Overview of the Urban Wood Utilization Markets, Obstacles and Opportunities from a State and Regional Perspective
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Overview of the Urban Wood Utilization Markets, Obstacles and Opportunities from a State and Regional Perspective



Overview of the Urban Wood Utilization Markets, Obstacles and Opportunities from a State and Regional Perspective ...

Overview of the Urban Wood Utilization Markets, Obstacles and Opportunities from a State and Regional Perspective

Edith Makra, Illinois EAB Wood Utilization Team | Jessica Simon, Southeast Michigan Resource Conservation & Development Council



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  • emm
  • emm
  • Bandmills, grinder, firewood, energy plant: many options currently exist. Multiple pathways are options from top left corner. Must push to find highest and best use.
  • Jesa
  • Jess
  • emm
  • emm
  • Jess
  • emm
  • Jess
  • Emm or Jess – let’s discuss
  • Edith
  • Jess
  • Jess
  • Discussed under green builidings Jess or emm?
  • emm
  • City president Chris Canning – used trees from his property; made baseball bats for little league
  • Emm or Jess
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Overview of the Urban Wood Utilization Markets, Obstacles and Opportunities from a State and Regional Perspective Overview of the Urban Wood Utilization Markets, Obstacles and Opportunities from a State and Regional Perspective Presentation Transcript

  • Overview of the Urban Wood Utilization Markets Obstacles and Opportunities Edith Makra IL EAB Wood Utilization Team and Metropolitan Mayors Caucus Jessica Simons Southeast MI RC&D Council and The Urbanwood Project
  • Overview ● Full Circle Urban Forestry ● Urban forest product markets – Supply – Demand – Urban Wood Attributes ● From tree to finished products - “links in a chain” ● Urban Wood Businesses ● Creating local wood programs ● Advancing urban wood – state and regional level
  • Trees are valuable over their lifetime
  • After decades of giving…. Is this the best stewardship?
  • Urban Wood Markets: opportunities outweigh challenges Better EAB response Lower disposal costs New wood products Location Diverse partnerships Poor wood markets Full-circle forestry Scale/supply issues Resource stewardship Diverse UF stewards Job creation Short timelines Carbon-smart Transportation Meaningful story Lack of support
  • Wood Products and Markets Lower Value Higher Value Highest Value Firewood Railroad ties Artistic pieces Mulch Landscape timbers Planed lumber Compost Rough-sawn lumber Finished products Biomass fuel (barricades, truck sideboards, etc.) High volumes used Plenty of resource Low processing/skill Lower value (flooring, furniture, etc.) Low volumes used More limited resource High processing/skill Higher value
  • Michigan Processors & Markets
  • Market Example: Twin Cities Cluster Source: Dovetail Partners, 2010
  • Market Example: Oakland University Biomass System
  • Potential Market Driver: Demand for Green Buildings Urban wood = Local and sustainable ● Certifiers drive materials selection ● Most recognized certification: LEED Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design ● Approved wood products (FSC) don’t recognize urban wood BUT: STORY is what matters to customers
  • Green Building Example: Traverwood Library Credit: Architect Magazine
  • Survey – Public Sector Demand for Green Products For Robbinswood Community Wood System Feasibility study • 272 Municipalities Surveyed - 15% participation rate • Analyzed park districts (separate agencies) own survey • Studied „green‟ programs for schools
  • Municipal Demand for Green Products ● 83% are purchasing green Product attributes considered in purchasing – 89% consider recycled materials – 40-50% consider local materials – 13% incentivize LEED building ● Staff most influential in buying decisions ● 52- 67% are part of purchasing coop ● 83% would buy green if more expensive ● Municipalities are best public sector full circle urban forest managers
  • Municipal Example: City of Grosse Pointe Park
  • School Demand for Green Products ● Hottest area for green – US Dept of Education, EPA, White House • Green Ribbon Schools – US Green Building Council • Coalition for Green Schools ● Driven by: – Children‟s health – Desire to teach “environmental literacy” ● 20% of the US population are in schools
  • Turning urban trees into products involves the entire wood use chain ● Arborists – fell trees, harvesting logs ● Sawyers – mill logs into lumber ● Woodworkers – build wood products from lumber ● Intermediaries – specify and sell wood products ● End users – buy finished wood products
  • Arborists first vital link ● Two paths from felling to products – Move one‟s own tree through the chain – Sell or provide logs to sawyers ● Issues in common – – – – Assessment of logs Safe felling Felling & storage to preservelog quality Cost or savings?
  • Sawyers – Primary Wood Products Manufacturers ● Portable band saws: – – – – Flexible services – buy/barter/hourly Nimble with location Willing to mill urban logs Artisan skill – can maximize value ● Drying adds value and quality ● Sawyer lists available in most states
  • Woodworkers – Secondary wood products manufacturers ● Most are unfamiliar with urban wood ● Prefer consistent supply ● Like what urban wood does well! – Green – Unusual species – Character wood ● Woodworker associations are helpful
  • Intermediaries – Specifiers and sellers of products ● Key contacts: – – – – Architects Interior designers Distributors & wholesalers Retailers ● Green certifications would help ● Need to build relationships ● Need more samples to compete with traditional industry
  • End Users – Promoting purchase of products ● Public agencies can lead ● All “links” can advocate ● Users ultimately drive market demand ● Consumers value story ● Great media potential ● Exhibitions very popular
  • All the links can work together! ● Arborist – Village of Wilmette ● Sawyer – Horigan Urban Forest Products ● Woodworker – Bats By Buck ● Intermediary – Village President, Chris Canning ● End User – Wilmette Little League
  • Urban Wood Businesses
  • Market Development Example: Urban Wood: Finding the Highest and Best Use
  • Urbanwood Marketplace Sales Growth Note: 2013 values projected
  • Promoting Urban Wood Community Level ● Know wood availability ● Understand capacity ● Explore products and markets ● Find partners ● Be realistic about logistics
  • Promoting Urban Wood Regional Level Midwest Example ● Southeast Michigan RC&D Council: Nonprofit “hub” ● Network: federal, state, local, nonprofit, academic, private ● Drove tri-state marketing and branding initiative ● Regional meetings created broader network ● Led to formation of Urban Forest products alliance ● Continued regional information sharing..
  • Promoting Urban Wood State Level ● State Urban and Community Forestry Program – Wisconsin – Grant programs – Technical assistance and training ● State Wood Utilization Team – Illinois EAB Wood Utilization Team – Stemmed from EAB readiness planning – Continues ad hoc ● State Forest Action Plan – 4 Midwestern States call for urban wood
  • Promoting Urban Wood National Efforts ● Wood Education Resource Center – Publications, technical assistance, organizing – Conference calls ● In USFS Northeast Area Strategic Plan ● National Partners – Tree Care Industry Association • ANSI Standard for Urban Forest Products – Arbor Day Foundation • Tree City USA Growth Award
  • Join the Conversation ● Quarterly Conference Calls ● Join UFPA on Linked In www.na.fs.fed.us/werc www.linkedin.com/ search groups
  • Questions? Jessica Simons jessica.simons@semircd.org www.urbanwood.org Edith Makra emakra@mayorscaucus.org www.illlinoisurbanwood.org This work has been supported by An equal opportunity provider and employer