Common misconceptions about timber harvesting
August 16, 2022

Many of the misconceptions about timber harvesting come from an environmentally conscientious perspective. People worry that the timber and logging industry is destroying natural resources by clear-cutting large woodland areas, leveraging the planet’s future for immediate but short-lived profits.

If you’re a land owner with standing timber, you may have questions about the best way to use forested lands that are beneficial not only for you but for the environment.

Responsible timber harvesting is a way to not only support the costs associated with land ownership but also act as a steward of the land. In this blog post, we’re dispelling some of the most common misconceptions about timber harvesting.

Undiscovered wilderness of unimaginable beauty. Light is a servant as it illuminates the people and objects we want to see, but fog serves the light by making it a visible feature of the landscape. Light was tangible this morning.

Clear cutting is the standard method of timber harvesting.

It’s no wonder this became such a popular misconception. In the early days of the environmentalism movement, footage of forests bulldozed was used to demonstrate mindless consumption of natural resources. However, clear cutting is used at the discretion of environmental professionals and isn’t the standard method of timber harvesting.

Some saplings, such as Douglas fir, require direct sunlight that’s not often available in unmanaged woodlands. Clear cutting is necessary to enable the young trees to grow.

However, in most cases, loggers are selective about which trees to cut down, making choices based on the property owner’s goals and what’s best for the land.

The U.S. timber industry is cutting down more trees than are growing.

For environmentally conscientious individuals, it’s natural to be pessimistic about the planet’s future. Many people imagine the future as an apocalyptic wasteland, where the timber industry has stripped the land of all trees and natural growth. However, loggers are business people who wouldn’t make decisions in the present that will put them out of business in the future.

The timber industry plants more trees than it cuts down.

  • The softwood growth-to-harvest ratio is 2:1.
  • The hardwood growth-to-harvest ratio is 2.5:1
  • The total acreage of standing timber has increased 18 percent in the last 50 years

When you work with loggers to harvest timber on your land, they’ll help you develop a sustainable growth plan that enables your land to continue to be profitable in the future.

Timber harvesting harms the environment.

It certainly feels counterintuitive, but responsibly deployed timber harvesting can benefit the environment. Certain trees may grow faster and larger than the surrounding species, blocking out sunlight and consuming all the resources in the area.

By harvesting your land’s timber, you can increase biodiversity and create natural habitat for birds and animals.

Responsibly harvested forests are healthy and have diverse plant life. They can be used for hunting, hiking, camping, horseback riding, and more.

Other building materials are more sustainable.

Many people believe it’s more environmentally friendly to use steel and aluminum to build. However, mining minerals to make steel and aluminum is far more destructive to the environment, sometimes destroying entire landscapes with strip mining.

Trees are a renewable resource. Many species grow quickly, and with managed woodlands, they often replenish themselves without additional intervention. Selective timber harvesting is far less damaging to the environment than mining and refining metal.

Get a free quote for timber harvesting from Phoenix Mat across Indiana and the Midwest.

We are a licensed timber harvesting company working with landowners in Indiana and across the Midwest to provide the highest return possible for standing timber. Phoenix Mat produces high-quality wood products such as crane mats for enterprises in the energy sector, including gas, oil, and wind. Because we operate from timber harvesting to production, we’re able to offer unparalleled prices to land owners.

Reach out to the Phoenix Mat to learn more about our services and range and get a free quote for timber harvesting.

Image of a forest that's benefitted from timber harvesting in Indiana.