- Forest Guild and New Mexico State Land Office Protect Forests, Watersheds, and Communities with Controlled Fire, October 15, 2013
- Successful Youth Conservation Program completed by the Forest Guild and the Cibola National Forest, September 5, 2013
- Prescribed burn planned for north of Black Lake, New Mexico on New Mexico State Land Office managed lands, August 5, 2013
- Forest Guild releases new guidelines for the sustainable harvest of forest biomass in the Pacific Northwest, April 17, 2013
- Local Wisdom → Collective Impact, December 3, 2012
- Help advance Collaborative Forest Restoration in New Mexico! join the CFRP technical advisory team, October 15, 2012
- Forest Wisdom issue #20: Managing Forests to Meet Today’s Opportunities and Challenges, October 8, 2012
- The Forest Guild’s Executive Director, Mike DeBonis, elected to the Forest Stewardship Council's US board of directors, September 25, 2012
- Public invited to participate in forest restoration projects to improve the health of watersheds and communities in the Zuni Mountains, July 12, 2012
- Forest Guild and the Cibola National Forest Receives President’s America’s Great Outdoors Initiative Grant, May 22, 2012
- Video Introduction to Sustainable Forest Bioenergy, May 15, 2012
- The Forest Guild becomes a Field Partner of ShadeFund to help identify green entrepreneurs in the US in need of small loans to expand, April 25, 2012
- Photo contest winners announced!, April 3, 2012
- Forest Wisdom looks at forest restoration from a range of perspectives, March 9, 2012
- New Forest Biomass Retention and Harvesting Guidelines for the Southeast , February 22, 2012
- New study weighs the carbon costs and benefits of using forest biomass for energy in the Southeast , February 14, 2012
Forest Guild and New Mexico State Land Office Protect Forests, Watersheds, and Communities with Controlled Fire
October 15, 2013—The Forest Guild and the New Mexico State Land Office conducted a controlled burn north of Black Lake, New Mexico that reduced the threat of wildfires, restored important ecological systems, and trained fire professionals and community members. “Forests of the Southwest need fire to be healthy, and this site will be a safer, healthier place for visitors, wildlife, and neighbors,” said Forest Guild executive director Mike DeBonis.
The project was funded by the USDA Forest Service Collaborative Forest Restoration Program (CFRP) to restore the health of the Upper Coyote Creek watershed. The controlled burn helped reduce the risk of large high intensity wildfires, increased the diversity of plants, improved wildlife habitat, and protects a source of clean water.
The controlled burn was the culmination of years of work. The collaborative team had already thinned the site and removed heavy fuels before the controlled burn. The reintroduction of fire through the controlled burn made the forest more resistant to wildfire and drought. The Forest Guild worked with the Nature Conservancy’s Fire Learning Network to include training opportunities for fire professionals and volunteer fire departments under the close supervision of an excellent team of seasoned fire professionals. Local firefighters from the Angel Fire and Moreno Valley Fire Departments provided additional support for the controlled burn and participated in the training.Read more here.
Successful Youth Conservation Program completed by the Forest Guild and the Cibola National Forest
September 5, 2013—The Forest Guild and the Mt. Taylor Ranger District of the Cibola National Forest and Grasslands recently completed a successful collaborative project dedicated to training low-income and tribal youth in conservation jobs in the Zuni Mountains. To date, the project has employed 10 low-income and tribal youth from Cibola and McKinley Counties with an interest in forest restoration and management. The data collection performed by this crew will enable the Cibola to mitigate catastrophic fire across an additional 700 acres. The forest restoration crew has also undertaken water resource protection projects at sensitive habitat locations for an endangered species currently being listed under the Endangered Species Act.
Read more here.
Prescribed burn planned for north of Black Lake, New Mexico on New Mexico State Land Office managed lands
August 5, 2013—The Forest Guild is preparing for a prescribed burn in October of ponderosa pine and dry mixed conifer forests north of Black Lake, New Mexico on New Mexico State Land Office managed lands. Funded by the USDA Forest Service Collaborative Forest Restoration Program (CFRP), the project will restore the health of the Upper Coyote Creek watershed by reducing the risk of large high intensity wildfires and improving soil, understory diversity, and hydrological conditions. The area to be burned has already been thinned and heavy fuels have been removed. The reintroduction of prescribed fire will make the forest more fire resistant. Read more here.
Forest Guild releases new guidelines for the sustainable harvest of forest biomass in the Pacific Northwest
April 17, 2013—The Forest Guild’s new guidelines for sustainable harvest of forest biomass in the Northwest detail how to produce renewable energy from the region’s forests while still protecting them for future generations.Developing domestic, renewable sources of energy is a national priority, and in the Northwest, forest biomass is a potential source of renewable energy and fuel that also supports local economies. The Forest Guild relied on the professional judgment of on-the-ground foresters and also involved scientists from universities and agencies across the Northwest to develop these regional guidelines. Together the members of the working group identified biomass harvesting practices that ensure the forest can support wildlife, maintain biodiversity, provide clean water, sequester carbon, protect soil productivity, and continue to produce income for local landowners over the long term.
“Regional guidelines have to be specific enough to provide necessary protections for forest values. At the same time, the targets have to be practical and flexible enough to be economical. These guidelines accomplish both goals,” said Jake Robinson, Forester and a member of the Forest Guild working group. The Forest Guild Pacific Northwest biomass harvesting guidelines are ready to be adopted by biomass or pellet facilities wishing to assure sustainability. Read the guidelines here.
Local Wisdom → Collective Impact
Decmber 4, 2012—Forest Guild membership principles are the foundation of ecologically sound land stewardship because
they recognize that a forester’s first duty is to the forest and its future, which should not be
sacrificed for short-term gain. As ecological and political uncertainty has led to increased
pressure on our natural resources, leadership from a values-based organization like the Forest
Guild is needed now more than ever. The Forest Guild has stayed at the forefront through
our work on the ground throughout the country and in the halls of Congress: committed to
putting the forest first and a legacy of leaving healthy forests and responsible stewardship for
With your support, the Forest Guild can and will continue to be an independent, leading voice
in sustainable, ecologically sound forestry. We need your help now. Through your personal
donation, you are making an investment that expands our collective impact throughout the U.S.
You can make a tax-deductible donation here
Click here to see a map of where the Forest Guild is working
Help advance Collaborative Forest Restoration in New Mexico! join the CFRP technical advisory team
October 15, 2012—The US Forest Service is seeking nominations and applications for 12 to 15 vacancies on the Collaborative Forest Restoration Program (CFRP) Technical Advisory Panel. The CFRP Panel evaluates grant proposals that may receive funding though the CFRP and uses a consensus based process to provide recommendations to the Forest Service on which ones best meet the program objectives. The Secretary of Agriculture makes the final decisions on project funding.
The CFRP provides cost share grants of up to $360,000 to stakeholders for forest restoration projects in New Mexico that are designed through a collaborative process. Projects can be up to four years in length and can be located on or on any combination of Federal, Tribal, State, County or Municipal Forest Land. The Forest Service anticipates awarding approximately $3.5 million in CFRP grants in 2013. Projects must address the following objectives:
· Wildfire threat reduction;
· Ecosystem restoration, including non-native species reduction;
· Reestablishment of historic fires regimes;
· Preservation of old and large trees;
· Small diameter tree utilization;
· Creation of forest-related local employment; and
· Stakeholder diversity.
Get more information here
Forest Wisdom issue 20: Managing Forests to Meet Today’s Opportunities and Challenges
October 8, 2012—From oak restoration to natural regeneration of loblolly pine to linking the supply chain though a forest partnership in New England, the suite of articles contained in this issue of Forest Wisdom, encapsulates what is best about the Forest Guild—humility, openness to trying new things, and a willingness to share knowledge and experiences to benefit the profession and the practice of forestry. Read the new issue here
The Forest Guild’s Executive Director, Mike DeBonis, elected to the Forest Stewardship Council's US board of directors
September 25, 2012—Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is an independent, non-profit organization that protects forests for future generations by setting standards under which forests and companies are certified. FSC membership consists of three equally weighted chambers -- environmental, economic, and social -- to ensure the balance and the highest level of integrity. On Tuesday, FSC-US welcomed three new members onto their board of directors: John McNulty from Seven Islands Land Company (Economic Chamber), Eric Palola from Guanacaste Dry Forest Conservation Fund (Environmental Chamber), and Mike DeBonis from the Forest Guild (Social Chamber). The FSC-US Board of Directors consists of nine elected individuals drawn from the US-based FSC members. Read more here
Public invited to participated in forest restoration projects in the Zuni Mountains
July 12, 2012 - The public is invited to learn about and participate in plans for the Zuni Mountain Forest Restoration Project at a series of meetings to be held between July 23 - 25.
Learn more about the meetings here.
Forest Guild Recieves America's Great Outdoors Grant
May 22, 2012 —The Forest Guild and the Mt. Taylor Ranger District of the Cibola National Forest are working together to train low-income and tribal youth in conservation jobs in the Zuni Mountains. They were awarded a grant funded from the Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Forest Service, and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation through their America’s Great Outdoors: Developing the Next Generation of Conservationists initiative that provides grants for projects that develop innovative conservation job opportunities for youth. wenty projects were awarded from nearly 300 organizations across the U.S. that applied for the grants. This two-year project will enable the Forest Guild and the Mt. Taylor Ranger District to hire and train 12 low-income and Tribal youth from New Mexico’s Cibola and McKinley Counties for six part-time seasonal jobs a year spanning two years. Learn more about the project here.
Video Introduction to Sustainable Forest Bioenergy
May 15, 2012 —The Forest Guild and the Pinchot Institute for Conservation are pleased to announce a new website presenting a series of videos about forest biomass harvest and retention guidelines. These guidelines detail how forest biomass can be harvested and utilized for energy while protecting the habitat, soils, water, and future of the forest. Each of the videos focuses on common questions about forest biomass harvesting guidelines from a different perspective: forest management, conservation, policy, or renewable energy production.The website also features a library of detailed technical guidelines for forest biomass retention and harvesting by state, region, and country. Landowners, foresters, loggers, policymakers, conservationists, energy producers, and others can benefit from an easy to understand guide to sustainable forest bioenergy. The website was made possible through the generous support of the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. View the videos: forestbiomassguidelines.org
The Forest Guild becomes a Field Partner of ShadeFund to help identify green entrepreneurs in the US in need of small loans to expand
April 25, 2012 —Every year, thousands of U.S. entrepreneurs look for responsible new ways to put our natural resources to work. They create jobs while sustaining the forests and open space that preserve clean air and water for all of us. New jobs in communities that depend on these working lands help ensure we’ll have green forests, ranches and farms in the future. Without creative conservation, the US Forest Service says 26 million acres of working farms and forests – an area the size of Ohio – could disappear before 2030. But many green innovators have a hard time finding the money they need to grow their business from idea to reality. Their personal resources only carry them so far, and banks are reluctant to lend to young, small businesses, no matter how bright their future may be. That’s where ShadeFund comes in. Using your tax deductible contribution, ShadeFund provides small loans to promising green entrepreneurs across America. Learn more about ShadeFund here.
Photo contest winners announced!
April 3, 2012 —Thanks to everyone who submitted photos to the Forest Guild photo contest. We’re happy to congratulate Dave Hobson the overall winner and share with everyone the great images from the forests we work in and love. See the winners here.
Forest Wisdom looks at forest restoration from a range of perspectives
March 9, 2012 —Forest restoration is the practice of renewing and restoring degraded ecosystems. In this issue of Forest Wisdom, authors explore forest restoration from different perspectives and geographies and provide insight into balancing ecological restoration with the social and economic needs of forest management. Articles discuss forestry and restoration in California, the southern Appalachians, New Mexico, and New York. Read the issue here.
Forest Biomass Retention and Harvesting Guidelines for the Southeast
February 22, 2012 —The Forest Guild's new guidelines for sustainable harvest of forest biomass in the Southeast details how to produce renewable energy from the region's forests while still protecting them for future generations.
"The Forest Guild guidelines show a much needed middle path. We don't have to forfeit environmental protection to produce renewable energy and create jobs," explained Mike DeBonis, Forest Guild Executive Director.
Developing domestic, renewable sources of energy is a national priority, and in the Southeast, forest biomass is a potential source of renewable energy and fuel that also supports local economies. Already, the Southeast is exporting thousands of tons of forest biomass to Europe in the form of wood pellets to be burned instead of coal. Forecasts for forest bioenergy suggest harvesting levels could grow by over 100 percent by 2050. These harvests could also add to ecological stress caused by an expanding population, a warming climate, and spread of exotic plants and animals. The Forest Guild used the best available science and professional judgment of on-the-ground foresters from the region to identify practices that ensure the forest can support wildlife, maintain biodiversity, provide clean water, sequester carbon, protect soil productivity, and continue to produce income for the long term.
The guidelines were developed by a working group of 16 Forest Guild members from the Southeast and aided by Forest Guild staff. Together the working group identified practical and flexible targets for biomass retention. The guidelines identify the forest conditions that call for specific amounts of logging residues to remain in the forest during biomass harvest as well as the numbers and sizes of dead and dying standing trees that are necessary to maintain wildlife habitat. Read the guidelines here.
New study weighs the carbon costs and benefits of using forest biomass for energy in the Southeast
February 14, 2012 —A study released today conducted by the Biomass Energy Resource Center, Forest Guild, and Spatial Informatics Group on behalf of the National Wildlife Federation and Southern Environmental Law Center delves into the carbon impact of using forest biomass for electricity. The report includes a review of existing forest biomass supply studies which determined that there is likely enough wood to meet a 15 percent federal Renewable Energy Standard (RES) in the Southeast when woody biomass sourced from local forests accounts for no more than 20 percent of the overall renewable electric generation target.
The study investigates the carbon impact of using forest biomass to generate electricity. The study uses a carbon accounting framework that integrates lifecycle carbon accounting, forest growth, forest management practices, and supply data. The results indicated that the 17 existing biomass facilities in the Southeast provide an atmospheric carbon benefit relative to fossil fuel technologies. Expanding biomass electricity to 22 additional plants would likely create a carbon debt that takes 35-50 years to recover from. Then, after 35 to 50 years, those additional 22 plants would also provide carbon benefits relative to fossil fuels.
While less common in the Southeast, use of biomass for thermal energy or combined heat and power are significantly more efficient and have much shorter carbon payback periods (in the range of 5-10 years) than electrical generation. Read the report here: http://tiny.cc/SEcarbon