Defending California’s forests since 1989

Forests Forever was founded in 1989 during the historic campaign to save Headwaters ancient redwood forest in Humboldt County, California. Ten years later 7500 acres including several large virgin groves had been acquired as Headwaters Forest Reserve and can be visited today. Our efforts helped galvanize the broad-based public awareness and outcry that led to this and many other subsequent forest victories across the state.

For over 30 years we have been rallying Californians in defense of the state’s 17 million acres of woodland ecosystems and watersheds. We accomplish this through year-round education, grassroots organizing, occasional litigation and work in elections, and executive-branch and legislative advocacy

In 2019 many issues that Forests Forever has been instrumental in shaping over the years came into relief as they never have before: salvage logging and clearcutting, assessment of cumulative watershed effects from logging, forest carbon sequestration, and agency restructuring and accountability, to name a few.

Before the deadly Camp Fire had cooled in November 2018 there were cries in the media, especially social media, and in the Capitol and other public forums to "reduce fuels" to prevent such a fire from recurring.

As we had before and have since the Camp Fire, we argued instead for using our always-scarce public resources not on salvage logging projects—which makes fires like these worse—but rather on home hardening: installing exterior sprinklers and ember-proof attic vents, using non-flammable roofing materials, and the like, as well as discouraging building in fire-prone areas.

In California field trips, meetings with natural resources academics, public hearings and other settings we were an insistent and well-informed presence, backed up by our grassroots network of supporters (such as you) who placed calls, and wrote letters and emails.

Most recently we fought to protect and strengthen Senate Bill 69 to safeguard timberland water quality and salmon habitat; it can still become law in 2020. And we're pressuring Congress to enact the PAW and FIN Conservation Act of 2019 (H.R. 4348 and S.2491) to fully reverse the Trump rollback of the Endangered Species Act.

And in the category of multi-year efforts, our fight alongside our Lost Coast League allies to save Rainbow Ridge's stands of virgin Douglas-fir and associated prairies and hardwood forests picked up steam even as Humboldt Redwood Co. began logging in the North Coast's Mattole River watershed.

Recently, following a lawsuit by developers the First District Court of Appeal in San Francisco reversed a lower-court ruling that had held up our hard-fought 2018 victory to pass the Richmond Hills Initiative. This decision preserves our victory in saving 430 acres of unspoiled oak woodlands.

These are a few of the more-recent examples of Forests Forever’s advocacy work, at all levels of government, as well as in the public-education arena.

Forests Forever is a California non-profit corporation operating under IRS code section 501(c)(4). Our Federal Employer ID Number is 68-0201338. The Forests Forever Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization founded in 1998, carries out research, litigation, and public education. Its Federal Employer ID Number is 94-3244942. Both organizations are governed by a volunteer board of directors.

Over the years Forests Forever and/or Forests Forever Foundation have been co-plaintiffs in successful litigation at the state and federal levels, sponsored legislation that was signed into law (for example, Assembly Bill 1504, authored by Assemblymember Nancy Skinner, which requires timber harvest plans toquantify how much CO2 they release or store), published a book (“Forests Forever: Their Ecology, Restoration and Protection”) now on the shelves in over 800 libraries worldwide, and educated and activated thousands of California citizens on the plight and the need for protection of their state’s forests.

Contributions to Forests Forever Foundation are tax-deductible. Contributions to Forests Foreverare not deductible because it engages in grassroots lobbying and electoral activity.

Thanks for your interest — and vital help — in our work!

Our mission: To protect and enhance the forests and wildlife habitat of California through educational, legislative, and electoral activities.


Forests Forever:
Their Ecology, Restoration, and Protection
John J. Berger

from Forests Forever Foundation
and the Center for American Places