Home > Forestry Professional > Policy/Law

Policy Update - Week of April 12, 2010


  1. SAF Encourages Attendance and/or Participation at the Forest Service Planning Rule Regional Roundtables

    The Forest Service is hosting national and regional roundtables to provide public discussion on the development of the new Forest Service Land and Resource Management Planning Rule. SAF encourages the attendance and/or participation of our members to provide input from the forestry profession. To find out information on Regional Roundtables, the Planning Rule Notice of Intent, meetings agendas, questions and answers and more, link to the Forest Service Planning Rule website

    To link to the Forest Service Planning Rule Blog click here: http://blogs.usda.gov/usdablogs/planningrule/

  2. SAF Comments on the Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP) Proposed Rule

    The Society of American Foresters supports the BCAP as passed in the 2008 Farm Bill. The SAF believes the Program could increase biomass energy production and rightly encourage the collection, harvest, storage, and transportation (CHST) of biomass. SAF comments specifically on the Programs explanation of Eligible Materials, and the Amount of Payments. SAF also comments on the termination of the Notice of Funds Availability and USDA's recognition of plans equivalent to Forest Stewardship Plans.

    To read SAF's comments on the BCAP Program link to: http://www.eforester.org/fp/documents/BiomassCropAssistanceProgram.pdf

  3. LEED Standards Should Embrace Products from State's Well-Managed Forests
      The Seattle Times Article Published April 2nd by Michael T. Goergen Jr

    The LEED rating system encourages the use of responsible materials in construction and renovation, but forester Michael T. Goergen Jr. is frustrated to see continued ill-treatment of forest products from well-managed forests in Washington and the nation. To read more of this article link to: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/opinion/2011509983_guest03green.html

  4. SAF Testimony on S. 2798 the National Forest Insect and Disease Emergency Act

    The SAF strongly supports S. 2798, the National Forest Insect and Disease Emergency Act of 2009, and commends Senator Mark Udall and Senator James Risch for their bipartisan leadership on the important bill. Given current federal land management laws, regulations and case law, there is virtually no way work can be completed to remove dead and dying trees in a timely matter. S. 2798 could be easily implemented by land management agencies to more-quickly address problems associated with extensive bark beetle infestations.

    To read SAF's testimony link to: http://www.eforester.org/fp/documents/saftestimony_udall_risch.pdf

  5. SAF Comments on Forest Planning Rule Notice of Intent

    THE SAF is dedicated to helping USDA craft a planning rule that will work for planners, land managers and the many different stakeholders concerned about our national forests. The SAF requests that the rule be kept as simple as possible. A complicated new planning rule will lead to further cost and frustration at no benefit to our national forests.

    To read SAF's comments link to: http://www.safnet.org/fp/documents/saf_planning_rule_noi_comments2-16-10.pdf

In the Administration

  1. White House Rhetoric May Signal Climate-Bill Surge
      The New York Times Article Published April 12th by Darren Samuelsohn of ClimateWire

    With the bruising health care debate over, President Obama's top economic adviser left little doubt last week that energy and climate has taken its place atop the administration's agenda. To read more of this article link to: http://www.nytimes.com/gwire/2010/04/12/12greenwire-some-see-white-house-rhetoric-signaling-climat-88495.html

Last Week in Congress

  1. No Natural Resource Legislation Passed Last Week as Congress was Spring Recess.

  2. Hidden Gems Wilderness Proposal Submitted to Polis
      Summit Daily News Article Published April 6th by Julie Sutor

    Conservationists released a formal proposal Monday for 244,000 acres of new wilderness designation in Summit and Eagle counties after about four years of study, vetting and deliberation. To read more of this article link to: http://www.summitdaily.com/article/20100406/NEWS/100409825/1078&ParentProfile=1055

  3. Forest Service Delays Shutdown of ATV trails
      Arkansas Online Article Published April 9th by Arkansas Online Press Services

    The National Forest Service has decided to put off a plan that would have shut down several miles of off-road vehicle trails in the Ouachita National Forest. To read more of this article link to: http://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2010/apr/09/forest-service-delays-shutdown-atv-trails/

  4. Colo. Submits Final Plan for 4.2M Acres of Roadless Lands
      The New York Times Article Published April 6th by Noelle Straub

    The state of Colorado today unveiled its final plan to guide management of 4.2 million acres of roadless lands within the state's 11 national forests and submitted it for federal approval. To read more of this article link to: http://www.nytimes.com/gwire/2010/04/06/06greenwire-colo-submits-final-plan-for-42m-acres-of-roadl-17832.html

  5. Breakthrough Forest Agreement Complete
      Payson Roundup Article Published April 9th by Pete Aleshire

    Environmentalists and loggers have agreed on a groundbreaking plan to use a reinvented timber industry to restore forest health by thinning 750,000 acres of dangerously overgrown central Arizona forests. To read more of this article link to: http://www.paysonroundup.com/news/2010/apr/09/breakthrough-forest-agreement-complete/

This Week in Congress & National News

  1. Wednesday 21st - RESCHEDULED: PUBLIC LANDS AND FORESTS SUBCOMMITTEE HEARING: to receive testimony on the following bills: S. 1546, S. 2798, S. 2830, S. 2963 (Hearing Room SD-366). Energy Committee Hearing Room - SD-366 at 2:30pm

    The purpose of the hearing is to receive testimony on the following bills: S. 1546, to provide for the conveyance of certain parcels of land to the town of Mantua, Utah; S. 2798, to reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire through the facilitation of insect and disease infestation treatment of National Forest System and adjacent land, and for other purposes; S. 2830, to amend the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 to clarify that uncertified States and Indian tribes have the authority to use certain payments for certain noncoal reclamation projects; and S. 2963, to designate certain land in the State of Oregon as wilderness, to provide for the exchange of certain Federal land and non-Federal land, and for other purposes (Hearing Room SD-366). The hearing was originally scheduled for March 23, 2010.


    Panel 1
    • The Honorable Harris Sherman , Undersecretary of Agriculture for Natural Resources and Environment, Department of Agriculture
    • The Honorable Joseph Pizarchik , Director, Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, Department of the Interior

    Panel 2
    • Mr. Forrest Reinhardt , President, Venture Beyond
    • The Honorable Dan Gibbs , Colorado State Senator, Senate District 16
    • Mr. Gregory Conrad , National Association of Abandoned Mine Land Programs
    • Dr. Dominik Kulakowski , Assistant Professor, School of Geography, Clark University

    To link to the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources click here: http://energy.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?Fuseaction=Hearings.Hearing&Hearing_ID=4f27c780-90d4-4627-a991-6d836ee788d4

  2. Senate Leader Reaffirms Plans for Climate Bill Debate as Sponsors Prepare Bloc-To-Bloc Talks
      The New York Times Article Published April 13th by Darren Samuelsohn of ClimateWire

    The Senate's top Democrat said yesterday he is still dedicated to spending valuable floor time this year on comprehensive climate and energy legislation, but the three sponsors of the plan may have to go member-by-member in order to deliver a package capable of mustering 60 votes. To read more of this article link to: http://www.nytimes.com/cwire/2010/04/13/13climatewire-senate-leader-reaffirms-plans-for-climate-bi-34741.html


In the States: Alaska, Montana and Nevada

  1. Divergent Interests at Loggerheads in Spectacular Tongass National Forest
      The Los Angeles Times Article Published April 12th by Kim Murphy

    Decades after many of America's national forests have been tamed into tree farms and campgrounds, the Tongass National Forest stands as a reminder of what wilderness once was. Beneath its 800-year-old stands of Sitka spruce and Western hemlock lurks a mossy hush, a thick, verdant silence. To read more link to: http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-tongass12-2010apr12,0,5161409.story

  2. Gallatin Forest to Restrict Motorcycle, Bike Use
      Daily Herald Article Published April 10th by the Associated Press

    Motorcycle and bicycle use within the Gallatin National Forest will be restricted this summer after a federal judge ruled the U.S. Forest Service had failed to adequately maintain the area's wilderness character, the federal agency said. To read more of this article link to: http://www.dailyherald.com/story/?id=372001

  3. Nevada Tree Plantation to Help Fight Deforestation
      The Associated Press Article Published April 6th by Scott Sonner

    An international forestry company embarking on a global effort to accumulate carbon credits while slowing deforestation has picked an unlikely site for the first of up to 100,000 acres of tree plantations it intends to grow on U.S. soil in the coming years. To read more of this article link to: http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5iK8AsAsS83-Doslj5lphlX8QXYgAD9ETQ9B85

Wildfire Update

  1. Mississippi Forestry Commission Encourages "Firewise Communities"
      WLOX, ABC 13 the Station for South Mississippi Article Published April 8th by Steve Phillips

    It's a program to help home owners reduce the risk of wildfire danger. The Mississippi Forestry Commission and other groups hosted a workshop at Flint Creek Thursday. To read more of this article link to: http://www.wlox.com/Global/story.asp?S=12279323

  2. Call for answers
      Pasadena Weekly Article Published April 8th by Andre Coleman

    Seven months after the US Forest Service reportedly canceled air drops that may have contained the devastating Station Fire in its early stages, Rep. Adam Schiff has asked the House Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior, Environment and Related Agencies to review the agency's ban against night and early morning flights. To read more of this article link to: http://www.pasadenaweekly.com/cms/story/detail/call_for_answers/8630/

Additional Information:

The SAF National Office serves as the voice of professional forestry through its active role in several forestry, natural resources, and agricultural groups and coalitions…
25 x '25 (www.25x25.org) - SAF is a proud member of 25 x '25 and currently sits on its Sustainability Working Group. The goal of 25 x '25 is to have 25% of our energy needs being fulfilled by renewable resources from our nation's farms, ranches, forests, and other lands by 2025.

Continental Dialogue on Non-Native Forest Insects and Diseases (www.continentalforestdialogue.org) - SAF sits on the organization's Steering Committee and assists in its mission of "cultivating and catalyzing collaborative action among diverse interests to abate the threat to North American forests from non-native insects and diseases." The 4th meeting summary of the Continental Dialogue on Non-Native Forest Insects and Diseases is now available online at: http://www.continentalforestdialogue.org/documents/meetings/2008-11/index.html

Additional groups in which SAF plays a role include:
Core Group of the Roundtable on Sustainable Forests"

Forest Carbon Education Group. The FCEG's Guidance Document on Managed Forests in Climate Change policy can be viewed on the SAF Policy Webpage http://www.eforester.org/fp/documents/managedforests_12-14-07.pdf

Wildland Fire Leadership Council

Western Governors' Association Forest Health Advisory Committee

About the Policy Update:

Disclaimer: The Society of American Foresters does not necessarily endorse the views expressed in the news items and/or links to additional information that appear in the Policy Update.

Problems? If you experience any problems with the Policy Update please let us know so we can work to resolve the problem. If problems persist, we can make arrangements to send the Policy Update to you in an alternative format.