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Timber harvest levels rise 36 percent

SALEM (AP) — Oregon’s timber harvest last year was up 36 percent from its 2009 recession low.

The state Department of Forestry says the harvest increased a third straight year to 3.75 billion board feet.

The 2009 harvest was 2.75 billion board feet.

A Forestry Department economist, Brandon Kaetzel, says the increase is due to a strong export market and improving housing starts in the United States.

The department reported Monday the largest increase in logging was on tribal lands, followed by private forest lands.

Logging on federal, state and county lands decreased or stayed about the same as the year beforeLane County was the biggest timber producer in western Oregon in 2012 with 590 million board feet.

Klamath County was the biggest producer in eastern Oregon with 107 million board feet.

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