Cities account for the greatest use of lumber. Houses and businesses all require much lumber to build, lumber that comes from natural forests. A city-owned forest is a way for cities to offset their use of lumber by actually growing some of their own. It can also provide a source of income for a city and a way to turn wastewater into revenue. And then there are carbon credits. This is not a new idea, the City of Arcata has owned the Arcata Community Forest for years. We have encouraged the City of Sebastopol to carefully evaluate Arcata’s operation as a model for Sebastopol. We also directed the city to potential funding sources.
Graton Community Forest Project:
In January of 2012 Forest Unlimited planted redwoods at the Graton Community Services Wastewater Treatment Plant. These trees will be watered with nutrient-laden water from the plant and will grow faster than normal. These trees will eventually be sustainably harvested to offset trees harvested elsewhere but used by Graton residents. Sales of the logs will also provide income to the district and turn wastewater into an asset. This reduces the pressure on natural forests while still provided needed lumber.