Take a quick look around your home or office and take stock of the products made from trees:

  • Your dining room table
  • Your kid’s toy chest
  • The frame for your wedding picture
  • Your bookshelf (and the books on it!)
  • Your desk

And what about the house itself:

  • Dimensional lumber and plywood
  • Window frames
  • Molding
  • Kitchen cabinets
  • Doors

Each of these uses may call for a different type of wood, based on the unique characteristics of the species.  Whether it is the beautiful color and character of your red oak or black cherry furniture, the clear and unwarped yellow poplar (tulip poplar) in your window frames, the strong and durable southern yellow pine (including loblolly, shortleaf, and pitch pines) that make up your dimensional lumber and plywood, or the birch (often yellow birch) veneer on your kitchen cabinets, foresters work to ensure that forests regrow in order to provide a steady, dependable wood supply.  And they do this in such a way as to also provide clean water and valuable wildlife habitat.

Frankly, we don’t want to live in a world without:

  • Wine barrels (white oak)
  • Baseball bats (white ash)
  • Bowling alleys (sugar maple)
  • Marshmallow-roasting sticks (whatever is handy)
  • Bathroom tissue

Do you?

15 - July 2014 580aAll of these wood products can be – or are – made with trees that grow in New Jersey’s forests.  We believe that New Jersey’s forests grow high quality trees, and that being close to end markets allows wood buyers to keep a close eye on our forests to make sure that trees are being replenished. Try visiting forests in Indonesia, Russia, or China to ensure sustainability!  In order to make sure that our words are backed up by third-party verification, over 67,000 acres in New Jersey are certified as sustainable by either American Tree Farm System, Forest Stewardship Council, or Sustainable Forestry Initiative.

Managed, healthy forests are also highly effective carbon sinks.  By keeping New Jersey’s forests healthy and growing, foresters remove CO2 from the atmosphere.  By burning firewood rather than fossil fuels, homeowners, businesses, and public agencies are moving from a carbon-producing to a carbon-neutral position.  Also, by using wood products in long-lived projects instead of metal, concrete, or plastic, the CO2 stored within that wood is effectively sequestered, and the large amounts of energy that would otherwise be needed to make that metal or steel is conserved.