North Carolina's forests, 2002
In 2002, forests covered 18.3 million acres in North Carolina, of which 17.7 million were classified as timberland. Hardwood forest types prevailed on 72 percent of timberland and planted pine stands occupied 15 percent. Nonindustrial private forest landowners controlled 78 percent of timberland, forest industry holdings declined to 8 percent, and publicly owned timberland totaled 13 percent. Volume of all live trees on timberland totaled 33 billion cubic feet, 66 percent of which was hardwood. Planted pines made up 3.1 billion cubic feet of the total. Loblolly pine was the dominant individual species with 6.7 billion cubic feet. Net annual growth of all live trees averaged 1.2 billion cubic feet, and annual removals averaged 1.2 billion cubic feet. Softwoods made up 51 percent of the growth and 59 percent of the removals. However, softwood removals exceeded their growth by 105 million cubic feet, whereas hardwood growth exceeded their removals by 104 million cubic feet. There were 249 sawmills, pulpwood mills, and other primary wood-processing plants across the State. The Coastal Plain accumulated more fuels than other regions of the State due to hurricane impacts on coastal forests.