The U.S. Forest Service’s proposed land management plan for the Pisgah and Nantahala forests has drawn thousands of objections, leading to an extension of time to review concerns. The Forest Service chief now calls the plan revision process, which took more than a decade, unsustainable.
On June 7, Carolina Public Press held a free and open virtual event with a panel of experts to discuss threats to the future of public forests in the state, including climate change. A recording of the event is linked to this story.
Innovative approaches such as land restoration and private-public partnerships, as well as revisiting tried approaches such as herd grazing and indigenous land management, offer partial answers to the challenges of a changing climate in WNC forests.
Forest supervisor James Melonas sets priorities for tenure as leader of state’s four national forests.
While the long-running planning process has made considerable progress toward a consensus vision for the forest, sticking points do still remain. Conservationists continue to disagree with some hunting advocates and logging industry groups about protected area designations and the exact extent of active management on the land.