"If the forest are so depleted then why is the price for timber at nearly
an all time low? Old growth forest that are gone will remain gone.
Forest can be regenerated but the old is gone forever.
What is the true story on forest resources? Lumber and timber prices
are determined by supply and demand with not too much govt. regulation
of prices. So what is the true story of supply???"
David, I think this issue belongs in the same class of questions as "What is
the most cost-effective way to deal with whales?" The answer to that
question is "Catch them all, eat them and go catch something else". Same
Dr Suess offered the best anecdotal account of Once-Ler economics in The
There are substantial plantation forest resources growing in many parts of
the world, but the ecological problem arises from regarding old-growth
forests as consisting of volumes of timber, and regarding plantation
forests as equivalent to old forests. There is more to life than that, whole
ecologies are more important than that, this ecological value may be
demonstrable to some extent in macroeconomics, but not in terms of
microeconomic values or on company books. The laws of supply and demand do
not prevent firms competing to deplete a resource as swiftly as possible.
Indeed, if you observe the approach of greedy children to a declining stock
of popcorn, I think you have a pretty good analogy for the approach of
timber merchants to declining timber stocks.
Forests are also in decline in parts of the world because they have been
choking. Any satellite map comparing 1970 with 1990 will show areas
involved. Any number of documentaries about the area where Germany, Poland
and the Czech Republic meet shows worst case versions of what is down the
street. The state of forests is an index of the depravity [using that term
in its full sense] of the species.
Choose the plastic bag, not the paper bag. The plastic may be more
renewable - see http://www.people.cornell.edu/pages/tg21/
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