MISSOULA, Mont. - 700,000 acres of Montana national forests burned in this summer's wildfires. The Montana Wood Products Association (MWPA) is planning to salvage about 30,000 of those acres, MWPA's executive director Julia Altemus told hundreds of people Tuesday.
 
The Missoula Area Chamber of Commerce event “Rising From the Ashes” was packed with people there to learn about the impact of 2017’s fires and how to prevent similar destruction in the future.
 
Altemus said the wood products industry is hoping to access timber that could be harvested this summer, as certain types of trees begin to lose their value over time.
 
“We’ve been working very closely with the Forest Service about the filters that they develop, as far as slope and intensity of the fire, and whether or not any of that timber is salvageable. Are there roads? Is it in a suitable base? Is there a mill close by so that they can take advantage of the timber?” she said.
 
In a statement, project managers said they plan to harvest dead, dying, and diseased timber, and cut down hazardous trees along roadways and plant tree seedlings.

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