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2007 Western Lumber Output Off 15.9%
The Western Wood Products Association reported that lumber production in the West totaled 15.751 billion board feet in 2007 off 15.9 percent from the 2006 total.
The 2007 production in the Coast region was off 15.4 percent; the Inland region was down 14.1 percent; and the California Redwood region was down a full 32.3 percent compared to 2006.
Sustainable Forestry Initiative Program Marks Record Growth
The Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI) program recorded substantial growth in 2007, including a 750 percent increase in locations with SFI chainof- custody certification that can track products from certified forests. “We started 2007 with 21 certificates at 48 locations, and ended it with 102 SFI chain-of-custody certifications at 408 certified locations,” SFI Inc. President and CEO Kathy Abusow said. “This represents a 386 percent increase in certificates and a 750 percent increase in certified locations and it appears the momentum will continue in 2008.”
There was also an impressive increase in the amount of SFI-certified lands to 143.7 million acres at the end of 2007 from 135 million acres at the end of 2006.
Abusow said she was not surprised by the SFI program’s growth. “More companies and more consumers are understanding the benefits of forest certification, and know that when they see the SFI label on a product be it a juice box, printer paper, or a twoby- four that the wood fiber in that product is from a legal and well-managed source.”
Landmark Study on State of Forests
The most recent USDA Forest Service data confirms that United States forestland is roughly as abundant today as it was 100 years ago. The Forest Service’s Resource Planning Act 2007 (RPA data) reveals both state and regional increases in forestland across the country. Among the key findings in the report (www.fia.fs.fed.us/program-features/ rpa/default.asp) are: • There are 750 million acres of forestland in the U.S. today, about the same as in 1907. • 11 states had increases of over 25 percent over the last century, and nine had increases of over 30 percent. • Overall, forestland in the northern U.S. has increased by almost 30 percent.
The new data reinforces findings in “The State of America’s Forests,” a 2007 report by the Society of American Foresters, which found that replanting and reforestation efforts, as well as natural forest re-growth on abandoned agricultural lands, have generally offset any loss of forestland during the 20th century due to urban/suburban growth. The report reinforces the importance of continuing sustainable certified forest practices to ensure forestland remains abundant for generations to come.
Historical trends indicate that the standing inventory (volume of growing trees) of hardwood and softwood tree species in U.S. forests increased by 49 percent between 1953 and 2006. For the past 50 years, tree removals have remained below two percent of standing inventory (the figure for 2006 was 1.68 percent). Meanwhile, the net growth of trees has been near three percent (in 2006, 2.64 percent). The report was produced with support from the Abundant Forests Alliance (AFA).
NAWLA Annual Meeting
Members of the North American Wholesale Lumber Association (NAWLA) will meet for their annual gathering in the legendary Old West of Tucson, Arizona, April 20-22, 2008. This year’s event, titled “Building Unity through a Better Tomorrow,” will be held in one of the most unique meeting venues in Arizona Loews Ventana Canyon Resort.
NAWLA’s annual meeting, where executives from the lumber industry’s leading wholesalers, manufacturers, and industry affiliated companies meet, has been dramatically redesigned! The Exhibitor Showcase will offer manufacturers an expanded 3-day format to showcase their products and services to company owners and officers during key Conference events. For more information, visit www.nawla.org.
FRA Online Service Board
FRA has created an on-line service to connect employers and job seekers in industrial forestry and wood supply, as well as in allied associations and forestry schools. Please visit the Job Board tab at FRA’s www.forestresources. org web site, or go directly to http:// jobboard.forestresources.org. Job seekers may access the site and post notices of their availability and resumes at no charge. Employers may post available positions, with appropriate detail, for a 60-day period for $250.
AFA’s $10 Million Education Campaign
The Abundant Forests Alliance (AFA) has come forward with a $10 million public education campaign to educate consumers on the TRUTH about the prosperous nature of our forests, and in turn reaffirm consumers’ ability to use and appreciate all wood and paper products as desired. The AFA is a team of leading members of the U.S. wood and paper products industry such as MeadWestvaco, International Paper, and Weyerhaeuser, who have joined together to support customer companies, by providing them with facts, so that when they are challenged about the industry’s impact on the nation’s forests, they are wellprepared with answers. AFA also provides educational outreach directly to consumers. For further information visit www.abundantforests.net
AF&PA Remarks on FLAME Act
The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) welcomes the introduction of the Federal Land Assistance, Management, and Enhancement (FLAME) Act.
This important bill, introduced by Representatives Nick Rahall (D-WV), Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), and Norm Dicks (D-WA), creates a special fund to cover emergency suppression costs for catastrophic wildfires. Under the current system of budgeting for wildfires, the USDA Forest Service typically “borrows” from other land management programs to fund fire suppression costs during severe fire years.
AF&PA President and CEO Donna Harman said, “The FLAME Act is a much better way to fund fire suppression costs. The establishment of an emergency account that can be managed separately from the rest of the Forest Service budget is critical to the successful management of our National Forests. www.afandpa.org.