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Forest Management Challenges & Opportunities. Green Counties: Green Lands Madison, VA 18 September 2007 Mike Santucci Region 3 Forest Conservation Specialist. Topics of Discussion. The forest by the numbers Demographic impact Threats and issues Points to ponder.

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forest management challenges opportunities

Forest ManagementChallenges & Opportunities

Green Counties: Green Lands

Madison, VA

18 September 2007

Mike Santucci

Region 3 Forest Conservation Specialist

topics of discussion
Topics of Discussion
  • The forest by the numbers
  • Demographic impact
  • Threats and issues
  • Points to ponder
economic impact
Economic Impact
  • $156.3 MM
    • DIRECT, INDIRECT, INDUCED impacts
    • #1 agricultural industry in the state
  • 1180 residents employed
    • 10% of population
  • Difficult to quantify other values
demographics
Demographics
  • Northern Piedmont is fastest growing region in VA
    • Added 15,000+ people in 5 years
    • Lost 5000+/- acres of forestland
conservation continuum
Conservation Continuum

Exploitation

Preservation

“Come–heres”

New residents

Neo-conservationists

Regulation

Societal benefits

“Been–heres”

Generational families

Traditionalists

Economic incentives

Private property rights

ecological footprint
Ecological Footprint
  • A single human being:
      • Annually consumes the amount of wood in a 16-inch diameter tree that is 100 feet tall
      • Uses 750 pounds of paper per year
  • Home construction
      • 20,000 board feet of lumber
      • 14,000 board feet of panel products
  • 24 acres of forestland per person
local threats to forestland
Local Threats to Forestland
  • Loss of open space
    • Through parcelization, fragmentation and conversion
  • Improper forest management
    • Past and present
  • Water quantity and quality
  • Invasive species
forest parcelization
Forest Parcelization
  • Division of large, contiguous forest tracts into smaller properties
  • Promotes forest fragmentation and land-use conversion.
fragmentation
Fragmentation
  • Often leads to conversion
    • Usually development
  • Tends to isolate and separate forested tracts from each other.
  • 75 acres
    • Healthy & manageable forest systems
  • Madison County
    • Average tract size is 20 acres
    • 85% of tracts are smaller
conversion
Conversion
  • VA losing 26,000 acres of forestland per year
    • 71+ acres per day
    • 2.9 acres per hour
  • 1 million acres by 2040
  • Majority is concentrated in northern piedmont and mountains
  • 75% due to development
proximity pressure
Proximity Pressure
  • Culmination of fragmentation and development
  • Madison County Population Density =

42 people per square mile

some points to ponder
Some Points to Ponder
  • History is the future
  • Succession happens
  • Forest management is an act of trade-offs
  • Where do the opportunities lie?
history is the future
History is the Future
  • Past events impact today’s decisions
  • Today’s decisions will impact tomorrow’s choices
  • “By understanding our past, we can shape our future.”
    • Forest History Society
succession happens
Succession Happens
  • Forests:
    • Are not static
    • Age at a different rate than us
    • Can and do change
  • Take the long view
    • The shorter the planning horizon, the less possibility for sustainability
    • “Forest time” is out of sync with “human time”
trade offs
Trade-offs
  • Very few panaceas or silver bullets
  • Very little is black & white
    • Get comfortable in the “gray”
  • Objectives can be contradictory
    • Cause and effect
opportunities
Opportunities
  • Public participation
    • Comprehensive Plan revisions
    • Ad hoc committees
  • Forest Stewardship Management Plans
  • Cost Share Programs
  • Tax Incentives
    • Land Use taxation
    • Forestal districts
  • Conservation Easements
thank you
THANK YOU!
  • Questions?
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