Biden aim to save mature forests advances to rulemaking stage

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The U.S. just drew one major step closer to strong and far-reaching protections for its mature and old-growth forests— the essential key to stemming the twin crises of climate chaos and species extinction.

On Earth Day 2022 President Joe Biden issued Executive Order 14072 calling on the U.S. Forest Service and the federal Bureau of Land Management to conserve mature and old-growth forests on federal lands across the country. This represented significant progress toward meaningful protections, but Forests Forever and its allies called on the Administration to broaden and strengthen its proclamation.

Our voices were heard. The Administration has now responded with a rulemaking process on the issue, for both agencies. Deadline for comments is June 20.

If you were one of the Forests Forever supporters who wrote to key agency officials, or donated to support our efforts, thank you!

Send in your comments to ensure the strongest possible regulations to protect mature and old-growth forests.

Trees older than 80 years must remain standing. Mature and old-growth forests are the most effective and cheapest way to remove carbon from the atmosphere and sequester this carbon in enormous quantities.

As if this weren't enough, conserving mature forests provides a myriad of co-benefits— cleaning and storing water, providing high-quality recreation opportunities, pumping dollars into local and regional economies, checking the spread of wildfire, and more.

Yet despite President Biden's order to protect them, at least 370,000 acres of older forests today are slated for logging. We must act quickly.

We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to lock in permanent protections for these essential climate and habitat forests.

Take Action today!
For the forests,

Paul Hughes
Executive Director
Forests Forever

A Forest Journey Book: The Role of Trees in the Fate of Civilization by John Perlin

Log photo credit: © Garrett Grove

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Forests Forever has teamed up with Patagonia Books as it brings out a recently enlarged and updated edition of the classic A Forest Journey: The Role of Trees in the Fate of Civilization by John Perlin.

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A Forest Journey was recognized by Harvard University as one of its One Hundred Great Books. Anthropologist and best-selling writer David Graeber compared it to "some Greek epic poem spanning 4000 years of civilization."

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  • Check out Forests Forever's previous alert on the Biden old-growth forest proclamation here.
  • Forests Forever is part of the Climate Forests Campaign, a nationwide coalition promoting strong protections for mature forest ecosystems.
  • What sets older forests apart from the rest? Here's a solid fact sheet on the subject.
  • Want hard-core details on the federal rulemaking now opened by these federal land management agencies? Here are the pertinent U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management portal pages.

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

from Forests Forever Foundation
and the Center for American Places