News Releases

Stay up to date with the latest OFRI happenings in our news releases, including updates on new publications, programs, conferences, events and board activities.

Study to examine economic impacts of 2020 fires
04.06.2021

PORTLAND, Ore. – The 2020 Labor Day wildfires that burned more than a million acres across western Oregon heavily affected the state’s forest-dependent businesses and industries. The Oregon Forest Resources Institute (OFRI) has commissioned a study that will look at the economic impacts of those fires on Oregon’s forest sector, ranging from lost timber and logging equipment to forest restoration efforts made more difficult by a shortage of loggers, tree seedlings and tree planters.

Experts from the natural resource consulting firm Mason, Bruce & Girard, in partnership with the forestry economic analysis and forecasting firm Forest Economic Advisors, will produce a report, scheduled to be completed in late June, that will look at various ways forest landowners and businesses such as logging companies and sawmills were affected by last year’s fires. 

The analysis will focus on the fires’ impact in terms of acreage burned and timber lost across public and private forestland, the economic value of timber lost in the fires, the potential to salvage timber burned in the fires, and the long-term impact on future timber supply to the state’s wood products manufacturing sector. The study will also investigate the scale and costs of needed post-fire forest restoration, including infrastructure repair, erosion control, stream protection and reforestation. Other topics that will be covered in the report include the value of federal timber under contract to be harvested that burned before it could be logged, and an estimate of the impact of the fires on Oregon’s forest-related employment. 

OFRI plans to publish the full report, along with a shorter report summarizing its findings, this summer.

About the Oregon Forest Resources Institute:

The Oregon Forest Resources Institute (OFRI) was created by the Oregon Legislature in 1991 to advance public understanding of forests, forest management and forest products, and to encourage sustainable forestry through landowner education. A 13-member board of directors governs OFRI. It is funded by a portion of the forest products harvest tax. 

New report examines carbon in Oregon’s forests
10.07.2020

PORTLAND, Ore. – A new Oregon Forest Resources Institute (OFRI) report highlights the major role Oregon’s forests play in keeping carbon out of the atmosphere, underscoring the importance of using strategies that enhance these forests’ carbon-sequestering superpowers to combat climate change.

The vast forests that cover nearly half the state capture and store significant amounts of atmospheric carbon, both in growing trees and wood products sourced from those forests, according to the Carbon in Oregon’s Managed Forests science review report. The report synthesizes the latest scientific findings on carbon sequestration in Oregon’s forests, including managed forests, also called working forests, which are primarily managed for timber production. Authored by experts in carbon and forestry as well as the life cycle assessment of wood products, the 120-page report and an accompanying 12-page summary are intended to help the public better understand how forests and wood products sequester and store carbon.

“As we work to solve the climate crisis, this report will inform Oregonians about ways we can harness our forests’ natural carbon-storing abilities in the fight against climate change,” says OFRI Director of Forestry Mike Cloughesy, who served as one of the report’s technical editors.

Digital copies of the Carbon in Oregon’s Managed Forests science review and its summary report are available to download at OregonForests.org/Carbon. Print copies of both documents can be ordered at OregonForests.org/publications.

About the Oregon Forest Resources Institute:

The Oregon Forest Resources Institute (OFRI) was created by the Oregon Legislature in 1991 to advance public understanding of forests, forest management and forest products, and to encourage sound forestry through landowner education. A 13-member board of directors governs OFRI. It is funded by a portion of the forest products harvest tax.

 

 

Report: High-quality tap water starts in forests
06.23.2020

PORTLAND, Ore. – Oregon’s forests provide high-quality source water for public water providers across the state, according to an extensive science-based review of the effects of forest management on drinking water led by Oregon State University’s Institute for Natural Resources and funded by a grant from the Oregon Forest Resources Institute (OFRI).

The Trees to Tap report is the product of two years of work by faculty from the OSU College of Forestry, who were guided by a statewide steering committee. As a companion piece, OFRI has published Keeping Drinking Water Safe, a 24-page publication summarizing the report’s key findings.

The highest-quality source water comes from forested watersheds versus other land uses, the Trees to Tap report concludes. This includes forests managed for timber production. Because logging, forest roads and the use of herbicides can affect water quality, the report emphasizes that best management practices, laws, regulations, monitoring and scientific research are all needed to safeguard the quality of drinking water sourced from Oregon’s forests.

“The continually improving, science-based forest practices highlighted in Trees to Tap, along with the care taken by those who work in Oregon forests, are helping keep our drinking water safe,” says OFRI Executive Director Erin Isselmann.

Digital copies of Trees to Tap and Keeping Drinking Water Safe are available to download at OregonForests.org/TreesToTap. Print copies of Keeping Drinking Water Safe can ordered at OregonForests.org. The OSU Extension Service will publish Trees to Tap in hard copy this fall.

About the Oregon Forest Resources Institute:

The Oregon Forest Resources Institute (OFRI) was created by the Oregon Legislature in 1991 to advance public understanding of forests, forest management and forest products, and to encourage sound forestry through landowner education. A 13-member board of directors governs OFRI. It is funded by a portion of the forest products harvest tax.

Oregon Forest Facts updated for 2019-20
01.29.2019

PORTLAND, Ore. – A new edition of Oregon Forest Facts, one of the Oregon Forest Resources Institute’s most sought-after publications, has been released, complete with the latest data about Oregon’s forests and forest-based economy.

The Oregon Forest Facts 2019-20 Edition is now available for digital download and to order online. The pocket-size booklet offers a detailed reference guide to Oregon’s forest sector, including information, maps, graphs and statistics about forestland ownership, timber harvest, forest-based employment and wood products production. Other topics covered include forest-fire trends, water quality in Oregon’s forests, investments in protecting watersheds and salmon habitat, and acres of Oregon forestland certified by third-party forest sustainability programs.

Oregon Forest Facts offers a broad overview of Oregon’s forest sector, with compelling graphics and fully cited information that will help readers gain a better understanding of Oregon’s forests, forest management and forest products,” says Oregon Forest Resources Institute Director of Forestry Mike Cloughesy.

The latest data from the Oregon Forest Facts 2019-20 Edition can also be accessed online at OregonForestFacts.org. The mobile-friendly site includes the option to easily share charts and graphs containing information about Oregon’s forests, via email or social media.

About the Oregon Forest Resources Institute:

The Oregon Forest Resources Institute (OFRI) was created by the Oregon Legislature to advance public understanding of forests, forest management and forest products, and to encourage sound forestry through landowner education. OFRI is governed by a 13-member board of directors and is funded by a portion of the forest products harvest tax.

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