First Senate Speech:
Problems Facing Forest Industry in Oregon and the West
April 12, 1967
Congressional Record, 9261 - 9266
Mr. HATFIELD. Mr. President, when I came to the Senate early this year, I did so with the thought that I would begin my term by listening and observing for some time before speaking-but recent events make it necessary that I speak now.
I am addressing myself to the Senate, as I believe this body should be apprised of one of the most significant problems facing my State and other Western States in which the economy is inextricably tied to land and natural resources.
Most of the lumber, plywood, and other wood products manufacturing plants in the West, now depend, for the most part, upon federally owned timber for logs—the raw material necessary to sustain their operations.
The ever-increasing demands for logs from Federal lands for domestic and foreign use has caused abnormally high prices for this log supply.
The health of the forest industry in Oregon, which has one-fifth of the timber resources of this Nation, has a direct bearing on only on the economy of my State and the prosperity of its citizens—it also has a direct bearing on the economy and prosperity of this entire Nation.
The tree is the source of many things. Logs are the raw material that provide the lumber for homes, schools, churches—for paper, containers, and more than 4,000 items which contribute so much to the pleasure and well-being of our citizens wherever they work and live—whether in the crowed cities here in the East, on rural farms and ranches, or in small communities throughout this Nation.
I am bringing this situation facing the timber industry to the attention of the Senate for another reason. The executive branch of Government has apparently refused to accept the responsibility for actions required to solve some of these problems and has demonstrated its indifference to its economic impact.
Failure on the part of the administration to act, its tendency to postpone, to drift, and to settle for consensus rather for specific solutions, is at the root of the problems facing Oregon’s forest industry.
For many months the forest and homebuilding industries have had to bear more than their fair share of the results of the fiscal policies and manipulations of the present administration. As the log supply and price problem become more aggravated, there will be more lumber and plywood mills forced out of business in Oregon and the West unless definite corrective measures are soon applied.
The time for action to solve the problems facing the forest industry in Oregon and the West is past due.
The existing high cost of logs from Federal lands in Oregon has, in itself, become a serious problem, and these high prices do not stem from a physical lack of log resources as much as from Government practices which unduly limit their availability to the market.
Even as high interest rates and lack of mortgage moneys this past year drove the cost of home financing beyond the reach of the average family—a situation which I am happy to report is beginning to change for the better—the administration continued programs which drove still higher the price of Government-controlled timber in Oregon and the West.
While I was Governor of Oregon, I became seriously concerned with the situation facing the State’s forest industry, as well as the inequity in Federal Government administration of the same resource as between the several States, and I engrossed this concern directly to the President.
In that letter written last October, I pointed out that the most serious problems facing Oregon’s forest industry related to:
First. An alltime high cost of logs from Federal lands in Oregon:
Second. Policies concerning allowable cut which are inconsistent and inadequate;
Third. The need for faster development of primary access roads in the 13 national forest in Oregon; and
Fourth. The need for some concrete action at the Federal level to relieve the high cost of the Federal log supply in Oregon resulting from the impact of log exports to Japan.
In that same letter to the President, I offered four specific recommendations to ease the timber problems just outlined. These were:
First. That the President direct a review, at the executive level, of the philosophies and policies of Federal agencies as they affect the control and administration of the same types of federally owned timberlands in different States;
Second. That the President request the Secretaries of Agriculture and Interior to speed up reviews now underway within their agencies aimed at increasing the regulated annual allowable cuts from Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management timberlands in Oregon—also that these agencies put up for sale, without delay, the additional 469 million board feet of unregulated cut in thinnings and mortality salvage the agencies were then capable of selling last year over and above their regulated annual allowable cuts;
Third. That the President direct that the Federal budget for fiscal 1968 include funds enough to complete, with the least possible delay, the underdeveloped primary access roads in the national forests in Oregon; and
Fourth. That the President arrange for the earliest possible high-level, decisionmaking conference on log exports between the appropriate representatives of the Governments of Japan and the United States, along with the Governors of Oregon, Washington, and Alaska, to discuss candidly—and in a spirit of cooperation—the problems for some and the benefits to others from log exports to Japan and to work toward solutions which will satisfy all involved or affected without decreasing the balance of trade between countries, and without imposing any Government interference on private industry trading.
My letter to the President of October 1966 was never acknowledged. Therefore, after arriving in Washington, and when the situation had worsened and more men had lost their jobs, I again called this problem to his attention. I received a letter dated February 7 from Mr. Gardner Ackley, Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, replying for the President and answering both of my letters, the one in 1966 and the one in 1967.
Mr. Ackley’s letter acknowledged the number and complexity of issues involved with regard to log supply and indicated that a review of alternative plans is underway to increase the volume of timber for sale from national forests. He also advised that discussions are underway in the Bureau of the Budget between the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management with a view toward achieving closer harmony between policies of the two agencies.
It appears that the administration is beginning to recognize at least this part of the problem. However, the reply to my recommendation for a high-level decisionmaking conference on log exports was that the proper course at the present time was to keep the situation under constant and careful review, and that any international conference would be premature.
Log exports, one of the most serious problems facing the timber industry in Oregon and the Northwest, was simply brushed aside by the Johnson administration.
I stated in my October letter to the President that this issue is one that transcends political party lines, and one that required prompt attention. I urged the President to intercede personally and forcefully to move the subjects outlined from discussion to solution.
The evasive and negative answers to my specific recommendations for action to alleviate the distressing situation facing the forest industry in my State and the West leads to the obvious conclusion that there will be little action at this time by the executive branch of Government. I am, therefore, alerting you to a serious situation that has been ignored by the President and Federal agencies.
The subject of log exports to Japan requires immediate attention.
During the time of my letters to the President, the Japanese were announcing an expected doubling of their log imports. According to figures compiled by the Pacific Northwest Forest Range and Experiment Station, the research arm of the U.S. Forest Service, log exports for 1966 from Oregon and Washington to Japan were 32 percent greater than in the preceding year of 1965. Softwood log exports from the two States reached 1.1 billion board feet in 1956. The doubling of log exports to Japan will not only add to the existing problem of inadequate and high-priced log supply now facing most of the lumber milling industries in the Northwest, but which will also add to other problems as well.
It cannot and should not be assumed, however, that the log export issue is the sole issue in creating the present critical situation now facing the Northwest’s timber industry. It is an important factor and should be dealt with as such.
At this time, I question the proposing or placing of legal restrictions on log exports. It seems that this would be attacking a symptom rather than the cause of the ailment. But I do believe that a frank evaluation of our problems and those of Japan in a conference of the two nations would be mutually beneficial in avoiding a severe crisis which will inevitably come unless we act and act now.
The most serious threat in the rapidly developing timber crisis in the Northwest is not so much to the large organizations which have their own timber resources, but it is to the small and middle-sized milling operators having no timber supply of their own and who depend entirely upon the Government-controlled log supply. These are the mills that, while providing thousands of job, encourage full participation of the small businessman in the economic mainstream in communities throughout the Northwest. The threat of a further decline in these types of operations is far more than to just the individuals and their mills. The threat is to the competitive system that has given strength to the growth of this Nation.
The crisis in timber supply in the Northwest has been developing over a number of years. The demands upon the forts of Oregon and Washington during World War II were enormous, when some 45 billion board feet of lumber were cut in these two States alone during that war period. Of the 45 billion board feet cut, less than 3 billion board feet came from national forests due to the inaccessibility of forest timber. The result was that the readily accessible privately owned timber was harvested first thereby turning the industries’ present demands to the Government timberlands for raw material supply.
To illustrate recent trends, approximately 9 billion board feet of timber was harvested each year in 1964 and 1965, of which 5 billion board feet came from public timber lands and 4 billion board feet from privately owned timberlands. It is now estimated that the commercial timber reserves in private ownership in Oregon will shortly be able to produce less than 3 billion feet per year.
The further reduction in timber supply from private lands in Oregon, coupled to an increase in log exports to Japan, presents the probability of a staggering imbalance between timber demands and supply in Oregon unless the supply from Federal lands is increased.
Permit me to emphasize, and reemphasize, the point that Federal policy in management of timber is the key to the health of the timber economy, and, therefore, the entire economy of Oregon, for one very basic and very simple reason—the Federal Government owns well over 80 percent of the existing commercial timber in our State, and over 51 percent of our geographic area. The large scale of Federal ownership in Oregon made it obvious that the solutions to forest industry problems of demand and supply must come from the Federal Government. There are solutions to these problems and one part of a possible two-pronged solution is to find a way to increase the available supply of logs. The other part is to develop a policy on log exports within the framework of free trade and existing treaties between this country and other nations.
The first part of the solution—finding a way to increase the available supply of logs—bears serious consideration on the basis that the two Federal agencies controlling most of the commercial timber in Oregon have annual allowable cuts which vary, as between the two agencies, as much as 100 percent.
A study completed last fall for the Oregon Department of Commerce showed that in Oregon the annual allowable cut of the Bureau of Land Management is well above that of the Forest Service for similar lands in similar geographical parts of the State.
In a letter written to me while I was Governor, the top Forest Service official in Oregon commented on the specific amount of difference in the allowable cut of the Bureau of Land Management and of the Forest Service in western Oregon.
He stated that this was difficult to determine because of the differences in measurement systems, differences in growing sites and productivity of lands, differences in allocation of acreages for experimental purposes, and the differences in marketability of species.
Forestry experts and others tell me that no matter what the extent of the percent of difference in annual allowable cuts may be, the Bureau of Land Management is still well above that of the national forests in getting its lands into high production.
The basic question is: What is the factual justification for the wide difference in allowable cuts from comparable lands administered by different agencies of the Federal Government?
Regardless of the exact amount of percentage difference, and this is the important point when considered in terms of volume, this percentage difference could be measured in billions of board feet, and could conceivably go a long way in providing a log supply which could begin to meet the needs of both the domestic market and the log exports to Japan.
I must emphasize that I am in full accord with a properly coordinated and balanced sustained-yield program for our natural resources that insures the maximum continued renewal of these natural resources. This is the highest concept of conservation.
I have noted that the Forest Service revealed just recently it expects to sell an additional 217 million board feet of thinnings and salvage timber in the Northwest by June of this year. These will be selective cuttings to allow better growth or to remove diseased or fallen trees.
I have asked for funds to permit the sale of an additional 252 million board feet of thinnings and salvage timber which is available now over and above the annual allowable cut.
I am also in accord with a program whereby Congress will provide funds to allow the fullest and fastest development of its access road system in all national forests in the country. Access roads are urgently needed to harvest overripe timber in Western States. During the past several years, Senators from other Western States have testified to this urgent need.
Recent congressional action increased the authorization for the development of forest roads. Since the Federal Government receives 75 percent of the revenue from the sale of Forest Service timber, a speedup in road construction will increase returns to the Federal Treasury and at the same time provide access to the needed timber. I emphasize at this point the need is to extend the access road system, not necessarily merely to improve existing roads.
It must be remembered also that such roads not only open the forest for harvest operations, but are used for recreational purposes and as access routes to protect the forest from insects, disease, and fire.
The second part of a possible two-pronged solution to the problems facing the forest industry in the Northwest is to undertake steps now that will provide the most practicable and equitable settlement of the issue of log exports to Japan.
Two of Oregon's leading newspapers, the Oregonian and the Eugene Register-Guard, in recent editorials very clearly brought the subject of log exports into sharp focus. I ask that the editorial entitled "Persistent Problem," from the Oregonian of February 20, 1967, and the editorial entitled "It Is Time To Talk Turkey With Japan," from the Eugene Register-Guard of February 24, 1967, be included in the Record with my remarks.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
(See exhibit 1.)
Mr. HATFIELD. While the damaging impact of log exports to some in the forest industry has been the subject of almost continuous dialog between industry and Government for a number of years now, a new wood product---woodchips---is now being exported to Japan to the advantage of others in the forest industry. Woodchips are manufactured from the portions of the log that were formerly waste and are used in the manufacture of pulpwood.
According to figures compiled by the Forest Service, the volume of woodchips to Japan from Oregon in 1966 totaled more than 180,000 cords. This is double the 1965 volume and is expected to continue to rise. Woodchips and logs must, therefore, be viewed in the context of the total forest products exports to Japan.
Another subject related to the log export issue is the difference in Federal rules as they apply to the different States. The Federal Government controls over 80 percent of the commercial timber in Oregon and places no restrictions on where this timber may be marketed. Yet under the provisions of a Federal law enacted 40 years ago, the Secretaries of Agriculture and Interior have imposed certain restrictions on the exporting of timber cut on any public lands in Alaska---even to the extent of prohibiting the export of logs from the State of Alaska to the States of Oregon or Washington.
The restrictions on log exports from Alaska to Japan mean that the bulk of Japanese demand for export logs must come from the States of Oregon and Washington, and some contend that the spiraling price of logs from Government-controlled timberlands in these two States results, in part, from this restriction on log exports from Alaska.
I realize that the law prohibiting log exports from Alaska was designed to protect a timber supply for the development of Alaskan industry---and I am in full accord with the buildup of industry in Alaska. It seems, however, that this 40-year-old law designed for this particular purpose might now be detrimental to competitive and full utilization of our natural resources, as it is my understanding that a sizable amount of the annual allowable cut from the public lands in Alaska has been unsold each year and is, in effect, wasted. Such being the case, it could be argued that inconsistent Federal policies have inequitably prohibited the export of logs from public lands in a State where logs have been plentiful and contributed an artificial log shortage, and abnormally high prices for these logs, in neighboring States.
As the Governor of one state, I realized at the time that an attempt to resolve what appeared to be an inconsistent administration of the same type of federally owned lands in another State was certain to be a sensitive matter. For this reason, and since Congress had by law delegated authority to the Federal agencies for the handling of the matter of log exports from national forests, I recommended to the President last October that he take whatever steps were required to review an inconsistent Federal policy by the States as it related to the same natural resource.
Since the administration has virtually turned its back on the log export issue, I call upon my Senate colleagues to join me in requesting an early meeting between appropriate representatives of the U.S. wood products industry, Federal and State officials of the United States, Japanese business interests, and Japanese Government officials to review all aspects of the log export issue with a view to uniting the effort needed for remedial action.
This type of conference, I believe, can point the way for resolution of this vexing problem.
The Crisis confronting the timber industry in my State illustrates the tremendous impact of Federal policies upon the State and the need for the State's voice to be heard in the shaping of policies relating to one of its great natural resources. The situation that I describe in Oregon can well illustrate what can happen in other States and to other natural resources.
Mr. President, in conclusion, let me remind you and all the Members of this body that the forest lands in Oregon and the West are a source of richness for all of America. From these lands flow an abundance of benefits granted no other nation on earth. The custody of these benefits demands no less than the combined national efforts in assuring their maximum and equitable use forever.
[From the Portland (Oreg.) Oregonian,
Feb. 20, 1967]
The Pacific Northwest Forest and Range Experiment Station has revealed that log exports to Japan from Oregon and Washington last year were 32 per cent greater than in 1965. Japan took 1,023 million board feet of logs, accounting for nearly all the exports, Canada got 59 million board feet, not quite half as much as in 1965.
Japan also more than doubled its imports of pulpwood chips from Oregon to a total of 182,651 cords.
Log exports provide jobs for loggers and longshoremen. The good prices the Japanese are willing to pay bring profits to both private timber owners and the federal government, which has the largest supply of timber.
But Japanese competition for logs raises the price American industry must pay for its raw material. Export of raw logs also cuts wages and profits running into millions of dollars which would go to U.S. workers and mill owners if lumber were exported instead.
The log-export issue, which has boiled and simmered for years, is about to boil over again. Recent low prices for lumber and plywood have placed the Pacific Northwest industry in a serious squeeze. Much of this can be blamed on the slump in home building. But the ever-increasing export of logs is a factor which makes a large segment of the domestic industry see red.
Those who profit from the log trade naturally have a different perspective. They contend that the Japanese mainly buy logs which are too small for the domestic market or are of species not in great demand here. Douglas fir accounted for only 11.5 per cent of last year's exports and Port Orford cedar
3.1 per cent. The remainder was made up primarily of hemlock and true firs.
That the export trade is valuable is shown by the $91.9 million price tag the experiment station placed on last year's business. This was 30.5 per cent greater than that for 1965.
Some foresee a doubling of Japan's demands on this region's principal raw material. This, they fear, would tighten insufferably the price squeeze on U.S. wood processors and would make even more ridiculous the position of a region fully able to manufacture finished products which, nevertheless, is sending out much of its resource in a raw state.
How can log exports be controlled within a free-trade framework and without endangering other highly valuable trade with a friendly nation? Many suggestions have been made but as yet none has proved effective when adopted.
Oregon law (ORS 528.80.5 to 526.835) provides that all timber, except Port Orford cedar, sold by the State of Oregon or any of its subdivisions shall be "primarily processed" in the United States unless the State Forestry Department has issued a permit for processing elsewhere. Issuing of a permit depends on a finding that there is no reasonable local market for the logs. A similar proposal is before the Washington Legislature. British Columbia has strict controls on export of raw timber and Alaska forbids it.
State timber is a small part of the supply in Oregon and Washington. To have much effect on log exports, the Forest Service and the federal Bureau of Land Management would have to establish primary processing or other controls. Such proposals have been rejected in Washington. Export quotas and distribution of export purchases over a wide region so that no locality takes the major brunt have been suggested.
Sen. Mark Hatfield has again asked President Johnson to call a conference of high-level United States and Japanese officials to consider the problem. As he did last fall as governor of Oregon, Sen. Hatfield requested that policies affecting government timber be made consistent, i.e., that export of Alaska logs be permitted on the same basis as those from Oregon and Washington.
Whether U.S. and Japanese cabinet-level negotiators could arrive at a solution acceptable to both sides and to interests within the U.S. industry is problematic. However, it is worth a try and Mr. Johnson should get such a meeting under way.
[From the Eugene (Oreg.) Register-Guard,
Feb. 24, 1967]
IT IS TIME TO TALK TuRKEY WITH JAPAN
Eventually, so why not now?
That familiar line has become the keynote in arguments by Oregon and Washington lumbermen for federal action to limit log exports from these states to Japan.
Citing constantly increasing Japanese purchases of logs taken from Oregon and Washington forests, the lumbermen are proving a point that sooner or later reasonable controls must be adopted. Otherwise, the forest products industries of these two states will be drastically affected. To an impractical and unreasonable degree, Oregon and Washington will lose economically if they became too much raw material suppliers for Japan and mills in these states are forced to close down because they can't match prices the Japanese are willing to pay for logs.
A Seattle publication predicts that Japanese log purchases in Oregon and Washington will be "well over 1 billion (board) feet" a year by 1970. That volume is greater than Lane County's annual log harvest ran prior to the close of World War II and not significantly larger than the greatest log harvest made in Lane County since the war.
Next to Douglas County, Lane is the largest log-producing county in the United States. So, in this perspective, Oregon and Washington lumbermen cannot be accused of exaggerating their claims that controls must be worked out to keep log exports to Japan within bounds.
British Columbia, whose mills export large quantities of finished lumber and plywood to the United States, permits hardly any exporting of logs to Japan. And Alaska, where timber growth easily exceeds mill demands, enjoys federally imposed prohibition of raw log exports. Consequently, Alaskan mills---some partly capitalized with Japanese money---sell practically their entire lumber output to Japan.
Why, Oregon and Washington lumbermen ask, shouldn't the Japanese be required to buy more finished lumber and plywood from these states—in return for negotiated rights to continue making controlled-rate log purchases?
The Japanese are reasonable, wise in the ways of business. It should not be hard to convince their government that a quid pro quo agreement involving Oregon-Washington logs and lumber would be to the long-range advantage of both Japan and the United States.
Eventually, something will have to be done to prevent ruination of Oregon and Washington forest products industries. Even if regulations are changed to permit Japan to import some Alaskan-grown logs, as Oregon's Senator Mark Hatfield has suggested, policies governing exports from Oregon and Washington must be thoroughly reviewed. It is senseless for the United States to import Canadian manufactured lumber and plywood on the one hand, while, on the other, Oregon-Washington mills are going broke and releasing workmen because they can't afford logs grown virtually within sight of them.
Again, the Japanese are realists. They would not sacrifice their own best economic interests as the United States is doing in this instance. Nor, honestly and fairly dealt with, would they believe they were being discriminated against if their log-buying opportunities were sensibly controlled.
Senator Hatfield has asked President Johnson to call a high-level conference of U.S. and Japanese officials on questions in this area of the two nations' trade relations. Delay of such negotiations can only lead to aggravation of the questions involved and make their sensible solution more difficult.
Mr. PERCY. Mr. President. I am privileged to commend the junior Senator from Oregon on his maiden speech. I know how he feels in not wanting to rush into this endeavor, but I think when he has a problem as vexing as this is, affecting a great State and a great industry, and he sees that action must be taken and is not being taken, he has an obligation and a responsibility to speak as he has.
I think that in the junior Senator from Oregon we have a degree of expertise in a complex field that is unique. He was Governor of his state for 8 years: He has a profound understanding of the interrelationship that must exist between states and the Federal Government. With the Federal Government controlling 80 percent of Oregon timber, it is not possible for the people of that State or the industry to solve the problem unless the Federal Government is responsive to the wishes of the people.
Second, the Senator from Oregon has with great foresight looked ahead to the problem that we will be facing and that will be much more critical in the years ahead. Too frequently the Federal Government deals with immediate problems and does not concern itself with ultimate problems. I think that we in the Senate should look ahead and solve problems that are not yet crises, with the thought of warding off crises by timely action.
Third, in indicating that it will be necessary to work with our friends in Japan, I would hope the Senator would find a responsive audience. I would be pleased indeed if I could be of assistance in this regard. My own relationship with the Government of Japan goes back many years. I felt the camera industry should be encouraged in that country following World War II. I worked, in the reciprocal trade agreements, to reduce tariffs on cameras into this country, so that Japan and Germany could have an equal opportunity to compete with the domestic camera industry. I saw the expertise of the competition result in the "heat getting hotter in the kitchen." I stood firm on the idea that we should allow our friends to compete with the domestic industry, and that we should develop our own research and development and expertise. I stood firm for that principle rather than the principle of withholding their access to our markets.
I think the Japanese people are cognizant of the fact that we have been firm friends and ought to think of being amenable to helping us work out the problems that we find in the great lumber industry.
Lastly, I should like to commend the Senator from Oregon for his contribution to a better understanding on the part of all of us a very complex subject which I, from the Midwest, did not fully understand or comprehend. The quality of his analysis provides understanding of an effort toward solution. It will enable us to look ahead to a solution that will be of aid not only to the people of Oregon and the industry, but to the entire Nation as well.
Mr. HATFIELD. I wish to express my appreciation to the Senator from Illinois [Mr. Percy]. I would add one further thought concerning this particular problem, which goes far beyond even the borders of this country.
About 2 1/2 years ago, it was my privilege to join with a group of business leaders of my State in what is commonly referred to as a trade mission to Japan. We had the privilege of visiting one of the largest pulp paper mills in the country of Japan, the Oji Paper Mill at Tomakomai, in northern Hokkaido.
While going through the mill with the plant manager, we fell into a discussion about the need for the natural resource to continue their paper production. He readily and frankly acknowledged that they had to find the resource somewhere. They were hopeful that they could continue to obtain it from the Pacific Northwest of the United States, but he stated that if they were forced to do so, they would have to turn to the Soviet Union.
He then commented, I think very profoundly, in a rather facetious tone and manner, but yet communicating a very important idea. He said :
I have long believed that red pulp tends to lead to red newsprint.
I think it is of major importance us that we seek to have friends throughout the world. We cannot isolate ourselves with trade barriers and obstacles that prevent the flow of goods and services. At the same time, we have a responsibility to our own domestic producers and to the people who depend upon prosperous domestic companies for their employment. But I believe all these things can be accomplished beneficially both to our neighbors in the world and to our own people, as we work together to solve these problems, which are not insoluble. That is why I feel strongly about such an avenue of approach to this problem as a conference. We found a warm response to such suggestions when we were in Japan, talking with its business and political leaders.
Japan is our friend, and wants to continue to be our friend; but the Japanese must also produce jobs for their people and must seek natural resources to provide such jobs. That is why the Pacific Northwest States—and I believe we are unanimous in this—are deeply concerned, and invite the interest and support of other states as well.
Mr. HANSEN. Mr. President, will the Senator yield?
Mr. HATFIELD. I yield.
Mr. HANSEN. I add my congratulations to those expressed by the junior Senator from Illinois for the excellent presentation of a complicated and certainly widely misunderstood subject, with which the junior Senator from Oregon is so intimately familiar.
The Senator has contributed mightily to a better understanding of the problems that confront the Nation in the presentation he has made this morning. I say that because, coming from the West as does the distinguished Senator, I believe the Pacific Northwest has an important role to play in the strengthening and the full development of the country. Certainly if we do not use all of our natural resources, particularly our renewable natural resources, of which timber is a most important one, we cannot hope to make the contribution that otherwise would be within our power.
I shall not add much to what the distinguished Senator from Illinois has already stated about the importance of strengthening the ties between the United States and Japan. I was in Japan about a year and a half ago, and I, too, appreciate the tremendous contribution which that country is making toward the extension of a democratic way of life in Asia, and the added strength that is thus given to our determination and our convictions in all of the Orient.
Certainly newsprint is an important commodity, one that is becoming more important as time goes on. I, too, come from a State which has some timber stands. Because I do, I would say to those from the East who are not as aware of the fact as some of us are that with the ravages of insect disease, the problem with timber is not simply a matter of storing or keeping a resource for use at some future time. Timber has a lifespan; it has a life cycle; it grows up. If it is not used at the time when it becomes ripe, it is often felled by insect diseases, and it can be scourged by the ravages of fire.
That fact lends a special importance to the wise observations made by the junior Senator from Oregon as to taking advantage now of the opportunity to institute a national program that will contemplate the use of these resources on a sustained yield basis, and which would permit the great capability of the State of Oregon and other States in the Pacific Northwest to utilize better this important renewable resource.
As we do that, as we make more jobs available, and as we add to the income, to the industry, to the prosperity, and to the tax base of the States in the Pacific Northwest, we will contribute to the strength of America and make possible places for Americans to find homes where the air is clear and the streams are clean, and we do not have all of the problems that exist in some of our metropolitan areas.
What the Senator from Oregon has said this morning is of great importance. I compliment him for his keen understanding of the many ramifications of the problem, and I urge that the Senate heed and consider carefully the important message he has given us.
Mr. HATFIELD. Mr. President, I wish to express my appreciation to the Senator from Wyoming [Mr. HANSEN] for his comments and observations. I had the privilege to serve with him as a fellow Governor and am completely aware of his great leadership in the area of natural resource development. I am proud to sit with him now in the back row of the U.S. Senate.
Mr. FANNIN. Mr. President, I join my fellow Senators in commending the junior Senator from Oregon. Although I did not have the privilege of being present when he made his remarks, I did hear the statements by the junior Senator from Illinois and the junior Senator from Wyoming in relationship to his remarks. I know of his great ability, how articulate he is in expressing himself, and how dedicated he is to his State of Oregon. My State, too, is vitally interested in the problem to which he referred; so I shall be eager to read his statement. I again congratulate him for his outstanding services to his State and to the Nation.
Mr. BROOKE. Mr. President, will the Senator yield?
Mr. HATFIELD. I am happy to yield.
Mr. BROOKE. Mr. President, I am pleased to commend the distinguished junior Senator from Oregon for his timely and informative remarks concerning the crisis confronting the timber industry in the_ state of Oregon and in the western part of our Nation.
I sincerely trust that we in the Senate will join with Senator HATFIELD in requesting an early meeting of United States and Japanese Governments and industry officials to review all aspects of the log export issue with a view to uniting the effort needed for remedial action.
Senator HATFIELD is to be congratulated for bringing this important matter to the attention of the Senate.
Mr. HATFIELD. I thank the Senator.