The USDA Forest Service’s Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program is the nation’s forest census. As one of its priority programs, NASF has always supported robust funding for USDA Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) in recognition of the value of the program in answering difficult and varied resource and economic questions across the full membership of states and territories.
NASF members are the primary partner in FIA program delivery, contributing over $4 million dollars annually in state resources to shortening measurement cycles, intensifying sampling, and sampling for additional variables for the common good.
NASF recommenda that Congress federally funds the FIA program at a level that ensures inclusion of all states and a return to historical cycles of plot measurement—every seven years in the east and every 10 years in the west. A shorter five year measurement cycle can be delivered through efficiencies or partnership with states in areas in the East and South where it is needed.
This week, NASF and partners sent a letter to leaders in the United States House and Senate Appropriations Committees urging consideration of adequate funding for this critical program as they develop the budget for the remainder of FY16 this month.