Joey Wallace, Domtar forester: As a proud partner of Printing United Alliance, Domtar is pleased to collaborate with a couple of our small forest landowners to plant trees on their timberland tracts in 2024.
Two trees will be planted in honor of every registrant of the Printing United Alliance Expo being held this month in Atlanta.
Take a moment to hear from our small landowners to better understand responsible forestry.
Eric Rhodes, forester for Ross Foundation: I’d just like to say that really, a healthy forest is dependent on healthy markets. I know there’s a lot of talk about “save paper and save a tree,” and really, I believe nothing could be further from the truth. Because without a healthy market, without a product that we can sell, it starts to become a question for us and other landowners, do we need to plant trees back? Or do we need to do something else with this property? Does it need to be developed, because we no longer have a revenue stream from growing timber?
Hit the print button with pride knowing that you’re potentially — in this situation you are planting a forest back with trees we are receiving. But you’re also maybe helping somebody make a decision that this is what we need our property to do. It needs to be in trees, it needs to be in forest.
We’ve gone through already a couple of rotations by most industrial standards just in the life of the foundation. We’re dealing with a land base that’s a fixed land base. We have to return to the same property again and again. If we’re not being responsible with our management, we’re just hurting ourselves, it doesn’t help anybody. So the foundation manages a block of timber that we have to return to on a regular basis, so we have to be responsible for it to expect it to produce in the future.
And I feel like Domtar and other large companies, you can’t just pick up and move a paper mill to a better location. So they’re also returning to the same property, so it just makes sense to be sustainable and to be responsible with the management. And to have landowners do a better job at producing the resources.
Doug Moore, senior vice president, Horizon Capital Partners: I think that the only thing I could really drive home is the importance that people are aware of what we’re doing. That’s clean water, clean air and that we’re positive actors. There aren’t a bunch of chemicals out here.
If we do not effectively steward the resources to the utmost of our ability and the industry as a whole’s ability, in terms of the research we do and the people we reach out to in different areas and try to collaborate and improve the overall landscape and the market, that we’re out of a job. And the resource hasn’t been maintained. That’s also how we drive long-term value.
We’re not the bad guy. This is what, we love to do this. It’s a very nebulous thing to come out here and plant a seedling and say, ‘In 25 years this needs to have a 14-inch bottom and a 6-inch top.’ It’s a labor of love for all of us.
The potential of planting thousands of trees as far as our land base — it’s two trees for every person who goes to the Expo — especially when you track the chain of custody element of that. For those people who might not understand what it takes to farm trees like we’re doing, we can increase awareness that something actually happened from what is to them just going to a conference theoretically.