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AFF Applauds Introduction of the Disaster Reforestation Act in the Senate

The following statement can be attributed to Tom Martin, President and CEO of the American Forest Foundation in regards to the introduction of the Disaster Reforestation Act in the Senate (S. 2768):

“With disasters increasing in severity and frequency, the fire-prone landscapes in the West and the storm-ravaged South, a key woodbasket for the U.S. are at risk.

What’s more is that families and individuals own and care for the largest portion – 39 percent – of these forests. That’s 290 million acres. These family forest owners care about their land, but most are not wealthy landowners. One in three landowners have a household income of less than $50,000. When a disaster strikes unexpectedly, these landowners face significant financial barriers to clean up the disaster and restore their woodlands to health. Unhealthy and destroyed forests face further threats, including from invasive species and additional wildfires. This domino effect not only harms the forests but also the many natural benefits, such as clean air and water, wildlife habitat, and sustainable wood supplies, as well as the local communities. It’s a cycle that needs stopped.

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