RALEIGH, N.C. -- The Southeast Urban Wood Exchange is enrolling a growing number of forest and wood product professionals who want to put urban tree removals to their highest possible use.

UrbanWoodExchange.org is a new clearinghouse for businesses ranging from professional tree care and removal services through sawyers, kiln dryers and lumber suppliers to connect and expand local urban wood networks. The exchange features a searchable database that makes it easier for businesses to find potential urban wood partners in their area.

North Carolina has served as the pilot project of the new website created to encompass the 13 states located within the U.S. Forest Service Southern Region 8. Already dozens of businesses throughout North Carolina including have posted business and product listings on the exchange.

Underwritten through a grant from the U.S. Forest Service, qualified businesses can list their products and services for free by logging onto UrbanWoodExchange.org. Product listings include cut logs, milled lumber and firewood/chips. service listings include arborists, sawyers, kiln operators and lumber sellers. 

An underlying mission of the Southeast Urban Wood Exchange is helping to facilitate the highest and best possible use of community trees at the end of their service. These trees are felled due to old age, insect infestation, storm damage, utility excavation and other circumstances. They are never meant to be removed solely for their wood value.

“Not every tree that is removed in the urban forest can yield lumber,” said Nancy Stairs, Urban Forestry Program Coordinator of the North Carolina Forest Service (NCFS). “Yet, too many trees that could be milled are ending up in a landfill. The Southeast Urban Wood Exchange aims to help divert as many logs as possible and feasible from the waste stream by promoting the opportunity to convert them into value-added products. In some cases that means lumber or slabs, in others the best possible use is firewood or mulch. In any regard, better utilizing this resource is not only good for the environment, but for growing local economies. See http://UrbanWoodExchange.org.