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Influence of Markets and Forest Composition on Lumber Production in Pennsylvania

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In this study, we examine regional differences in the hardwood timber resources of Pennsylvania and how the combined changes in inventory volume, forest composition, and lumber prices have influenced regional lumber production. Isolation of these relationships is important because shifts in lumber production reflect changes in harvesting activity. In turn, harvesting influences long-term forest composition and structure. We define three hardwood regions in Pennsylvania based on forest composition and present a chronology of regional changes in sawtimber volumes, sawtimber composition, and lumber production. Regional changes in hardwood lumber production were found to be positively related to changes in the price of No. 1 Common lumber adjusted for changes in forest composition between 1970 and 1999. This finding supports our contention that regional changes in lumber production are influenced by a combination of changes in interspecies lumber price and changes in species availability.
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Keywords: Hardwood; lumber; sawmill; sawtimber

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: USDA Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station, Princeton, WV 24740.

Publication date: 01 June 2006

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