You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Florida Timber Industry Razed by Hurricane Michael Awaits Disaster Relief, as Fire Risk Looms

What happens to a forestry community in the aftermath of a disaster? Hurricane Michael - a Category 5 storm - wiped out more than $1 billion worth of timber in the Florida Panhandle when it struck in October 2018, and nearly eight months later the community is still waiting for federal assistance to clean up and replant. The dead trees also mean that the panhandle is facing heightened wildfire risk, as a new hurricane season arrives. Robby Roberts, a panhandle resident, was playing the long game when he planted his small plot of trees nearly 20 years ago, hoping it would provide him income in his later years. After Hurricane Michael ravaged his land, Roberts, a retiree, was able to sell half his timber for one ninth of the profit that he was expecting. The other half of what was to be his retirement plan now lies on the ground rotting. Roberts, like many other small land owners in the region, must now decide whether to reinvest in a crop that will take 20 years to see a return. * SUBSCRIBE to NBC LEFT FIELD: http://nbcnews.to/2rAQzwx * Watch the latest from NBC LEFT FIELD: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R8tG3hlHcPg&list=PLmWVE4PP8w5Urph0JyLjmQInFXxtgOMBT What is NBC LEFT FIELD? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yh0j6zMWCI&list=PLmWVE4PP8w5UEOKp7cxAEqxNgaZ8EUSDs FOLLOW NBC LEFT FIELD: Facebook: http://nbcnews.to/2rACLSM Instagram: http://nbcnews.to/2rAsQwp Twitter: http://nbcnews.to/2rAsWUN VISIT OUR SITE: http://nbcleftfield.com Video journalist Ali Withers __ ABOUT NBC LEFT FIELD: NBC Left Field is a new internationally-minded video troupe that makes short, creative documentaries and features specially designed for social media and set-top boxes. Our small team of cinematographers, journalists, animators and social media gurus aims to unearth stories and breathe creative life into current headlines. While pushing boundaries at home and abroad, NBC Left Field will also be serving as an experimental hub for NBC News style, treatment and audience engagement. #NBCLeftField

More From Southern Living

More From Southern Living

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon