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A First-Of-Its-Kind Partnership

In January of 2023, the National Alliance of Forest Owners (NAFO), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), and the National Council for Air and Steam Improvement, Inc. (NCASI) signed a ground-breaking Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) formalizing the Wildlife Conservation Initiative as a programmatic partnership for voluntary and proactive collaborative conservation benefiting common, at-risk, and listed species.

The MOU codifies the value of active forest management in private working forests as a powerful conservation tool.

At a high level, the WCI MOU:
  • Promotes cooperation and collaboration.
  • Creates consistency as a USFWS agency-wide initiative.
  • Encourages the partners to explore proactive, voluntary conservation efforts before regulatory action is warranted.
On the ground, the WCI MOU:
  • Supports research that seeks to understand how active forest management impacts species conservation.
  • Facilitates voluntary access agreements to private forests for public and private research.
  • Provides the USFWS with better data and resources for species conservation work.
The National Alliance of Forest Owners

White House Announcement

At the White House Conservation in Action Summit on March 21, 2023, President Biden announced new major actions to conserve and restore lands and waters across the nation, which includes the Wildlife Conservation Initiative MOU:
“The Department of the Interior’s U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Alliance of Forest Owners and the National Council for Air and Stream Improvement Inc., will announce a memorandum of understanding which formalizes the Wildlife Conservation Initiative, a collaborative partnership focused on advancing the conservation of at-risk and listed species within private working forests nationwide. The announcement comes as the Department of the Interior celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act and highlights the landmark law’s importance in preventing imperiled species’ extinction, promoting the recovery of wildlife, and conserving the habitats upon which they depend.”

NAFO Resources

Bee on flower.

From turtles in the Great Lakes, to bumblebees in the West, to songbirds migrating along the Eastern Seaboard, we are dedicated to conserving species through active forest management of private working forests.

A man in an orange shirt and hat looks out over a forested landscape, while carrying a large bag of seedlings to plant.

Wildlife thrives in actively managed working forests. Sustainable forest management integrates the production of useful renewable products with conservation of healthy and diverse forest ecosystems across the landscape.