Forests play a critical role in Oregon’s economy

Oregon has long led the nation in the production of wood building materials and is an innovator in the development of new, engineered wood products.

Businesses in Oregon’s forestry and logging sector employed 9,668 people statewide in 2016 and poured $539 million in payroll into the state’s economy, according to Employment Department data.

In 2016, the latest year for which data is available, 6,327 Oregonians were employed within the private forestry sector, which includes forest nurseries and timber tract operations. Another 3,341 were employed by the state and federal governments.

Forestry and logging typically provide workers with higher-than-average wages and good benefits. In 2017, the average annual wage was $54,200, which 6 percent higher than the average wage of $51,100 for all Oregon employment.

The Oregon Forest Resources Institute counts a total of 61,051 Oregon jobs that were in some way tied to forestry in 2017. Those jobs range from logging to engineering, management and research.

Oregonians are employed in wood products or forestry jobs in every one of the state’s 36 counties, the Oregon Forest Resources Institute reports. And the data shows logging and forestry continue to play a critical role in Oregon’s coastal economy.

Are you or someone you know interested in learning more about a career in forestry? Check out these helpful links: