Keeping family forests."Family forest" landowners manage about 60 percent of forests nationwide. Yet this statistic does not reflect the tremendous influence these landowners have over certain key landscapes. For instance, the ownership pattern within the lower-elevation forest lands in western Washington's Puget Trough is dominated by family forests. The Puget Trough--once predominantly low-lying forests, prairies, wetlands, and farmlands--is rapidly urbanizing, forming a barrier between wildlife in coastal Washington and the Cascade Mountain Cascade Mountain can refer to:
Family forest landowners (often known as tree farmers) take pride in managing their lands. Many of them desire to manage for wildlife and to mimic natural-disturbance regimes, as well as manage for recreation and the production of forest products. While the term "tree farm" implies young trees growing in rows like crops, family forests are typically diverse and often contain old forest conditions with large standing dead trees and large downed logs used by many species of wildlife.
Unfortunately, many tree farmers fear that potential regulatory restrictions could keep them from managing their lands economically. These lands represent long-term investments, often for college and retirement funds, and occasionally for yearly family income. As with industrial lands, listing of species under the Endangered Species Act The federal Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA) (16 U.S.C.A. §§ 1531 et seq.) was enacted to protect animal and plant species from extinction by preserving the ecosystems in which they survive and by providing programs for their conservation. may have unintended consequences For the "Law of unintended consequences", see Unintended consequence
Unintended Consequences is a novel by author John Ross, first published in 1996 by Accurate Press. when a listing encourages landowners to harvest timber on shorter rotations and to retain less structure within their forests so that the listed species are not attracted to their properties.
In this context, Habitat Conservation To conserve habitat life for wild species and prevent their extinction or reduction in range is a priority of a great many groups that cannot be easily characterized in terms of any one ideology. Plans, and other conservation tools such as Safe Harbor Safe Harbor
1. A legal provision to reduce or eliminate liability as long as good faith is demonstrated.
2. A form of shark repellent implemented by a target company acquiring a business that is so poorly regulated that the target itself is less attractive. Agreements (SHAs), can accomplish the conservation of threatened and endangered species endangered species, any plant or animal species whose ability to survive and reproduce has been jeopardized by human activities. In 1999 the U.S. government, in accordance with the U.S. merely by removing the uncertainties that may be created by a changing regulatory environment. The largest threat to wildlife habitat in many areas is the conversion of forest lands to residential, commercial, or industrial developments. Developing HCPs can help to retain these lands as habitat for listed species. However, other uncertainties will continue, and the Fish and Wildlife Service recognizes it will have to incorporate additional flexibility to accommodate the management on family forest lands. For example, unexpected medical bills may make it necessary for a landowner to harvest and sell timber that would otherwise have been allowed to grow longer.
A number of family forest landowners have contacted the Service wishing to pursue HCPs or similar conservation plans. They were already managing their lands in ways the Service would applaud. However, these landowners generally did not have the ability (as do some industrial companies) to prepare an HCP HCP,
n healthcare provider, a professional who specializes in treating and managing a person's general or specific health needs. or SHA SHA - Secure Hash Algorithm and the necessary environmental compliance documents, therefore making it necessary for Service staff to prepare these documents. Because of the workload associated with large HCPs and SHAs, some covering over a million acres each, smaller projects often have ranked lower in Service priority. Another factor influencing priorities was that many of these family forest landowners were not having immediate impacts on listed species. But smaller landowners needed the same opportunities as the larger landowners. There had to be a better way.
Family forest landowners in Lewis County, Washington Lewis County is a county located in the U.S. state of Washington. As of 2000, the population was 68,600. The county seat is at Chehalis, and its largest city is Centralia.
It is named after Meriwether Lewis. , have been aware of the encroaching growth problems and are represented by a group of progressive and involved leaders. The Service, working with these community leaders, contacted a broad range of people and groups interested in maintaining family forests within Lewis County, including family forest landowners, landowner organizations, state and federal agencies, Native American tribes, environmental organizations, county extension staff, and universities. These stakeholder groups found common interests and desires.
A steering committee steer·ing committee
A committee that sets agendas and schedules of business, as for a legislative body or other assemblage.
Noun began pursuing a programmatic HCP. The original idea was that the programmatic plan, which was expected to contain several options for land management, would form the basis for issuance of numerous individual permits under the Endangered Species Act. Each landowner who chose to participate would receive his own permit and be responsible for compliance. Lewis County has joined the process and may agree to hold a master permit, if issued, allowing individual landowners to be included through "Certificates of Inclusion."
The programmatic HCP is expected to streamline other processes. Upon approval by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), independent agency of the U.S. government, with headquarters in Washington, D.C. It was established in 1970 to reduce and control air and water pollution, noise pollution, and radiation and to ensure the safe handling and and Washington Department of Ecology The Washington Department of Ecology, or simply, Ecology, is an environmental regulatory agency for the State of Washington. The department administers laws and regulations pertaining to the areas of water quality, water rights and water resources, shoreline management, , there should be certainty with respect to the federal Clean Water Act. Also, once approved by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and Department of Natural Resources Many sub-national governments have a Department of Natural Resources or similarly-named organization:
The plan developers believe that this approach provides landowners with the opportunity to pursue long-term regulatory certainty and "one-stop shopping," as well as a number of options that will fit their desire for site-specific management. At the same time, this programmatic approach will help the agencies achieve their goals for fish and wildlife conservation and clean water in a manner that was not possible on a case-by-case basis. The agencies and other groups realize that each will have to contribute to the effort. Only a team effort will succeed.
The Steering Committee of the Family Forest Habitat Conservation Plan has formed the Family Forest Foundation, a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation, to facilitate the funding of this project. Cooperation among several key stakeholders (the Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) is a United States federal agency. A division of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Department of Commerce, NMFS is responsible for the stewardship and management of the nation's living marine , Washington Department of Natural Resources, and Lewis County) is increasing. Legal counsel and biological assistance have been established, and progress is encouraging.
William Vogel is a wildlife biologist '''
The examples and perspective in this article or section may not represent a worldwide view of the subject.
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A wildlife biologist is someone who studies wild animals and their habitats. with Service's Western Washington
Western Washington is a region of the United States defined as that part of Washington west of the Cascade Mountains. Office (Bill_Vogel@fws.gov). Steve Stinson is the Executive Director of the Family Forest Foundation and a partner in the Cowlitz Ridge Tree Farm. He is also the primary contact for the Family Forest Conservation Project (email@example.com).