On Earth Day, April 22nd, the National Forest Foundation (NFF) launched an ambitious campaign to plant 50 million trees on America’s National Forests. The NFF initiated this effort to address the increasing reforestation needs on National Forests. Many Americans are unaware that an estimated one million acres of National Forests need reforestation. Every year, wildfire, insects and disease take their toll on these treasured public lands. The campaign calls attention to this issue and invites Americans to make a difference.
"We will address this need head on by planting trees where they are needed most," said Mary Mitsos, NFF President. "Planting 50 million trees is an enormous challenge, but in that challenge we see opportunity opportunity to engage Americans in their National Forests. Since every dollar donated plants a tree, each of us can plant several trees for the cost of a morning latte. It really is that easy."
Working in partnership with the USDA Forest Service, corporate partners, small businesses and individual supporters, the NFF will direct its support to National Forests that need it most. The Forest Service only plants native trees, chosen specifically for each site. For every dollar contributed, the agency invests two additional dollars in these reforestation projects.
"We see a growing reforestation need across our National Forests," said Vicki Christiansen, Interim Chief of the Forest Service. "It is fitting the Forest Service joins in launching this campaign as we celebrate Earth Day and work to sustain the natural resources that support our communities, livelihoods and life itself. Through this reforestation effort, the Forest Service and the National Forest Foundation will work together to tackle this challenge. This is a public-private partnership at its best."
The NFF has already planted more than 11 million trees on National Forests across the country since 2008. Reforestation projects like these:
- Improve wildlife habitat for the thousands of wildlife species that call forests home.
- Restore watershed health, which benefits the millions of Americans who depend on National Forests for water.
- Improve forest health to ensure forests are resilient in the face of climate change.
- Enhance the beauty of forests and people’s ability to enjoy them.
About the National Forest Foundation
The National Forest Foundation promotes the enhancement and public enjoyment of the 193-million-acre National Forest System. By directly engaging Americans and leveraging private and public funding, the NFF improves forest health and Americans’ outdoor experiences. The NFF’s programs inform millions of Americans about the importance of these treasured landscapes. Each year, the NFF restores fish and wildlife habitat, plants trees in areas affected by fires, insects and disease, improves recreational opportunities, and enables communities to steward their National Forests and Grasslands.