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Comments Recieved at Charleston

image: young hophornbeam leaves


The table below captures the comments collected during the breakout session at the Charleston public meeting. Comments are grouped by major forces of change. Specific subregions of applicability are listed where provided.

  Comment Subregion
Social/Economic/Institutional
  Evaluate need for cooperative, multistate water use policies (NC, SC, GA) NC,SC,GA
Will the agriculture to forest land transition continue (in SC)? SC
Consider forestry laws within the State SC
Basis of agriculture has been forest products, what are the impacts of the loss of these as economic source for SC SC
Assess public disconnect with forests (urbanization)
Evaluate decline (federal, university, & private) in research investment
Evaluate the justification of timber investment in face of increasing land values
Look at State & Private forestry budget; decline in funding/incentives
Look at decline in funding for extension
Assess demographics (age) of logging workforce
Evaluate capacity: harvesting & transport
Evaluate road infrastructure
Evaluate population demographics/dynamics. Those growing up rural vs urban counties getting into forestry regulations
Consider the urbanization of rural America
How much forest land is actually available for forestry (how much less?)
Consider fragmentation/smaller tracts
Consider subsidies: CRP, corn, fallow, longleaf
Consider increased demand for small diameter, driven by subsidies & mandates
Consider Policy: biofuels, farm bill
Evaluate the impact of a wall of small timber coming without a market for it
Consider loss of market for increased quality timber
Consider conservation easements: impacts on management (private entity influence)
Coonsider intergenerational transfer of land (changes in estate tax laws?)
Consider Immigration policy: tree planting & other (private) activities; workforce
Evaluate trend towards tree protection vs tree harvesting
Decreased base of hunters = decreased funding for land acquisition/conservation. Impacts ability to manage land & changes use
Consider lack of knowledge & understanding of heritage in land management
Look at WUI: movement into forest, real and perceived losses due to fire, challenges of fire control in WUI = increased costs, changes in entire approach & systems
Consider carbon credits market
Evaluate population growth/sprawl patterns (especially as related to distance from the coast)
Evaluate management difficulties (fire) as related to demographics of population (and new arrivals)
Assess water usage (drinking vs irrigation). Competition for water in a drought, Lack of understanding: where water comes from
Evaluate the need for active management of longleaf pine
Evaluate pinestraw/tree planting vis a vis contract workforce/immigration policy
Evaluate effects of proposed law in SC: 15% of all energy from non-fossil fuel/natural sources
Consider local groups banding together to protect lands (via conservation easements) but allow for use as a working forest (called “working forest conservation easements”) A solution.
Evaluate Land use planning/zoning. Is this the only way to protect lands?
HBU (higher and better use). What are the factors affecting impacts—location, demand
“It's the loss of the middle class, stupid”
Evaluate productive land use (as impacted by population levels)
Evaluate the ability to purchase, conserve, and manage land
Assess decrease in private property rights
Asses decreased availability of forest land for the “common man”
Land Uses/Timber
  Consider that land costs affect uses; speculation is driving change.
  Evlauate the effects of high land prices on reforestation? On land use?
  Assess industry sell off to TIMO/REITs: what's the effect on management strategy? Management intensity?
  Evaluate effects of ownership change on research support
  Consider parcelization—increasing effects on operability and markets
  Who is going to operate on small scale operations (logging crews)
  How stable is future demand for timber (esp. pulpwood)? Implication on land investors' behavior.
  Consider uncontrolled development without land use planning is reducing availability of timberland—especially leap-frog development (sprawl). Moving outside infrastructure along with annexations.
  Evaluate impact of development on rural incomes with shift from wood products to services
  Evaluate increasing demand for small diameter—OSB, pulpwood
  Evaluate importance of energy markets—demand for residuals may result in competition for raw material between energy and wood products
  What are nutrient implications of increased utilization with energy
  Evaluate value/cultural change with shift in generations. Increased tendency to grow / dispose of forest land (linked to economics)
  Pay attention to shifts in product mix and effects on resources/industry
  Renewable portfolio standard—what are the implications for structure of utilities (vertically integrated operations?)
  Consider environmental pressures against forest practices
  Evaluate shift from dimensional lumber to engineered lumber products
  consider the lack of research funding for developing new products/markets. Use research to help negotiate changes in markets (e.g., housing boom & bust).Forward looking create “soft landing”.Building options for future changes.Focus on enhancing global competitiveness
  Evaluate long-term economic implications of cost-share programs. How can these programs be designed to meet society's goals?
  Assess CRP—thinnings wave has moved through. Now there is a mid-diameter sawtimber glut (related to the need to evaluate cost-share programs)
  Evaluate effects of mandated nenewable energy.
  Consider Regulations, renewable energy requirements (e.g., FL, NC, SC)
  Look at fiber exports?
  Evaluate growth in bioenergy demand (developing now)
  Assess how to respond to natural disasters—fires, hurricanes
  What's the availability of other land for afforestation?
  Evaluate loss of forest land for agriculture (corn—ethanol)
  Evaluate decline in forest land base (no countervailing gains from ag); substantial change with development
  Evaluate effects of changes in product prices on land uses
  Evaluate substitution from wood products to non-wood products (e.g., steel)
  Consider that REIT/TIMO changes are focused especially in coastal plains
  Evaluate export growth – pellets, fuel pulp
  Evlauate effects of increased returns on landowners
  Evlauate European regulatory structure (energy etc.) shifts demand for US products.
Biological
  Consider T&E species—those that are already endangered, and those that will become endangered CP
Consider Pathogens
Consider Gypsy moth (coming to the South)
T&E species may cause restrictions to be placed on the use and management of forests
With climate change species composition will change
Drought will impact species population distribution
Cypress and other spp. swamps are being logged and their ecological function is changed drastically (even if temporarily.) This is happening as droughts allow accessibility, and as new equipment technology makes it possible to harvest swamps.
Consider Invasives in the coastal plain: SPB, cogangrass, Kudzu, anosus root rot (impacted by drought), popcorn tree. Also invasives that may come into ports (like red bay). As changes allow industry equipment to be used over larger areas, they potentially spread invasives over that larger area
Asses biomass. May see an increased us of biomass for energy use (will be demand and market driven).Large scale production of biofuels is unlikely (opinion).Production of biomass over time could lead to depletion of soil nutrition.
Biological/Physical
  Consider management regimes may change as a result of bio/physical factors. Private and public timber land owners will react and anticipate the need for change differently. They may also change if biomass for fuel become more in demand.
Carbon markets may change the interest in forest management planting
Will need good hardwood markets to see better hardwood production.
Coastal plain will not be able to support marketable, high quality hardwood forests; nutrition in coastal plain is not able to support biofuels (not all agreed). Some feelt the most fertile land available is in the south.
Urban sprawl on the coast is growing more rapidly than any where else. It is supplanting the most fertile soils and potential forest and agriculture production. Urban sprawl also has an impact on the water cycle as it relates to forestry. This puts the supply of wood at risk. Forest industry is largest economy in SC. Sprawl puts at risk green space and quality of life associated with forests and wildlife that is here now.
Consider public perception of how public/private land management will affect how the government manages land to match those public expectations.
Physical
  Evaluate changes in levels of reforestation
Consider Sea level rise
Consider Drought
Consider Water availability
There is potential major loss of forests from severe weather (like hurricanes)\
Evaluate Severe weather events. There is potential major loss of forests from severe weather (like hurricanes).Hurricanes change wood use, availability, markets, players and the products. And all this shifts over time. Hurricane Hugo was the advent of runaway prices and urbanization in the coastal plain.
Prescribed burning may be limited for social reasons
As our ability to do prescribed fire is decreased: older successional hardwood forests will increase, We'll see an increase in the hardwood component, The amount of biomass available will increase, We'll see a negative impact on biodiversity, esp. in fire dependent communities
Consider a potential for change in prescribed burn policy—if social will is influenced by the science that supports the value/risks of burning
Recommended Resources
  Strom Thurmond Institute