A Wealth in the Forest
Forests cover nearly half of the land in Kentucky and provide many economical and environmental benefits. Trees are renewable, natural resources that are harvested for timber and wood resources. Every single county in the
Commonwealth contributes to Kentucky’s $14 billion forest and wood products industry that supports the jobs of more than 60,000 people.
The most popular trees harvested for saw logs are black walnut, white oak, red oak, ash and yellow poplar. The
white oak, left, dominates Kentucky wood exports in the form of oak barrels for aging alcohol.
The Kentucky Division of Forestry works to protect, conserve and enhance the forest resources of the Commonwealth. As a means of meeting their mission, the division offers a variety of programs and services ranging from landowner assistance and master logger training to forest health protection and wildland fire management.
Paper production and finishing brings more money to Kentucky than any other wood-dependent industry. Harvesting lower quality trees for paper helps keep forests healthy.
Logging, solid wood manufacturing such as lumber and cabinets, and wood residues (mulch and sawdust) are also
important economic engines for Kentucky.
Forests for Healthy Ecosystems and Fun!
Environmental and cultural benefits of forests include ecosystem services such as cleaner air and water, carbon sequestration, biodiversity, and wildlife habitat, not to mention providing Kentuckians and thousands of visitors with recreational opportunities and aesthetic beauty.