Clear Cutting Pros and Cons List

The process of clearcutting, sometimes referred to as clear felling, is a major tactic used by companies in the logging business where they go through an entire stretch of timber and cut every single tree in the area at once.

There is definitely a considerable amount of controversy that surrounds the indiscriminate cutting involved in clearcutting, but the timber industry continues to contend that it is an efficient and effective means of not only harvesting timber but also replanting new forests as well. Here is a quick breakdown of the pros and cons of clearcutting.

List of Pros of Clearcutting

1. The financial benefits of clearcutting are very difficult to ignore, not only to the logging company that is able to come in and clear out a tremendous amount of timber efficiently but also for consumers that purchase timber products later down the supply line.

2. Those that invest or own timber companies that clear-cut are going to see a big boost in their profitability with a reduction in their expenses, and many of these companies pass along considerable savings to those in the timber/lumber businesses as well. The savings intern gets passed along to consumers.

3. Increased water flow to regions that are clear-cut is another big benefit and pro of this practice. Clearcutting improves soil water retention, streamflow, and overall water accumulation from storms – all of which can rebuild ecosystems that had a difficult time otherwise supporting so many water hungry trees.

List of Cons of Clearcutting

1. On the flip side of things, there are distinct drawbacks to clearcutting.

2. The biggest one has to be the major impact that clearcutting has on the environment and not just from a plant life perspective. Plenty of different species of birds and animals depend on forests for their habitat, and changes to the forest – especially wholesale changes like clearcutting and entire swath of land – completely reshapes the resources that these living animals depend so heavily upon.

3. When combined with the loss of recreational/environmental land for human use as our world gets more and more developed, a loss of forests that may be hundreds or even thousands of years old that would take at least that long to replace, you can easily see why so many people are against clearcutting – especially those that have no real financial benefit to move forward with this kind of practice.

There is definitely a balance between the benefits and disadvantages of clearcutting and hopefully we have been able to shine a little bit of light on both sides of this topic.