Wolverines, grizzly bears, fishers, frogs, owls and more will face an uncertain future on our nation’s forests if the Obama administration’s proposed forest plan goes unchallenged.
But thanks to the more than 87,000 Defenders, who spoke for the trees and submitted comments to the U.S. Forest Service asking for stronger wildlife protections, there is reason for hope.
Since February, Defenders members and supporters have been helping to get the word out about how the proposed changes to the National Forest Management Act forest-planning rule will weaken long-standing protections for wildlife.
In an impressive showing of support, many advocates took time off from their everyday lives to attend public meetings held by the Forest Service, voiced concerns with their congressional leaders, and wrote letters to their local newspapers.
The forest-planning rule lays out the “rules of the road” for how the Forest Service is supposed to manage 155 national forests and 20 grasslands, guiding forest managers as they decide which areas of the forest should be protected for wildlife and which can be safely logged.
Plenty Is at Stake
The Forest Service manages some 193 million acres of public lands (an area as big as Texas) which provide a lifeline for one-fifth of federally protected threatened and endangered species and provide millions of Americans with drinking water.
There’s Still Time to Act
The public comment period on the Obama administration’s proposed forest plan expires May 16.