The economic recession affected southern forests and related industries substantially, particularly those sectors most closely related to home construction. Between 2005 and 2009, for example, the three primary forestry sectors wood manufacturing, paper manufacturing, and forestry and logging lost more than 110,000 jobs in the southern United States. This article assesses the effects of the recession on the southern U.S. by reviewing existing data related to economic and resource impacts, including employment, timber product output, production facilities, state economies, exports, and forest area and management activities. While all sectors were affected, wood products and furniture manufacturing experienced the greatest change. As a result of the downturn, the South's forest sector's direct contribution to the regional economies decreased by 24 percent between 2004 and 2009. Some developments such as rebounding paper consumption, expanding export markets, and bioenergy, however, offer potential growth opportunities for the future.

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