Friday ACF update.

Ron Wenrich woodtick at
Fri Oct 24 18:36:54 EST 1997

Joseph Zorzin <redoak at> wrote in article
<3451133E.64A1 at>...
> Don Staples wrote:
> (much edited)
> > As
> > for a definition of
> >        Sustainable Management, this has yet to be defined.
> Easy. Any property under management of a professional forester.

Not so easy.  Many mills who practice cut and run do so with foresters. 
The only thing being sustained is the amount of logs to the mill.  We even
have a "consultant" who buys timber from the landowner (who knows nothing
of price but is very trusting), then turns around and sells the timber. 
Guess who makes a huge profit.  I've seen a bid perspectus - no undesirable
species, and no trees under 18".  Sounds like a high grade job.  He easily
doubles his money on each job.  But, he is a professional forester, in
every sense of the word, i.e. degree, experience.

In Pa, most mills commonly use foresters to purchase timber.  Consultants
and industrial foresters rarely, if ever, write management plans. 
Preliminary inventories are unheard of.  Any tree over 18" is mature, and
must be removed.  All done by professional foresters.  Just because a
professional forester is involved does not guarantee that professional
quality work is being carried out.
> > 
> >        The Tree Farm Director, Bob Simpson, stated that Tree Farm is
> > oldest and largest certification program in the U.S.
> >        For the interim, Tree Farm is observing and fashioning itself to
> > work well with the Sustainable Forestry Initiative.  However, they are
> > trying to keep from becoming a prescriptive program like the SFI and
> > place
> > burdens on their members.
> The Tree Farm program is pretty good. Everyone recognizes the tree farm
> signs which I think have a lot to do with making landowners aware of
> tree farming.

Some mills are using the tree farm system as a sales tool.  Some of the
progressive mills adhere to the system.  Pulpwood thinnings are unheard of
outside of the paper industry.  Most thinnings involve sawtimber only.
> > 
> >        The Forest Landowners Representative, April Hendley, stated that
> > FLA
> > was not in favor of certification due to the costs involved.  They
> > be
> > especially concerned if the program somehow became mandatory for
> > landowners.
> > 
> Cost? It should be trivial. Certification should be no more complicated
> than getting under the Tree Farm Program. It would never be mandatory
> because it's too good an idea; too progressive for the '90's. Rush
> Limbaugh wouldn't like it. But if certification became commonly
> understood by wood product purchasers then some pressure would be on
> forest owners to show their interest in it.

Most landowners don't give a hoot about certification, unless it would mean
a reduction in taxes.  Those that do are already doing, without
certification or tax relief.  Clean and green was used to slow down
development by giving tax relief.  Not all landowners signed up for that,
even in areas that couldn't be developed.  Again, signing up and complying
would be two different animals.


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