Volume 2, Issue 1 - Winter 2009
Message from the Director
The historic inauguration of President Barack Obama opened a new chapter in Federal land management. All Presidential transitions involve policy adjustments of some form, but the circumstances facing our new administration invite actions beyond the ordinary. For example, passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 has led to increased Federal spending in an effort to boost economic recovery. A relatively small but significant piece of these economic stimulus funds is targeted at projects to improve forest health while helping provide jobs to American citizens. The Forest Service and other land management agencies have a large backlog of forest and rangeland treatments and infrastructure improvements that will benefit from this infusion of funds and workers.
Although increased funding may allow forest managers to gain ground on some of the more prominent and pressing forest threats, no one expects a temporary bump in funding to solve our forest health problems. Continued diligence and hard work are required to respond to the ever-increasing threats to forest health. This is where the information, technology, and skills provided by EFETAC and other Forest Service support units can help. Our scientists, staff, and partners bring expertise and tools in environmental assessment and planning that can help identify areas where active forest management, restoration, or watershed improvements can be effective. Such planning requires an integrated landscape approach that recognizes the spatial context of lands, the activities they support, and the environmental services derived from them. It also requires a rigorous and comprehensive approach to risk assessment and management, core tenets of the EFETAC philosophy.
In the following pages, we describe some of the tools we’ve developed recently and introduce you to several of our staff. It looks to be a busy year ahead for us as we step up to help our clients and partners meet the challenges before us.
Until next time,