Montana Lumber Industry in Dire Straights (video within) Forest Health Massive Issue

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The lumber industry is in deep trouble in the sate of Montana. Read more below. Video footage within.

Bozeman, Mont — The lumber industry in Montana has gone through rapid changes. 33 lumber mills have closed in the last 31 years.

“We were about 7000 people within that industry. But we have lost over 4000 in that last 30 years as well. So, but we’re still here. I mean, that’s the good news,” Montana Wood Products Association Executive Director Julia Altemus said.

Sean Steinebach with Sun Mountain Lumber up in Deer Lodge says there are not many lumber mills left.

“But really the ones that have the ability to really make an impact. There are about five or six of us left,” Sun Mountain Lumber outreach forester Sean Steinebach said.

This week there was another closure. R-Y Timber confirmed it will close after it was damaged in a fire last week — the second in just six months.

The Livingston community voiced their sadness as roughly 70 workers will be laid off.

“All of the jobs that they have mean a lot, it’s meant a lot for 25 years here to Livingston,” Leslie Feigel, CEO of the Livingston Area Chamber and Visitor Center said.

Going forward workers hope the lumber industry can survive, as they believe the work they do is needed.”

You can read the rest of the article here. (Video is included within as well). by Jonathan May NBC Montana

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