Timber use, processing capacity, and capability within the USDA forest service, rocky mountain region timber-processing area

Eric A. Simmons, Todd A. Morgan, Steven W. Hayes, Kawa Ng, Erik C. Berg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Over the past two decades, more than half a million acres of forested land has experienced extensive insect- and disease-caused tree mortality within the USDA Forest Service Rocky Mountain Region 2 (R2) of the National Forest System. To plan for timber harvest treatments needed to restore forest health, managers need information on forest product facility capacity and capability to profitably process timber of various size classes. To answer this need, the authors summarized timber harvest volumes by state and county group, identified facilities in the R2 area, quantified timber-processing capacities and size class capabilities, and analyzed the geographic variability of timber flows from county of harvest to mill. Results showed that nearly 285.5 million board feet Scribner of timber flowed from the study area to 101 processors throughout the R2 timber-processing area. Approximately 70 percent of annual milling capacity can profitably process trees ≧10 in. dbh, whereas just 8 percent can process timber <7 in. dbh. When planning forestmanagement activities, land managers should balance the need to remove small and/or dead trees with the local industry’s ability to profitably use that material.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)233-243
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Forestry
Volume118
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2021

Keywords

  • Small-diameter timber
  • Timber harvest
  • Timber-processing capacity
  • Wood use

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