U.S. Forest Service reported it sold 2.87 billion BF of timber sales (compared to the agency target of 4 billion BF) in fiscal 2021, a decrease from 3.2 billion BF in FY 2020, according to the agency’s Fiscal Year 2023 Budget Justification document. The sold volume was valued at $197 million.
The decrease in sales was primarily due to limited staff capacity and no-bid sales, according to the agency, adding that the COVID-19 pandemic limited the mobility of timber crews, and field work continued to be difficult to accomplish due to the large fire activity across the Western U.S. Many employees that usually work to prepare timber sales were assigned to wildfire suppression and support. Recovery efforts after large fires, including stabilization work and hazard tree removal, necessitated the involvement of the staff who would typically work on preparing and administering timber sales, the agency stated.