The Working Forest Fund | United Country Real EstateBy Marlena Cavanaugh
October 18, 2023
Learn about the Working Forest Fund and the importance of conserving timberland.
The Working Forest Fund
The Working Forest Fund identifies and acquires the most important at-risk
private forests with vital support from the philanthropic community and state
and federal agencies.
In the coming decades,
forestry experts anticipate that over 37 million acres (about twice the area of
South Carolina) of forest will be lost. When forests are cut down, they are
often never set to recover. This is why the conservation fund has
pioneered this effective and financially sustainable model, The Working Forest
Fund. The goal over the next 10-15 years is to save 5 million acres of the most
exceptional and highest conservation value forests.
Importance of Conservation
There are many reasons
why it is so vital to save our nation’s forests: climate mitigation, economic
opportunity, and clean water. With each 5 million acres of forest lost, the
climate impact is equivalent to burning over a trillion pounds of coal. If they
were protected, the benefit could be equal to 5 billion in total economic
impact from the forestry and recreation economies and 6,500 miles of rivers and
streams would stay protected.
Deforestation has deadly
impacts on the health of the people who directly depend on forests. Since the
1600s, America has lost 75% of its original forests.
Three stepping stones
lead to the path of deforestation: parcelization, fragmentation, and
conversion. Parcelization happens when the land is broken into parcels, but it
remains forested. Fragmentation is where some forest remains but part of it is
permanently lost. Finally, conversion is when all forest is lost, and the
land is transformed for non-forest use.
The Working Forest Fund
To fight against the
forest loss, The Working Forest Fund buys land that they assess is the most at
risk and of utmost importance. They then manage that land while protecting the
forest and the local forestry jobs. The Working Forest Fund then starts the
process of a permanent conservation easement that will protect the forest
against fragmentation and conversion into commercial land. After this easement
is secured, the land is then resold to a public or private buyer.
Working Forest Fund is
focused on the scale of the transaction. Nationwide, the vast majority of
conservation projects range between 1,000-acre to 10,000-acre parcels.
Forests are the
foundation of our world, and this is why we must protect them. Supporting the
Working Forest Fund will help keep at-risk forests shielded from conversions
into commercial use. The Conservation Fund currently looks to raise capital to
permanently secure the first one million acres of critical forests. The
long-term goal is to protect 5 million acres.
United Country Real
Estate has played a large part of the buying and selling of timberland for a
century with recreation, conservation and appreciation as our passion. United
Country has excelled in real estate and auction services, spanning across all
50 states and beyond, with an unmatched marketing approach. Contact us to find your dream timberland
property or work with a
timberland expert today!