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Archived 2007 News, Issues & Information


(12/30/07) Conservation Easements provide huge benefits to those who know how to push the envelope.

(11/29/07) "New Method Converts Organic Matter to Hydrogen Fuel Easily and Efficiently." Source: Science Daily

(11/14/07) Large-scale fires in a western or southeastern state can pump as much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in a few weeks as the state's entire motor vehicle traffic does in a year, according to newly published research by scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and the University of Colorado at Boulder.

(11/7/07) National Public Radio reports on wood-based Cellulosic Ethanol Fuel Plant in Georgia.

(10/29/07) Check out our new RSS news feeds and send us search engine words that produce relevant articles for our landowners.

(10/09/07) If you plan to hire someone to plant trees for you this winter, you may need to call your Congressman and Senators. North Alabama tree planting contractor, Geoff Ellison, describes the problem and suggests a solution. Contact Geoff at gellison@drennenforestry.com or (256) 739-8344.

(11/29/07) Sen. Sessions Responds to Save our Small and Seasonal Business Act

Concern over the availability of seasonal workers and the cap of 60,000 H-2B aliens in the Immigration Bill created a flurry of concern in September and October this year. Specifically, limitations on returning workers and the H-2B status will affect the number of workers able to participate in reforestation activities since many of the returning workers will be employed in other industrial sectors of the economy.

Senate Bill 988 containing the exemption to allow returning H-2B workers through October 2012 was passed by the Senate as an amendment to the Commerce, Justice and State Appropriations Bill. Sen. Jeff Sessions' office says the bill is now in a House/Senate Conference Committee, and when language differences are resolved will go to the President for his signature.

Quick action by the forestry community, state and national forestry associations helped improve both the House and Senate version of the Save our Small and Seasonal Business Act. In addition to Sen. Sessions, thanks are due Sen. Richard Shelby and Alabama's U.S. Congressmen. The entire delegation deserves our hearty thanks.
Source: AFA Newsroom, 11/15/07

(09/18/07) Governor Riley is looking for the State Christmas Tree.

(09/07/07) The Chestnut Tree may be "poised for a comeback, but don't tell that to the "I hate non-native species" crowd. Source: Purdue University.

(08/29/07) The Drought may soon cause serious problems for some paper mills in Alabama. Repercussions may be felt by landowners who try to sell pulpwood. Watch an Alabama Forestry Association seminar on the situation.

(08/25/07) "Chestnut tree poised for comeback. A hybrid, 25 years in the making, is designed to resist a devastating blight. Source: The Christian Science Monitor, 8/7/07

(08/16/07) A "No Burn" order has been declared for 59 counties by the Alabama Forestry Commission. Under the No Burn Order, “it shall be unlawful in the [59] counties for any person to set fire to any forest, grass, woods, wildlands or marshes, to build a campfire or bonfire, or to burn debris or other material that may cause a forest, grass or woods fire until said declaration is lifted.” The remaining eight counties were placed under a less restrictive "fire alert."

(07/19/07) The Potential for Selling Carbon Sequestration and Carbon Storage Rights Grows. Five States have adopted greenhouse gas emissions reduction limits and twenty-three have adopted renewable portfolio standards (RPS). RPS means power companies will have to produce a certain percentage of their electric power from renewable energy sources instead of fossil fuels. Woody biomass can be one of those renewable energy sources if the laws permit it.

(07/13/07) New Antlered Buck and Turkey Harvest Record - Hunters must record the date of harvest before field dressing or moving an antlered buck or turkey. AFOA sends compliments to Conservation Commissioner Lawley and staff for developing a "low red-tape" method for complying with the new "3-Buck Limit." See hunting season dates & bag limits here.

(07/10/07) Food for thought: Whose Bread I Eat -- His Song I Sing.

(06/13/07) Alabama Prescribed Fire Council to be created to improve public understanding of fire and its importance to forest management and hazard reduction. "On May 30 a group of about forty individuals interested in prescribed fire representing about 16 different organizations met in Clanton to discuss the formation of a Prescribed Fire Council. Anyone interested should contact me to have their name included on the RxFire Council email list." Kent Hanby at hanby@charter.net

(06/07/07) Please help fight restrictions on timber markets that will limit competition for your wood. "Unrestricted markets are the best policy for forest landowners and renewable energy producers." Source Forest Landowners' Association Action Alert 6/7/07.

(05/24/07) 3 Buck Limit to Add Red Tape. If you hunt on your own land without a license or hunt with a lifetime hunting license, a new law may force you to maintain an official record of the bucks you harvest. What happens if you aren’t a very active hunter - you hunt only occasionally though you are in the woods every weekend - and you decide after several hours of pruning trees to spend a half hour at the end of the day to sit down by the creek and watch for a buck. If you shoot one and load it into your truck to carry home, Conservation Commissioner Barnett Lawley was quoted as saying, “Any hunter caught with a buck and an unpunched license will be charged for illegally taking a buck.” We hope the Commissioner understands he has devalued private land and the lifetime hunting license with one stroke of the pen. If this law, designed to please trophy hunters, makes you a little upset with the overeagerness of bureaucrats to force more paperwork on us, why not send your comments to: Commissioner Barnett Lawley, Alabama Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources, 64 North Union Street, Montgomery, AL 36130. Toll free phone number: 1-800-262-3151 or email spayne@dcnr.state.al.us.

(05/07/07) Bad Laws and Powerful People -- Let Them Eat Cake... An Essay by Jim Beers.

(05/07/07) If you are looking for hunters to lease your land this fall, it's time to advertise your search. List your land on AFOA's very busy "hunting land for lease" webpage. Several hundred hunters check this page everyday and many of them will call or send email inquiries to you. It's a good idea to have a map of your place ready to send them. Also send them a copy of the lease you will want them to sign (all hunters should sign the lease unless the club is incorporated).

(05/02/07) Big Canoe Creek Gas Field in St. Clair County (and others) has its own website. Check it out.

(04/12/07) Tax deadlines extended for 7 state counties. "Residents of seven Alabama counties declared federal disaster areas as a result of the March storms will have until April 30 to file their federal and state taxes. The Internal Revenue Service and the Alabama Department of Revenue extended the filing deadlines nearly two weeks for residents of Coffee, Dale, Dallas, Henry, Jefferson, Montgomery and Wilcox counties. Taxpayers can claim damage and personal property losses on their 2006 returns, even though the storm hit in 2007. Those who have already filed can also file an amended return. Taxpayers claiming the loss for 2006 will receive an earlier refund, but waiting until the 2007 return could result in greater tax savings, depending on other income factors, according to the IRS. For IRS information, go to www.IRS.gov or call 1-800-829-1040. For Alabama information, go to www.revenue.alabama.gov or call 1-800-242-1099." Source: The Decatur Daily 4/10/07
 

(04/06/07) 3-Mill Property Tax May Be on Ballot June 5 in Escambia County if County Commission Approves. This 3-mill tax was rejected by voters last September.Sources: The Atmore Advance, 4/2/07 and The Brewton Standard, 4/2/07.

(04/04/07) Book Release: Management Guidelines For OHV Recreation. This book contains "time-proven strategies for the building and maintenance of environmentally sustainable and quality OHV trail systems throughout the country." Some of the featured sections in Management Guidelines for OHV Recreation include: User Needs and Desires, The Four Es of OHV Management; Engineering, Education, Enforcement, and Evaluation, Developing the Vision, System and Route Planning, Trail Design, and Active Management. Cost: $10 which includes shipping. Contact NOHVCC at 1-800-348-6487 or trailhead@nohvcc.org.

(03/23/07) AFOA's Hunting Lease Price Survey is ready for your review. Prices of more than 600 leases in 63 Alabama counties are included. AFOA urges members to participate in this survey. It will help all landowners get a better handle on the value of their land for hunting and recreation. Price information should be sent to AFOA when applying for hunting lease liability insurance.

(03/22/07) State of the World's Forests 2007. Forest area in developed countries is stable or increasing. Is it because forests in these countries tend to be privately owned and developed countries tend to defend private property rights?

(03/12/07) Biomass Harvesting Police Drafting Guidelines in Minnesota. The world-will-be-destroyed eco-warriors will really explode when biomass harvesting starts in earnest in the ethanol and bio-diesel future. Be aware.

(02/19/07) Excellent Video Presentations from 2006 Quail Management Workshop in Monticello, Florida and 2006 Deer & Turkey Video Courses are on line at http://wildlifeandag.wec.ufl.edu/assistance/Courses.htm Source: Adam Wilcox & Bill Giuliano, 1/30/07.

(02/09/07) "Rich Gas Deposits Found in St. Clair" AFOA is trying to learn more about a Feb. 16 public hearing and contact information for the "adviser" to landowners mentioned in the article. Source: Birmingham News, 2/8/07

(02/09/07) With a falling U. S. Forest Service budget, the Bush administration has again proposed selling unneeded federal forestland. Sources: www.redlodgeclearinghouse.org, 1/29/07 and www.duluthnewstribune.com, 2/7/07.

(02/07/07) Investment Advice From UBS -- considerations from a global warming/subsidy/regulatory perspective.

(02/02/07) "MeadWestvaco Corp. plans to sell about 82,000 acres of forestland in Alabama. Announced Jan. 30, the land sale is part of a larger plan to sell a total of 300,000 acres in West Virginia, Alabama and Georgia in 2007." Source: www.bizjournals.com, 1/31/07

(02/01/07) Research Finds Urban Sprawl Not So Bad for Wildlife.

(02/01/07) Programs that re-introduce or encourage survival of wolves into our communities have serious consequences. Take a look at the graphic photos from the Southwest. When viewing these photos we are amazed at the restraint shown by the rancher who didn't kill the wolves harassing his horses and dogs. Black bears aren't wolves, but if their numbers increase, we can expect human/bear interactions that will be unpleasant, to say the least.

(01/03/07) Mobile County Lawsuit questions where the money to enforce new "Limited Home Rule" regulations will come from. More later...