Wood's Latest Move: from Carbon Neutral to Climate Smart Video, 59 minutes

Watch this Premium Content Video!

Join Now - $19.95/mo

Already a premium member?
Log in now

Firm or campus member?
Click here

Wood products are widely considered to be inherently “carbon neutral.” The current surge of interest in mass timber was spurred by this belief.

But could scaling up our demand for wood actually make climate change worse?

It’s a huge risk. Our forests are a massive carbon bank and a critical climate buffer, and they’re already under threat from wildfires, pests, and other accelerating climate impacts. If we’re going to start using a lot more wood in buildings, we need to think hard about where that wood is going to come from and how it will be harvested. If we focus too much on a single metric, we don’t learn those things.

Enter climate-smart forestry.

The people working to define this concept are focused on a broad, holistic assessment of a wood product’s climate impacts—not just its embodied carbon. That means a big emphasis on healthy and biodiverse ecosystems that promote resilience, build in adaptation, and support the small rural communities that depend on these forests’ existence.

In this webinar, you’ll hear from people who are:
  • Finding the sweet spot where forest regeneration and logging intersect

  • Unlocking local supply chains by building trust in unlikely places and asking for information in new ways

  • Carrying on Indigenous traditions and forestry practices to provide products that sustain their communities

  • Applying novel forestry models to optimize the dynamic interplay of carbon storage and economics

Afterward, you will be able to:
  • Consider all aspects of sustainability—economic, social, and environmental—when vetting and sourcing wood products.

  • Explain the importance of healthy, thriving, intact forests to our global climate future.

  • Articulate multiple ways that climate-smart stewardship can make forests more resilient to climate impacts while also producing timber.

  • Appreciate the complex dynamics and interdependencies among many different systems and impacts associated with wood products, like rural communities and cultures; forest biodiversity and resilience; and local and global economies.


Katrina is a logger, sawyer, and ecological consultant. She applies her background in wildlife biology and land conservation in support of local woodsheds that center regenerative timber harvests and thriving small business ecosystems. Katrina trials a lot of potential solutions via Timberdoodle Farm, the business she runs with her husband.


Jacob Dunn’s recent professional trajectory has gone all in on exploring the sustainability of mass timber. His work in this realm centers primarily around transparent procurement impacts and wood’s impact on local ecology, regional economies, and carbon emissions. Whether Jacob is simulating building physics with computational design, collaborating with universities on research initiatives, or working on new life-cycle-analysis tools for mass timber, his goal is to help redefine the relationship between our buildings and the land and communities they come from. 

Steve is a Yakama Indian Nation Tribal member and currently with Sustainable Northwest. He has also served as the General Manager of Yakama Forest Products, Renewable Resource Manager for Yakama Power, and a Forester for The Yakama Nation.  Steve strives to continue to pass on opportunities, both cultural and economic, to his people and future generations.


Jennifer’s areas of expertise include the science of climate change impacts on forest ecosystems, climate-smart approaches to forest management, and the use of wood for lower-carbon building construction. She leads NEFF’s work to develop a regional forest bioeconomy that benefits communities, our climate, and our forests. Jennifer has degrees in forestry and environmental management, and she is an SAF Certified Forester.