...HEMP SAVES THE WORLD

Allan Derickson alland at whidbey.com
Wed Feb 7 13:04:44 EST 1996


>From: "D. Braun" <dbraun at u.washington.edu>
>Newsgroups: alt.architecture,alt.architecture.alternative,alt.building.construction,alt.business.import-export,alt.business.misc,alt.industrial,bionet.agroforestry,biz.misc,misc.entrepreneurs,misc.industry.pulp-and-paper,rec.woodworking,talk.environment,alt.save.the.earth
>Subject: Re: Planetary Re-Education: HEMP SAVES WORLD
>Date: Mon, 5 Feb 1996 10:59:17 -0800
>Message-ID: <Pine.A32.3.91j.960205094420.130505B-100000 at homer21.u.washington.edu>
>References: <3100DE1C.5D93 at u.washington.edu> <Pine.SUN.3.91.960123001234.6656A-100000 at garcia.efn.org> <4edehn$kip at news.paonline.com> <4eem30$lqe at merlin.delphi.com> <Pine.SOL.3.91.960129222225.14437A-100000 at Hermes.nki.nl> <4elgik$pij at whidbey.whidbey.com> <31111BA2.D4D at connect.com> <4f3a26$il1 at whidbey.whidbey.com>

>Reply to Allan Derickson follows:

Greetings from a U.W. alumnus (B.S. '74, M.F.R '91)!
Thank you for an excellent post and for keeping this thread on (mostly) an
intellectual level.

>Your answer as to where pulp wood comes from is mostly incorrect. 
>....
>....  While it is 
>true that thinnings and and plantations also produce chips for pulp, this 
>is not the only source. In the U.S., pulp chips have been a significant 
>product derived from logging primary forest, in the Tongass or not, based 
>on the "cull" trees and trimmings from lumber mills.  As a forester, you 
>certainly must be familiar with these facts. 

My answer needs some clarification. We need to consider the context of my
argument. My position is that old-growth forests are not cut primarily for the
pulpwood. Yes, pulpwood is gleaned from them, but it is the extraordinary
value of the sawtimber that pressures them to be cut. In tropical areas, I
seriously doubt that the value of pulpwood cause them to be cut. Isn't it
their perceived value for other uses such as agriculture (hemp plantations?)
that is liquidating them? As for the boreal forests, the Tongass deal was
done when pulp values were very low and was justified on the basis of
economic development of the region. Our arguments do not really apply to
that situation.

 I, without a stack of
current references at hand, would not dare to argue with a Ph.D. candidate
on forest ecology, but I do question some of your assumptions on "primary"
versus "secondary" forests. No one seems to regard old-growth forests as
ecological deserts anymore, but it is surprising how often this appellation 
is applied to secondary or managed forests. Particularly in boreal forests,
where I understand that fire return intervals are on the order of 50 to 200
years, tree species are not fire resistant, and growth rates are low, I
wouldn't expect that primary and secondary forests would have to differ that
much. Both the Canadians and the U.S. Forest Service are making major
efforts to adjust management to relect our increased knowledge and preserve
the values you identify most eloquently.


>Logging of primary forest for pulp will continue so long as all the long 
>term benefits of primary forests, known and unknown, are recognized by 
>policy makers. 

May I assume a 'not' was left out here?
The long term values will only be recognized when people put their money
where their mouth is.

>Your arguments, Mr. Derickson, that primary forests are 
>not cut for pulp, and that hemp will not reduce pressure to log 
>old-growth, are not supported in your short post.

Agreed. I think this not the place for detailed references, but a stimulus
for thinking and not simple acceptance of the mouthings of either industry
or environmental hacks.

>Simply signing off as a forester, I presume, by your 
>company name ("Derickson Forestry Services") does not add weight to your 
>assertions in the minds of the educated public.

Agreed. It is not put there, I assure you, for that purpose. Perception colors
much of what we see, think, and believe. I believe I owe it to folks to let
them know where I come from. Com'on, didn't it help you formulate your
post?

> You may dismiss me as another "tree hugger 
>enviro", but not the facts.

Don't be so defensive, David. Go across the hall occasionally and have a beer
with the folks in the silviculture lab. They still do that on Friday afternoons,
don't they?

I work with non-industrial private forest owners in rural areas feeling urban
and suburban pressures. It seems that I and other foresters are fighting a
losing battle trying to convince them that their forests will have value as
forests and not housing developments in the future. The same thing is
happening all across the country. If I can convince them that they or their
heirs can recover some value early in the rotation of their forest (from pulp
thinnings), I'm much more likely to succeed.

> my dissertation is on the 
>influence of thinning on the host selection of the mountain pine beetle 
>in second-growth  ponderosa pine stands.   

I look forward to seeing it.




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