Oregon is number one
11.08.2016

I visited Wisconsin last week for the Society of American Foresters National Convention. Foresters are very proud people and we all think our state or region is the best. However, I have proof that Oregon is number one. I have been gathering data for our new edition of Oregon Forest Facts & Figures 2017-18, and here are some of the ways I have found that Oregon is top in the nation.

Oregon is number one in softwood lumber

No other state produces as much softwood lumber as Oregon’s 5.2 billion board feet. This represents more than 16 percent of the nation’s softwood lumber production. In fact, Oregon has led in this category for at least a decade, and probably much longer.

Here’s proof:

Top 10 states and U.S. total production (in millions of board feet)1

 

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

2015

% of U.S. total
for 2015

Oregon

 7,033

 6,176

 4,724

 3,829

 3,994

 4,134

 4,659

 5,119

 5,448

 5,222

16.5%

Washington

 5,130

 4,763

 3,885

 3,241

 3,637

 3,685

 3,763

 3,942

 4,035

 3,745

11.8%

Georgia

 2,590

 2,309

 1,920

 1,702

 1,856

 1,995

 2,111

 2,190

 2,363

 2,454

7.8%

Alabama

 2,433

 2,242

 1,594

 1,385

 1,455

 1,613

 1,808

 1,950

 2,034

 2,155

6.8%

California

 2,590

 2,309

 1,920

 1,442

 1,435

 1,623

 1,838

 1,937

 1,938

 1,957

6.2%

Arkansas

 2,420

 2,215

 1,615

 1,631

 1,638

 1,737

 1,808

 1,859

 1,944

 1,937

6.1%

Mississippi

 2,224

 1,998

 1,598

 1,433

 1,523

 1,604

 1,622

 1,715

 1,824

 1,821

5.8%

Idaho

 1,847

 1,752

 1,344

 1,105

 1,258

 1,353

 1,494

 1,647

 1,667

 1,717

5.4%

North Carolina

 2,027

 1,649

 1,407

 1,212

 1,248

 1,331

 1,521

 1,564

 1,664

 1,678

5.3%

Texas

 1,788

 1,652

 1,406

 1,184

 1,055

 1,101

 1,191

 1,260

 1,296

 1,332

4.2%

Total U.S.

38,726

35,158

29,177

23,187

24,803

26,508

28,257

29,951

31,496

31,644

 

 

Oregon is number one in plywood production2

Oregon led the nation in plywood production with 2.5 billion square feet in 2015, which is nearly 30 percent of national production.

This is significantly more than the next highest plywood-producing states, Louisiana, Washington and Texas. Check it out:

Top plywood-producing states (million square feet, 3/8” basis)

 

2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

2015

% of U.S. total for 2015

Oregon

 2,303

 2,149

2,553 

2,704 

2,589

2,534

29%

Louisiana

 996

 1,111

1,236 

1,251 

1,191

1,195

14%

Washington

 777

 706

751 

791 

760

756

9%

Texas

 809

 750

763 

726 

700

671

8%

Georgia

591

571

649

609

589

588

7%

Mississippi

584

650

656

654

611

582

7%

Arkansas

 867

 837

470 

505 

520

481

5%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

U.S. total

 9,131

 8,986

9,181 

9,345 

8,985

8,817

 

 

Oregon is number one in engineered wood products2

Oregon has 17 engineered wood processing facilities, or 25 percent of the 68 facilities in the country. This includes glulam, I-joist, laminated veneer lumber and cross-laminated timber facilities. The APA – Engineered Wood Association doesn’t publish production statistics by state, but Oregon is clearly the leader in engineered wood products. This is important because engineered wood represents the future of forest products.

Oregon is number one in net softwood growth, but second in softwood harvest3

The reason Oregon is able to lead the nation in the major forest product categories is because we have abundant forests with primarily softwood trees, such as Douglas-fir and ponderosa pine. These are the tree species that are used primarily for housing and building construction.

According to the U.S. Forest Service, Oregon grows more softwood timber than any other state in the nation, with 1.54 billion cubic feet. But in an interesting twist, Georgia jumps ahead of Oregon to be number one in softwood timber harvest. This is because most forestland in Georgia is privately owned and managed for timber production. In contrast, the majority of the forestland in Oregon is publicly owned, and unlike many privately owned forests, timber production is not the primary objective on those lands.

Top five states for softwood timber growth and harvest

State

Softwood net growth

(in thousand cubic feet)

Softwood harvest

(in thousand cubic feet)

Oregon

1,538,297

   974,925

Washington

1,500,255

   843,231

Georgia

1,378,561

1,043,796

California

1,374,048

   466,293

Alabama

   995,095

   804,774

 

The other thing foresters talk a lot about is football. So, it is nice to know that even though Washington has the best football team in the Pacific Northwest this year, we beat them again in every major forestry category.

For the forest and the Beaver State,

Mike Cloughesy

Director of Forestry

 

 

1 Forest Economic Advisors LLC. Personal communication: October 2016. www.getfea.com 

2 Joe Elling. Structural Panel and Engineered Wood Yearbook. APA – The Engineered Wood Association. Tacoma, Wash. April 2016.

3 Brad Smith et al. Forest Resources of the United States, 2007. USDA Forest Service, GTR-Wo-78. March 2009.

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