Koppers Holdings Inc. Announces Appointment of Leroy Ball as President and Chief Executive Officer. | November 2014
PITTSBURGH, November 7, 2014 – Koppers Holdings Inc. (NYSE: KOP) announced today the appointment of Leroy Ball as President and CEO, effective January 1, 2015 as part of its long-term strategic planning process...
1. In July 2005, Drs Robin Wakeling and Nicholas Smith MP made statements in television, radio and print media that were extremely critical of the efficacy and suitability of Osmose’s surface applied boron timber preservative, known as TimberSaver®, used to treat house framing.
2. As a result, Osmose issued court proceedings claiming that a number of those statements were untrue and defamatory. Osmose claimed significant damages for losses, as the statements made and the subsequent uproar in the marketplace utterly destroyed the market for TimberSaver®.
3. Subsequently, Osmose joined several other parties to the litigation alleging that evidence showed they had participated in and shared responsibility for the statements made in the media by Drs Wakeling and Smith. The parties Osmose joined to the litigation included Arch Wood Protection (NZ) Ltd (a competitor of Osmose formerly known as Koppers Arch Wood Protection (NZ)) and Bay Treatment Ltd (one of Arch’s largest customers).
5. Osmose is pleased it has been able to reach a settlement of the litigation with Dr Smith, Arch and the other defendants.
6. While the terms of the settlement are confidential, Osmose is satisfied with the settlement and with the apology that Dr Smith has provided, in which he acknowledged that statements made about timber treated with TimberSaver® were incorrect and unfair to Osmose.
Wood Preservation 2009 will this year run in Brisbane on 21-22 April and Rotorua on 15-16 April 2009. Developments since 2006, the last time the event was run in Australasia, have been substantial. New treatment technologies have included; the introduction of micronized copper quaternary and copper azole formulations, alternative hydrocarbon solvent carriers for traditional “white spirits solvents” for LOSP type treatments, innovative new treatment processes using borate compounds, water soluble compounds that lock boron into the wood and wood modification processes.
Key issues like; product innovations with wood plastic substitutes in some of the more traditional markets for treated wood products, recycling options for treated timber, opportunities of using treated wood wastes for biofuel, replacement of chemical treatment processes with heat treatment and carbon sequestration through wood products will also be covered as part of the 2009 series.
Interest from local and international suppliers and wood treatment operations in the 2009 series has been huge. Overseas presenters who will be involved already include Gary Converse, Vice President Marketing, Osmose Inc, USA, Mark Manning, Global Wood Preservation Manager, Rio Tinto Minerals, USA, Ernst Wolmuth, Technical Development Manager, BASF/Dr Wolman GmbH, Germany, Tumelo Mokoena, CEO, Celcure Africa Timber Preserving, South Africa, Alan Preston, Vice President R&D, Viance USA and representatives from Demolite Oy, Finnish Wood Preserving Association.
For further information on this 2-3 yearly event visit www.woodpreservationevents.com
The land-mark NZ Wood programme was officially launched at Parliament on 13 September by Hon Jim Anderton, Minister of Forestry.
The launch kicks off the first promotional phase of NZ Wood - to present the environmental credentials of forests and wood to the building and design sector and coincides with the launch of the NZ Wood website, http://www.nzwood.co.nz.
NZ Wood brings together the wood and forestry industries behind the common goals of increased wood consumption and greater awareness of the environmental credentials of wood and forests, particularly in the fight against climate change.
NZ Wood is managed by the wood and forest sectors and co-funded by industry and government. The budget for NZ Wood is approximately $2 million a year over 3 years.
The key note speaker at the launch was Minister Anderton – and supporting addresses were given by Doug Ducker, Chairman of Woodco, Dave Anderson, Chairman of the Wood Processors Association of New Zealand, and Peter Berg, Chairman of the New Zealand Forest Owners’ Association.
“Wood has great environmental credentials. It is the building material of the future. Sustainability is only going to become even more important to consumer choices and policy. Wood and forests are great partners for sustainability and NZ Wood means to take advantage of these opportunities,” said Mr Ducker addressing the launch.
“The recent government announcement that government buildings will need a wood design option, illustrates the kind of opportunities awaiting wood. NZ Wood will not just promote wood but provide information, resources and tools for those designing and building with wood,” says Ducker.
NZ Wood is multi-dimensional development programme - involving promotion and advertising, research, website and information channels, a NZ Wood brand, design resources and training initiatives.
A key component of the NZ Wood programme is a “resources” website that will provide information for those designing and building with wood. The website will be launched in mid 2008.
“We New Zealanders have a great tradition of building our homes in wood, and NZ Wood wants to keep it that way. There are also huge opportunities for wood in non residential buildings – and this will be a focus for NZ Wood,” says Ducker.
More than 90 per cent of New Zealand homes are built in wood. A recent BRANZ report estimates that we could be using 20 – 30 per cent more wood in our non-residential buildings.
The launch, as with previous road shows and industry events, was well attended by representatives from across the forestry and wood industry, as well engineers, architects, designers, builders, politicians and government officials.
“It’s great to see such a high level of support for the NZ Wood programme, and this is reflected in the number of different groups from across the industry who have attended the parliamentary launch.” says Ducker.
The NZ Wood road shows attracted 700 wood and forestry people across 15 centres.
NZ Wood is supported by New Zealand Forest Owners Association, Wood Processors Association, Douglas-fir Association, New Zealand Farm Forestry Association, New Zealand Pine Manufacturer’s Association, Forest Industry Contractors Association, the Timber Design Society, and the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.
Story supplied by NZ Wood | www.nzwood.co.nz
In conjunction with the APVMA, the New South Wales Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) has advised us that they will be putting together a Pesticides Control Order (PCO) which will govern the use and requirements for the preservative CCA, which will then be adopted by other states within Australia.
Whilst the detail of the PCO is not yet available, the main consideration will be based around the training of all Plant-Operators passing a suitable training program.
Osmose will be offering the appropriate training to all of our customers once the PCO has been finalised, although we have been told plant compliance with AS2843 will be a requirement, the exact detail and other requirements of the DEC are not yet clear.
It is envisaged that the industry will be given between 6 and 12 months to comply, which we feel will be an adequate amount of time for us to complete training with all of our customers and others who may wish us to help them with full compliance.
Osmose Australia will be offering all of our customers training on-site by our technical representatives at no cost to our customer base. The training will only be required by plant operators, not associated roles such as fork-lift drivers or plant supervisors, unless they will be actually operating the plant.
For more information please contact your Osmose Territory Manager.
Subterranean termite management continues to present challenges for the Australian building industry, nowhere more so than in Queensland. Although the timber preservation industry now has an armory of products to assist in the protection of timber against termite attack, these products work best in tandem with effective termite barrier systems. Any barrier system used must comply with the deemed-to-satisfy provisions or the performance requirements of the Building Code of Australia (BCA).
From 1 May 2006, a Queensland variation to the BCA requires termite barriers in new construction in Queensland that are not able to be readily replenished or replaced, to have a design life of 50 years.
Osmose Australia General Manager Elias Akle, says the directive may have caused some concern amongst timber treaters, especially those who treat framing that carries a 25 year limited warranty. “In short the level of the warranty for treated timber is not the relevant concern. The changes impact mainly on termite barrier systems, such as physical mechanisms and chemical spray techniques.”
“The Building Code of Australia requires an effective barrier system to be used in new house construction, unless all the primary building elements are constructed from termite resistant materials,” says Mr Akle.
He points out that the advice from Building Codes Queensland makes it clear that treated timbers complying with Australian Standard (AS) 3660.1 (Appendix D) is deemed to be termite resistant. Therefore, H2 LOSP treated timber or H2F framing would be deemed a termite resistant material.
The advice from Building Codes Queensland also makes it clear that there is a distinction between warranties and design life, and that it is not necessary for the warranty offered to be of 50 years duration. In fact it states that it would be unreasonable to expect such a warranty to be provided. It is sufficient for the termite treatments to comply with AS3660.1.
“The purpose of the Queensland variation to the termite management provisions of the BCA is to ensure that a reasonable assurance, based on scientific data, is given by a system providing that there will be no loss of function of a termite management system over a design life of not less than 50 years. The legislation does not intend to require, and it is unreasonable to expect, a supplier to warranty their system for 50 years,” says the news flash from Building Codes Queensland.
The New South Wales government is aiming to reduce the amount of waste material going into landfills. In that context the management of end-of-life treated timber products will demand increased industry attention.
The government has identified a number of products and is attempting to reduce the quantity of these products ending up in landfills. It is doing this by directing that relevant industries take increased responsibility for products at the end of their life.
According to NSW Timber Development Association (NSWTDA) General Manager Andrew Dunn, a good example of this policy direction is plastic bags. “Lightweight plastic bags are now considered to be on-the-nose. Reducing their use and finding replacement products has almost become a national obsession.”
While treated timber is not in the top priority listing, the NSW government’s 2004 Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Priority Statement, does include treated timber in the list of “Wastes of Concern”. The Minister for the Environment has requested that the timber industry present reports on specific proposals or current actions and further reports on implementation relating to:
• Development of processes to identify and separate treated timber from mixed timber wastes.
• Programs to educate consumers about proper disposal of treated timber.
• Assessment of options for the use of more benign alternatives to treat and preserve timber.
• Action to develop end-market uses for recovered treated timber.
Mr Dunn is leading the timber industry’s efforts to deal with the government requirements. He indicates that at the moment the extent
of the task for the timber industry is unclear, he said “The government is presently referring to ‘treated timber’, so that could also include blue framing and other treated products in addition to treatments for higher hazard class applications. We are seeking clarification from the government on the scope of the task.”
He also advises that if the timber industry does not make meaningful progress the government has indicated that it may enact regulations, saying “government regulation could mandate some sort of requirement to collect and dispose of end-of-life products. This is unlikely to be the most cost effective solution for the industry. Any additional cost will, at the end-of-the-day, need to be carried by treated products and that has implications for competitiveness relative to alternative products.”
In association with the Australian Plantation Products and Paper Industry Council, NSWTDA has taken a lead in focusing the attention of all sectors of the timber industry on this end-of-life challenge.
Under NSW legislation EPR schemes can include product stewardship arrangements where stakeholders have a role and responsibility in managing waste, from designers and manufacturers through to retailers and consumers. The NSWTDA has therefore established a treated timber product stewardship group comprising all parties in the use of treated timber products. Meetings will be scheduled following the preparation of a “way forward” discussion paper.
Osmose is the company most likely to lead the timber treatment technology industry into the future based on its efforts in areas such as innovation, progressive product development, increasing market share, timber industry support and treated product advocacy.
Osmose Australia general manager, Elias Akle, has reaffirmed the priority placed on R&D and linked it to the company’s future. “We see R&D as the best way to grow our business and to differentiate ourselves. It’s a major focus of ours and that is why we have made a large commitment to R&D, both locally and globally.”
“Osmose is able to tie its global R&D effort together. We have over 30 PhDs employed working on new technologies and new processes – all related to advancing aspects of timber preservation,” he said.
It is clear that this coordinated world-wide effort is an Osmose strength. “The synergy that it is able to develop between the research effort here in Australia, New Zealand, the US, and elsewhere, has produced some real benefits.”
Our local R&D contribution is an integral part of the global Osmose effort advised Mr Akle. “For instance, is our Determite®, a Bifenthrin based insecticide used as an envelope treatment for framing and a glue-line treatment for LVL and plywood. is now being developed for use in international markets.
“This is a good example of our ability to contribute to global R&D efforts. We can certainly stand on our-own-two-feet down here.”
In terms of Osmose’s program in Australasia, the R&D team has two centres of excellence. The New Zealand laboratory effort in Auckland, lead by Dr. Steve Crimp, and formulating chemist Brett Coombridge, has a strong focus on developing new timber preservative formulations.
The Osmose Development Centre in Queensland concentrates much of its effort on simulated and real-situation treated product trials. The centre, run by Stuart Meldrum, operates pilot plants, experimental spray units and a range of other trial equipment.
“In Queensland we continue work with our products in development, and test both application technology and efficacy in real-life situations,” said Mr Akle.
Osmose has an extensive product testing program in place in Australia and New Zealand. “This program is part of our global testing program - so overall we have an incredible number of test stakes in the ground at key locations all over the world trialing new preservatives.”
Mr Akle stressed that Osmose has two critical requirements for any new products developed for use in the Australian or New Zealand markets. They must be proven to perform in the local environment and conditions, and where possible, they must make use of the existing treatment facilities and the already high levels of capital invested by timber processors.
“Products also need to be tested for compliance with local statutory requirements, building codes and standards. To this end, it is vital that we have a vibrant research and development effort here in Australasia.” In terms of future innovations, Mr Akle said Osmose is already looking at the next generation of preservatives - beyond ACQ - both copper based and non metallic, and at a number of new developments including improved anti-sapstain formulations. “Looking at enhancing the properties of wood, such as appearance and surface characteristics is also high on the R&D agenda.”
“To be able to give consumers and users of treated timber products the confidence they deserve, and to continue to meet changing legislation and other requirements is critical to our future R&D effort.
We recognise that what people now want from a piece of timber today differs from what they wanted twenty or thirty years ago,” concluded Mr Akle.