Support for Urban and Community Forests in the Reconciliation Package
October 7, 2021
SAF led a letter signed by 93 organizations supporting inclusion of urban and community forestry related programs in the reconciliation package. The letter also reemphasizes the importance of maintaining funds for critical wildfire resilience and forest restoration activities. Excerpt below.
From combating climate change and creating more equitable communities to improving infrastructure and expanding green jobs, our nation’s current and expanding 138 million acres of urban and community forests and trees are an essential piece of the equation. Furthermore, with climate impacts from extreme heat and air pollution rising, cities and towns are urgently setting new goals for expansion of tree cover to protect our most vulnerable populations. The bold investments proposed in the reconciliation bills—particularly from the House Agriculture Committee—represent unprecedented recognition and support for the multitude of scientifically proven social, economic, and environmental benefits provided by forests and trees across communities of all sizes.
The House Agriculture Committee’s $40 billion forestry package includes support for shared priorities across the diverse spectrum of urban and community forestry stakeholders, including significant investments in USDA Forest Service programs like:
• Urban and Community Forestry (U&CF)
• Community Forests and Open Space Conservation (CFP)
• Forest and Rangeland Research, including Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA)
• Forest Health Monitoring
• Forest Legacy
• Civilian Climate Corps (CCC) (new)