Last week, members and staff of SLMA met with forest products industry partners and EPA to discuss the upcoming Plywood and Composite Wood Products (kiln) MACT rulemaking. SLMA members educated other regions and sectors of the forest products industry, in addition to EPA staff, on how southern yellow pine mills dry lumber and how the diversity of products, species and geography within the industry require any new regulations to be very flexible and simple. Additionally, SLMA members made it clear to EPA that lumber kilns are operated as efficiently as possible, as there is no financial incentive to over-dry lumber, inefficiently heat kilns, or improperly maintain kilns. EPA staff had several questions for industry attendees regarding possible work practices options for compliance with a new regulation that could focus on kiln temperature control, moisture content of dried lumber, proper maintenance and recordkeeping, or other site specific options, instead of new emissions controls. EPA staff is expected to begin touring mills in the Southeast in the coming months, and will likely ask to meet with members of the southern yellow pine industry again as the process moves forward.
Thanks to Harold Hankins of Hankins, Inc., Patrick Harrigan of Harrigan Lumber, David Richbourg of HW Culp Lumber, Fred Taylor of Troy Lumber, Tommy Wheeler and Sherman Philips of Rex Lumber, Craig Harper of Collum's Lumber, and Phil Witter of Canfor Southern Pine for traveling to Raleigh for the meetings last week.