Just the facts, please
02.05.2013

“You are entitled to your opinion. But you are not entitled to your own facts.”

That was the opinion of Sen. Daniel Patrick “Pat” Moynihan of New York, who served in the U.S. Senate from 1976 to 2000, and who passed away in 2003.

Of course, facts can be slippery. I recall a quote ascribed to 19th-century British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli, popularized by American author Mark Twain: “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.”

So it’s with a sense of humility that OFRI offers its biennial publication, Oregon Forest Facts & Figures, now available from our resource library. Data in this book comes from state of Oregon and federal reporting agencies, plus other authoritative sources. It has been thoroughly reviewed by contributors and contains nearly three pages of citations.

This year’s edition is informed by OFRI’s 2012 Forest Report – an examination of the forest sector and its significance to Oregon’s economy. With $12.7 billion of economic impact and 76,000 direct jobs, the state’s forest sector is the most important traded sector in rural Oregon. To download the full report or an executive summary, or to watch a video, visit TheForestReport.org.

One of the more interesting facts, in my opinion, is that the total amount of forestland acreage in Oregon has held relatively constant for more than 30 years. That shouldn’t come as a surprise. It’s due in large part to our state’s unique system of land-use laws and comprehensive planning, which steer development away from forest and agriculture.

Whether you’re searching for facts about forest ownership, harvest, jobs, lumber and housing sales, forest protection rules, forest fires, or protecting salmon and water quality, you can find it in this pocket-sized fact book. It’s one of our most popular publications.

And get this: In early March, OFRI intends to publish its first-ever mobile application – an interactive electronic version of the 2013 Oregon Forest Facts & Figures. The app will work on the major mobile platforms.

Oregonians are nothing if not passionate about their forests – there’s no shortage of opinions about their care and management. However, at the end of the day, we believe that opinions are best informed by facts.

For the forest,

Paul Barnum
Executive Director

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