Ida Storm Recovery Needs Loggers, Markets
Despite more than 4.9 million tons of pine and 67.5 million tons of hardwood timber destroyed over more than 160,000 acres for an impact of $300 million, landowners in southeast Louisiana are struggling to recover from Hurricane Ida that came ashore late August 2021 and caused extensive property damage and flooding. Recovery is difficult for several reasons: lack of manufacturing facilities in the area that can accept salvage wood is a big obstacle—and that’s if landowners can even find a logging contractor to do the work. Making matters worse is much of the most damaged areas are characterized by multiple small landowners (as opposed too more industrial timberland in northwest Loiuisiana, for example).
According to a report by Louisiana Forest Assn.’s Jeff Zeringue, this area of the state has about a third of the logging capacity that it did before Katrina in 2005. Logging storm-damaged wood is also hazardous and requires tracked cutters with pivoting processor heads—not the standard south Louisiana logging setup. Production is also much lower even with the right equipment. One landowner in the report says he will be lucky to salvage 15% of the timber damaged on his land.
Tidewater Equipment Co. has announced the development of a new location in Marianna, Fla., in an old helicopter site roughly 16,500 sq. ft. in the Marianna Airport Commerce Park, that plans to be in operation toward the end of June. This is…
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