Type of Event: Study Tour
Topic: Industrial Forest Management
Organization: Weyerhauser Company
Location: Mount St. Helens, Washington
Hosts: Mark Sheldahl / Forester, Molly Rasor / Inventory Forester
International Fellows: Jeen Bunnik ( The Netherlands), Meei-ru Jeng (Taiwan), Xuejiao Li (China), Thammarat Mettanurak (Thailand), Tuan Manh Phan (Vietnam)
WFI Staff: Shadia Duery / International Fellowship Manager, Vivian Bui / Professional Programs Coordinator
Special Guests: Jes Munk Hansen (WFI Fellowship alumni) and sons, Andreas and Nicolas Munk Hansen
On this day we visited Weyerhauser Company's 440,000-acre tree farm near Mount St. Helens in Washington. Weyerhauser Company is the largest landowner in the world and one of the last vertically integrated timber companies, owning both timberlands and manufacturing facilities. It is a publicly traded, Fortune 500 company whose investors are interested in institutional, long-term investments. The company's southwestern Washington location is unique, as the mild climate allows timber products to be produced and delivered to clients year-round. Weyerhauser produces 50-70% of its own lumber consumption, roughly 24 Mbf per acre. The company produces 22 different log sorts, with smaller-dimension logs staying in the domestic market due to local sawmill capacity. Despite its high production rate, Weyerhauser harvests only 2-3% of its Northwest timberland each year. This low percentage ensures that the company will maintain a sustainable harvest over the long term. Weyerhauser adheres to state "green-up" regulations which takes into account the aesthetics of timber harvest and limits contiguous clearcut sites to less than 240 acres. Additionally, the company is required to maintain a 128 feet wide fish buffer on each side of every fish-bearing stream, thus leaving about 15% of the area non-loggable. After harvest, Weyerhauser leaves at least 5 trees remaining per acre with a maximum spacing of 800 feet for wildlife habitat. These environmental practices allows Weyerhauser to maintain ecological sustainability in combination with commercial needs.
|(Left to right) Thammarat Mettanurak, Shadia Duery, Jes Munk Hansen, Andreas Munk Hansen, Nicolas Munk Hansen, |
Jeen Bunnik, Meei-ru Jeng, Xuejiao Li, Mark Sheldahl, Molly Rasor, Tuan Manh Phan
Click here for more information about Weyerhauser Company.