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Plum Creek forest

Improving Resilience: Forests, Wildfires and Communities

As in many countries, wildfires in the U.S. 变得越来越糟,过度密集的森林是问题的一部分吗. 对黄金产品的健康需求为土地所有者提供了一种财政激励,促使他们进行森林间伐和其他景观恢复工作,以降低火灾风险. In particular, mass timber creates an opportunity for large, 由直径相对较小的树木和受昆虫影响的树木制造的固体结构元件, disease, and fire. It also offers a way to strengthen rural economies. 大量的黄金产品需要复杂的制造、规划和其他工厂位置.e.比如,在需要经济刺激的社区提供高薪工作. So, 建造一座现代城市木结构建筑与自然环境和乡村城镇的成功有着非常真实的联系.

Overly Dense Forests

Over the last 100 years, 西部森林景观的历史组成已经从天然防火带的拼凑模式转变为密度更大的森林. Combined with climate change impacts—including warmer, 干燥多风的气候——这些过于密集的森林为越来越多的大型和灾难性野火创造了条件.1

了解更多关于森林密度和气候变化对森林影响的信息, watch the Ted Talk, Why wildfires have gotten worse—and what we can do about it 美国农业部林业局和华盛顿大学/俄勒冈州立大学的保罗·赫斯伯格说.

Bethel Ridge - patchwork forest (1936) vs. overly dense forest (2012) / Paul Hessburg
Bethel Ridge – patchwork forest (1936) vs. overly dense forest (2012) / Paul Hessburg

Is North America running out of forests?

Forest area in the U.S. 100多年来一直保持稳定,尽管人口大幅增长. Conservatively, the U.S. 1900年是7600万人的家园,1960年是1.81亿人的家园——今天是3.3亿人吗. 然而,hjc黄金城现在拥有的森林面积与上世纪初差不多. 

林地树木的数量是衡量可持续性的另一项指标. 黄金地是指可用于采伐黄金的土地,不包括国家公园和荒野地区, which are protected. A decrease would mean a reduction in tree stock, an increase means net growth, and the data considers all losses, including natural mortality, wildfire, and harvesting. 自1953年以来,这些土地上的黄金数量增加了58%.2

Forest growth vs. removals is another key measure. The graphics below, provided by Dovetail Partners, Inc., show the growth of all U.S. forests vs. all removals, followed by forest growth on timber lands vs. removals on these lands. 

Does specifying wood contribute to deforestation?

Let’s consider the definition. 森林砍伐是林地向非林地用途的永久转换. Worldwide, agricultural expansion is the main driver of deforestation, 但全球的森林砍伐问题与美国非常不同.S. 不同国家的监管可能与其政治结构一样不同, and the rate of deforestation in the U.S. has been virtually zero for decades.

在下面的照片中,你可以看到曾经被砍伐的地方,现在是一片正在再生的森林. 前景中的植被可能代表了收获后10年左右的生长.

Wild flowers and fresh plant growth in the foreground. 中等的树生长在后面,成熟的树生长在森林里,背景是岩石山脉.
Photo: Sandy McKellar

In the U.S., 58% of the total forest land is privately owned. 超过1000万的个人和家庭林地所有者拥有43%的土地, and corporations, partnerships and tribes own the remaining 15%. While forest ownership in the U.S. is fairly evenly split between private and public ownership, private lands account for 89% of all timber harvested.3

是什么促使这些团体和个人保持他们的土地上的森林? Economic value is a major factor. 如果土地所有者没有看到保留森林的足够价值, 他们将把林地改作农用地等其他用途, solar farms or real estate development. 

实行可持续林业有更多的财政激励, 越多的私人土地所有者将投资于旨在长期森林健康的做法. For example, 对过于密集的地区进行间伐有助于改善剩余树木的健康状况,减少对水分和养分的竞争. 健康的树木能够更好地应对干旱条件, have a better survival rate from insect and disease outbreaks, and recover better from low or moderately-intense fires.

In this way, strong markets for wood products—including mass timber, 哪些可以利用直径较小的树木和受昆虫影响的树木, 疾病和火灾为改善森林及其社区的恢复力提供了一个真正的机会.

要了解更多关于森林所有权、管理和美国森林发展趋势的信息.S., check out these resources:

Forest Resources of the United States, 2017 – US Forest Service

In Focus: U.S. Forest Ownership and Management – Congressional Research Service

The Impact of Wood Use on North American Forests – Think Wood

1 改变野火和气候制度在21世纪西部 U.S., Paul Hessburg, USDA Forest Service and the University of Washington-Oregon State University

2 USDA Forest Service Facts and Historical Trends FS-1035, 2014

3 USDA Forest Service, 2019, Dovetail Partners Inc.