Between the mill closure in Coos Bay, downsizing in Forest Grove, and the lively cap and trade discussions, there has been a renewed interest and focus on the timber industry in Oregon. Our office has fielded nearly a dozen requests recently to speak about the industry, historical changes and the outlook. As such, I have fully updated and expanded our office’s Historical Look at Oregon’s Wood Products Industry which we originally published in 2012 and last updated a couple years ago. See those posts for a more complete summary of the industry’s history. An updated full set of slides are at the bottom of this post, but first I wanted to re-up some work that we have touched on a few times over the years.
There’s no question that the loss of good-paying jobs has a big, negative impact on a regional economy. The question is what comes next? The answer depends.