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Southern Forest Resource Assessment Consortium

Mission and Goals

The Southern Forest Resource Assessment Consortium (SOFAC) develops forest sector market models for application to forest resource assessments in the South, U.S., and the World. SOFAC modelers and members will be able to use the SOFAC suite of models and research to simultaneously project timber inventory, supply, and prices for a variety of regions and a variety of timber products across the South. SOFAC will continue cooperative university-industry-public agency cooperation in southern and national forest sector economic modeling, enhancing graduate instruction in forest economics and modeling.

Save the Date for the 2024 SOFAC Technical Meeting

The SOFAC Technical Meeting will take place February 7th-8th at NC State’s Plant Sciences Building on Centennial Campus. A hybrid option will also be available.

Please complete the registration form for the 2024 Technical Meeting here.

SOFAC Technical Meeting Agenda

February 7th:

  • 8:00-9:00: Coffee and light refreshments
  • 9:00-9:15: Welcome and Introductions (Baker)
  • 9:15-10:00: FIA updates and discussion (Rossi)
  • 10:00-10:30: Proposed next steps with FIA and discussion (Sheffield, Rossi)
  • 10:30-10:45: Coffee break
  • 10:45-12:00: SRTS Updates, next steps for development, and member feedback session (Rossi, Abt, Baker)
  • 12:00-1:00: Lunch break 
  • 1:00-2:30: Graduate student research highlights – highlighting new tools and data products, discussion (Fuller, Puls, Manner)
  • 2:30-3:15: SOFAC hardwood research update and HW SRTS (Dhungel) 
  • 3:15-3:30: Refreshments break
  • 3:30-5:00: Special research topic updates: Harvested wood product carbon flows, GHG Protocol concerns, Hurricanes, Recent policy developments (Baker)
  • 5:00-5:30: Wrap up discussion and SOFAC member feedback.
  • 5:30-7:00: Happy hour/social event for in-person attendees

February 8th:

  • 9:00-10:30: Guest model spotlight
  • 10:30-1:00: Optional SRTS training module (Rossi, others)
  • 12:30: Meeting adjourns, optional group discussion and SRTS troubleshooting.

Get the Latest News through our SOFAC Blog


The core SOFAC modeling framework is the SubRegional Timber Supply (SRTS) Model, which is a bio-economic model that integrates forest inventory and analysis data and economic principles to estimate inventory, supply, demand, and price trends.

SOFAC integrates currently available forest resource data from the USDA Forest Service, Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program and economic theory to model timber supply, demand, and prices in the South by local area; analyze the status of southern timber supply periodically; and analyze the impacts of new market and policy factors on timber supply.

Models that are linked to SRTS include modules that periodically collect and update the USDA Forest Service FIA data. Further, SRTS is linked to other economic frameworks that provide important data elements, including projections of:

  • Land use change,
  • Pine plantation responses to price changes,
  • Timber demand and removals, and
  • Climate impacts on forest productivity.

This suite of models is then used to project timber supply at the regional to local level under a range of economic and policy scenarios in the South, with occasional applications in the Northeast and Midwest.

In addition to SRTS, SOFAC affiliates work with a wide range of economic modeling tools, ranging from spatially explicit frameworks to global models of forest product markets and land use. These models include:

SOFAC affiliates also perform timber investment and production economics studies are performed periodically with graduate students, including analysis of global timber investments, logging capacity, biomass harvesting contracts, and timber market structure.


SOFAC affiliates have completed recent studies on topics such as new forest products processing capacity or closures, growth and removal cycles, wood chip demand, bioenergy, wood pellets, and drivers of land use change. We are actively modeling the market and resource implications of using more roundwood for bioenergy (including the impact of state, federal, and EU policies); the effects of holding more sawtimber for longer periods; evaluating the effects of carbon policies on southern U.S. forests; and assessing the impacts of forest market structure on timberland investments.

Recent research efforts led by SOFAC faculty affiliates cover the following topics:


Justin S. Baker, Director of SOFAC and Associate Professor of Forest Resource Economics

David J. Rossi, SOFAC Research Scholar

Robert Abt, Principal SRTS Developer and Professor of Forest Economics

Kelley McCarter, SOFAC Meeting Coordinator

Graduate Students:

Gaurav Dhungel, NCSU FER

Madisen Fuller, NCSU FER

Olakunle Sodiya, NCSU FER

Recent Publications from SOFAC Affiliates

Puls, S., R. Cook, J. Baker, J. Rakestraw, A. Trlica. 2024. Modeling wood product carbon flows in southern US pine plantations: implications for carbon storage. Carbon Balance and Management 19(8): 21p.

Dhungel, G., T. Ochuodho, J. Lhotka, J. Stringer, K. Poudel. 2023. Sustainability of White Oak (Quercus alba) Timber Supply in Kentucky. Journal of Forestry.

Rossi, D., B. Rushakoff, O.-P. Kuusela. 2023. Impacts of the Small-Tract Forestland Tax Program on Forestland Use in Oregon. Forest Science 69(5): 498-509.

Favero, A., J. Baker, B. Sohngen, A. Daigneault. 2023. Economic factors influence net carbon emissions from bioenergy expansion. Communications Earth & Environment 4(41).

Rossi, D., J. Baker, R. Abt. 2023. Quantifying additionality thresholds for forest carbon offset markets in Mississippi pine pulpwood markets. Forest Policy and Economics 156: 103059.

Dhungel, G., Rossi, D., Henderson, J., Abt, R., Sheffield, R., Baker, J. 2023. Critical market tipping points for high-grade white oak inventory decline in the central hardwoods regions of the United States. Journal of Forestry.

Baker, J., C. Van Houtven, J. Phelan, G. Latta, C. Clark, K. Austin, O. Sodiya, S. Ohrel, J. Buckley, L. Gentile, J. Martinich. 2023. Projecting U.S. forest management, market, and carbon sequestration responses to a high-impact climate scenario. Forest Policy and Economics 147: 102898.

Daigneault, A., Baker, J., Guo, J., Lauri, P., Favero, A., Forsell, N., Johnston, C., Ohrel, S., Sohngen, B. 2022. How the future of the global forest sink depends on timber demand, forest management, and carbon policies. Global Environmental Change 76: 102582.

Henderson, J., Abt, R., Abt, K., Baker, J., Sheffield, R. 2022. Impacts of hurricanes on forest markets and economic welfare: The case of hurricane Michael. Forest Policy and Economics 140: 102735.

Abt., R., Galik, C., Baker, J. S. 2022. When burning wood to generate energy makes climate sense. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. 78(3): 152-157.

Wade, C. M., Baker, J. S., Jones, J., Austin, K., Cai, Y., Bean de Hernandez, A., Latta, G., Ohrel, S., Ragnauth, S., Creason, J., McCarl, B. 2022. Projecting the impact of socioeconomic and policy factors on GHG emissions and mitigation potential in U.S. forestry and agriculture. Journal of Forest Economics. 37(1).

Rossi, D., Zhai, J., Kuusela, O.-P. 2021. Measuring the Value of Softwood Log Exports: Evidence from Oregon. Journal of Forestry 119(4): 351-362.

Austin, K., Baker, J. S., Sohngen, B. L., Wade, C., Ragnauth, S., Ohrel, S. 2020. The economic costs of planting, preserving, and managing the world’s forests for climate change mitigation. Nature Communications. 11(1): 1-9.

Henderson, J. D., Parajuli, R., Abt, R. C. 2020. Biological and market responses of pine forests in the US Southeast to carbon fertilization. Ecological Economics. Vol. 169.

Nepal, Prakash, Karen L Abt, Kenneth E Skog, Jeffrey P Prestemon, and Robert C Abt. 2019. Projected Market Competition for Wood Biomass between Traditional Products and Energy: A Simulated Interaction of US Regional, National, and Global Forest Product Markets. Forest Science 65 (1):14-26.