The American Forest Foundation (AFF) was awarded $30,000 to support North Carolina family forestland owners in certification to the American Tree Farm System (ATFS) and engage landowners who may not be ready for certification, on a pathway to sustainable forest management.
In this unique project, AFF conducted outreach utilizing several coordinated targeting methods, which together ensured both the certification relevance and ecological impact of efforts. The first level of targeting was selecting lands within the North Carolina Significant Geographic area identified by the “America’s Longleaf Conservation Plan.” That focus was further refined to reflect highest priority areas based on an assessment of ecological importance at the landscape level. The resulting priority areas were then compared against the ownership boundaries of State Forest Stewardship Landowners that lie within the procurement areas of SFI certification participants to determine the core area of focus. Lastly, within this focal area, landowners were screened using practices developed by AFF that identify individuals most likely to certify their lands or pursue sustainable forestry. These landowners were contacted and offered field visits and expert advice by ATFS Foresters. Landowners not ready to certify were encouraged to join local and state stewardship efforts and offered MyLandPlan, an AFF online resource for landowners interested in sustainable forestry.
The project supported SFI objectives to increase sustainable forest management within the family forest landowner community, and protect ecologically significant landscapes.
For this project The American Forest Foundation partnered with The American Tree Farm System and the North Carolina Tree Farm Committee.