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CONTACT: Jessica McFaul 202-463-2436, jmcfaul@awc.org

American Wood Council Responds to EPA's Release of Final Boiler MACT Rules
December 21, 2012

WASHINGTON – American Wood Council President Robert Glowinski issued the following statement today regarding the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) release of its final Boiler Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT), Incinerator, and Non-Hazardous Secondary Materials (NHSM) rules.

"We will need time to understand the details of these complicated rules, but it appears that some of our concerns have been addressed. Nonetheless, these are costly regulations that require significant investment for our industry while the housing market that we serve is still only inching toward recovery.

"It seems that the emissions limits may be achievable and that the EPA understands our need for the certainty that comes with the proper listing of biomass residuals – particularly resinated wood and processed construction and demolition wood – as fuels under the NHSM rule.

"However, considering the complexity of the rules and the availability of capital, facilities still need the additional certainty that comes with more up-front compliance time, and the language in the preamble urging states to give an extra year is helpful.

"We appreciate the work EPA has done to better understand and address our concerns in the final Boiler MACT rules, and we thank members of Congress and governors for their work to bring attention to these important issues."

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2012 National Design Specification® Printed Copies Now Available from the American Wood Council
December 20, 2012

2012NDSLEESBURG, VA – The American Wood Council's (AWC) 2012 National Design Specification® (NDS®) for Wood Construction is now available for purchase in printed format.

The NDS was approved Aug. 15, 2011 as an American National Standard and is designated ANSI/AWC NDS-2012. It is referenced in the International Code Council's 2012 International Building Code.

Designers may begin using provisions of the new standard pending approval by the authority having jurisdiction.

"Most code officials will allow for use of newer standards even if they are not referenced in older editions of the building code, especially those developed through a consensus process," said AWC Vice President of Codes and Regulations Kenneth Bland.

AWC's 2012 NDS with Commentary, 2012 NDS Supplement: Design Values for Wood Construction, 2008 Special Design Provisions for Wind and Seismic (SDPWS), and ASD/LRFD Manual for Engineered Wood Construction are available for purchase as a set.

Revisions to the 2012 ASD/LRFD Structural Wood Design Solved Example Problems manual continue, and its availability will be announced once it is updated.

Please note that additional changes to design values for southern pine dimension lumber are anticipated in 2013. A new addendum to the 2012 NDS Supplement will also be provided once those values are certified and available.

For more information, call 202-463-2766 or email publications@awc.org.

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American Wood Council Statement Regarding EPA's Final PM NAAQS Standards
December 14, 2012

WASHINGTON – American Wood Council (AWC) President and CEO Robert Glowinski issued the following statement today following the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) release of its final National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for particulate matter (PM).

"While EPA retained the secondary and daily PM standard, we are disappointed that EPA chose to set the annual PM standard at 12 µg/m3, making it challenging for the wood products industry to pursue projects that spur economic growth. EPA has also ignored the significant uncertainty in the underlying health science. Lowering the annual PM standard means that sawmills and wood product businesses that are beginning to ramp up production to meet the demand of a growing housing market could be hard pressed to show compliance with the new standards. EPA has ignored several studies that show that the current standard is more than adequate to protect public health.

"In addition, we are concerned that the agency entered into a consent decree to issue final PM regulations in an expedited fashion despite stakeholder comments stating that this regulation will impose an undue burden on employers as they continue to face economic uncertainty."

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American Wood Council Team Expands to Support Building Codes and Standards Work
December 3, 2012

Leesburg, Va. – The American Wood Council (AWC) is pleased to announce the addition of four new staff members to support its building codes and standards activities.

Michelle Kam-Biron, P.E., S.E. is AWC's new director of education. Kam-Biron has more than 20 years experience in structural engineering and most recently served as WoodWorks' senior technical director for multistory/mid-rise construction. In her new role, she will conduct outreach with key audiences on AWC's work on structural wood products codes and standards.

Lori Koch is AWC's new project engineer. With degrees from Penn State, Clemson, and Virginia Tech in civil engineering as well as forestry, wood science and forest products, Koch will ensure timely completion of AWC research and engineering projects and will work with AWC staff to review technical documents and provide engineering interpretations to wood designers.

Bryan Knight is AWC's new web development coordinator. Prior to joining AWC, Bryan was a web designer for Bloomberg BNA where he coded and maintained custom websites and provided technical and design support. In his new role, he is responsible for maintaining the AWC website and designing and maintaining multimedia tools and tablet/Smartphone applications.

Marcie Weeber is AWC's new part-time program assistant. Prior to joining AWC, Marcie worked at Sandia National Laboratories providing administrative support to staff scientists and served as a tutor and teacher in Loudoun County (Virginia) Public Schools. In her new role, she provides administrative support to AWC technical staff and assists members with information requests.

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Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) Gains Code Approval – New Opportunities for Wood in Non-Residential Structures
November 12, 2012

Leesburg, Va. – A proposed code change by the American Wood Council (AWC) to expand the use of cross laminated timber through the building code's heavy timber construction classification has been approved by the International Code Council (ICC). The recently approved change will lead the way for new U.S. markets for this emerging wood product in non-residential buildings.

The ICC held its final action hearings Oct. 21-28, 2012 in Portland, Oregon where ICC members made final decisions on proposed language for the 2015 International Building Code (IBC). This now-approved code will be published in late-2014 and will be immediately available for jurisdictions to adopt in 2015. The IBC is one in a series of codes that is being updated by the ICC for 2015.

"Having worked closely with ICC code and fire officials, AWC was able to quickly answer questions raised about the proposal during the earlier ICC committee hearings in May," said AWC Vice President of Codes and Regulations Kenneth Bland. "The strong support for the proposal shown by ICC members in Portland is validation of the ICC process when all stakeholders work together to maintain state-of-the-art codes."

Prior to the hearings, as part of a project to produce a U.S. design manual for cross-laminated timber (CLT), AWC conducted a successful ASTM E119 fire endurance test on a CLT wall at NGC Testing Services in Buffalo, N.Y. The wall, a 5-ply CLT specimen (approximately 7 inches thick), was covered on each side with a single layer of 5/8" Type X gypsum wallboard. The wall was loaded to the maximum attainable by the test equipment, although it remained significantly below the full design strength of the CLT. It was then exposed to a standard fire that reached over 1800 degrees Fahrenheit in the first 90 minutes of exposure.

"While only seeking a 2-hour rating as required by building code provisions, the test specimen lasted 3 hours 6 minutes. This may also open up additional possibilities in a few specialized locations where a 3-hr fire resistance rating might be required," said AWC Vice President of Engineering Brad Douglas.

The test culminated nearly a month of intense planning and cooperation by the North American wood products industry to get the test run in advance of the ICC hearings.

For more information, contact Buddy Showalter at 202-463-2769.

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American Wood Council Hosts 3rd Annual Members Meeting in Chicago - Highlights political outlook and structural wood product certification
October 29, 2012

WASHINGTON – On Tuesday, Oct. 24, representatives from across the structural wood products industry met for the American Wood Council's (AWC) third annual members meeting in Chicago.

This year's theme, Looking Beyond the Horizon, served as a framework for speakers and attendees to discuss events and milestones that will affect the industry in 2013. Political expert Bernadette Budde of Washington, D.C.-based BIPAC gave an election preview, and UL Environment's Paul Firth spoke about the future of environmental certification and labels, including environmental product declarations. Attendees also received an update from the Softwood Lumber Board and gained the AWC members perspective on the year ahead during a roundtable session.

"AWC has long been – and will continue to be – a leader on building codes, standards, and regulations, and we're seeing that it is equally important for us to maintain a strong presence with policy makers," said AWC President Robert Glowinski. "As we continue to grow as an association, we must be responsive to our members' needs, and being able to meet with our members one-on-one like we did in Chicago allows us to keep tabs on those needs."

AWC members also elected its 2013 officers and board during the meeting, which include:

• Chairman: Fritz Mason, Georgia-Pacific
• 1st Vice-Chairman: Rob Taylor, Weyerhaeuser
• 2nd Vice-Chairman: George Emmerson, Sierra Pacific
• Immediate Past Chairman: Brian Luoma, Louisiana Pacific
• Other Board members elected: Danny White, T.R. Miller Mill; Tom Corrick, Boise Cascade; Aubra Anthony, Anthony Forest Products; Ray Dillon, Deltic Timber; Michael Giroux, Canadian Wood Council; Pat Patranella, Temple-Inland, an International Paper business; Andrew Miller, Stimson Lumber; Jim Rabe, Masonite; Marc Brinkmeyer, Idaho Forest Group; and Joe Patton, Westervelt.

For more information about AWC, visit www.awc.org or follow the association on Twitter: @woodcouncil.

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American Wood Council Statement Regarding EPA's Proposed PM NAAQS Standards
June 18, 2012

WASHINGTON – American Wood Council President Robert Glowinski released the following statement today following EPA's release of its proposed National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for particulate matter (PM).

"We are disappointed that despite announcements to the contrary in May, EPA was forced by the courts to rush its release of the PM NAAQS standards. One major oversight in our estimation is the exclusion from the rulemaking of consideration of the current standards. The option to recognize that the current standards adequately address air quality concerns is not included as an option for comment. Regardless of EPA's decision to do so, AWC will be submitting formal comments on both the current and the proposed standards.

"Given deadlines established by the courts, we do not believe that EPA will now have adequate time to review comments on its proposed findings and address the uncertainty of the science being used for analysis. Increasing court intervention on regulatory matters puts undue pressure on the rulemaking process, making it difficult for EPA to make informed decisions."

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AWC APPLAUDS REPS. THOMPSON AND SCHRADER FOR INTRODUCING THE FOREST PRODUCTS FAIRNESS ACT OF 2012
June 1, 2012

WASHINGTON – U.S. Reps. Glenn Thompson (R-Pa.) and Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.) have introduced H.R. 5873 – the Forest Products Fairness Act of 2012 – to modify the definition of "biobased" materials to specifically include wood products in the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Biobased Markets Program initiatives.

"I applaud Reps. Thompson and Schrader for recognizing an obvious deficiency with the USDA's Biobased Markets Program and taking action to address the issue by introducing legislation to identify wood products as biobased," said American Wood Council President Robert Glowinski. "This bill has broad, bipartisan support, because our legislators understand that wood is among the most 'biobased' products out there. We urge others to give their support to H.R. 5873 to help protect our industry and the tens of thousands of good-paying American jobs it provides."

The Biobased Markets Program (also known as the BioPreferred® program) was originally enacted as part of the 2002 Farm Bill to increase the identification and use of biobased products. The program is comprised of two separate initiatives: Product Labeling, which allows companies to affix certification labels to products the agency identifies as biobased, and a Federal Procurement Preference, which gives preference to pre-selected biobased products for purchase by the federal government.

Under the current implementation guidelines, many traditional wood products that have up to 100 percent biobased content are not considered biobased, while products with as little as 25 percent biobased content are recognized.

H.R. 5873 clarifies that USDA should recognize wood products as biobased and will ensure a competitive marketplace for all products with biobased content.

"We believe excluding traditional wood products from a program touting the benefits of biobased products is misleading to the public, and we ask that wood be recognized for its inherently renewable properties," said Glowinski.

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Wood Products Industry Leaders Take to Capitol Hill
May 15, 2012

WASHINGTON – Representatives from the wood products community are on Capitol Hill today meeting with members of Congress to discuss federal issues affecting their industry and its more than 300,000 workers.

The American Wood Council (AWC) Fly-In has gathered industry leaders from across the country to advocate on behalf of members' interests regarding environmental regulations (such as Boiler MACT), building energy performance, and fair marketplace treatment for biobased building products.

"It is important that the leaders in our industry have this opportunity to tell our elected representatives what we do, why it's important, and what they can do to help us continue to operate in what is a complex and ever-evolving regulatory and legislative environment," said AWC President Robert Glowinski. "The products that AWC members make help support hundreds of thousands of jobs across the country and are among the most environmentally responsible and structurally sound out there; additionally, their use in housing and other construction will contribute greatly to economic recovery. Legislators need to understand this, and we're here today to share our story."

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AWC applauds Sens. Pryor and Blunt for introducing the Forest Products Fairness Act of 2012
May 2, 2012

WASHINGTON – On Thursday, U.S. Sens. Mark Pryor (D-AR) and Roy Blunt (R-MO) introduced S. 2346 – the Forest Products Fairness Act of 2012 – which would modify the definition of "biobased" materials to specifically include forest products in the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Biobased Markets Program.

"I applaud Sens. Pryor and Blunt for recognizing and taking steps to correct a blatant deficiency with the USDA's Biobased Markets Program," said American Wood Council President Robert Glowinski. "It's difficult to imagine how some wood products could have been excluded from the program in the first place since they are all made from biobased sources."

The USDA Biobased Markets Program was originally enacted as part of the 2002 Farm Bill to help consumers identify and use biobased products. Products with as little as 25 percent biobased content are recognized under the program's current implementation guidelines, while many traditional wood products that have up to 100 percent biobased content are not.

S. 2346 clarifies that USDA should recognize forest products as biobased and will ensure a competitive marketplace for all products with biobased content, including wood.

"We believe excluding traditional wood products from the program is misleading to the public," said Glowinski. "All we are asking is for wood to be recognized for its renewable and biobased properties."Go Back To Top

 

Southern Pine Design Values Implemented in AWC Standards and Design Tools
May 1, 2012

LEESBURG, VA – The American Wood Council (AWC) has revised several of its standards and design tools in response to upcoming changes to Southern Pine design values. The American Lumber Standard Committee (ALSC) Board of Review approved changes to design values for 2"- 4" thick, 2"- 4" wide, Southern Pine #2 Dense and 2x4 Mixed Southern Pine #2, and all lower grades (i.e. #3, Stud, Construction, Standard, and Utility), with a recommended effective date of June 1, 2012 to allow for their orderly implementation. The changes to AWC standards and design tools ensure they remain consistent with the new design values. Visit www.spib.org and www.southernpine.com for more details.

In advance of the implementation date, AWC has developed addenda and other updates to use with new construction designed in accordance with its standards and design tools as follows:

Visit www.awc.org for more information or follow us on Twitter: @woodcouncil.

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AWC Elects T.R. Miller Co.'s Danny White to Board of Directors
March 30, 2012

WASHINGTON – American Wood Council (AWC) has announced that T.R. Miller President and CEO Danny White has been elected to serve on its board of directors for a two-year term.

White was formally installed at the March 13 board meeting in Portland, Ore.

“We’re pleased to have someone with Danny’s breadth of experience joining our board,” said AWC President Robert Glowinski.  “His commitment to the industry for more than two decades will serve our industry well as he steps into this leadership role, and we appreciate his willingness to serve in this capacity.”

A graduate of the University of Florida, White formerly worked for Scott Paper Company / Kimberly-Clark for 22 years, where he held numerous positions, including: management forester, pulp mill manager, woodlands manager, corporate director of woodlands, and Mobile (Ala.) plant manager.  

White joined T. R. Miller Mill Co. in 2001 as president and CEO.  He has served as president of the Alabama Forestry Association and chairman of Southeastern Lumber Manufacturers Association and is currently on the boards of directors for the Brewton (Ala.) Rotary Club and the YMCA.Go Back To Top


AWC Statement on President Obama’s Biobased Product Procurement Memorandum
Association urges USDA to recognize all wood products as “biobased”
February 24, 2012

WASHINGTON – American Wood Council (AWC) President Robert Glowinski released the following statement today in response to President Obama’s memorandum directing the federal government to increase procurement of biobased products.
“We applaud the intent of President Obama’s memorandum to help protect and increase rural jobs by promoting the use of agricultural products.  Use of sustainable, biobased products can create and protect thousands of well-paying jobs in the U.S. and stimulate the economies of many rural areas. 
“The unfortunate irony is that USDA’s regulation, referenced in the president’s memo, will exclude most wood products – which are nearly all 100 percent biobased -  from the biobased programs.  This exclusion prevents wood products manufacturing facilities around the country from participating in the USDA biobased programs.  Clearly, USDA needs to recognize ‘biobased’ wood products and their impact on the rural economy.

“The wood products industry supports thousands of sustainable jobs in this country, and our products deserve to be recognized within USDA’sbiobased programs.”Go Back To Top


AWC Submits Comments on EPA’s Boiler MACT Rules
Despite some improvement, issues of achievability and affordability remain.
February 23, 2012

WASHINGTON – On Tuesday, Feb. 21, the American Wood Council (AWC) submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the reproposed Boiler MACT rules, as well as on the Commercial and Industrial Solid Waste Incineration (CISWI or Incinerator) rule, Non-Hazardous Secondary Materials (NHSM) rule, and Boiler Generally Achievable Control Technology (GACT) rule.

“The data that we have collected and submitted to EPA will help the agency develop and finalize a set of rules with which our members can comply,” said AWC President Robert Glowinski.  “We need the certainty of regulations that can be reasonably implemented and that we’re confident will not change months down the road to trigger yet another multi-billion dollar investment.

“Accordingly, we’re committed to working with the regulatory community to finalize a set of rules that balances jobs with environmental and public health.”

The latest set of Boiler MACT rules revises the March 2011 rules, which EPA immediately stayed, noting their inadequacy in accomplishing the desired benefits.

AWC’s submitted comments address concerns over achievability, inadequate compliance time, uncertainty of classifying biomass materials as fuels, excessive costs, and the prevalence of legal uncertainty.  The Boiler MACT rules regulate boilers across a wide range of industries, making it one of the most complex MACT standards ever established.Go Back To Top


AWC Statement on the U.S. District Court Decision to Vacate Stay of Boiler MACT Rules
January 10, 2012

WASHINGTON – American Wood Council President Robert Glowinski today issued the following statement regarding Judge Friedman’s District Court decision to vacate the stay of the Boiler MACT rules.

“The Court’s decision to vacate the stay of the March 2011 Boiler MACT and Incinerator rules puts thousands of wood product industry jobs at risk.  The already-inadequate compliance timeframe now has been significantly impacted, making the costly and complicated task of compliance that much more confusing and difficult.  This ruling underscores the need for swift legislative action.  Congress has the ability to help protect American manufacturing by passing the EPA Regulatory Relief Act – which will give EPA time to finalize a more appropriate set of rules and provide much-needed certainty to businesses across the country – and we urge them to do sowithout delay.”Go Back To Top

 

American Wood Council Elects New Officers for 2012
January 4, 2012

WASHINGTON – The American Wood Council (AWC) announced today the election of its 2012 officers and board of directors.

Chairman:
First Vice
Second Vice Chairman:
Immediate Past Chairman:

Brian Luoma, LP
Fritz Mason, Georgia-Pacific
Andrew Miller, Stimson Lumber
Joe Patton, Westervelt

Ray Dillon of Deltic Timber was newly elected, and Rob Taylor of Weyerhaeuser was reelected to the board.  Members who will continue to serve on the board include: George Emmerson, Sierra Pacific; Tom Corrick, Boise Cascade; Pat Patranella, Temple Inland; Jim Rabe, Masonite; and Diana Blenkhorn for the Canadian Wood Council.
The board of directors is nominated and elected by AWC membership.

“On behalf of all the members of AWC, we’re pleased to have such experienced board representation,” said AWC President Robert Glowinski.  “We had many great achievements in 2011 on building codes, standards, and sustainability efforts, as well as on public policy issues on Capitol Hill and in the states.  We expect that with this board’s leadership, we will continue to grow, prosper, and make a difference for thewood products industry.”Go Back To Top

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Favorable Energy Criteria Established

On October 1, ICC Evaluation Services approved New Environmental Criteria for Determination of Equivalent Frame Wall Assemblies to the Prescriptive Building Thermal Envelope Requirements of the IECC and the IRC. The new Acceptance Criteria, EC115, specifies how to determine equivalent energy performance to prescriptive thermal wall requirements of the IECC or the IRC energy chapter. With this environmental criteria, manufacturers with Evaluation Reports will be able to include thermal performance for certain wood wall assemblies based on equivalency to tabular R-value tables specified in the code. Designers can access Evaluation Reports and, with the approval of the code official, specify assemblies that utilize wood structural panels.

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Wood Engineering Award

At the 66th International Convention of the Forest Products Society (FPS), AWC sponsored and presented the 2012 Wood Engineering Achievement Award to Eric Karsh of Equilibrium Consulting in Vancouver, BC. This year's award was in the category of Engineering Innovation and involved incorporation of cross-laminated timber, LSL, and glulam in a high-visibility project.

The Earth Science Building at University of British Columbia is a five-story 158,000 ft2 academic facility with a laboratory wing, an 85,000 ft2 office / lecture hall wing, and connecting atrium space built of innovative glulam post and beam and solid wood panel construction. Composite LSL floor panels span 21 feet between composite post and beam frames, with loads fully transferred across the 63-foot-wide lecture theatres located on the ground and second floors. The roof and generous exterior canopy structure surrounding the building consist of 5-ply CLT panels. Exposed glulam chevron braces provide seismic resistance. The main atrium features a dramatic, fully cantilevered stair composed of a seamless folding "ribbon" of glulam plates, a first of its kind in the world.

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New Report Dissects the International Green Construction Code

A new report released from Dovetail Partners dissects the recently announced International Green Construction Code (IgCC). The report focuses on impacts the code will have on selection of building materials for commercial construction projects. The report also provides a concise 14-page summary of major elements of the code, including the mandatory requirements for Material Resource Conservation and Efficiency. The report is available to download from the Dovetail Partners website, http://www.dovetailinc.org/reports.

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FAQ RSS Feed

AWC has developed an additional RSS feed (RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication) for web-based frequently asked questions (FAQs). The direct link to the feed is http://www.awc.org/FAQRssFeed.xml. You may also access the feed on any AWC's web page by clicking the RSS icon at the top right of the page. The feed will be updated regularly as new FAQs are developed, so be sure to stay up-to-date!

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New Android App Launched

AWC is pleased to announce the release of a new application for the Android operating system. The Span Calculator for Wood Joists and Rafters (Span Calc) performs calculations for all species and grades of commercially available softwood and hardwood lumber as found in the 2012 National Design Specification® (NDS®) for Wood Construction Supplement: Design Values for Wood Construction with May 2012 Addendum. Joists and rafter spans for common loading conditions can be determined. A "span options" calculator allows selection of multiple species and grades for comparison purposes. For more information, visit the Google Play Store or the Amazon App Store.

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Adopt-a-University Program

Charles Ingram Lumber Company is sponsoring the Spring 2012 Wood Design course at Clemson University through its donation of 30 copies of the 2005 Wood Design Package for this class. 

"The willingness of Charles Ingram Lumber to donate a copy of the 2005 NDS to each Clemson University Civil Engineering student taking Wood Design this spring is extremely valuable,” said Dr. Scott D. Schiff, Professor of Civil Engineering at Clemson and the instructor of Wood Design for seniors and graduate students.  He went on to note that, “our required textbook certainly provides the students with the background and application of design provisions, but students really need to know where to find information and design provisions in the NDS and how to effectively use the NDS to complete a design of a wood-frame structure.  The students will use the NDS to complete the assigned homework and a design project and also use the NDS as a resource during their exams. This spring we are again expecting around 30 students to enroll in our wood design course and become comfortable designing a structure using dimensional or engineered lumber products."

Further, AWC will be donating 10 electronic copies of the 2012 NDS and Supplements to students in Washington State University’s CE 539 Advanced Timber Design graduate class this Spring. Donald A. Bender, P.E., Ph.D., Professor, Civil & Environmental Engineering at Washington State University wrote to AWC to say, “Washington State University is committed to educating the next generation of designers and innovators in wood engineering. The American Wood Council is a great partner in our programs by donating electronic design manuals to our students, and providing valuable technical support to our faculty and students. AWC has an incredibly knowledgeable and professional staff, and we thank you very much for your continuing support!”

For more information on how your company can sponsor university students, contact Lacey Merriman at 202-463-2766 or lmerriman@awc.org.Go Back To Top
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