The nation's 59 state and territorial foresters pass resolutions and release policy statements on an annual basis. These official views of the association address public policy issues, including legislation and policies adopted by various agencies of the federal government.
NASF takes a firm position on actively managing federal forest land. With limitless bureaucracy and a lack of funding thanks to fire borrowing, forest ecosystems and forest industry are ailing. For long-term sustainability, NASF suggests a range of changes to federal laws and regulation that would focus the management of federal lands on achieving a more balanced set of economic, environmental and social benefits.
Forest Inventory and Analysis
In regards to the Forest Inventory Analysis (FIA) program, NASF believes it provides essential information/data to many like-minded partners. NASF priorities are:
- Fully Fund and Implement a Comprehensive and Adequate Base Program
- Provide Funding for Essential Emerging Needs
- Additional Areas of Program Support.
NASF's position on climate change involves increased funding for private forest lands, urban and community forests, improving forest health, and State Fire Assistance and Volunteer Fire Assistance to combat catastrophic wildfire. Trees absorb carbon dioxide and store it, even when they are cut down and converted to products. Preventing catastrophic wildfires, making forests more resilient, and increasing the amount of forest cover in urban areas will greatly reduce carbon emissions.
Endangered Species Act Reform
NASF supports an updated Endangered Species Act that encourages greater cooperation, more efficient regulatory processes and a renewed emphasis on sound science in the management of threatened or endangered plants and animals.
NASF supports tax policies that help private forest owners including
- Abolishing the estate tax on family forests
- Retaining capital gains of timber revenue
- Increased tax deductions for conservation efforts
- Maintaining the yearly deduction of forest management operations costs.
Forest Certification, another tool to promote sustainability, is completely voluntary; it require rigorous documentation to prove that forestry practices are sustainable. NASF values the certification process and is a strong advocate for the continued improvement and recognition of all credible programs.
Preventing and managing forests pests is of great concern. With damages reaching upwards of billions of dollars of damage, NASF believes that state and federal partnerships must cultivated to handling infestations. A collective unit can handle these issues much better. Rapid response is essential to preventing as much damage as possible.