Tag: Virginia Urban Wood Group

Urban Wood Standards & Certification Highlight Webcast

The latest in the ongoing efforts to develop North American urban wood standards and certification was presented during the Oct. 8 Urban Wood Utilization webinar organized by the USDA Forest Service.

The two-hour program is now available on-demand.

Jennifer Alger, president of Urban, Salvaged & Reclaimed Woods, provided the update on Standards for Certification and Chain of Custody (CoC) for urban lumber that have been in the works for over a year. She said a 60-day public comment period that closed on Sept. 30 garnered feedback from stakeholders across the country and Canada.

Alger said the proposed urban lumber standards cover definitions, processing, grading, drying and chain of custody requirements. She said the standards and related certification is needed not only to create guidelines for properly managing the urban wood movement from tree removal through the lumber mill. Certifying urban lumber that meets the standards will help build awareness about urban wood’s socio-economic and environmental benefits in the marketplace.

The webinar also shed more light on the strengthening of cooperation among urban wood groups across the country. The Urban Wood Network has created a steering committee comprised of Alger, representing the west region; Joe Lehnen, forest utilization and marketing specialist for the Urban Wood Program of Virginia, east region representative; and Dwayne Sperber, owner of Wudeward Urban Forest Products, Wisconsin representative.

Other presentations of the webinar included:

  • Outreach to Urban Wood Consumers in Wisconsin & Urban Wood Network Update by Don Peterson, executive director of Renewable Resource Solutions. 
  • Far West Forest Products – Using Salvage Wood (Wood Innovation Grant) by Alger.

  • CalFire Urban Wood Grant at work in San Diego by Cody Harrison, beyond sustainability specialist at Corona Enterprises and Tom Hamilton, CEO of LumberCycle.

The webinar was moderated by Ann Sarnecki, partnership coordinator of the USDA Forest Service, Forest Products Laboratory, in Madison, WI.

Watch Webinar

 



Petitioners Push for National Urban Wood Day

President Dwight Eisenhower is presented with a commemorative clock from representatives of the National Lumber Manufacturers Association in 1960 after signing the proclamation designating the third week of October, National Forest Products Week.

The Virginia Urban Wood Group is leading the charge to designate the Friday of National Forest Products Week “National Urban Wood Day.”

“I believe it is time for a National Urban Wood Day. The urban wood movement, pioneered by some of the early advocates like Sam Sherrill, Steve Bratkovich, Ed Cesa, Stubby & Maria Warmbold and others, has come of age, developing into a thriving, booming sector of the forest products industry,” said Joe Lehnen, forest utilization & marketing specialist of the Virginia Department of Forestry.

“I am proposing that we collectively petition the American Wood Council which promotes National Forest Products Week (third week of October), to designate the Friday of that week as National Urban Wood Day.  There is precedent for special designation days of that week since the NFPW recognizes Wednesday as National Biofuels Day.”

The petition reads as follows:

“There are more than 130 million acres of urban forests. Annually, more trees are removed from urban areas than from all of the National Forests in the United States.

“Urban wood products from these trees have become part of the fabric, style and culture in many office buildings, businesses and homes. The urban wood economy and consumers desire for locally sourced products has become a movement too large to ignore.

“The Urban Wood movement now employs thousands of people, has created new jobs, and growing local economies. It has also purposefully added value and dignity to the trees of our urban forests, honoring these urban trees beyond their biological lives.

“More than any other day of the week, Fridays are a day when people gather around products made from urban wood: the bar top at the local craft brewery, the furnishings at a locally owned restaurant, a family dining table made from a tree that once stood near grandma’s home. The warmth, beauty, and creativity of urban wood products draws people into community.

“Therefore, we the undersigned, propose that the Friday of National Forest Products Week be designated as National Urban Wood Day, a day to honor a rising star of the forest products industry.”

Individuals and groups interested in signing on to the petition can do so by contacting Lehnen at joe.lehnen@dof.virginia.gov.

President Dwight Eisenhower signed the first proclamation designating the third week of October as National Forest Products Week to recognize the value of forest products and commit to conservation practices that help responsibly manage U.S. forests. This week celebrates the role and impact of forests and wood as an integral component to our nation’s society. National Forest Products Week is scheduled for Oct. 20-26 this year.



The Urban Wood Movement Surges Ahead at IWF

 

IWF Urban Wood Seminar

Rich Christianson, left, moderated the seminar that featured Dwayne Sperber, Jennifer Alger and Joe Lehnen.

Representatives of urban wood utilization groups located in the Southeast, West Coast and Midwest shared their knowledge and passion with professional woodworkers attending the International Woodworking Fair in Atlanta.

The free 90-minute seminar, “The Urban Wood Revolution Is Now! Come Join the Movement,” was held Aug. 24 at IWF, North America’s largest industrial woodworking event. Nearly 80 woodworkers from across North America registered for the program organized by the Urban Wood Network.

Wood-Mizer, a leading manufacturer of portable sawmills and other wood processing equipment, is the lead sponsor of this unique program. Other sponsors include Richelieu Hardware, one of North America’s largest sources of cabinet and furniture hardware, Dynabrade, manufacturer of industrial sanding equipment, and Safety Speed Manufacturing, a U.S. manufacturer of vertical panel saws, widebelt sanders and other woodworking equipment.

IWF URBAN WOOD SEMINAR SPONSORS

Rich Christianson, communications director of the Illinois Wood Utilization Team, moderated the session. Presenters included:

Jennifer Alger, CEO of Far West Forest Products based in Sheridan, CA, and president of Urban Salvaged and Reclaimed Woods, the first West Coast urban wood network.

Joe Lehnen, forest utilization & marketing specialist for the Commonwealth of Virginia, including the new Virginia Urban Wood Group.

Dwayne Sperber, owner of Wudeward Urban Forest Products of Milwaukee and Wisconsin state lead for the Urban Wood Network.

“A lot of great things have happened to push the movement forward since the IWF hosted the first urban wood seminar in 2016,” Christianson said. “First and foremost, larger networks like the Urban Wood Network, Urban Salvaged and Reclaimed Woods and Virginia Urban Wood did not exist. These umbrella groups are bringing local networks and individual companies and stakeholders together to do business, share best practices and raise the awareness of urban wood’s potential.

“Secondly, while Wood-Mizer once again took the lead to demonstrate its fantastic support for the urban wood movement, we were gratified to have the additional backing of major IWF exhibitors like Richelieu, Dynabrade and Safety Speed Manufacturing. Their support is further evidence that the urban wood movement is gaining traction among the mainstream woodworking industry.”

Program highlights included:

• The unique source local/buy local marketing appeal of urban wood products and the interesting stories they tell.
• The environmental advantages of utilizing urban wood.
• How to find local sources of urban wood.
• How to join or start a local urban wood network.

In addition to the individual presentations, the seminar was anchored by a robust Q&A session that afforded audience members the opportunity to get immediate responses to their questions and viewpoints from the panel and fellow seminar attendees.

About the Urban Wood Network
The Urban Wood Network (UWN) operates from funding provided by the USDA Forest Service Northeastern, State and Private Forestry Landscape Scale Restoration Grant Program. UWN has opened up membership to other state urban wood organizations as well as individual companies and entities. The four state partners include:
Illinois Wood Utilization Team;
Michigan Urban Wood;
Missouri Department of Conservation
; and
Wisconsin Urban Wood.

About the International About the International Woodworking Fair
The International Woodworking Fair, owned by the Woodworking Machinery Industry Association and the Wood Machinery Manufacturers of America, is North America’s largest industrial woodworking event. IWF 2018 is scheduled for August 22-25 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta. It is the “must-attend” show for manufacturers of furniture, cabinets, flooring and other secondary wood products. IWF 2016 attracted more than 17,000 woodworking professionals and featured more than 1,100 exhibitors from the U.S., Canada and beyond. Learn more at iwfatlanta.com.2

IWF 2018 Urban Wood Seminar Presentations

Rich Christianson

Jennifer Alger

Joe Lehnen

Dwayne Sperber

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Virginia Urban Wood Group Creates Business Directory

Add the Virginia Urban Forest Council to the growing list of organizations upping their game to promote the creation of local urban wood networks. The VUFC recently created the Virginia Urban Wood Group and developed an Urban Wood and Small Woodlot Forestry Business Directory for its website virginiatrees.org.

The directory allows businesses throughout the state to list their products and services including custom milling, drying kiln, lumber sales and custom made furniture. Users of the guide can search for specific products services either state wide or narrow their search to a single city to find a local source.

The Virginia Urban Wood Group was created to promote the improved marketing and utilization of urban and small acreage trees as a viable part of Virginia’s forest products economy. Goals of the Virginia Urban Wood Group include:

  • Utilizing outreach, education and innovative workforce development to assist in the development of small acreage service providers which can fill a contractor void between the arborist and the traditional production logger.
  • Improving the utilization of Virginia’s urban and small woodlot forest resources via enhanced marketing opportunities.
  • Seeking opportunities to fulfill the interest and management needs of small property landowners who have concerns over issues such as forest health, fire danger and the proper management of their woods, with the ultimate goal of aesthetically managing their small forested property.

Access the Urban Wood Business Directory.