Rodrigo Arriagada, Fred W. Cubbage, Karen L. Abt, Robert J. Huggett
Year Published:

Cataloging Information

Fire & Economics
Fuel Treatments & Effects

NRFSN number: 8172
FRAMES RCS number: 7512
Record updated: May 24, 2018

ANNOTATION: The costs for harvesting timber for forest fire fuel reduction purposes were estimated for 12 states in the West. These simulation inputs were used to estimate average costs for 12,039 Forest inventory and Analysis plots in the West, and then that FRCS output was used develop regression equations that estimated costs as a function of small, medium, and large size trees per acre, as well as slope. Ground-based mechanical whole tree harvesting systems were cheapest in the areas where they could be used, with a mean cost of $620 per acre. The other three ground-based systems had mean costs ranging from $958 to $1,627 per acre. Cable yarder systems mean costs were much more expensive, at $2,794 and $3,535 per acre. The results do indicate that fuel reduction harvests in the West are expensive, and provide magnitudes of these costs that can be used for planning and budgeting purposes for landowners and forestry professionals.


Arriagada, Rodrigo A.; Cubbage, Frederick W.; Abt, Karen Lee; Huggett Jr., Robert J. 2008. Estimating harvest costs for fuel treatments in the west. Forest Products Journal. 58(7/8): 24-30.

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