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Timber-Processing Capacity and Capabilities in the Western United States

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Abstract:

This examination of milling capacity and timber use in the western United States summarizes changes in the region’s wood products industry and its ability to use trees of various sizes. Between 1986 and 2003, total timber-processing capacity in the West (excluding pulpwood and fuelwood) declined from 5.0 to 3.2 billion cubic feet annually, and capacity utilization decreased from 3.6 to 2.5 billion cubic feet. During 2003, 2.2 billion cubic feet of timber processed in the West was from trees ≥10-in. dbh, and 2.5 billion cubic feet (80%) of capacity was not capable of efficiently processing trees <10-in. dbh. Geographic distribution of existing capacity and small-tree capabilities is critical to forest management activities throughout the West.

Keywords: capacity utilization; milling capacity; small-diameter timber

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2006

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of Forestry is the most widely circulated scholarly forestry journal in the world. In print since 1902, the Journal has received several national awards for excellence. The mission of the Journal of Forestry is to advance the profession of forestry by keeping forest management professionals informed about significant developments and ideas in the many facets of forestry: economics, education and communication, entomology and pathology, fire, forest ecology, geospatial technologies, history, international forestry, measurements, policy, recreation, silviculture, social sciences, soils and hydrology, urban and community forestry, utilization and engineering, and wildlife management. The Journal is published bimonthly: January, March, May, July, September, and November.
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