USFS Releases Report on Threats to Private Forests

September 1, 2010

More than half of US forested lands — 56% — are in private hands throughout the country. On Aug. 11, 2010, the US Forest Service released a report on these lands, assessing the threats to them, often from encroaching development, and the impacts on an area's fire risk, water, wildlife, plants, recreation, pollution, invasive species, and pathogens.

The report includes many lists and maps that allow you to zoom in on specific topical and geographic areas of interest to your audience. Some of the angles to explore, evaluated by watershed, include:

  • Most acreage threatened by increased housing density
  • Greatest wildfire danger
  • Most species potentially at risk
  • Water quality most at risk
  • Most impact on timber extraction
  • Most potential fragmentation of forest
  • Greatest threats from insect pests and diseases
  • Most threatened by ozone pollution