The lumber industry in the US is currently employing half a million people directly, with additional 1.6 million holding jobs directly dependent on it. It is producing more than 30 billion board feet annually, firmly placing the US as the world’s single largest producer and consumer of lumber and contributing as much as 4% of the US GDP.
The rich expanses of American forests are more than just natural landmarks. They are more than source of revenue and they are far from invulnerable. Ever-expanding urbanization paired with deforestation poses a clear and present danger to this invaluable natural resource, to the very thing that directly influences the quality of air we breathe, purity of water we drink and the health and wellbeing of our children.