Whatcom Women in Timber Tour
by Stephanie Wiley
June 7th 2019
The Friday before the Deming Log Show weekend, the Whatcom Women in Timber offer a tour of the Timber Industry here in Whatcom County. I am ashamed to say, as a native of Whatcom County, I have never been to the Deming Log Show, and I definitely know very little about the timber industry in general. So when I had the opportunity to go on this tour, I jumped at the chance. One of the best parts of my job with the Chamber of Commerce is the opportunity that I am provided to learn more about the many industries that make up our business community and economy here in Whatcom County.
Before this tour, when I thought of the timber or logging industry, I would picture the animated movie from the 90’s “FernGully: The Last Rainforest”. If you haven’t ever seen it, the logging company is very clearly the villain, ravaging the beautiful forest with its evil, monstrous machinery. Now, I obviously understood that this was a kid’s movie, but I really did not have any other frame work for how the industry actually worked. Which made the Timber Tour that much more valuable to me.
As a part of this tour, there were representatives from all aspects of the industry, who worked very closely together to make sure that their work is done in a healthy and safe way for people and the environment. I was impressed to see land owners (both private and commercial), regulatory agency representatives, logging company owners, mill owners, and many more, presenting on the tour. Every decision made throughout the entire process is done within many federal and state regulations that help to protect wildlife and ensure that this natural resource continues to be viable for generations to come. If you are interested in more information on these regulations, I would recommend that you check out the Department of Natural Resources information on Forest Practices. Another great resource is the Washington Forest Protection Association and their Forest Policy.
We live in an area abundantly blessed with rich forests, soil, and wildlife, and the timber industry is an incredible part of our economy because of it. This timber tour was fascinating and gave me such a huge insight into how the industry actually works. I would highly recommend this tour to anyone who is curious about the industry, so mark the Friday before the Deming Log Show on your calendar for 2020, and don’t miss out!