Buildings made of materials grown by the power of the sun are healthy, natural and renewable, requiring far less energy than man-made building materials. Wood products that come from sustainably managed forests play an important role in protecting our climate.
As posted on themostnaturalresource.com, modern, scientific forestry is sustainable and renewable. Trees are harvested then replanted. (Nearly 100 million trees are replanted each year in Washington and Oregon managed forests, each one by hand). This cycle of harvesting and replanting stores carbon–not only in living trees in the forest, but in finished wood products such as lumber and furniture. Substituting wood for non-renewable resources such as concrete and steel can be a major factor in reducing greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere.
While over half of Washington State is forested (about 23 million acres), some 53% of the acreage is restricted from timber harvesting. On much of the remaining land, working forests make up the backbone of our state's wood products industry. It's an industry that supports more than 107,000 workers, generating more than $4.5 billion in wages annually. In a sustainably managed forest, harvested trees are replanted. On average, three seedlings are planted for each tree harvested.
In addition to supporting rural economies, working forests are a source of clean water and healthy habitat for fish and wildlife. These forests also store carbon in their trees, and in the wood products that come from trees, reducing the amount of greenhouse gas emissions in our earth's atmosphere. Working forests are also a source of renewable biomass used to create green energy.
Private forest landowners maintain this valuable natural resource through sustainable and scientific forest practices, creating green jobs that are vital to our state's economy and environment.