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Optimal Policies for Managing Aggregate Resources on Temporary Forest Roads

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High-quality, durable rock aggregate suitable for road surfacing, with low sediment–producing characteristics, is a scarce resource in many forested areas of the United States and elsewhere. Rock aggregate is a heavy product that generally must be transported less than 50 miles to be economically useful. In the Coast Ranges of western Oregon and Washington, aggregate for road surfacing can amount to more than 60% of the cost of road construction. Durable aggregate is becoming scarcer, with few known quarry sources. So, over the last two decades, some aggregate surfacing on temporary roads has been recycled by both the USDA Forest Service and the Oregon Department of Forestry. We discuss the process of recycling road aggregate, drawing from the experience on the Astoria District of the Oregon Department of Forestry, and then propose a mathematical formulation to determine optimal policies for managing aggregate resources on temporary forest roads.

Keywords: Low-volume road surfacing; aggregate recycling; forest transportation planning; mixed integer programming

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2006-10-01

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  • Each regional journal of applied forestry focuses on research, practice, and techniques targeted to foresters and allied professionals in specific regions of the United States and Canada. The Western Journal of Applied Forestry covers the western United States, including Alaska, and western Canada; WJAF will also consider manuscripts reporting research in northern Mexico that has potential application in the southwestern United States.
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