America’s forests are facing a perfect storm of threats. Infestations of diseases and invasive pests like the Emerald Ash Borer are killing tens of thousands of acres of trees nationally. Increased development is splitting once-vast forests into small fragments, and a history of suppressing natural fires has created unhealthy stands of forests. Additionally, climate change is altering the size and growth patterns of forests.
Without these forests, 50 percent of the nation’s water supply will go unfiltered and 12 percent of U.S. carbon emissions won’t be absorbed. Iconic and important plant and animal species will lose their home, and more than $14.5 billion generated on Forest Service lands – money that goes back to local communities – will be lost.