SEEC Nature and Oceans Task Force Supports U.S. Forest Service Old-Growth Forest Conservation Plan

April 01, 2024

Washington, D.C. – The House Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition (SEEC) Nature and Oceans Task Force Members, Rep. Jared Huffman and Rep. John Sarbanes, along with Co-Chair Rep. Doris Matsui, sent a letter to the Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack in strong support of U.S. Forest Service’s (USFS) proposal to amend all land management plans across the National Forest System to conserve existing old-growth forest and recruit future old-growth forest across America. The letter was signed by 48 House Democrats.  

“Old-growth forests are the bedrock of our National Forest System, providing a range of essential ecosystem services, from clean water and animal habitat to carbon sequestration and recreation. We must act to protect these forests and manage them responsibly,” the Task Force wrote. “We strongly support the proposed national plan amendment, and we urge USFS to swiftly finalize and implement the proposed amendment and to ensure the amendment is durable under future administrations. Further, we urge USFS to strengthen and clarify the prioritization of ecological health when managing existing old-growth forests and to include strong and consistent direction for the recruitment of future old-growth forests. Finally, we urge USFS to promote tribal co-stewardship and integrate indigenous knowledge throughout the amendment.”

Read the full letter here.