Email American Loggers Council
 

ALC Executive Vice President
Daniel J. Dructor
Email Daniel

 

P.O. Box 966
Hemphill, TX 75948
T: 409.625.0206
F: 409.625.0207



Tigercat Releases 602 Cable Skidder

Tigercat releases the compact and narrow 602 cable skidder in North America. 
 

In 2017, Tigercat developed and released its most compact skidder platfrom, the 602 series. The prototype 602 skidder was sent to France last summer to be fitted with a Belgian designed and manufactured swing boom for use in mountain regions of Europe.

 

Now the 602 is available as a cable skidder suited to pockets of North America and other traditional winch skidder markets. The 602 cable skidder is ideal for high value selective hardwood logging and for retrieving timber from steep slopes and gullies.

 

The 602 is equipped with the Tigercat FPT Tier N45 engine which  provides full emissions compliance for Tier 2 and Tier 4f , along with excellent fuel economy. Both engines deliver 125 kW (168 hp) at 2,200 rpm.

 

The machine has a fixed front axle with an oscillating centre section to achieve a very narrow overall width of 2,7 metres (106 in). The agility of the 602 is ideal in selective felling applications. The machine can access high value timber in steep terrain, while minimizing damage to the residual stand.

 

Maximum fuel efficiency is achieved by the use of Tigercat’s load sensing hydraulic system – only supplying the amount of oil that the various functions require for reduced engine load.

 

The 602 cable skidder offering has already attracted a lot of attention in the United States, where the first machine debuted at the Paul Bunyan show in Cambridge, Ohio this past October.

 

Bill Shufflebotham, based in Rockport, Illinois purchased the first 602 cable skidder. He states, “It’s the only quality small machine on the market. It’s easy to move at nine feet wide and it’s powerful.”

Changing our image with performance based certification

By Ted Wright, Executive Director, The Trust to Conserve Northeast Forestlands

 

Loggers are a proud group of hardworking individuals, and nothing makes a careful and conscientious logger cringe more than seeing sloppy work, hearing stories of landowners being cheated or being treated with skepticism by people inside and outside the industry.  Those loggers know that this damages their reputation just as much as it does the reputation of the logger that is responsible. 

 

Logging is not the only profession that has good caring professionals along with bad apples that can ruin the bushel.  Physicians, attorneys, electricians, mechanics, plumbers and many others all have ways to distinguish the good from the bad.

 

There was a time when physicians could simply go to medical school and then go into practice. There was no performance assessment for the specialty they chose to practice. Bad physicians were getting into practice and were making people sick or making critical mistakes that made people fear seeking the help of a physician. In the early 1900’s the majority of physicians knew they needed a profession-led certification to move forward and crack down on those within the profession that were not holding up their end of the bargain. Through the creation of board certification, they were able to remove the bad actors but also improve their image.

 

This was not done through training programs. It was done by board certification. It was undertaken for many reasons, but improving image, distinguishing excellent practices and driving continuous improvement were all part of it.

 

The analogy of physicians can be directly related to the logging profession. Logging contractors that invest millions of dollars and run clean businesses are lumped into the same group as loggers who are only there for a short term or as long as they can hack it. Today a person can simply buy a chainsaw and a skidder, take a training class and then they are considered a ‘qualified’ logger.

 

Many of these “loggers” do harm to the industry because they have a short term window of operations, but the damage they can do to the industry is long term. We cannot continue to operate this way. The time has come for a performance-based certification to truly separate the loggers that care, are invested heavily and want to see a future of responsible forest management.

 

There have been many people who are skeptical of Master Logger because they believe it will somehow inhibit their business, add cost and cause harm, when in fact its purpose is to recognize those of you who are doing things right and separate you from those who don’t.

 

Training alone is a great equalizer when it comes to responsible and irresponsible logging contractors. Anyone can attend a training and be recognized for that. It is not enough. What matters is what happens in the woods.

 

Our industry simply can’t move forward because everyone is “trained”.  Training programs have improved safety and opened up new ideas, but they also cost valuable time if they are taken simply to meet a required mandate. The logging profession cannot be judged on attendance at training programs alone. Better to judge the profession on performance standards that drive continuous improvement.

 

I think what has been lost over the last twenty years is the understanding of the terms: “qualified” and “certified”.  This has confused those working in the industry as well as the general public.  As a result, these terms are comingled and used without understanding, allowing those who have attended a training program to call themselves certified even though this doesn’t meet the definition of the term. 

 

For context, I think it’s extremely important to differentiate between 1st party (company) , 2nd party (qualified) and 3rd party (certified) assessments. 1st Party assessment is a conformity assessment performed by the individual that provides the service, where the 1st party can establish, “I am good”. 2nd party assessment is a conformity assessment performed by an organization (Trainer, instructor) that has an interest in the service provided, “we are good” otherwise known as “qualified”. 3rd party assessment is a conformity assessment that requires an entirely independent party to provide the conformity assessment. “They are good”. 3rd party is the only assessment that can be called certification.

 

In closing, I offer the following table for you to compare and contrast the differences and uses of Logger Training Program (qualified) vs. Master Logger (certified). Training has been important and will be important for growth for ourselves and our employees, but it should not be the deciding factor in measuring a logger’s commitment to the industry.

Many of you have years of experience, serious investments in machines, employees and your local communities. These successes that you have worked so hard to achieve can be undermined and minimized by a recognition system that is mandated by others, and that’s not fair. Performance based certification recognizes your good work and commitment to the logging profession and is that recognition that will lead to an image of our professionalism that we all desire.

 

I hope this article mobilizes conscientious logging contractors towards voluntary logger certification. We need all of you on board going above and beyond to help weed the bad out from the good. The industry and our profession will be better because of it.

Wendy Farrand: Loggers, Listen to Those Who Truly Understand

Ever since I set foot on a logging job, I have been advocating and defending loggers. I say to loggers everywhere, no one knows your world better than a fellow logging contractor. I am not a logger, but I did learn a lot of things from working in the woods right alongside loggers as a procurement manager. 

 

As a procurement manager for a fully mechanized timber harvesting company, I was part of the crew. Once I got that contract signed, I supported my crews the best way I could which could entailed anything from running for a hose or part, driving a crew member to the hospital or court, or retrieving hot soup for the slasher operator who was sick as a dog, but refused to leave the job in order to keep the wood flowing to the mill. I always strived to pull my weight when it came to physical work. 

 

No one, and I mean no one, myself included, knows the pain and heartache of running a logging company when times are tough. When fuel prices are high, when quotas are low or when regulations halt a job. I experienced all those things alongside the owner, but when I went home, the bottom line, as much as I stressed about the business, I did not sign the paychecks and could not begin to tell the logger how to decide what to do. I could advise him on things that I knew without a doubt, but making those tough every day decisions could only fall on his shoulders. 

 

Which brings me to a very valuable bit of information ….. no one but a fellow logging contractor can understand, really understand, what you experience in the woods. So when considering people to fill those positions of power, who are setting standards for how you work in the woods, please, please hold out for someone who has walked your shoes. Someone who really understands what it is like to look into the eyes of those men and women who have families waiting at home for them to return. Waiting for them to return with a fair wage to put food on the table, and a roof over their heads. People in power should understand those hard decisions, how you make them, and why you make them. 

 

When I delivered my presentation “Rebranding and Industry” this past February at the Oregon Logging Conference, I opened my presentation exactly the way I opened this piece, I have worked in the woods alongside loggers, I have worked in this industry in hard times, but I still don’t feel I have the right to tell a business owner how to make those tough decisions when I have never really walked in his shoes, or frankly had the courage to walk in his or her boots. I have never had a huge equipment payment, had to make the decision to buy an expensive part to repair a piece of equipment, or stretch a penny to buy fuel, the lifeblood that keeps the wood flowing. What’s a logger to do? In order to keep the wood flowing those decisions, made under extremely stressful circumstances with very little room for a wiggle, let alone the luxury of time to decide, are what separate the weak from the strong. When someone from outside of your industry tries to tell you what to do, take heed, for without total understanding of the blood, sweat and tears that go into the decisions you so keenly make every day, they really don’t understand. 

 

Empathy, the ability to put yourself in someone else shoes, is one thing a successful leader must possess. So, there is one thing I can advise you without a doubt, and that is fill the spots, that are in your power to fill, with people who have walked in your boots. Not someone who might wear sandals or office flats on the job, if you know what I mean. 

 

Wendy Farrand is a forest industry consultant who works to spread the word regarding the value of strengthening “The People Side of Timber Harvesting” and the positive impact that has on safety, production, and overall professionalism in the logging industry. 

Electronic Logging Devices and Hours of Service Supporting Documents Frequently Asked Questions

The U.S. Department of Transportation has developed a guide for compliance with the Electronic Logging Devices (ELD) mandate.  That guide can be found here: https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/sites/fmcsa.dot.gov/files/docs/regulations/hours-service/elds/74541/eldrulefaqs-mar2018.pdf

 

Why Master Logger Certification© matters now

By Ted Wright, Executive Director, Trust to Conserve Northeast Forestlands

 

Logging has an image problem in America, and every logger knows this.

 

It wasn’t always this way. Not so long ago, nearly every family in timber-rich areas of the country had at least one member working in the woods.  Logging was understood and accepted, and loggers honored and celebrated as members of a vital and respected profession.

 

Today, with mechanization the number of loggers has fallen dramatically, relatively few families are in the business, and this once accepted industry is now overlooked, misunderstood or, regrettably, vilified by the public.

 

Changing this image will not be easy, but it may be one of the most important tasks the logging industry must confront if it is to survive. Wood markets ultimately depend on the public, and when the public starts to question where, how or even whether wood is harvested, the image of logging becomes something we all need to consider. This is where Master Logger Certification© can make a difference, not just for individual loggers, but for our industry as a whole.

 

Master Logger is about achieving professional standards and third-party verification. It is a program built not simply by taking classes, attending workshops or training sessions, but by demonstrating high quality work in the woods every day. In many cases, businesses that achieve this certification are already meeting the Master Logger standards.  Certification is a means of documenting this ongoing commitment. For these logging enterprises, it provides recognition of the high-quality work they already do. For loggers who do not yet meet the benchmarks and want to improve, it raises the bar for the industry.

 

Other industries have implemented standards that have elevated their reputation with the public. My wife is a registered nurse and relative newcomer to the logging industry.  Many times, she is asked by coworkers or patients about what I do. She often explains the Master Logger Program by using an analogy about the medical field.  Patients will always prefer using a board-certified physician. Certification in the health field has ensured up-to-date and evidence-based knowledge and practice. The success of the program has led people to expect this level of practice.

 

The same is true for the Forest Products Industry. By growing brand recognition of Master Logger, the consumer (mill, landowner, or general public) will know their choice of timber harvesting business meets the seven responsibilities of the certification program. The consumer will recognize a Master Logger company as doing the very best for the environment, the forest, the community, and their employees.

 

Implementing these benchmark measures also allow state and federal regulators to look at our industry as being able to self-regulate, which can lead to the lifting or lightening of external regulations and red tape. This has already begun to happen in certain states. Increased awareness and understanding of Master Logger Certification will only bring greater recognition of our achievements and positive outlook.

 

In 2017, the American Loggers Council (ALC) decided the time was right to revitalize and promote the Master Logger program nationally to build on the success it has seen in areas of the country where it is already established. This effort is being undertaken to help the logging industry receive recognition for the high-quality work so many loggers are already doing and to reinforce standards that will enable it to improve its image with the public and maintain healthy forests.

 

American loggers are doing the best work in the world.  The public should know this and value it.  Wood buyers should reward it. In an industry where most of us are working long hours and often six or seven days a week, we have little time for anything that does not get the job done. This is why we must let the work we do stand for itself, and why the work must be recognized. This is what the Master Logger program seeks to accomplish.

 

In the coming months, this national effort will gain momentum. Existing Master Logger programs will be expanded, and new efforts launched. If there is not a Master Logger program in your area now, there will be soon.

 

For more information on the Master Logger Program contact Ted Wright at (207) 532-8721 or executivedirector@tcnef.org.

National Master Logger Certification Program Committee Formed and Program Coordinator hired

AUGUSTA, ME – The organization tasked by the American Logger’s Council (ALC) with revitalizing and promoting Master Logger Certification© has formed a national committee to guide the effort and hired a program coordinator to administer it.

 

The first Master Logger program, Northeast Master Logger Certification, was created in 2001 by the Professional Logging Contractors of Maine (PLC) as the first in the world point-of-harvest certification program, offering third party independent certification of logging companies’ harvesting practices. In 2003, PLC created The Trust to Conserve Northeast Forestlands (TCNF) to administer the program with the broader goal of “enhancing the health of working forest ecosystems through exceptional accountability” throughout the Northern Forest region.

 

In 2004, the ALC adopted the program as a national model. Since that point, 18 states have approved templates for implementation of the program, with several currently implementing it. In August of 2017, the ALC decided to launch a national effort to promote the program and appointed the TCNF to lead it.

 

The TCNF began the effort in January and has now formed a committee with representatives from the logging industry from 17 states. Members of the committee so far include: Myles Anderson, California; Perry Sawyer, Connecticut; Richard Schwab, Florida; John Lane, Georgia; Dennis Aucoin, Louisiana; Andy Irish, Maine; Brian Tetrault, Massachusetts; Brian Nelson, Michigan; Mike Hill, Minnesota; Shannon Jarvis, Missouri; Rocky Bunnell, New Hampshire; Paul Mitchell Jr., New York; Bruce Zuber, Oregon; Robert Thurber, Rhode Island; Crad Jaynes, South Carolina; Sam Lincoln, Vermont; Ed Bryant, Washington.

 

In late February, the Trust hired Jennifer Hartsig of J Piper Consulting, LLC in New York to coordinate the effort and provide administrative support and implement nationwide technical support, expansion, branding, standardization and outreach.

 

Hartsig specializes in working with rural, natural resource dependent organizations, businesses and municipalities to help design, fund and manage projects.  After gaining more than two decades of experience in public and private sector program coordination, she formed her own consulting company in 2010.  Since 2012, she has been working directly with loggers and other forest industry stakeholders in New York State as the Coordinator for New York Logger Training, Inc., and project consultant with Empire State Forest Products Association.  Jennifer lives with her husband, Forestry Consultant Steve Bick, two daughters and soon to be University of Maine graduate son, in Okara Lakes, in the western Adirondack Mountains of New York.

 

“I am thrilled to be joining the team to promote Master Logger certification across the U.S. on behalf of the ALC,” Hartsig said.

 

TCNF Executive Director Ted Wright said that the pieces are now in place for the next steps of the effort to begin.

 

“With our committee members and a program coordinator with Jennifer’s credentials onboard we are ready to begin the serious work of promoting the Master Logger program nationwide,” TCNF Executive Director Ted Wright, said. “We are confident that the time is right and the industry ready for what the Master Logger program can offer not only to individual loggers, but to the industry as a whole. Raising the bar in logging is what Master Logger is all about, and that is a win-win scenario for our forests, our industry, and our economy.”

 

Master Logger is a rigorous certification which can only be earned by loggers who are harvesting professionally and responsibly, and adhering to the highest standards of conduct. Independent third-party verification is key to the program.

 

The ALC’s national Master Logger Certification© program template is built on seven areas of responsibility that meet the performance standards of the program, but allow each state participant to tailor their program based on existing state regulations and forest practices acts.

 

While the program may be generally unknown to the public, landowners in areas of the country where Master Logger programs exist are increasingly seeking Master Loggers for harvests on their property, and many end-users of wood are also seeking its assurances that the wood they are buying is being harvested sustainably and responsibly.

 

Members of the ALC voted in August 2017 to move forward with a proposal submitted by the TCNF and the Professional Logging Contractors of Maine (PLC) to revitalize and promote the program. The decision to have the TCNF lead the effort was a practical one given the program’s origins.

 

For more information on the Master Logger Program contact Ted Wright at (207) 532-8721 or executivedirector@tcnef.org.

Peterbilt to Offer Vocational Truck Rebates for 2018

Contact: Nicholas.Smith@PACCAR.com

DENTON, Texas. – February 1, 2018 – Today Peterbilt Motors Company announced the availability of two rebates for vocational customers throughout the 2018 calendar year.

 

National Ready Mixed Concrete Association (NRMCA) members are invited to take advantage of a $2,000 cash rebate on Peterbilt’s Models 567 and 520 that are factory spec’ed to support mixer, pump, and other concrete industry equipment.

 

With the company’s heritage in the logging industry, Peterbilt is happy to offer The American Logger Council (ALC) a $2,000 cash rebate for Models 567.

 

“Peterbilt’s vocational customers demand the most rugged and reliable trucks available,” said, Robert Woodall, Assistant General Manager – Sales and Marketing, Peterbilt Motors Company. “We are confident that customers in need of these trucks will proudly choose Peterbilt time and time again. Peterbilt is pleased to support their loyalty by offering these rebates.”

 

Rebate checks are mailed directly to the customer from Peterbilt and customers are limited to three unit rebates per calendar year. These rebates may not be combined with any other offer directly from Peterbilt.  Customers can expect rebates to take 6-8 weeks to process. Members must be in good standing with ALC or NRMCA for 90 days prior to taking delivery.

 

Peterbilt Motors Company, located in Denton, Texas, has a global reputation for superior quality, industry leading design, innovative engineering and fuel efficient solutions, and is recognized as the “Class” of the industry.

 

Peterbilt provides a comprehensive array of aftermarket support programs through its 350-plus North American dealer locations that complement its full lineup of on-highway, vocational and medium duty products, including alternative fuel vehicles. Peterbilt offers industry leading service and support, including SmartLINQ connected truck technologies, expedited Rapid Check diagnostic services, the Red Oval certified used truck program, automated parts inventory replenishment and 24/7 complimentary Customer Assistance through 1-800-4-Peterbilt.

 

For more information about Peterbilt, visit www.peterbilt.com. Peterbilt is a PACCAR Company, traded publicly on the NASDAQ as PCAR.

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt Talks Biomass, Forest Products in NH

USEPA photo by Eric Vance

During his New Hampshire in February, Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt indicated his agency is preparing new federal energy policies that could help secure markets for biomass. In a letter to Gov. Chris Sununu, Pruitt suggested the agency plans to add biomass, including wood and other plant-based fuels, to its “‘all of the above’ energy portfolio.”

 

Administrator Pruitt met with industry members at a Round Table discussion in Manchester, NH on “Policy Update on EPA Programmatic Treatment of Biomass and the Forest Products Industry” to discuss biomass and other forest landowner issues. Tom Thomson owner of the Thomson Family Tree Farm in Orford, a former Chair of the National Tree Farm Policy Committee, presented him with a Tree Farm “Wood Is Good” bumper sticker for his office.

Arkansas’ Larry Boccarossa Attends Roundtable Discussion with Governor Asa Hutchinson, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue

Arkansas Timber Producers Association Executive Director Larry Boccarossa recently had the opportunity to participate in a roundtable luncheon and discussion meeting with Governor Asa Hutchinson and US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. The purpose of the meeting was to hear from agricultural and business leaders about Arkansas’ agricultural industry.

 

 

During the discussion Larry promoted Congressman Westerman’s Resilient Federal Forests Act, particularly the American Loggers Council’s Future Logging Careers Act contained in the bill. He spoke of the need to allow 16 and 17 year olds to work in the woods with their family logging operations, considering that logging contractors are aging and that such an opportunity might lead to increased future family and generational logging operations. Larry says Secretary Perdue appreciated his comments, noting, humorously, that the stiffest lobbying opposition might come from the 16 and 17 year olds.

 

 

Larry also thanked the Governor and Secretary for including Arkansas Timber Producers Association and the Arkansas Forestry Association and giving enhanced recognition to the logging and timber producing industry as part of the agriculture community.

Action alert: Take part in U.S. Forest Service’s NEPA revision process

The Forest Service is seeking public comments as they modernize their National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) regulations for the first time in a quarter century.  Current NEPA guidelines have been in place during an era in which the National Forest System has experienced massive declines in forest health, matched with massive increases in catastrophic fire, and a decline in timber harvests that have decimated rural communities across the country.

 

It’s time to make the NEPA process more responsive to the needs of our forests and communities. Take two minutes and click here to send a public comment through Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities’ web site. 

 

Details on the agency’s rule-making can be found here. The agency are accepting public comments through February 2, 2018.

 

It’s time to change the Forest Service’s outdated NEPA regulations. The time required for the Forest Service to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) has risen from 817 days to a whopping 1,300 days. The number of days required to complete an environmental assessment (EA) increased from 594 days to 730 days.  According to U.S. Government Accountability Office, the Forest Service between 2008 and 2012 produced more than twice as many EISs as the Army Corps of Engineers or the Federal Highway Administration, and nearly two and a half times as many as the Bureau of Land Management.

 

There’s strong agreement on the need to reduce paperwork.  Longstanding guidance from the Council on Environmental Quality, for instance, recommends that EIS’s only be used for significant environmental impacts, and that they should be completed in one year or less, and should be generally less than 300 pages. Forest Service NEPA processes frequently take up to four years and documents run into the thousands of pages.

 

Help us improve the NEPA process so more work can be done on national forests, more quickly. Send a comment by clicking here.

© AMERICAN LOGGERS COUNCIL, 2018