WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators John Boozman (R-AR) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) introduced a resolution recognizing the 75th anniversary of the American Tree Farm System (ATFS), a program founded in 1941 to help family and individual woodland owners sustain forests and promote the benefits that forests provide.
The ATFS celebrated its 75th anniversary on June 12, 2016. The resolution highlights its important role in providing Americans with clean air, jobs, wildlife habitats and sustainable resources.
“Tree farms are important to the economy of Arkansas and the entire country. Over 340,000 family forest owners own 9.3 million acres of forestland in Arkansas. The forest industry contributes more than $2 billion dollars to to our state’s economy in addition to providing numerous benefits to the environment,” Boozman said. “Arkansas tree farmers and woodland owners have made vital contributions to our state, both economically and in terms of conservation, and have much to be proud of. I’m proud to recognize ATFS on this milestone.”
"I am proud to celebrate the American Tree Farm System’s 75th anniversary and our nation’s tree farmers who help to provide wildlife habitat, clean water and a sustainable wood supply from our working forests. On my own tree farm in Middlesex, Vermont, I have seen firsthand many of the incredible challenges our nation’s family forestlands are facing from growing development pressures, invasive forest pests, a rapidly changing climate, economic and technical transitions in the timber industry, and devastating wildfires. The American Tree Farm System provides vital support and tools to forestland owners to respond to these challenges,” Leahy said.
The ATFS was originally created to promote the idea that being good stewards of forestland would encourage others to do so as well. There are millions of acres of tree farms across the United States that contribute to our country’s sustainable forestry endeavors. Tree farmers and woodland owners provide an invaluable service to our economy and the environment and the ATFS plays a vital role in educating individuals, families and corporate woodland owners on cultivating and conserving one of our nation’s greatest assets, our forests.
Representatives Glenn Thompson (R-PA) and Kurt Schrader (D-OR) introduced a companion resolution in the House of Representatives.