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Protecting the environment in Douglas-fir National Monument will be a two-pronged strategy. One aspect is to preserve all of the old-growth forest that remains there, which means no logging of old trees in these forests will be permitted. The other aspect is to practice restoration forestry on the rest of the forest, as described below.

To read more about ancient forests, please go to the Old-growth Forests page.

Protection works both ways: to read about how forests protect us from global warming
please go to the Climate Change and Forests page.

Restoration forestry in the proposed Douglas-fir National Monument

A significant amount of the federal public forestlands to be protected by a national monument designation was clearcut and then artificially planted. Where they were “successful,” these Douglas-fir plantations are generally monocultures of trees that are now all the same species, age, height and spacing. Such plantations have little resemblance to a natural forest. Restoration forestry in the proposed Douglas-fir National Monument would put these degraded forest stands on a path that will achieve high amounts of biological diversity for fish and wildlife, watershed integrity for water quality and quantity, and carbon storage and sequestration for the climate—as well as protecting spectacular scenery and recreation opportunities for this and future generations.

Restoration forestry consists of ecological restoration thinning, where the plantation stand is thinned to favor the growth of the remaining Douglas-fir trees and also provide for other native tree species that may be on the site or could be planted with locally adapted stock. Not every planation acre will be thinned, as some are not readily accessible by road, are too steep, too close to streams or should be left for other habitat values.

Unnecessary roads would be decommissioned to protect water quality. Necessary roads would be maintained and upgraded to support water quality and minimize habitat degradation potential.

As a result, ecological restoration thinning will provide large amounts of commercially valuable logs for local mills. That, and the use of heavy equipment necessary to decommission unnecessary roads, means jobs in the woods and the mills.

It is projected that enough ecologically desirable restoration thinning opportunities will last for decades.

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A diverse forest
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Unwinding in a pristine setting

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Large culvert for fish passage
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High quality clean water