Senators introduce wood buildings bill

Senators Debbie Stabenow (MI) and Mike Crapo (ID) introduced a bill yesterday focused on various components of tall wood buildings. The Timber Innovation Act (S. 2892) is designed to help accelerate research, development and construction of wood buildings in the United States.

New England Forestry Foundation, along with over 75 organizations such as The American Wood Council, American Forest Foundation, and Binational Softwood Lumber Council, expressed their strong support of the bill.

Senator Stabenow stated in a press release, “Wood construction is a winner for our rural economies and for our environment…Our bill helps drive a new market for forest products – keeping loggers at work in the woods and helping to sustain rural communities.  At the same time, using wood for construction reduces carbon pollution and gives private landowners an economic incentive to keep their land forested, instead of parceling it up for development.”

In their press release, the American Forest Foundation explains that the bill would:

  • Establish performance driven research and development program for advancing tall wood building construction in the United States;
  • Authorize the Tall Wood Building Prize Competition through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) annually for the next five years;
  • Create federal grants to support state, local, university and private sector education, outreach, research and development, including education and assistance for architects and builders, that will accelerate the use of wood in tall buildings; and
  • Authorize technical assistance for USDA, in cooperation with state foresters and state extension directors (or equivalent state officials), to implement a program of education and technical assistance for mass timber applications.

A copy of the Timber Innovation Act along with a list of the 75 supporters are available.

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