The State Forest Action Plan (Plan) is a 10-year strategic plan for New York's forestry community. The purpose of the Plan is to provide long‐term, comprehensive, coordinated strategies for investing state, federal and leveraged partner resources in major management and landscape priorities. Under the federal Farm Bill, every 10 years each state must submit a State Forest Action Plan to the U.S. Forest Service. The Plan is approved by the State Forester, who in New York is the director of DEC's Division of Lands and Forests. This version of the Plan was adopted in 2020.
The value of forests encompasses all the irreplaceable life-giving and life-enhancing benefits they provide. The recommendations in the Plan outline the actions to be taken to ensure New York's forests are prepared for the challenges and opportunities of the next 10 years. The Plan provides an important framework for the ongoing efforts of the New York State Climate Action Council to identify strategies, policies, and regulations to reach the State's climate goals through forest protection and management. This Plan's strategies also aim to stimulate public policy that safeguards the irreplaceable value of forests as climate change mitigators by preventing loss of forests to development or infrastructure.
Managing our forests for the long-term will ensure that the citizens of our state, and the entire global community, continue to experience the vital benefits of forests, including the protection of our water and air, the conservation of wildlife habitat, and the employment of thousands of people in the forest products, outdoor recreation, and tourism industries.
The Plan identifies four primary goals for New York's Forests, and proposes strategies for addressing each goal:
- Keep New York's forests as forests
- Keep New York's forests healthy
- Increase forest benefits for humans and all living creatures
- Appreciate, support, and protect New York's Forests
Download the Plan
New York State Forest Action Plan - no appendices (PDF, 5 MB)
Appendix A - Forest Legacy Program's Assessment of Need (PDF)
Appendix B - Partner and Stakeholder Outreach and Participation (PDF)
Appendix C - Survey of Stakeholders and Staff (PDF)
Appendix D - New York's Forest and Woodland Community Types (PDF)