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Fairwood News 2011

June 10, 2011
Home Kenzaiten launched a reconstruction project with“Miyagi Original Houses"
June 6, 2011
The allocation of JPY 5.3 billion first supplementary budget has been decided to rebuild tsunami affected factories
June 2, 2011
Noda Corp. considers manufacturing plywood from Japanese cedars in its overseas subsidiary
May 26, 2011
Japan must seek only legal timber to rebuild: Tsunami aid plea an opportunity to use Indonesia’s new regulations
May 16, 2011
Forest buyout by foreign capital in Japan: total area of 620 ha since 2006
May 10, 2011
Temporary houses made with local wood: support project by Tenryu Wood Industry Cooperative, Shizuoka
May 10, 2011
Price of Sarawak plywood surges due to high demand in Japan
May 9, 2011
Building permanent houses instead of temporary ones: Reconstruction project by Kogakuin University team for strengthening ties among residents
May 3, 2011
Recycling of Tsunami debris to building materials for temporary houses
April 19, 2011
Sumita Town builds temporary houses with locally-sourced woods: 110 units by end of May
April 13, 2011
Trees logged for dam construction are utilized as building materials for temporary housing --- Oshu City, Iwate Prefecture
April 8, 2011
Government decided to supply 60,000 temporary houses through support to local small builders
March 25, 2011
A brand-new rotary lathe introduced at Hayashi Plywood Ind.
March 25, 2011
Japanese major housing companies supply temporary housing for survivors: 10,000 units by end of May
March 24, 2011
Green electricity procurement measure approved by the Cabinet
March 17, 2011
Paper and wood mills in Pacific coastal area suffered enormous damage
March 16, 2011
Canadian Timber firms rally to Japanese cause
Feb. 4, 2011
Biomass power generation launched on a trial basis
Jan. 20, 2011
A Forest Town sells carbon credits to establish fine “economy-ecology cycle”


Home Kenzaiten launched a reconstruction project with“Miyagi Original Houses”
[June 10, 2011: Japan Forestry Investigation Committee]
A Sendai-based company, Home Kenzaiten Co., Ltd, initiated a project for reconstruction of tsunami affected areas. The company focuses on the house-building which is based on the concept of ‘local production/consumption.’ The project named as the “Town Project of Miyagi Original Houses,” is being conducted by seven local small builders, including the Home Kenzaiten with the secretariat function of the project. They plan to build, on an annual basis, a hundred of unique wood houses which are made from smoke-dried, locally-grown cedar.

Original article in Japanese


The allocation of JPY 5.3 billion first supplementary budget has been decided to rebuild tsunami affected factories
[June 6, 2011: Japan Forestry Investigation Committee ]
The allocation of the first supplementary budget for the fiscal year 2011 has been decided by the government. 5.3 billion yen was budgeted for emergency measures and maintenance subsidies on wood supply, which mainly aim to reconstruct wood processing factories damaged by the East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami. The percentage of this subsidy is 50%. It will be available for the affected companies through Iwate, Miyagi, Yamagata, and Fukushima Prefectural governments.

Original article in Japanese

Noda Corp. considers manufacturing plywood from Japanese cedars in its overseas subsidiary
[June 2, 2011: Japan Forest Products Journal]
Noda Corporation, a Tokyo-based company which manufactures and sells house building materials and household equipment, announced on May 31 that they were considering the possibility of manufacturing plywood from Japanese cedars in an affiliated plywood factory located in the State of Sarawak, Malaysia. As the factories of its affiliate, Ishinomaki Plywood Manufacturing located in Ishinomaki City, Miyagi Prefecture, has been shut down due to tsunami damage, Noda aims to fill the gap and diversify material sources. If this happens, it will be the first time that a domestic company manufactures plywood from Japanese cedars in an overseas subsidiary.


Japan must seek only legal timber to rebuild: Tsunami aid plea an opportunity to use Indonesia’s new regulations
[May 26, 2011: PRLog (Press Release)]
Japan’s call for help in its reconstruction is a timely opportunity for Indonesia to put its new timber regulations to work, ensuring only legal timber and products are exported.

The Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), a UK-based NGO, and its Indonesian partner Telapak understand the Japanese Government has asked for help from Indonesia, seeking two million sheets of plywood to help rebuild in tsunami-hit areas. In September 2010, Indonesia began to implement a timber legality assurance system, Sistem Verifikasi Legalitas Kayu (SVLK); it is currently building capacity across industry and has already started a program of audits. EIA and Telapak urge the Japanese Government to seek only SVLK-certified timber products from Indonesia and to avoid importing illegally sourced plywood from other suppliers who have not addressed legality in their imports/exports.

News source (English)


Forest buyout by foreign capital in Japan: total area of 620 ha since 2006
[May 16, 2011: Japan Agricultural Communications]
On May 11, survey results on the current status of forest buyout by foreign capital were released by Japan Forestry Agency and Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MITI). The survey was conducted in reference to the registry information (from January to December of 2010) required by the National Land Use Planning Act. The annual area of forest acquisition amounted to 45 ha, and the number of cases was 10. The largest number (7 cases) comes from Hokkaido with a total area of 31 ha. The forest successors are mainly the nationals of China (Hong Kong) and Greece. The utilization purposes include leisure (or permanent) residence, asset holding, and possession for sale.

Other cases were found in Yamagata, Nagano, and Kanagawa Prefectures. Among them, there was an acquisition by a company whose domicile is in British Virgin Islands. After 2006, the total area of forests acquired by foreign companies or individuals (both of whose domiciles are outside Japan) amounts to around 620 ha in 40 cases.

Original article in Japanese


Temporary houses made with local wood: support project by Tenryu Wood Industry Cooperative, Shizuoka
[May 10, 2011: Shizuoka Shimbun]
As part of support for reconstruction of 3.11 earthquake-affected areas, the Tenryu Wood Industry Cooperative, based in Hamamatsu City, Shizuoka Prefecture has recently promoted the development of special temporary housing that is built with their locally sourced wood, referred to as Tenryu wood. The house is also designed with an eye to the responses to the recovery from possible Tokai earthquake. To help provide this Tenryu wooden temporary housing, their show house will be open in Tono City, Iwate Prefecture, late in May.

The house, which Tenryu-grown Japanese cedar is heavily used, has one room with dining and kitchen area (the total floor space is 22 sq m). Based on the assumption of the need of prompt and massive housing supply, both of the production process and design were so simplified that it can be built only with generally distributed lumber products. When the Tenryu temporary houses are mass-produced, the production cost can be held down to the same level as that of prefabricated temporary houses.

Watch a photo and video (YouTube) of the making of this house
Original article in Japanese


Price of Sarawak plywood surges due to high demand in Japan
[May 10, 2011: Malaysia-navi]
Due to the rapidly growing demand in Japan, where the reconstruction activities after the 3.11 Earthquake are being pushed into full swing, the price of plywood produced in Sarawak goes up from 400 US dollars to 600 US dollars per cubic meter, which is, on an average, a 50 percent of price rise a month. According to the Plywood Products Committee of the Sarawak Timber Association (STA), the price is heading skyward in a short time because, whereas the domestic plywood production is on the decreasing trend in reaction to a shortage of timbers it is made from, the orders are rushing in from Japan and the United States.

In the first quarter of this year, the total amount of timber production in the State of Sarawak was 1.81 million cubic meter. Compared to the same period of the previous year, it was decreased by 28 percent. The amount of export was also dropped by around 20 percent, and the export to Japan accounted for 50 percent of the total in the year-earlier three months.

Original article in Japanese


Building permanent houses instead of temporary ones: Reconstruction project by Kogakuin University team for strengthening ties among residents
[May 9, 2011: Asahi Shimbun]
A group of architectural scholars at the Kogakuin University (located in Tokyo), set an initiative to build permanent wooden houses for the victims of East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami in Ishinomaki City, Miyagi Prefecture. The group plans to rent a place and build ten houses with locally-sourced wood in coming July. This initiative intends not merely to construct temporary housing, which has been speeded up by the government, but to develop life-long communities where people can settle down.

The site is situated in an upland area at 30-40 meters above sea level, which escaped major damage from 3.11 Tsunami. There will be two types of houses: two-story wooden houses with a total floor space of approx. 66 sq m, and one-story houses with that of 43 sq m. Some traditional construction techniques will be adopted so that people can enjoy seeing the bare pillars and beams from indoor. Heat insulation materials and double sash windows, both of which are tailored for cold weather region, will be also applied.

The construction is scheduled to start in middle of May and to be completed within two months. A local builder based in Tome City of Miyagi Prefecture will be in charge of construction. They would like to utilize as much local-sourced wood as possible and to employ carpenters who were affected by the Tsunami.

Original article in Japanese


Recycling of Tsunami debris to building materials for temporary houses
[May 3, 2011: Iwate Nippo]
In collaboration with a builder based in Miyako City, two academic experts launched an innovative project to establish a supply scheme for temporary houses that are built with the recycled wood waste generated from East Japan Earthquake. Professor Noboru Sekino, who specializes in timber production science and wood engineering at Iwate University, and Associate Professor Shinpei Uchida, who specializes in architectural design at Morioka Junior College of Iwate Prefectural University, have taken the lead in the project.

In this project, the waste wood are chipped and recycled into wooden boards so as to utilize as architectural panels for temporary houses. The house is characterized by its short construction time and high insulation capacity. Since many people in the affected area voice a strong desire for swift construction of temporary housing, the project has drawn much attention as a unique attempt to quickly build temporary housing, at the same time to clear the debris and to facilitate local employment.

As for the building materials other than the panels, they try to adhere to locally sourced/processed products. The temporary house can be dismantled, stored, and reused afterwards.

Original article in Japanese


Sumita Town builds temporary houses with locally-sourced woods: 110 units by end of May
[April 19, 2011: Japan Forestry Investigation Committee (J-FIC)]
Sumita Town, located in Iwate Prefecture, has launched an independent project to build temporary houses for the Tsunami victims in its neighboring affected cities such as Ofunato City, Rikuzentakata City, and Kamaishi City. This project is generating a lot of attention because the Town builds the houses with Japanese cedar wood grown in the Town. Sumita Town has set aside 250 million yen for the project. 110 units, mainly made of FSC-certified local wood, are scheduled to be completed in the first stage (by the end of this month). One unit can be built in half a day if all necessary components are available.

Original article in Japanese


Trees logged for dam construction are utilized as building materials for temporary housing --- Oshu City, Iwate Prefecture
[April 13, 2011: Mainichi Daily News]
At the request of Iwate Wood Industry Cooperative, Isawa Dam Construction Work Office has recently donated logged wood to build temporary houses for the victims of East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami. These are the trees logged in Isawa Ward, Oshu City, for the construction work of a dam. On May 5, approximately three thousands of Japanese larch logs, ten centimeters in diameter and cut to two meters in length, were sent by trucks to a building material processing company located in Mizusawa Ward of the City. These logs will be processed into six thousands of foundation piles, which can be used in the foundation work for nearly two thousands of temporary housing units.


Original article in Japanese


Government decided to supply 60,000 temporary houses through support to local small builders
[April 8, 2011: Japan Forestry Investigation Committee (J-FIC)]
On April 5, eight relevant Ministries and Agencies including Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism held the second meeting of the “Committee to Discuss the Promotion of Housing Supply for the Victims of East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami.” In the meeting, it was reported that, as of April 4, (i) the government had so far received a request from suffered local governments to prepare a total of 62,290 units of temporary housing, and that (ii) 6,282 units of them have already begun (or will soon begin) to be constructed. In order to further speed up the construction, it was confirmed that the government would assist local small building contractors/subcontractors, while also announcing a policy to utilize imported houses.

Original article in Japanese


A brand-new rotary lathe introduced at Hayashi Plywood Ind.
[March 25, 2011: Japan Forestry Investigation Committee (j-fic)]
In February 2011, a new rotary lathe went into full-scale operation in Nanao Factory, located in Ishikawa Prefecture, of Hayashi Plywood Industrial Co., Ltd., which is known as the pioneer in the manufacturing of softwood plywood in Japan. This rotary lathe, called ALT-3, which is developed by Meinan Machinery Works, Inc., is able to peel small logs 8 centimeters in diameter until 1-centimeter thick. It has thus drawn much attention as an innovative machine that allows us to utilize forest thinnings or offcuts which used to be too small to be converted into plywood.

Original article in Japanese

Japanese major housing companies supply temporary housing for survivors: 10,000 units by end of May
[March 25, 2011: Nikkei]
Japanese major housing companies, including Sekisui House and Daiwa House Industry, will supply 10 thousands temporary housing units for survivors of East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami by the end of May, 2011. Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism asks for the industry to offer thirty thousand or more units ultimately. The housing majors adopted terrace-style houses and set the concrete specifications to swiftly procure the necessary materials. With a view to further expansion of manufacturing systems, they have started to make efforts toward the earliest possible completion of the task.

Original article in Japanese


Green electricity procurement measure approved by the Cabinet
[March 24, 2011: Japan Forestry Investigation Committee (j-fic)]
Japanese Cabinet approved the “Special Measures for Renewable Energy Procurement by Operators of Electric Utilities” on March 11. This proposed measure requires electric power companies to buy up electricity generated by renewable sources of energy such as woody biomass. Although it is scheduled to be submitted during the current Diet session, aiming to come into effect in 2013, the Diet's deliberations and legislative process are seen to be affected or prevented, in varying degree, by March 11 earthquake.

Original article in Japanese


Paper and wood mills in Pacific coastal area suffered enormous damage
[March 17, 2011: Japan Forestry Investigation Committee (j-fic)]
Massive tsunami triggered by March 11 earthquake entirely destroyed paper mills and wood plants in Pacific coastal area of northeastern Japan, especially the plywood factories located in the coastal area of Iwate and Miyagi Prefecture. Since those factories cover 21-22 percent of the total domestic production of plywood panels, the property damage to them is indeed a great loss for the country, not only in terms of easing near-term supply shortage, but also meeting long-term reconstruction demand.

Original article in Japanese


Canadian Timber firms rally to Japanese cause
[March 16, 2011: The Global and Mail]
Major Canadian forest products companies are joining forces to support a massive reconstruction effort in Japan that will spur much-needed demand for timber and other building materials. Canadian forestry companies – particularly lumber producers in British Columbia – have carefully built deep relationships in Japan over the past several decades. Now they are rushing to help government-led efforts to rebuild infrastructure and put up new housing for the hundreds of thousands left homeless in the natural disaster that hit last week.

News source (English)


A Forest Town sells carbon credits to establish fine “economy-ecology cycle”
[January 20, 2011: Daily Yomiuri]
Aga Town, a small town located in mountainous area in Niigata Prefecture, has vigorously committed to effective forest improvement through a carbon trading program launched by the Prefecture.
In this program, local municipalities which are actively engaged in forest improvement within Niigata can sell their credit for forests carbon sinks to businesses willing to contribute to the reduction of carbon dioxide emission.
With 90 percent of land area being forest, Aga Town fully takes advantage of its geographical location, aiming to enhance the uptake capacity of forest by conducting appropriate thinnings. The Town’s revenue from carbon credit sale is used for further forest improvement.
Aga Town also plans to start producing wooden fuel pellets from forest thinning and residue. The Town will strive for the establishment of a positive cycle of ecology and economy at a local level, placing forests at the center of its strategy.

Original article in Japanese
http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/e-japan/niigata/news/20110120-OYT8T00137.htm



Biomass power generation launched on a trial basis
[February 4, 2011: Asahi Shimbun]
Chugoku Electric Power Company introduced, on a trial basis, biomass and coal together into its Misumi power plant, located in Hamada City, Shimane Prefecture. Following the successful launches in Shimonoseki and Shin Onoda power plants, the company started to use a mixture fuel of wooden chips (made from thinned trees) and coal at Misumi’s Unit No.1 (coal-fired power plant), which has a capacity of one million kW.
By using this fuel, 0.48 % (32 million kW) of its annual energy production (approx. 6.6 billion kW) becomes biomass-derived electricity. The company expects to reduce CO2 emissions (approx. 230 thousand ton) through the effective use of forest thinning and residue (approx. 30 thousand ton). This test operation will continue until March 2013, and a full scale operation will start in the following month.

Original article in Japanese
http://www.energia.co.jp/press/09/p091102-1.html



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