Timber salvage economics
Timber salvage is commonly done following natural disturbances, to recover some value from damaged forests. Decision making about salvage, however, is affected by ownership objectives, the nature of the damage agent, site factors, and the strength of the local timber market. For profit-maximizing landowners, salvage decisions must balance the cost of harvesting operations in difficult conditions with the revenue obtainable from damaged timber. On public forest lands, salvage decision-making is further complicated by the fact that managers need to consider trade-offs between the net value of timber extracted and the impact of salvage activities on a suite of ecosystem services that are valued by people. This chapter describes an economic framework for evaluating timber salvage, describes the role of government in both private and public salvage efforts, and provides empirical and simulation evidence of its impacts on market segments and individuals.