New report outlines the impact that industrial logging has on our climate and the need for change if we are going to address the climate crisis; Governor Cooper can ensure his climate legacy by taking action and stopping further forest destruction
A new report from the Center for Sustainable Economy and Dogwood Alliance puts a spotlight on North Carolina, and shows just how big of a climate catastrophe logging is in the state. The report finds that industrial logging is the state’s third most carbon intensive sector, just after electricity and transportation and for the most part goes completely unaccounted for. For example, North Carolina’s recently released Greenhouse Gas Inventory fails to accurately account for a significant amount of emissions from logging, forest degradation, and the biomass industry.
Forests are a critical climate solution. They store enormous amounts of carbon in their trees and soils, and buffer communities from climate impacts like flooding and storms. With Hurricane season here and North Carolina already witnessing the flooding, property destruction, and loss of life from Hurricane Dorian, this is now more critical than ever. But they are being destroyed and degraded at an alarming rate — and even shipped overseas to be burned for electricity. The US South is ground zero for destructive industrial logging, and North Carolina is the largest wood pellet exporter in the country.
“Our latest research is conclusive proof that now more than ever, we need to be protecting forests, not cutting them down and burning them,” said Danna Smith, Executive Director of Dogwood Alliance. “Governor Cooper should see this as evidence that forest destruction in North Carolina is contributing to the climate emergency that must be addressed. If North Carolina can turn their serious logging problem around, it will send a huge signal to leaders across the region and around the world.”