Loss of paper mill is a loss for forests, too

By Andy Tait, EcoForesters
The Mountaineer
May 23, 2023
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US East

CANTON, North Carolina — The closing of the paper mill in Canton is a major loss for its 1,100 employees and a shock to the area’s economy. The ripple effects also make it very bad news for sustainable forestry in the mountains. …While historically some of the supply chain demands necessary to support these industries negatively impacted overall forest health, the paper mill’s use of only low-grade and small-diameter wood created opportunities for sustainable and beneficial forest management. …A sustainable timber harvest usually has to remove lower quality trees to let in enough sun so that a young stand of new trees can grow vigorously and compete in good conditions to develop into a healthy future forest. With no market for low quality trees, these less well adapted trees will now be left even more frequently and will become our future forests.

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