WFPA members are committed to advancing sustainable forestry in Washington State to provide forest products and environmental benefits for the public.

Tall wood buildings are imminent in the U.S.

2014-07-17 Ashley Bach

The momentum behind the rise of tall wood buildings around the world is impossible to stop. The positive developments just keep coming. A Yale University study showing the massive environmental benefits behind wood construction. The U.S. federal government spending $1 million to train architects and developers about the benefits of large wood buildings, and another $1 million on a design competition to "demonstrate the architectural and commercial viability" of using wood for high-rise construction.

Tall wood buildings going up around Europe and Canada. One of the world's leading architecture firms, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, saying that even larger wood buildings - hundreds of feet tall - are technically possible, environmentally friendly and financially competitive. The Pacific Northwest becoming a potential hub for wood buildings in the U.S., with an Idaho timber company becoming the first to sell cross-laminated timber (the key component in large wood buildings) in America.

But what hasn't happened until now is the construction of a tall, modern wood building in the United States. 

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Forest collaboratives need willing partners and mutual goals

2014-07-11 Ashley Bach

We've written a lot over the years about forest collaboratives, in which local and federal leaders, along with timber companies and conservation groups, band together to reach common solutions. In an age of lawsuits and federal forest mismanagement, these collaboratives could be the future of forestry.

When even the New York Times op-ed page calls for more active management of our country's wilderness, it's clear that the time is ripe for the disparate groups that care about the state of our forests to start collaborating.  

The Capital Press this week has a great story exploring the challenges and benefits of several collaboratives in Washington and Oregon. 

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Diary of a Working Forest: Biomass

We already know that the private forest land in Washington State plays a vital role in the carbon cycle. Now with biomass fuel we can make use of these working forests for another carbon positive process, power generation. Biomass boilers use harvest and milling by products to generate steam as an alternative to fossil fuels.