Washington’s State Department of Natural Resources currently has several roles involving forests in the state:
- Manager of 2.1 million acres of forested state trust lands, earning revenue— mostly for schools— while providing diverse native habitats,
- Steward of thousands of acres of protected forests in Natural Areas,
- Administrator of state forest practices rules on 12 million acres of forests,
- Trainer of small forest landowners to plan sustainable stewardship on their working forests to accomplish their ecological, economic and other goals,
- Researcher of forest pests and diseases, that shares this information landowners,
- Wildfire fighter protecting 12.7 million acres state and private forests.
Maybe this broad range of activities that we do is why we are so interested in the health and viability of the forests that provide so many benefits. But our state needs others to be involved, and we want to encourage creative thinking from diverse interests across Washington.
So what do you think DNR’s role might be—and roles of others as well—to help meet a vision for sustainable forests, including working forests, into the future? We have received some ideas in this week’s DNR Forum. We hope you will view them and offer your ideas— on any of the subjects presented— today and over the weekend. Today’s conversation starter:
What do you see as the state Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) role in protecting working forests across Washington State?
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