The North American lumber industry is having its craziest year in memory -- and that was before the wildfires.
Weyerhaeuser Co., the continent's biggest wood producer, said Friday that the blazes that have blanketed much of the Western U.S. sky in an apocalyptic orange had reached its timber operations in Oregon. All employees were safe, the company said, and it was too early to measure the potential effects on its business.
That's the second natural disaster to rock the industry in 2020. In March, producers idled sawmills during the coronavirus lockdown. Just a month later, pent-up demand exploded. Homebuilders broke ground on a surprising number of new houses, and do-it-yourselfers, fortified by government stimulus checks, took on home repairs and remodeling jobs they were able to tackle while under quarantine.