Toward daylight - Some surprising gems lit gloom through 2020


Here's a quiz for you that illustrates an important but sometimes under-heralded service Forests Forever provided in 2020, as it has done continually over the years: our mythbusting function...

Salvage logging—the clearcutting of all trees in a fire-affected area. Is it legal and carried out in California?

Here's another: Biomass incineration. Is burning wood chips to generate electricity a clean form of "alternative" energy?

These examples illustrate just a couple of the misconceptions frequently held not only by the public but also by public officials and even some forest advocates.

Mythbusting, then, is an important part of what we do every day, and perhaps to a unique degree. That's because, unlike any other forest-protection group we know of, Forests Forever speaks directly to thousands of concerned citizens throughout the year.

We are writing to urge you to make an end-of-year gift to Forests Forever. Your backing makes it possible for us to continue to fight for California's forest ecosystems—on private lands as well as public.

With your continued support we will be able to defend our hard-fought gains against inevitable attack, to strengthen and extend protections now in place, and to address forest-related problems that are not only local and regional but also global in scope.

Before summarizing some of what we have accomplished in 2020 thus far and what we see as the main challenges ahead in '21 we would be remiss not to update you on how we have fared as the pandemic gained a foothold this spring.

Like most conservation outfits we have of course played mostly defense since the election of Donald Trump.

One of the worst assaults in 2020 was an attack on the "Magna Carta of U.S. environmental law," the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

In an anomalous stroke of good fortune this year we did enjoy a major victory, due in part to a western senator (Daines of Montana) finding himself in a tough reelection bid and suddenly seeking to shore up his hideous environmental credentials by authoring the Great American Outdoors Act.

One more federal bill we worked on—a good one—deserves mention. The Wildlife Corridors Conservation Act (H.R. 2795 and S. 1499).

We also were busy at the state level.

Great news for one of our successful oak woodlands campaigns came in June when the Superior Court of Contra Costa County ordered a writ of mandate to implement an earlier appeals court ruling.

In over three decades since its birth in the midst of a landmark conservation battle—resulting in establishment of the Headwaters Forest ancient redwood reserve on California's North Coast—Forests Forever continues to move ahead through a challenging and continually evolving landscape.

We remain the only non-profit group that works every day of the year to save and restore California's forests and wildlife habitat through broad-based grassroots advocacy.

The fact that we tackle management of private forestlands—which make up almost half of the productive conifer forest in the state—makes our challenges tougher but also more critical. We campaign for public forests as well, of course.

What's ahead in 2021?

More than ever, your continued financial support is essential to keep our important work moving forward.

In the next year we will fight to defend the gains we've already made as they come under renewed challenge by the timber industry and its allies in Congress. We will work to make sure the laws actually do what they were put in place to do. And we'll keep blowing up those pesky forestry myths as they continually arise.

We respectfully hope you will continue to help us make this happen.

With deepest appreciation,

Paul Hughes
Executive Director
Forests Forever

Your contribution today will help California's forests thrive!

If a tax deduction for your gift is important
please make your contribution to the Forests Forever Foundation.

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

from Forests Forever Foundation
and the Center for American Places