Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Santa Clarita, and Rep. Bruce Westerman, R-Arkansas, have introduced the No Timber From Tyrants Act. The legislation would ban imports of wood products from Russia and Belarus and direct the U.S. Forest Service and the Department of the Interior to harvest more timber from federal lands to compensate for the banned imports.
“I’m proud to join Congressman Westerman in introducing the No Timber From Tyrants Act,” Garcia said. “It’s imperative that the U.S. does not provide funding to our adversaries. Instead, we should be supporting American industries like the timber industry. Putting American timber first would spur economic growth in America and prevent American money from fueling Russia’s malicious acts of war against Ukraine. Our bill would also help prevent forest fires by allowing for increased forest management practices such as harvesting timber from federal forests. I hope this common-sense bill receives wide, bipartisan support in Congress.”
Last year, the U.S. imported more than half a billion dollars of wood products from Russia and Belarus. The “No Timber From Tyrants Act” would not only cut off this source of funding for Putin’s acts of aggression, but it would also create jobs here at home and help make our federal lands more resilient to catastrophic wildfires, said a news release from Garcia’s office.
In July, Garcia introduced the Protecting and Restoring Our Trees by Enhancing Conservation and Treatments (PROTECT) Act, which would help improve forest management by allowing for more flexibility for federal land managers to utilize active forest management methods, like prescribed burns, to reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire.