectation is this will support further investment in new primary processing ventures in the region, utilising fibre that is currently being exported as whole logs."

Founded in 2000, Fenglin was one of the earliest engineering board manufacturers in China and the first in Guangxi Province, according to its website. Listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange, Fenglin has three MDF plants and one particle board plant in China with total capacity of 810,000 cubic metres a year, and also owns about 14,000 hectares of forests to secure wood supply.

With plants in China’s Guangxi and Guangdon provinces, the company said it began to explore more international opportunities from 2015.

Source: Scoop

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Tasmanian plantations sold for AU$60 million

Resources Minister Guy Barnett has faced a barrage of questions in Tasmania’s State Parliament this week after announcing the sale of 29,000 hectares of hardwood forest plantations for AU$60.7 million via a Facebook post.

Labor and the Greens both directed questions at Mr Barnett, with Labor leader Rebecca White accusing him of making a “fire sale” at a loss to taxpayers. Ms White said it cost taxpayers $90 million to put the trees in the ground, and called the sale a “dud deal”.

Greens Leader Cassy O’Connor cited a 2012 letter in which the Auditor-General accepted figures estimating the cost of establishing the plantations was in excess of AU$100 million. Ms O’Connor also said the purchaser, Reliance Forest Fibre, had a parent company listed in the Cayman Islands. She said Reliance Forest Fibre was established just two months ago.

Mr Barnett said the MPs “should be saying congratulations and well done”. Mr Barnett said the sale would add to Sustainable Timber Tasmania’s bottom line, with an estimated AU$15 million of the proceeds slated to be used to boost health funding.

The Government has sold the rights to the plantations and not the land itself, Mr Barnett said. However, Ms O’Connor said the 99-year lease provided to the company amounted to selling the land.


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AI-powered drone soars like a bird

Microsoft is working on giving a sailplane flying instincts like a bird. The artificial-intelligence controlled flying machine can detect and hitch a ride on thermals, enabling it to circle and gain altitude without having to expend any energy. They’re testing the intelligent learning platform as much as the sailplane itself, examining its ability to learn how to avoid danger. It would need to internalize local airspace laws as well as avoiding more physical dangers like flying too close to the ground.

“These can be your cellular towers someday,” said Anish Kapoor, one of the principal researchers on the project, in Microsoft’s news release. “You don’t need any ground infrastructure.” There are of course a lot of similarities to Facebook’s solar-powered drone, and Microsoft is also looking into using solar or wind power to keep their glider aloft for longer periods of time.


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Meeting of cross-Tasman forestry groups

Key leaders of the Australian and New Zealand forestry and forest product industries came together for a Trans–Tasman dialogue in Canberra on Tuesday. Representing Australia were members of the Australian Forest Products Association Board, led by Chair Mr Greg McCormack. The New Zealand delegation was led by the Chair of New Zealand Wood Council, Mr Brian Stanley.

The twenty strong New Zealand delegation consisted of leaders from the New Zealand Wood Council, Forest Owners Association, Farm Forestry Association, Forest Industry Contractors Association and the Wood Processors and Manufacturers Association.

Mr McCormack said: “Australia and New Zealand share many common objectives, shareholders and even species of trees. There is much we can learn from each other. In both countries, our industries represent a very large part of the economy and also unrealised potential. There are policy changes which need to take place to unlock our full potential.”

Mr Stanley said: “It’s an opportune time to be sharing experiences. We have an election imminent and a recognition by all political parties that forestry needs greater encouragement so that it can deliver more economic and environmental benefits. The joint statement today by Australian Ministers shows there is also recognition on this side of the Tasman of the multiple benefits from growing this asset. Working collaboratively across industries to facilitate this is a no-brainer. “

In an historic cross-jurisdictional, bipartisan statement, Australia’s forestry Ministers also released a position statement which calls for Australia to value and grow our forest industries. The Statement released on Tuesday by the Commonwealth Government and the governments of NSW, Tasmania, Victoria, Western Australia, Northern Territory and South Australia states that all governments “strongly support Australia’s forest industries”. The statement confirms that all these governments will “commit to working together to ensure the ongoing future of Australia’s forest industries”.

Source: Australian Forest Products Association

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NZIF Foundation announces 2017 Awards

The NZIF Foundation announced its 2017 awards at the New Zealand Institute of Forestry conference dinner in Rotorua last week. The awards encourage and support forestry-related education, training and research through the provision of grants, scholarships and prizes; promoting the acquisition, development and dissemination of forestry-related knowledge and information and other activities.

A Future Forest Scholarship of $10,000 was awarded to Fei Guo, a PhD student at the University of Canterbury looking at the use of spectroscopy of cellulose and wood to predict growth-stress levels in standing trees and logs. This is a new award for the Foundation, made possible by a donation of $70,000 from the forest investment company New Forests.

The Otago/Southland Award of $1,500 went to Luke Holmes, a Bachelor of Forest Engineering Honours student at University of Canterbury whose research topic is the productivity of fully mechanised cable logging operations. He is studying a cable logging operation in Southland using an innovative method of cable logging.

Michael Pay, a second year Master of Forestry Science student at University of Canterbury received the Frank Hutchinson Scholarship of $1,000 for a postgraduate student. Michael’s project is estate modelling of a multi species, multi-objective forest.

A University undergraduate scholarship of $1,000 was received by Morgan Scragg, a first year Bachelor of Forestry Science student at the University of Canterbury.

The Mary Sutherland scholarship of $1,000 went to Pauline Edge, a second year Diploma of Forest Management student at Toi-Ohomai Institute of Technology in Rotorua.

Winners of the student poster competition held at the NZIF Conference were:

William Hollis, a Diploma in Forest Management student at Toi-Ohomai Institute of Technology, Rotorua, for a poster on the classification of native forest using remote sensing imagery (first prize of $800)

Okey Francis Obi, a PhD student at University of Canterbury, for a poster on the efficiency of logging crews (second prize of $500)

Michael Pay, a Master of Forestry Science student at University of Canterbury for a poster on outcomes from management of a marginal hill country forest property (third prize of $200).

Announcing the awards, the Chair of the Foundation, Dr Andrew McEwen, said how pleased the Trustees were at the number and calibre of applicants. “This augured well for the future of forestry in New Zealand, a sector which contributes significantly to New Zealand’s economy, environment and society and which requires highly trained individuals in order to make that contribution.”

Source: NZIF
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USC leads bushfire risk trials

Researchers from the University of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland are leading one of three major trials across Australia aimed at reducing the risk of bushfire damage to our built and natural environments.

USC Professor of Forestry Operations Mark Brown is heading a Western Australian field trial into the effectiveness of using machinery to reduce fire fuel loads (plant material) in targeted locations to lessen the strength and speed of bushfires. Trials are also being held in New South Wales and Victoria as part of the same project.

Professor Brown, Director of both the USC-based Forest Industries Research Centre and the Australian Forest Operations Research Alliance, is working with USC senior researchers Justine Edwards and Rick Mitchell on the 12-month trial, due to finish in October.

USC won the tender for the WA Mechanical Fuel Load Reduction Trial under the Australian Government’s National Bushfire Mitigation Program, administered by the NSW Government Department of Primary Industry to aid a sustainable forestry industry. Professor Brown, who has been travelling between USC at Sippy Downs and the 185ha site at Collie, south of Perth, said the research could produce huge benefits for communities and the environment across Australia.

“If the results show that mechanical fuel load reduction works, this method could be applied in other selected areas where there are towns or infrastructure or high conservation status areas close to bushland, such as across the greater Sunshine Coast region,” he said. “This method has the potential to cut the cost of bushfire management while improving preventative measures and decreasing impacts”.

“Mechanical fuel reduction can be applied throughout the year, as opposed to prescribed burning which requires specific weather conditions. It could allow bushfire mitigation measures in areas where it hasn’t been possible before because of burn risks and smoke issues near people’s homes and public infrastructure”.

“It won’t replace prescribed burns to mitigate bushfires, but it could be a complementary tool. In addition, the material removed to reduce fuel loads could be sold to produce sustainable bioproducts or bioenergy.”

USC is also involved in modelling and assessing the performance of machinery used in the fuel reduction practices, with Mr Mitchell working on site in WA conducting “time and motion” studies to better understand machine cost and performance. Professor Brown said the results of the machine trials in WA would be analysed and modelled by USC Senior Research Fellow Dr Mauricio Acuna, who is based in Hobart.

“Dr Acuna’s work will aim to understand the performance and cost of the mechanical operations, how they relate to the fire mitigation outcomes, and how they compare to the cost of fuel reduction burning,” he said.

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Funding boosts for small-scale timber growers

Innovative sub-tropical cabinet timber growers in northern New South Wales and south-east Queensland are offering more market power to small-holders, thanks to backing by the Australian Government. Two regional not-for-profit groups have received AU$200,000 from the Commonwealth Government’s Farm Cooperatives and Collaboration Pilot Program, known as Farming Together.

The groups, NSW’s Subtropical Farm Forestry Association, NSW and Queensland’s Specialty Timber Growers Incorporated have united under the brand Quality Timber Traders (QTT) to improve small-scale grower marketing power and find outlets for selling their timber.

Carol Neal, president of the Queensland group said: “Many individual small-scale growers across Queensland and New South Wales established mixed cabinet timber species with a view to harvesting the trees for their high-value timber. The dominant species in the plantations, commonly known as Silver quandong, Blue quandong or Blue fig (Elaeocarpus grandis) are at an age where harvesting operations and timber processing can commence.

“Many growers are also unaware of the challenges they will face finding harvesting contractors, negotiating fair prices for harvest operations, transport, milling and processing their timber. Most growers will also have small volumes of timber. Small sales may be achieved, but their combined volumes should allow them to enter larger markets,” she said. “Collectively, expertise within the two groups is as such that the challenges of harvesting, timber processing, marketing and sales are more likely to be met.”

QTT aims to survey growers to develop a marketing strategy that will help them harvest, process and sell their timber. The group will also undertake smallholder plantation viability, milling and drying methods, and biomass studies (i.e. carbon sequestration) of the group’s dominant species. The studies will be undertaken by Southern Cross University, Lismore, NSW.

QTT is also running a vigorous marketing campaign, peer-hosted field days and educational workshops. It aims to generate interactive web-based databases for participating growers. Carol said: “No farm is too small. If you are a grower and are interested in knowing more, or if you would like to participate in this project, contact us at, or visit

The Farm Co-operative and Collaboration Program is a two-year, AU$13.8m initiative from the Australian Government designed to help agricultural groups value-add, secure premium pricing, scale-up production, attract capital investment, earn new markets or secure lower input costs. For more information on this Program, visit

Photo: STG member milling 24-year-old Silver quandong for fellow group member

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Review into leadbeater’s possum endangered status

Victoria’s faunal emblem will have its critically endangered listing reviewed after a successful push from the logging industry. The leadbeater’s possum received the highest possible legal protection under national environment law just two years ago.

But the listing for the rare animal — whose numbers in Victoria’s central highlands are thought to have dropped by 80 per cent since the mid-1980s — has hit a hurdle. The Herald Sun has revealed this week that Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg has directed the Threatened Species Scientific Committee to fast-track a review of the listing.

Industry group Australian Forest Products Association requested the possum’s status be reviewed in March, citing evidence the possums had been found across a wider habitat range than understood at the time of its listing.

It is estimated somewhere between 1500 and 3000 Leadbeater’s possums remain in the wild, but the Department of Environment’s draft recovery plan last year highlighted there was “no precise and robust estimate” of the total population size. The data, collated by Victorian government-owned forestry agency VicForests over the past three years, included extensive targeted surveys for the native marsupial.

The Herald Sun understands the committee must finalise its advice on the appropriate listing status by March 30 next year.


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Cummins beats Telsa with fully electric semi-truck

Tesla is expected to unveil its electric semi-truck next month, but Cummins just beat them to the game with its own fully-electric heavy-duty truck. Cummins is known for its hardworking diesel engines, but now the company is looking to the future with the debut of the electric Concept Class 7 Urban Hauler EV.

The Cummins electric truck, known as AEOS, is powered by a new battery pack that is lighter and denser, giving the truck a longer driving range and faster charging times. The truck can carry up to 44,000 pounds and its 140 kWh battery pack only takes an hour to charge on a 140kWh charging station. The AEOS only has a 100 mile-range, which means that it’s more ideal for shorter trips in urban environments. Tesla’s semi is expected to have a driving range of around 200-300 miles.

Cummins hopes to cut the charging time down to 20 minutes by 2020. For drivers that need a longer driving range, the company is working on an extended-range model that will use a diesel engine to act as a generator for the battery pack. The extended-range model will have a much more usable driving range up to 300 miles and will cut emissions by 50 percent compared to diesel-hybrid trucks.


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East coast meets to make the forests safe

Fresh ideas about making health and safety measures for forestry workers more effective came out of an informal hui in Gisborne last week according to media coverage. The meeting was called on the back of three deaths and two near-misses in the region’s forests in the past six months.

Advocate for some of the grieving families and workers, Joe McClutchie from Ruatoria, called the meeting involving the Forestry Industry Safety Council (FISC), WorkSafe New Zealand, forestry managers, contractors and workers. Te Runanga o Ngati Porou hosted the hui at Te Tini o Porou.

The most recent death, of Piripi Bartlett on August 21, was behind Mr McClutchie’s call. As well as representation from many key stakeholders, there were two crew workers from East Side Logging and representation from family members who have had relatives injured and killed. There was also representation from Turanganui a Kiwa iwi.

With a focus on what can change tomorrow? What can change next week?, Mr McClutchie said he felt the hui achieved some hope of heading in that direction. Read more.


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Buy and Sell

...and one to end the week on ... oldies

Morris, an 82 year-old man, went to the doctor to get a physical. A few days later the doctor saw Morris walking down the street with a gorgeous young woman on his arm.

A couple of days later the doctor spoke to Morris and said, "You're really doing great, aren't you?"

Morris replied, "Just doing what you said, Doc. 'Get a hot mamma and be cheerful.'"

The doctor said, "I didn't say that. I said, 'You've got a heart murmur. Be careful.'"


A little old man shuffled slowly into an ice cream parlor and pulled himself slowly, painfully, up onto a stool. After catching his breath, he ordered a banana split.

The waitress asked kindly, "Crushed nuts?"

"No," he replied, "arthritis."

OK - one more to go with the storms that have been battering various parts of the world this week. This is scary - lightning cuts down a tree in Canada.

And on that note, have a great weekend and we're looking forward to catching up with sawmillers from across Australia in Melbourne at next week's WoodTECH 2017 event. see you there. Cheers.

Brent Apthorp
Editor, Friday Offcuts
Distinction Dunedin Hotel
6 Liverpool Street, Dunedin 9016, New Zealand
PO Box 904, Dunedin 9054, New Zealand
Tel: +64 (03) 470 1902, Mob: +64 21 227 5177, Fax: +64 (03) 470 1906
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This week's extended issue, along with back issues, can be viewed at

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