Wood Product Development and Utilization is Focus of Colorado State Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management Project

The Colorado State Forest Service, an agency of the Warner College of Natural Resources at Colorado State University, and the Colorado State Office of the Bureau of Land Management, have entered a multiple-year agreement to investigate and develop wood- product utilization and marketing opportunities that will enhance uses for Colorado’s piñon-juniper forests.

Many of Colorado’s forests have received significant attention regarding hazardous fuels, forest health and wood utilization; however, the potential economic value of wood products from Colorado’s piñon-juniper forests remains relatively unknown. As is the case with other forest types in Colorado, experts are concerned about the health of piñon-juniper forests, which face increasing threats from wildfire, energy development and public recreation. Active forest management in piñon-juniper systems will contribute to the heath and resiliency of these forest communities and enhance effective utilization of wood.

Research scientists and faculty members affiliated with the Colorado Wood Utilization and Marketing Program of the Colorado State Forest Service will work with the BLM to assist natural resource managers, contractors and businesses in identifying ways to enhance the ecological and economic opportunities affiliated with piñon-juniper management on Colorado BLM lands.

“This project will continue a successful effort initiated by the Colorado State Forest Service and BLM in 2005,” said Jeff Kitchens, BLM forestry lead in Colorado. “In these tough economic times, the BLM and CSFS are dedicated to furthering forestry-related economic opportunities in Colorado, as well as promoting sound management of our ecosystems.”

“The Colorado State Forest Service actively seeks opportunities to work with our federal land management agency partners to promote responsible forest management that benefits the land and results in greater economic efficiencies,” said Joe Duda, Forest Management Division supervisor for the Colorado State Forest Service and director of the Colorado Wood Utilization and Marketing Program. “This joint venture presents us with a unique opportunity to examine the link between forest management and efficient utilization of wood resources on a broad scale, and we look forward to this cooperative endeavor with the BLM.”

For more information on the Piñon-Juniper Marketing and Utilization Project, visit www.csfs.colostate.edu/cowood/ or contact Tim Reader, CSFS utilization and marketing forester, at 980.247.5250 or treader@lamar.colostate.edu.